A few weeks ago I lost a dear friend to suicide. He was my boss at my first 'real' job. A job I loved, and a job that may very well be the best job I will ever have. I loved what I did, who I worked with, and I loved going to work. It was not just a job, but often this is where I saw my friends. These were the people I was closest to for quite a few years of my life. I worked at this job for seven years. I started the week I turned sixteen. I quit a handful of weeks after graduating college. That small business was not just a job to me, but a place I had grown fiercely loyal too.
To this day, whenever I am at one of my many jobs I still have to fight to not answer the phone with the old business name.
He wrote me a goodbye in a way though. I didn't know it at the time. I just didn't. How could I have?
I knew someday he would die, I know someday I will. Suicide hurts in a very stark way. It hurts, because the pain he was feeling must be worse than the pain I am feeling or his family now feels. It hurts because of the darkness he was in.
It hurts, because he could still be here today. He could maybe laugh again and share his stories again. I loved his stories. He had great talent for story telling. I never grew tired of hearing his stories, granted I love people's stories.
At his memorial service I could not have kept back tears if I had tried. The musicians and pastor were all friends of him as well. They struggled with their tears as well. I was blessed to have dear friends surround me, friends that we both shared and who could empathize with the pain.
The one gift I have through this though is knowing he is healed. I fully feel that and believe that. I fully know he is in peace.
The Untitled Hymn was played at the service. I cried for I knew he loved that song. We had discussed that hymn many times before. It was during this song that I knew it was perfect for him in life and remained perfect for him in death.
I take faith in knowing that truly nothing can separate us from the love of God. And that is the joy, the peace, and the hope that will carry me through this loss.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. -Romans 8:38-39