As I read through the article, I was heart broken--for you see--loss of hope was the reason for this surge in numbers. OH--on the death certificates, it lists liver cirrhosis, heart failure, pneumonia, and suicide, but the root cause---no hope. Here we are in the most affluent country in the world--and we have people who have no hope for anything better.
These are not the homeless--not those without families--not those chronically ill. These are women---who cannot seem to find anything to live for---who have given up---and looked to alcohol and drugs for relief from the pain. With the relief came addiction, and with addiction comes destruction of the body, and with that destruction comes death.
I do not see this hopelessness at the shelter when working with the children. Most of their parents are taking advantage of the programs to give them a boost up. They are seeking to better their lives in what many would consider a staggering uphill climb. I do not see despondency upon their faces though, I see determination. What is the difference?
I believe it is a helping hand and the daily reminder of Jesus. As we trek the path on this great planet and face the struggles thrown at us along the way--how do we face tomorrow with the hope of a future promised by Jesus? Somehow these women, at what I consider the prime of life, have become so depressed and disillusioned they are not able to cope and passively accept the knowledge of where there self destructive behavior has them headed. They begin to believe death is better or at least a way out.
What am I to do with this knowledge? What is my responsibility? I am not sure---I will continue to serve those God has placed in my path---and I will continue to pray for my eyes and ears to be open to the opportunities God gives me----and pray for our great nation. I also choose to believe in a Sovereign God and my hope is in Him for us all.