为一只小而明亮的眼睛的鸟致悼词

紫雀11月10日,星期四,我得到消息,教会青年小组的一个15岁女孩结束了自己的生命。我跳上车去了医院,在候诊室里发现了她母亲。我抱了她又抱,不知道该说什么,想着最好什么也别说。但在11月15日,星期二,我们在一个避难所为她的女儿举行了追悼会,那里满是悲伤的朋友和家人,还有几百名泪流满面的青少年,他们不知道这样的事情怎么会发生在自己的孩子身上。我是这样说的:

上周五早上,我和我的朋友华莱士·亚当斯·莱利一起去跑步,他是里士满圣保罗圣公会教堂的牧师。在我们跑步的同时,我告诉他前一天发生的事情,也就是周四,当我得知凯特的消息时。我把整个悲伤的故事都告诉了他,他是我的好牧师。他倾听我,安慰我,答应今天要为我祈祷,因为他知道在这样的时刻,要找到合适的话语是多么困难。但当我们跑完后,他问:“她叫什么来着?”“芬克,”我说。“凯特芬克。我肯定它在德语里是美丽的意思。”“它!”他说。“我大学时有个朋友叫芬克。它的意思是‘雀’,你知道,就是那种鸟。”我确实认识这只鸟。雀类是我的最爱。 They are tiny birds with bright eyes and beautiful voices. I thought, “How perfect for Kat, who seemed so fragile, so vulnerable—like a little bird—and yet who had those bright eyes and that beautiful voice.” And then yesterday I looked again at the verse I read at her baptism, the one Bart read earlier from Matthew 6: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life…. Look at the birds of the air; are you not of more value than they?”

凯特比它们值钱多了。我想起了诗篇139的词句,以及它们是如何描述她的。诗人说:“耶和华啊,是你造就了我的内心;你在我母亲的腹中将我编织。我要赞美你,因为我被造得奇妙可畏。”凯特也是,她被塑造得既可怕又完美,然而我们在她的追悼会上,很多人都想知道为什么。为什么会发生这样的事情,我们能做些什么来防止它呢?我想起了约翰福音第11章的故事,耶稣的朋友拉撒路死了,耶稣去参加葬礼。约翰告诉我们,在那里“耶稣哭了”,因为他太爱拉撒路了。拉撒路的妹子马大出来迎接他,说:“主啊,你若早在这里,我兄弟必不死。” A little later her sister Mary comes out and says the same thing: “Lord, if you had been here my brother would not have died.” Can you imagine how that must have hurt? And yet it’s something we all do at a time like this; we all begin to say, “If only.” “If only I had been there.” “If only I had called her.” “If only I had been a better friend.” But I want you to notice what Jesus does in John 11: he says to Martha, “Your brother will rise again.” And she says, “I know he will, on the Resurrection, at the last day.” But Jesus says, “I am the Resurrection, and the life. Those who believe in me, even if they die, will live. And everyone who lives and believe in me will never die.” What Jesus is saying to Martha is that he is not responsible for Lazarus’ death; he is responsible for his life. And I say to you—all of you who are thinking “if only”—you are not responsible for Kat’s death. Kat was responsible for her death. But Jesus Christ is responsible for her everlasting life.

他就是复活。

“那么,她为什么要这么做呢?”“你问。“她为什么要自杀?”我们可能永远不会知道,但我们最好的猜测是凯特患了一种我们称之为“抑郁症”的疾病。如果她死于癌症,我们仍然会难过,但至少我们会理解,不是吗?我们知道癌症是如何发生的。但抑郁症不同。我们并不完全理解它,但我们知道有不同的种类和不同的程度,从你在数学考试中得了一个糟糕的分数而感到沮丧,到毫无理由地感到无休止的、难以忍受的精神痛苦。我并不完全理解,但在为我们教会一位患有严重抑郁症、有时想自杀的妇女做了一年多的心理咨询后,我更好地理解了这一点。她对我很坦诚,她问了所有正确的问题。

当她问:“自杀是不可饶恕的罪过吗?”我说,“不。根据耶稣的说法,唯一不可饶恕的罪就是亵渎圣灵。”当她问道:“自杀是一种选择吗?”我说,“不。生死攸关的事应掌握在上帝手中,而且只掌握在上帝手中。”当她问:“当我想自杀时该怎么办?”我说:“当你觉得你的手要伸出来伤害自己的时候,就拿起电话打给我,如果我不接,就打911,说:‘我需要帮助。’”不久之前,我接到了她的电话,我能够提供帮助,我为她打来电话感到非常自豪。但她仍然谈论着挥之不去的痛苦。她说要不惜一切代价让痛苦停止。 But mostly she talks about this feeling of being down in a hole, a deep, dark hole, with no way out.

有一天,我让她描述一下那个洞,她说:“好深。”“有多深?”我问。“太深了,你在顶部看不到任何光,”她说。“有多宽?”我问。她说:“大概宽到可以伸开你的胳膊。”“墙是用什么做的?”我问。“土。”她说。“它们是垂直向上还是倾斜的?” I asked. “They go straight up.” “And what’s the floor like?” “It’s dirt, too,” she said, “And some gravel.” Her answers were very specific. They made me believe she had spent a lot of time in that hole. But then I remembered something I did once when I was a boy and I told her about it. My mother had plucked a chicken (some of you may know what that means), and she asked me to bury the grocery bag full of feathers in an unused part of the garden. So, I went out there with a shovel and began to dig. The dirt was so soft that I soon had a nice sized hole, but it was also so soft that I kept on digging until I had dug a proper grave for those chicken feathers. I buried them, but then I moved over a few feet and began to dig again. I dug most of the rest of that day, until I had a circular hole about six feet across and about six feet deep. When I stood at the bottom I could stretch my arms out and almost touch the walls on each side.

第二天,我从洞里挖了一条隧道,一直通到地面上,然后我用一些旧木板和防水布把洞盖上,然后在上面铲一些松散的泥土,直到你几乎看不出它的存在。我从谷仓里拖来一捆稻草,撒在洞里的地板上,直到它变得温暖、干燥,散发出一股甜甜的气味。我在墙上刻了一个小龛,在夸脱罐里放了一支蜡烛,点燃蜡烛,放进小龛里。然后我带着我的睡袋,一个枕头,一本好书,还有一份零食,我希望你能看到我躺在睡袋上,我的头靠在枕头上,周围是散发着香味的稻草,在烛光下吃着零食,读着书。

当我讲完这个故事的时候,这个女人一想到要把一个洞变成这样一个快乐的地方就笑了。我说:“也许你也可以这么做。也许,下次你发现自己在那个洞里的时候,你可以舒舒服服地找本好书,点根蜡烛,吃点零食。也许你可以让这支蜡烛成为上帝存在的象征。”然后我告诉她,“这就是为什么我们要在避难所点蜡烛。每次我们在那里举行礼拜时,我们都会点燃蜡烛,提醒自己上帝就在身边。上帝就在眼前。上帝无处不在,我们无处可去。诗篇139说:“我若在阴间(阴间不过是地洞)铺床,你仍在那里。我若说、黑暗必遮盖我、我四围的光必变为黑夜。 the night is as bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you.” As it says in John 1: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness will never overcome it.” And in Psalm 23: “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for God is with me.”

神与我们

凯特和上帝在一起。

吉姆·萨默维尔市