I was scrolling through a Facebook feed when I noticed that Linkin Park was trending. Next I saw an article about a tribute to Chester Bennington –a tribute? This isn’t good… come to find out the singer of the rock band Linkin Park had taken his own life – suicide.
I cried. I could scarcely believe someone who I had connected to so well during my lifetime through his music had just taken his own life. It’s shocking and terribly sad.
I received the Meteora CD for my 14th birthday as a present from a friend. I listened to it in my CD player over and over again. It was easily my favorite album.
Even when I went camping I still brought Linkin Park with me – letting the older generation have a listen because I wanted them to experience it too.
At times, as an adolescent, it felt like Chester was going through some of the same things I was experiencing — pain, disappointment, skepticism, bitterness and anger.
From the foreword introduction with the sound of breaking glass that segways perfectly into the first loud rock song to Chester’s singing and growling and Mike Shinoda’s rap rhymes the whole album is so raw and palpable. I found this kind of emotional honesty breathtakingly refreshing. Chester was able to express his emotions in a way I wish I could at the time. I admired him speaking so openly about the not-so-niceties of the human condition. Chester references in one of his songs looking for “somewhere I belong”; maybe you too are looking for somewhere you belong.
If so, keep reading!
I want to let you know about a place with an open invitation where we can choose to belong. This place is not a location you would find on a map but it’s a faith journey instead into an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord.
What do I mean by this?
I’m inviting you into (if you don’t already have) a real relationship with Jesus, the living and loving Son of God.
His testimony is given to us in the Bible.
Jesus was born of a virgin and lived a holy life preaching of His Father in heaven and how God wants us to live: loving God and loving one another. Jesus then died on the cross as a blood sacrifice for all people in order to reconcile our broken relationship with God and offer us afterlife. Jesus chose to die because there are profound consequences for the ways in which we act, Jesus chose to pay that price for us.
From the beginning of creation people have rebelliously discarded God’s ways in favor of pursuing our own desires. The reason living out of our own desires is hazardous is because it leads us in circles of pain and disappointment in a selfishly stagnant loop unable to contribute good to anyone: God, ourselves or others. Every action has an eternal consequence whether it is immediately seen or not.
….Maybe you’ve cheated your way in business
….Maybe you’ve lied in a relationship,
….Maybe you have an addiction
…. Or you have hurt someone’s reputation by gossip.
God says that we must adhere to Jesus and stay connected and rooted in Him to be productive in any area of our lives.
““I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn’t bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.
“Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can’t bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can’t bear fruit unless you are joined with me.”
John 15:1-4 MSG
In this world where dark spiritual forces want to keep us stuck and living in a place of anguish, there is hope, forgiveness and a blossoming fruit bearing life found in the healing grace, love and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We don’t have to stay in the middle of Satan’s lies about our identity, meaning, purpose or worth.
Suicide and depression touches everyone in the community in some way, whether you’ve experienced it first hand or know people that have, do not choose to endure it alone. Please seek professional help and the support of your local church/friends and family.
Even not knowing Chester personally, loosing him so tragically still resonates with me.
You are a valuable creation of God’s. God loves you and has your best interests at heart. Stay safe and God Bless you.