Sunday November 26, 2006
I logged onto gmail to find an email from a friend, saying good-bye to me, to six other girls, to the world. “Before I died…” he titled it. It was only after I finished reading the short email did I realize that he really meant, “Before I commit suicide…”
My heart stopped. I couldn’t feel anything, neither grief, nor worry, nor sorrow. Time halted as my brain whirled. I called Amy, a good friend who was also a recipient of this email, hoping she would know what to do. “God,” I prayed, “keep him safe. Keep him safe.”
Amy had found the email earlier than I had and had already contacted Public Safety. She reassured me that they were combing the university campus, looking for this friend, that when he was found he would receive the help he needs to overcome the depression and loneliness plaguing him.
We could only hope, and pray.
Two hours after my friend sent his suicide note, he was found. The university’s public safety officers had found him, I don’t know how. I was there when they took him in for his own safety. I gave him a hug to let him know I cared, I wanted him alive, I wanted him well. I gave him a hug to let him know that no matter how much I cared, God loved him infinitely more, that he must live the life Jesus Christ blessed him with. After seeing my friend safe, relief flooded my heart. I could feel again.
“Thank God. Thank God.”
It is now four hours since the email was sent. Though I don’t know where to go from here, I know only this, that life is precious. I feel it even more keenly now that a friend almost took his with his own hands.
This friend is Christian. Yet he forgot that “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). He forgot that Jesus Christ died so we might live.
I pray he remembers. I pray God will give me the strength, wisdom, and compassion to help him. I pray he lives.
*Name has been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals involved.