What’s Your Number?

Summer is a time of moments. Moments at the lake, the beach, at your family’s reunion, time together sharing, loving and laughing. Unfortunately, not everyone will be there this summer…not even next week.

This week marked with great desperation where we said goodbye to two famous celebrities who left us forever. There’s no return from taking your life, there’s no do-over, no replay. Like you, I’ve read too much on social media these past several days of how selfish or how this or that, those who are left to survive when a family member takes their own life and how we’re all supposed to feel.

Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain were two of 865 people who committed suicide last week – ONE WEEK! 

The suicides this week of fashion icon Kate Spade and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain have shocked many people. Spade left behind her husband Andy and their 13-year-old daughter. Bourdain left behind his girlfriend Asia Argento and his 11-year-old daughter.

No matter what you’re facing, you are getting stronger. Whether you’re a religious person or not, God sees us and our purpose. He moves us from our weakness and sets us on our strength to go to the next strength. We see mountains and valleys when we take the time during summer just to look out and enjoy nature.

The problem becomes once we’ve crested the mountain, rejoiced in its beauty and enjoyed the view all around, it’s never about if we’ll come down the mountainside and into the valley but when. You’re on top of the world when you inhale the beauty from the mountaintop. The valleys get your attention!

Life is full of mountains and valleys joined together simultaneously. This is the reason why we need rhythm in life instead of balance – only scales balance. Life ebbs and flows, constantly moving up and down like a rollercoaster – you can’t have one without the other. You have dozens of examples in your own life, and for many, your own story is a gut-wrenching churn from one crisis to another like the rolling waves that constantly come ashore.

Courtesy Getty Images

Life isn’t one mountaintop to another stepping over each valley. You may enjoy what God has made when you see from the mountaintop, but you get to know Him when you’re in the valley. Valley’s get your attention and in a hurry. Valleys will have you examine your motives, your heart, your relationships, your agenda, your lead, your purpose, your mission in life.

If you’re reading this with a ‘spiritual but not religious’ perspective, then understand this context, evil lives on earth and evil is a spirit. He will drain your strength, confuse you and will do everything fair and unfair to discourage you – like telling you there is no hope and no reason to go on in this life.

We can all help prevent suicide. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24/7 for you or your loved ones.

Your impact is in doing something after reading this article. Call and text a friend, or two or two hundred. You may be the only who cared enough to reach out during their time of pain. It’s not the weak that take their life, but it’s the strong ones who just want the pain to go away.

Call the Lifeline 1-800-273-8255

People Who Are Suicidal Don’t Want to Die, They Just Want the Pain to Stop

One in five people struggles with mental health issues. That means for every room you enter with hesitancy and your head turned downward, believing you are the only one with issues, one in five of those people are going through the exact same thing.

For someone who has never experienced suicidal thoughts, the thought of wanting to die in itself can seem ludicrous. The sun is shining, there is a chance for another day, you are in love, the breakfast you had that morning was delicious. The thought of dying seems way too far-fetched. Something left for a time far away in the future. What more could you ask for?

But for those who struggle with debilitating mental illnesses, such as depression, the demon of them all, suicide is a strong risk. Let me make this clear. Depression can kill you.

Can you take just one step forward? You can go from strength to strength. You are getting stronger even in your weakest moments. One step at a time, your darkest hour is only sixty minutes long and we can live one minute at a time – just one – I can do that and you can do that!

You can do this – live one minute, take one step forward to the next minute. You can get stronger with one relationship and disconnect from one unhealthy relationship. You can keep taking one small step at a time, not stopping, not accepting where you are in this moment, but strength to strength taking one more step. If you’re in a canyon, a pit, a bottomless hole, you are still getting stronger and you can go from strength to strength.

There’s a selfless sacrifice where you can be planted in the shade whether you plan to sit there or not. We can find fulfillment and purpose in our pain and know we won’t be in this moment for long. Some time later, we can be where we want to be. Be and see the hero in you in this moment. A friend is not someone who you check their status. Your network is not on LinkedIn. A conversation does not happen on a blog, and you don’t have a discussion on Twitter. These are human experiences and we need them!

Reach out to someone you know today!

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