Years before Carson Brooks took his life, but was still struggling with unstable bipolar, he had a playlist on his MP3 player. The song, You Raise Me Up, written by Brendan Graham and Rolf U. Lovland, specifically the version sung by Josh Groban, was one of his favorites. Sometimes, he would play it over and over. Sometimes, I could hear him singing it. (To watch video, click here: https://youtu.be/oni0tO_HN30?t=21)
After Carson took his own life on July 12, 2010, the words of that song took on a different meaning for me. It seemed a cry for help in his dark moments. I really hadn't listened to the lyrics closely:
"When I am down, and, oh, my soul, so weary
When troubles come, and my heart burdened be
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence
Until you come and sit awhile with me
You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas
I am strong when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up to more than I can be."
Today, when I hear it, tears wash my eyes, because I know those that struggle with mental illness yearn to have someone carry them during those dark days, when their soul is so weary, when troubles come, and their heart burdened be.
Yes, as a Believer, I know Jesus carries them in "dark times." But, you see, depending on the severity of their mental illness, their ability to think rationally is impaired to the point that they cannot wrap their thinking around a God that would love them. This is why I advocate so desperately the importance that Christians must be the hands and feet of Jesus for them; during the dark times!
Chances are that you've not ever heard of someone taking their own life because of heart disease. Could it be because so many around them can readily identify that type of illness and suffering, and in turn are then more likely to raise them up, and carry them, until they are stronger?
Listen to this song to see if you can identify why Carson found hope in its lyrics, that he hoped someday someone, other than family, would understand his bipolar disorder and lift him up, to carry him when he felt he could go no more.
Sadly, that didn't happen for Carson. He hid his complex illness and suffering at school, work and church, and chose instead to empathize with others and help them. Only when he came home did he feel free to show his depression; his darkness.
I do have a hard time listening to this song without shedding tears, tears necessary to release the pain of a mother's grieving. I will live my life without one of the precious miraculous gifts God gave Todd Brooks and I.
I will see Carson in Heaven, but that will be a long wait, unless God decides to come sooner.
Please become educated about mental illness. This biological disorder knows no boundaries!
Contact me about our Grace Alliance Support Groups; Family Grace Groups for caregivers of a mentally ill loved one, and Living Grace Groups for anyone struggling with a mental illness. We meet @ Fellowship Church, Grapevine Campus @ 7pm, the 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month.
God made us all with the ability to sympathize. To empathize, you have endure the condition or the same situation. Help those who are suffering and need someone to be that person to raise them up and get them help.
Call me #469-774-3663. I can help with listening, recommending resources and praying for you.
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