John Stonestreet and David Carlson: Anthony Bourdain, Suicide, and Us: a Wake-Up Call for the Church

An epidemic of staggering and tragic proportions is sweeping the country. And Christians are not immune.

This man seemed to have it all. Celebrity chef, TV travel dude, and author Anthony Bourdain circled the globe, going to exotic places, eating the world’s best foods—whether at a West African fish hut or the finest restaurants in Paris. He lived in a multi-million dollar Manhattan condo.

And last week, he took his own life.

Now, if you’ve ever watched the shows, “No Reservations,” or “Parts Unknown,” you know he was kind of a bad boy. Savvy and intelligent, yes. But irreverent, edgy, and sometimes profane. You couldn’t help but think, “This man needs Jesus.”

Sadly, all that Bourdain had and had achieved was not enough to save him from what is now called “death from despair.”

And he’s not alone. His death came right after the suicide of New York handbag designer Kate Spade and a day after the CDC reported that between 1999 and 2016, suicide rates in all but one state in the U. S., across age, gender, and ethnic lines, increased. Suicides, in fact, are the second leading cause of death for people ages 15-34. Throw in the other “deaths of despair,” such as drug overdoses and complications from alcoholism, and we have a public health crisis of the first order.

Given the state of our culture, it’s not surprising. People seem more isolated than ever before, despite—or perhaps in part because of—being more virtually connected. Loneliness and depression are epidemic and rising, and the mediating institutions of communities, like families, churches, civic organizations are struggling, to say the least. Social ties are fraying at an astonishing pace.

In our society, it’s increasingly difficult for individuals to be spiritually, mentally, and emotionally healthy.

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Source: Christian Post