Roy Exum: Morning Always Comes

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

NOTE: My close friends know that I adore the writings and common sense of Max Lucado, a fountain of hope from San Antonio. Last week, as two celebrities ended their lives, I was drawn to an essay by Max that all of us who struggle with depression must never forget because it’s fact.  In Psalms there is a wonderful verse, “For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” In this gem from Max, he explains why the darkness never lasts, and begs us to hold on a little while longer.

* * *

“BUT JOY COMETH IN THE MORING” BY Max Lucado

The suicides of CNN’s Anthony Bourdain and fashion designer Kate Spade illustrate an all-to-common tragedy – the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported this week that nearly 45,000 people committed suicide in the U.S. in 2016 alone, and said the suicide rate in the U.S. rose by nearly 30 percent from 1999 to 2016.

While the CDC report isn’t surprising, it is sobering. If a disease saw a spike like we’ve seen with suicides, we would deem it an epidemic.

How do we explain the increase? We’ve never been more educated. We have tools of technology our parents could not have dreamed of. We are saturated with entertainment and recreation. Yet more people than ever are orchestrating their own departure. How could this be? And what can we do?

Suicide victims battled life’s rawest contests. They often faced a mental illness or physical illnesses and felt the peril of mental fatigue. What you and I take for granted, they coveted. Optimism. Hope. Confidence that all would be well – that they would be well.

Their clouds had no silver linings. Their storms had no rainbows.

What led fashion designer Kate Spade to take her own life?

If that describes the way you feel, can I urge you to consider one of the great promises of the Bible? The promise begins with this phrase: “Weeping may last through the night” (Ps. 30:5).

Of course, you knew that much. You didn’t need to read the verse to know its truth. Weeping can last through the night. Weeping may last through the night, and the next night and the next.

This is not news to you.

But this may be: “Joy comes with the morning” (Ps. 30:5). Despair will not rule the day. Sorrow will not last forever. The clouds may eclipse the sun, but they cannot eliminate it. Night might prolong the dawn, but it cannot defeat it. Morning comes. Not as quickly as we want. Not as dramatically as we desire. But morning comes, and, with it, comes joy. Joy comes.

Joy comes because God comes.

In his book “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living,” published in 1948, Dale Carnegie told the story of a woman he called Mary Cushman who learned this important truth.

The Depression of the 1930s all but devastated Mary’s family. Her husband’s paycheck shrank to $18 a week. Since he was ill, there were many weeks he didn’t earn even that much.

Mary began to take in laundry and ironing. She dressed her five kids with Salvation Army clothing. At one point the local grocer, to whom they owed $50, accused her 11-year-old son of stealing.

That was all Mary could take.

Mary said: “I couldn’t see any hope … I shut off my washing machine, took my little five-year-old girl into the bedroom and plugged up the windows and cracks with paper and rags. I turned on the gas heater we had in the bedroom – and didn’t light it.

“As I lay down on the bed with my daughter beside me, she said, ‘Mommy, this is funny, we just got up a little while ago.’ But I said, ‘Never mind, we’ll take a little nap.’ Then I closed my eyes, listening to the gas escape from the heater. I shall never forget the smell of that gas. …

“Suddenly, I heard music. I listened. I had forgotten to turn off the radio in the kitchen. But it didn’t matter now. But the music kept on and presently I heard someone singing an old hymn.

“What a friend we have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
Oh, what peace we often forfeit
Oh what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer

“As I listened to the hymn, I realized I had made a terrible and tragic mistake. ... I had tried to fight all my terrible battles alone. I jumped up, turned off the gas, opened the door and raised my windows.”

Mary went on to explain how she spent the rest of the day giving thanks to God for the blessings she had forgotten: five healthy children. She promised that she would never be ungrateful. Her family eventually lost their home, but she never lost her hope. They weathered the Depression. Those five children grew up, married, and had children of their own.

Mary said: “As I look back on that terrible day when I turned on the gas, I thank God over and over that I woke up in time. What joys I would have missed. How many wonderful years I would have forfeited forever. … Whenever I hear now of someone who wants to end his life I feel like crying out, ‘Don’t do it! Don’t.’ The blackest moments we live through can only last a little time – and then comes the future.”

And you? You’ll be tempted to give up. Please don’t. Open your Bible. Meditate on Scripture. Sing hymns. Talk to someone about your hurt. Seek help. Place yourself in a position to be found by hope. Weeping comes. But so does joy. Darkness comes, but so does the morning. Sadness comes, but so does hope. Sorrow may have the night, but it cannot have our life.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

* * *

THE SURVIVOR’S CREED

When going through these tough times, Max has a creed that encourages and instructs:

You will get through this.
It won’t be painless.
It won’t be quick.
But God will use this mess for good.
Don’t be foolish or naïve.
But don’t despair either.
With God’s help, you’ll get through this.

------

royexum@aol.com


Questions About TVA And Controlling Water Levels - And Response

When Lies Become Normal In Politics - And Response (2)

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com; Include Your Full Name, Address, Phone Number For Verification


So in 2003 Chattanooga and Marion County and more people below Chickamauga Dam suffered a 100 year flood because TVA had not prepared for the amount of rain that fell. Since then up until 2018 ... (click for more)

The far right Trump cult has allowed themselves to be whipped into such misinformation frenzy, that colossal lying from our president is completely acceptable to them. The misplaced excessive ... (click for more)

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. This includes your home address and phone ... (click for more)


Opinion

Questions About TVA And Controlling Water Levels - And Response

So in 2003 Chattanooga and Marion County and more people below Chickamauga Dam suffered a 100 year flood because TVA had not prepared for the amount of rain that fell. Since then up until 2018 they have done a great job with controlling the flooding problems. On Feb. 14 they started dumping water at Chickamauga Dam and raising the river, bringing the river level up. Feb 15 it's ... (click for more)

When Lies Become Normal In Politics - And Response (2)

The far right Trump cult has allowed themselves to be whipped into such misinformation frenzy, that colossal lying from our president is completely acceptable to them. The misplaced excessive admiration of Trump’s right wing cult has allowed lies to become normal behavior with our president. Promises made without follow through become lies – i.e. Mexico will pay for the Southern ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Sanford Found Innocent Of 2000 Strangulation Murder In East Ridge

A Criminal Court jury on Friday night found Jason Sanford not guilty in the 2000 strangulation death of an East Ridge woman. The defense put on no proof. Sanford spent two and a half years in jail awaiting trial in the Cold Case. Earlier on Friday, a Michigan man gave a deathbed statement that his first cousin had admitted killing Sarah Davis Perry. The jury heard ... (click for more)

Trio Charged In Armed Robbery Of Dunkin Doughnuts On Highway 58

Three men have been charged with the robbery of the Dunkin Doughnuts on Highway 58 on Wednesday night. Charged with aggravated robbery were Justin Marcus Brakefield, 29, of 7310 Standifer Gap Road, Demarketh King, 30, of 4613 Locksley Lane, and Xavior Travon Robinson, 18, of 3606 Locksley Lane. An employee said three males walked into the business through a back door that ... (click for more)

Sports

Baylor, Cleveland Claim State Wrestling Titles

The Cleveland Blue Raiders didn’t leave much room for doubt on the final day of the TSSAA Traditional State wrestling tournament at the Williamson County Agricultural Expo Park in Franklin Saturday. While Cleveland breezed to their title by a 65.5 point margin over runner-up Wilson Central, the competition in the other two divisions was much closer. Baylor had an outstanding ... (click for more)

East Hamilton Girls, Boys Reach Disrict 5-3A Tournament Championship Round

Expected inclement weather will not dampen East Hamilton’s basketball spirits on Monday and Tuesday. That’s because on Saturday, the East Hamilton girls and boys posted semifinal victories and are penciled in as District 5-3A tournament finalists against Bradley Central’s Bearettes and Cleveland’s streaking Blue Raiders, respectively, at Soddy-Daisy High School. The No. 3 ... (click for more)