Chris and I fell in love very quickly…after only about 2 months actually (he would tell you a few weeks for him…sweet man). We married 11 months after we started dating, and this August would have marked our 3rd wedding anniversary.
You can ask anybody that knows me well (and even some that don’t know me that well), God had not only blessed our marriage, but He blessed the type of love we had for each other. We were crazy about each other, and our love never weakened after getting married…it actually grew stronger. We couldn’t stand to be apart for very long, and we acted like a bunch of lovesick teenagers most of the time. We never had a single argument, and I can count on one hand the number of times we had what I would classify as a “disagreement”. It almost always seemed to be about time. Chris couldn’t tell time very well. Ha! Ha!
I know he loved me. He told me…all the time. He sent me a love email every morning and love texts throughout the day. He told everybody how much he loved me, and I know I was blessed beyond belief to have somebody love me like that. And…even more…to be given a second chance at such an amazing love after such a heartbreaking divorce many years ago. God truly redeemed the years the locusts had eaten in my marriage to Chris.
So, how could a man that loves me that much end his own life? Yes…he committed the S word. Suicide.
Many have asked how my husband died, and many of you already know. But, I honestly had to write this post not to answer the question, but simply…for me. Every word I write is part of the healing process it seems.
But, the answer to the question of “why” will never be fully understood this side of heaven. There was no note. There was no obvious reason. But, in talking with professionals, and in putting together some pieces of the puzzle with a little hindsight (only about 3-4 days worth of hindsight actually)…it appears to have been mental illness. It appears that Chris may have been mentally sick, and it may have even been his first “episode”. It’s possible he had no idea what was happening to him. But these things I do know…
Chris was a believer!
Chris was cleansed of all sin through the blood of Jesus!
Chris loved God!
Chris loved God’s word!
Chris is now completely healed in heaven!
While I can type these words, and while I know them to be true…it has been a difficult road to walk. Within minutes of my receiving this tragic and life-altering news, Satan was already working on me. With thoughts like…
Leah, how could you have let him do this?
Leah, you could have stopped this.
Leah, you are not worthy of love like this.
Leah, you always fail at marriage.
Leah, you’re alone again.
Leah, you are nothing.
Leah, God can never use you now. This is shaming to Him.
My mind was going crazy with these stupid thoughts. And, I actually remember uttering some of them out loud, because I also remember my friend, Lorie, looking me in the eye (while I was still in a state of shock) and boldly reminding me these were all lies of the enemy.
In the 4 weeks that have followed Chris’ death, God has also been reminding me of a few things. Interestingly, these were the same words that I shared with a precious group of women in Kentucky just a few months ago…
Daughter, remember I am the only One that determines your worth. Your circumstances do not determine your worth. Your family does not determine your worth. Your friends do not determine your worth. I made you…you are Mine…and I love you! And…My love is complete!
My earthly love affair with Chris may have ended abruptly because of the S word, but my love affair with Christ is only heating up more and more intensely. And…He calls me worthy.