Lost on Long Island: My Life with (and without) God – Part IX

Escape from the L.I.E... by Tasayu Tasnaphun


In high school, I learned the Peter Principle –

“People rise to their level of incompetence.”


In seminary, I was taught –

“Be careful what you pray for;

You might just get it.”


Still, I prayed to rise –

More people, a bigger community, better pay.


A church on Long Island called

And offered me all this and more…

… more than I expected.

… more than I could handle.


From the moment I landed, I was consumed with busyness

That had no end.

The church needed a Savior.

And I wasn’t Him.

The ministry became my golden calf

Where I sacrificed my family and my sanity.


One night I went to bed early,

Emotionally exhausted and physically drained.

Lying in bed, I heard a voice say,

“It’s okay.”


But it wasn’t the voice of assurance.

It was a word of relinquishment.


I got up and filled my palm with psychotropic drugs.

Put them in my mouth and swallowed.

I did it again.

And again.


It wasn’t enough to kill me.

Only to put me in a drug-induced stupor.

I collapsed on the floor.


Alice found me and called my psychiatrist

He said I could sleep it off.

But I kept falling onto the floor,

My body was contorted; I kept running into walls.

Alice had to direct me to the bathroom,

And clean up after me when I missed.


I was angry…

… angry at myself for making such a mess of things.

… angry at Alice for cleaning up my mess.

… angry at God for messing with me.


Some people ask me now how someone who claims

To be in a saving relationship with Jesus Christ

Could try to kill himself.


I don’t have a good answer.

I only know that though I’ve wanted to give up on God.

God hasn’t given up on me.


Now I’ve come back to the outskirts of Nineveh,

Grateful for the shade God provides,

Hiding from the scorching sun.


The story begins…

Out of Nineveh: My Life with (and without) God – Part I

Sent to Serve: My Life with (and without) God – Part II

Prayer, Parenting, Pits, and Pills: My Life with (and without) God – Part III

A Clarion Call: My Life with (and without) God – Part IV

Alone in a Fog: My Life with (and without) God – Part V

On a Teeter-Totter: My Life with (and without) God – Part VI

In the Heart of the Finger Lakes: My Life with (and without) God – Part VII

Chosen to Adopt: My Life with (and without) God – Part VIII

(photo: “Escape from the L.I.E…” from Tasayu Tasnaphun, some rights reserved)