Parents of Struggling Kids Need to Remember This

by | Jun 15, 2020 | hope | 10 comments

Welcome today’s guest blogger, pastor and father Nick Watts. Nick writes from the heart of a fellow wounded parent. His son Jordan died by sucide. Nick’s words carry weight for those of us trying to find our way on a difficult path.

I had been in full-time, vocational ministry for just over 30 years when, for the first time in my life, I gained previously unknown insight into the depth of the evil Satan possesses. 

After Jordan Blake Watts took his life I was crippled in every way, en route to being hospitalized for suicidal thoughts myself. 

As you can imagine, during that first year, I, numerous times, broke down into screaming madness on the floor.

Later, as I reflected back on those moments of unspeakable pain, I recalled how intense the battle was for my mind.

Finish the Job

I remember distinctly a voice in my head telling me to “finish the job. Go see your son. Your family will be much better off without your broken mind.  Finish. The. Job.”

Logic says that, at that point in my life, being 100% useless to the kingdom of heaven here on planet earth, Satan would’ve moved on to someone else.

Satan didn’t care. 

His goal?  Finish the job. Take me out. Hurt my family deeper.  

I learned from a counselor once, “You can’t fight an enemy you don’t know exists.”

According to the Bible, the devil exists. 

And he hates everything about you. 

If you’ve placed your faith in Christ, you are an active threat to his plans. 

If you’ve never placed your faith in Christ, you potentially could do that one day. That makes you a potential threat.  

He. Hates. You. And won’t stop at attempting to take you out.  

He Won’t Give Up

photo cred. Abel Marquez on unsplash

Marriage in shambles? Just lost a loved one? Just diagnosed with cancer? Suffering from crippling depression? Facing unanticipated financial crisis? Been recently betrayed. Wrestling with addiction? Lost your job? (Insert here your most recent crushing life event.) The list goes on…

Satan doesn’t care how bad it is for you. He’s coming after you to finish the job. 

Two gospel writers, Matthew & Luke, record the temptation narratives (the “showdown in the desert” between Christ and Satan). Both in chapter 4.  

There are a dozen sermons in those passages. Mine here is just one:

After failing to get Jesus to sin the first time, Matthew records, “Then the devil..” (4:5)

Satan wasn’t going to give up. 

After failing yet a second time, Matthew records in verse 8, “*Again*, the devil…”

He still wasn’t going to give up.  

While the Cross offers us mercy, the devils offers us none. 

Finally, Jesus ordered Satan, “Be gone!” And Satan had no choice but to leave. 

The Devil Wants You To Forget This!

But Luke adds this ominous warning: the devil “departed from [Jesus] *until an opportune time*.” (4:13)

Paul reminds believers that, because of Christ, “we overwhelmingly conquer through him who loved us.” (Romans 8:37) The disciple, John, put it this way: “Greater is he who is in us, than he who is in the world.” (1 Jn. 4:4)

photo cred. macau photo agency on unsplash

But, the devil works hard to get us to forget that.

This way he can continue his relentless, systematic, and methodical strategy to take out families and individuals. Once and for all. 

You can’t fight an enemy you don’t know exists. 

But God

My objective here is to remind you we have an enemy.

But, he is no match for the risen King, Jesus Christ, at whose presence the devil cowers in terror. 

“Put on the whole armor of God,” an imprisoned Paul wrote, “that you may be able to take your stand against the schemes of the devil.”

Soli Deo Gloria. 

For Narnia. 


Recommended Books and Resources: 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline   800-273-8255 (TALK)

The Hope Line  800-394-4673  Coaches available 24/7

Grieving a Suicide by Albert Hsu

Finding Your Way After the Suicide of Someone You Love by Biebel and Foster


Still Standing after all the Tears by Valerie Silveira

Nick Watts

Nick Watts  Nick is married, has three children, and has been a pastor for 36 years. Having grown up in a violent, alcoholic home he experienced his fair share of pain: his dad died of alcoholism and his youngest sister died from a drug-related illness. However, nothing comes close to the day he walked into his son Jordan’s bedroom and discovered he’d hung himself.  He was 19.Follow Nick’s blog:


*(Today’s post is from the archives.)

*Was this helpful? Please leave a comment. I will share them with Nick.



  1. Cindy Jo Seerveld

    Thank you! Was very good to see real honesty about his heart struggles! It’s so painful. Yet God is the Victor!

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      Yes, in spite of the struggle, God is the Victor!

    • Brendaly Segarra

      Thank you so much for sharing this. My son’s are both in jail charged with horrible charges. My youngest took a plea and will be home in a few months (he just turned 17 last week) my oldest is 19 and was offered a plea of 10 years. I found out about his involvement yesterday and felt it had been the worse day of my life. I wanted to kill myself too but kept thinking of my other son and my mom . I tried to rationalize that God understands my mental state and pain and that he will forgive me.After reading this today I have renewed hope that Jesus will get us through this. God bless you for your encouragement.

      • Tom and Dena Yohe

        Brendaly, I’m so glad that Nick’s words (the dad who wrote this blog) renewed your hope that Jesus will get you through and you changed your mind, choosing to live instead of ending your life! I praise God for this! I am so sorry for your pain. Cling to Jesus and when you feel like you can’t hold on any more, lift your eyes toward heaven…Jesus will cling to you!
        And if you should feel despondent again in the future, I want you to have this phone number you can call any time of the day, including weekends or holidays. A trained volunteer who really does care will help you: 800-273-8255 (This is the number of the National Suicide Prevention Hotline).

        I also have a friend who has been through something similar. She is available to talk with you if you’d like. She can understands your pain. Let me know and I can send you her information in an email.

        “May the God of hope fill you with joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 15:13).

  2. Trudy

    This is such a good reminder. Satan has spoken these same lie to me, “Your family will be better off without you.” While I can’t prevent that thought crossing my mind (like a bird flying over your head), I can refuse to dwell in it (not allowing the bird to build a nest on my head).

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      Trudy, you are so right. We choose what we will do with those thoughts from Satan. We’re glad you found Nick’s blog to be a good reminder.

  3. Janis Van Keuren

    Thank you for reminding me that there is an enemy who is trying to destroy me.
    It gives me the right perspective as we battle through the heartaches of our sons.

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      We’re so sorry for the heartaches, but grateful this reminder helped. God, please strengthen Janis in the battle. Keep her strong Christ. Amen.

  4. Caroline

    My wounded heart was touched by your words I’m so sorry for your loss and I too am a wounded warrior for Christ I grew up with abuse on both sides of my family and evil sin of every kind when I was 25 I turned to the lord and taught my children the Holy word of God they are adults now and tonight i found out my oldest son Stephen married a man my second son is in rehab his mental health and heart damaged 20 years addictions leaving my precious baby granddaughter my youngest son Jared says he doesn’t believe in God so I was searching for some kind of hope and I found it in your words of faith thank you God Bless you I believe Jesus I will not let satan win

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      Caroline, I’m sorry for the delay in a response. I was out of town and then we’ve been having issues with our website. I’m so sorry for all you’ve been through with your children and so grateful God used my words to touch your wounded, weary heart. Never give up praying as you keep giving then back to Him. Your pain is deep and few can understand. I hope you can find a support group in your area where you can process your feelings and draw strength from each other. It will help so much. May the Lord give you deep peace as you do your best to keep trusting Him with your pain and disappointment. A book you might like is Shattered Dreams by Larry Crabb. It helped me have more realistic expectations. It’s listed on our website under the “books” tab.
      Sincerely in Christ, Dena