By Dennis Daniel Muhumuza
Just the other day TV West ran a story of the head of parishioners in Kagadi who hanged himself in his house. You would expect that someone serving in church would never ever entertain the idea of committing suicide. But when the going gets tough, when one feels overwhelmed; the grim reaper is bound to pounce, and in such circumstances, the rich or poor, famous or obscure, can all fall prey.That’s why it should not bewilder you that celebrated American chef, author and television personality Anthony Bourdain and famous American fashion designer and businesswoman Kate Spade recently committed suicide in spite of all their money, fame and power.
In Britain alone, accordingly, nine million people regardless of age, social or economic status are affected by loneliness. Loneliness and depression are universal concerns that affect multitudes of people worldwide because of the capitalistic nature of the present epoch, small, isolated families, and the influence of social media which has replaced physical bonding and interactions in most cases. In Uganda alone, most people are lonely and depressed because of unemployment or underpayment, poverty, and diseases like HIV or cancers. Because of these, many people have found the going getting tough, causing many to give up on life, which explains the increasing rates of suicides and broken relationships as reported in the press.
Is there a way out?
Of course. In his 1985 classic, English singer Billy Ocean crooned that “when the going gets tough, the tough get going.” Basically he was calling on people to grow a thick skin and refuse to give up no matter the circumstances. This optimistic stance was also espoused by American motivational writer and preacher Dr. Robert H. Schuller as is evident in his book titled, Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do (1996). Having that positive outlook on life; knowing that challenges are there not to kill us but to make us strong will help us to overcome. As St. Paul the apostle said in Romans 5:3-5, we should glory in our sufferings because suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character and character breeds hope that does not disappoint. Secondly, we should not fight the challenges of life alone, but must seek help. It’s true that sometimes we seek help overtly or covertly and are disappointed when the people we reach out to ignore or bluntly refuse to help us. But that should not resign us to fighting alone. In fact, in most cases, a problem shared is a problem fully solved!
Connected to this, it always helps to surround yourselves with good people. The Bible says bad company corrupts good morals. Most of the addictions and perversions such as abusing drugs and addiction to pornography are often introduced to us by peers, who moreover abandon us when the effects of our indulgences begin to bite. So rather than surround yourself with people that are only interested in clubbing and betting, it is more beneficial to surround yourself with those that are enterprising enough to help you fulfill your dreams.
These are people you can confide in; people that can chip in with help when you are broke or in need of social support. People that can give you good advice and pray with you. It’s such industrious, purpose-driven people that the writer of Hebrews had in mind when he encouraged us not to give up the habit of meeting together, and that we should continue encouraging one another and all the more as we see the day approaching. Are you in the company of encouragers or discouragers? Are you a friend of optimists or pessimists? The type of people you hang out with will determine whether you will rise up and or sink in times of storms.
Last but not least, pray. The potency of prayer in calming the tumults of the heart is unrivalled. One of my favorite verses is Philippians 4:6-7. It says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ” (NIV). Usually when I’m getting restless about some tough situations, when demons of fear and doubt are beginning to creep in on the inside, I’ve often invoked this scripture through faith, and it has always helped me. It can help you too.
Nov 14, 2018 0Setting out in 1993, Uganda Martyrs University (UMU) has...
Jul 03, 2018 Comments Off on When a worker is punished for being honestBy Venansio Ahabwe Mr. Naperi did not acquire a lot of...