31 For the Lord will not cast off for ever: 32 But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies.
In my last post I mentioned suicidal thoughts. These aren’t new to me. I’m not sure how many of my readers have considered (or are currently considering) suicide, but if you are, or maybe if you’ve stumbled here by chance after searching the web for reasons to live, then hear brutal honesty from a man who’s sick and tired of the truisms and emotionally-distant talking-points flooding our society about this topic:
Faith really is the issue.
I know how that sounds. How can it be that simple? I’d get mad anytime someone suggested it. “Of COURSE I believe God exists!” I’d tell people. How could I not? The problem, though, is even demons believe God exists. A suicidal man may believe God exists, he just doesn’t believe God cares. He doesn’t believe God is willing to interfere in the world on his behalf or on behalf of justice.
So, dear reader, look deep inside and ask yourself: if you really have no hope in God then why not pull the trigger? That’s where you’ll find your faith. That’s where I found mine. I discovered a mustard seed sized belief that God wasn’t done with me; that I had work left to do. When it came down to it, I realized I still had faith that God might do something big in my life.
I read a post on Cambria Will Not Yield suggesting Shakespeare was a greater philosopher than Immanuel Kant. At the time, I was taken with philosophy. Reared in the Presbyterian tradition, I was characteristically devout in studying systematics and spent hours working through analytic philosophy and theology. I made a name for myself as a Christian apologist, debating philosophy majors and uppity God-haters of all stripes. As quaint as I thought CWNY’s commentary was, I could never admit Kant was outdone by a playwright.
That was before the “slings and arrows” of life forced me to look beyond intellectual parlor games to find my mustard seed of Faith. Now I’d only venture to disagree with CWNY in that, in my current state of mind, I feel it’d be an insult to accuse Shakespeare of being a philosopher at all. To tie him in with that bunch is a heavy charge. Of course, if we’re going to compare them, Shakespeare is the greater philosopher. He skipped all the nonsense about transcendental idealism or pure and practical reason, choosing instead to answer that timeless question: “to be or not to be?”
I’ve suffered many defeats in my life and few victories. My people are defined by tragedy, suffering, and loss (I’m speaking of southerners). The whole of antique-European culture is “gone with the wind”, leaving behind a legacy of descent. If there was ever a time white boys needed to pick up their Hamlet and read, it’s now.
To be or not to be?
What was Hamlet’s answer?
“O, from this time forth,
My thoughts be bloody or be nothing worth!”
In light of Hamlet’s resolution and its unique applicability to my life, I’ll be taking a break from blogging for awhile. I need time to fast and pray and focus on my spiritual health as well as plan for a future that may very well include rash acts of heroism.
Fare thee all well, for now.