I have already wrote a bit about what I mean by this phrase so please read that post first (titled, homesick – yearning for your true home).
But here I want to talk about how homesickness causes depression. General homesick doesn’t, because you can easily get home. But being homesick from Jesus makes it complex and complicated.
The gap between you and your true home feels to big, and this can cause despair. We know that the new creation will be incredible, so we feel trapped in this world, in this broken, sinful world, that creates a gap, a chasm between you and the God who made you. Between you and the people sitting right next to you.
It can be easy when the homesickness gets loud to what to get home by any means necessary, but to do that means suicide.
Something that is massively misunderstood, that people don’t want to think about and think people can easily snap out of it. But you don’t usually shave unless you depression (I think, correct me if I’m wrong). And it is clear from the bible, from society and from pretty much anyone who isn’t suicidal that it is a bad thing.
Many people will say that if you aren’t a christian and you are suicidal it’s because you don’t know Jesus. And while this may be true, that doesn’t count the people who Jesus didn’t cure of depression. Who didn’t take away my struggle. Many told me he would (and while he definitely can), I want to talk to those who are saved but still struggle.
Because as a christian you shouldn’t have depression, you have nothing to complaining about right? You know Jesus so that should be the end of it, right?
But that negates the fact that we still live in a fallen world. We know this world isn’t as it should be, we know that things are still difficult. But we act as if they shouldn’t be. We shame people who still struggle. And we shouldn’t, why? Because it makes no sense too.
We all have our struggles, and we shouldn’t feel ashamed to talk about them, with mine I have three common responses either they act awkward, tell me I shouldn’t say it. However this response is mainly because people operate out of a if I act as if it isn’t there it’ll go away, or if she doesn’t tell me its no longer my problem. This response is at best unhelpful and at worse dangerous. Because we aren’t talking about capacity (that’s a different topic) we are talking about people not wanting to deal with it because it’s complex and difficult to hear. The second response is they treat me as if I’m fragile and could break at any second, people forget that if I can cope with this (with God’s help) I can handle most things. I am stronger than you think. These people try to fix you, they think it’s there personal mission to make you all better, and when it doesn’t happen the way they think it should they get frustrated.
The third response, is less common, but these people accept you as you are. Don’t see you as fragile. But see you as a person, a person loved by God more than they could ever love me. They are there to talk, to listen, but don’t freak out. They get sad at what you are saying, but instead of letting go they hold you tighter. Instead of creating a chasm between you and them they move in closer.
I am lucky to have friends that fall into this last category.
Having suicidal ideation is serious and often people need help, but they need love too. Because fundamentally they are homesick, and just like a child who craves to be home we crave to be home too. Just like you would hold a child and cry together, we need you to do that for us too. We aren’t fragile, holding us closer won’t break us, and though we may hurt you (just like any human being would) it’s worth it, because we also can show you what it means to suffer daily, what it means to pick up your cross and follow Jesus, which for us to just keep breathing.