OK everyone seems to be blogging about the tragic death of Robin Williams. I agree it is tragic and I can’t begin to imagine what his life must have been like. Many are blogging about the depression he suffered from. I have only experienced depression on a very mild basis and it only lasted a week. It was not diagnosed by a doctor, but I knew I was in depression. I was lucky enough to reach out to my prayer warriors and ask for prayer. I cannot and will not write about something I know very little about. But, I also see his tragic death through different eyes and that’s what I’d like to share.
I believe Robin was a very talented man. His creativity was something everyone admired and looked to for inspiration. His movies often moved us to laughter, tears and maybe we even learned something from them. We all stepped back from life for just a little while as we watched his movies or heard him do his comedy routine.
As I look upon his life I see a successful man; a man who was looked at as being one of the greats in our society. Men and women alike wanted to have the success that Robin had. He had money, fame and fortune. Those are all great things, but in the end what did it get him?
Although Robin’s biggest problem may have been depression, drugs and alcohol I believe he had yet another bigger problem and that is being of this world. I think he might have (and I say might because I don’t know) depended on how the world viewed him for his peace of mind. I think it all depended on what others thought of him and how many he could make laugh. Making others laugh is not a bad thing, but when your life is all about the applause and accolades then I think we need to stop and ask ourselves, is that all there is? What happens when there is no more applause or accolades? What happens when life stops?
I think it is so unfortunate that so many of our actors and actresses get caught up in alcohol and drugs. I think it’s sad that producers and directors push and push until these men and women are burned out. So, what do they do? They use alcohol and drugs to keep them going. I am sure they like how it makes them feel too. Too many of these folks love being in the center of attention and love all this world has to offer them.
Romans 12:2, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” God calls each of us to be transformed into a new person. We aren’t to copy the lifestyles of others. So many look at people like Robin Williams and others and think they have the perfect lifestyle so they seek their lifestyle and too many times it ends tragically.
What does that have to do with us? We all know the lifestyles of the rich and famous, but how does that relate to us? No matter who we are or what we do, we can be a minister, a successful missionary, a successful businessman, or a success at anything but if we look to others for our accolades and depend on others to tell us how great we are then we are falling into the same trap. We look at people like Robin Williams and say, “how tragic.” We think it can never happen to us, but if we don’t keep our eyes on God and our focus on Him we can just as easily fall away and become of this world and not in this world. As we become successful in whatever God calls us to do we need to remain in Him and fully rely on Him.
Just like Robin Williams we may have all the money we can spend, we may have all the accolades anyone can receive, we may strive to be the top dog in our churches, in business, in our communities, we may strive to be the center of attention and we may receive all kinds of praise but when life comes to an end what will you gain? If you and I are more about the praise we get from our fellow man, if you and I are more about getting accolades for all the work we’ve have done and we don’t stay focused on what is true then it won’t mean a thing when life is done.
I am sorry for Robin William’s death. His death will surely be a great loss, but at the same time I am grateful for his death, because it once again reminds me to stop and think about what is really important. It reminds me life will come to an end and it makes me wonder what this life means when it all ends. I don’t know if Robin had faith or not, I don’t know what his relationship with God is or was, but I do know hearing God say, “Well done good and faithful servant” is all the accolade I need to hear. Hearing God’s angels and all those in heaven applaud as I enter the gates is all the applause I need. In order to get that accolade and that applause I have to stay focused. I have to be willing to be transformed and not copy those of this world whom I may think are successful.
Do you value what others think of you more than you do God’s thoughts about you? Is it more about receiving praise and accolades from your church, your business or your community? Do you always have to be the center of attention in all you do? If you would do those things you do anonymously and not get any accolades or recognition would you still do it?
Dear Lord, I do pray for Robin William’s family. It’s tragic that we will always remember how his life ended. Let his life be a reminder to me it’s not about praise, honor or glory, but it’s all about you and how I transform my life to reflect your life in me. Help me not to copy the lives of successful people but to copy the life of Jesus Christ as He walked this earth. May others not see the success I am, but may they see Christ in me. Amen.