Spiritual Practice


Mary Lynn Johnson, 20

Several years ago, a friend of mine confided in me that she was struggling with suicidal thoughts. I immediately talked to an adult about the situation, and people stepped in to help. Even though our friendship was shaky for a while, I know I did the right thing.

Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.
Proverbs 31:8a (NIV)

When people are hurting so deeply that suicide seems like the answer to their problems, their thoughts and judgment are clouded by circumstances and oftentimes by emotional health issues. They are captive to something that is difficult to work through without help. As a friend, our job is to be an advocate for their safety since they cannot do this themselves. By telling a trusted adult about these situations, you could be saving their lives.

When our friends confide in us their thoughts and emotions, we may feel that we’re violating their trust by telling someone else. But the Bible is clear that we need to speak up for those who need help. They may be upset with us at first, and our friendship may be bumpy for a while; but it’s worth the cost. Our friends are precious; they need to know how much we care.


ACT ON IT: If a friend is talking about suicide, don’t hesitate to tell an adult you trust and to get your friend the help he or she needs.

—from devozine (November/December 2012). Copyright © 2012 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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