Thursday, April 7, 2016

When Depression is Our Companion

When we struggle with depression, isolation can make us feel hopeless. Most in our social circle may mean well, yet do not have the wish or ability to get close and connect on a deeper level. Though surrounded by people we can experience a profound aloneness.

There are valleys we walk that are so deep we wonder who will pause, listen to our pain, and understand? I am thankful that we can be open in our deepest sorrows with our loving Father. He will not turn away, dismiss us with light sentiments, or act awkward. In Christ, He knows us intimately. He knows us to our core. He demonstrated such love on the cross for us, with wonderful grace.

The darkness of depression can bring a numbing separation from anything positive. Hope then seems beyond the control of our immediate moment. We long for understanding yet withdraw into ourselves. Reading the Psalms as an example, we find that God welcomes His children pouring out our deepest pain to Him. There is none of this we need to hide. We are safe to bare all the despair within. We are free to be vulnerable with a Lord who tells us He will never leave us or forsake us, who reminds us how deeply He loves us. As there is no isolation more devastating than separation from God, if we have never accepted His Son we must receive this wonderful gift.

Sometimes our hearts are so weighed down we can not reach out and appreciate God's love in the emotional moment. Depression is like a sickness which may not pass with the best medicine. We can lay this turmoil before Him, knowing He walks us through our days with our hand clasped in His own. In the redemption of Christ, His hand holds strong over ours, where we can not wander, as it could be if the hands were reversed. His grace is not only over us when we can see it, this is just as true in the heart's dry branches, thorns, and thistles. Our wonderful God is good, all the time. His tender, gentle love enfolds with the healing light of pure acceptance in Christ.

Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Psalm 62:8

And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit...but have poured out my soul before the Lord. 1 Samuel 1:15. 

Artwork: © Jeffrey M Green. "Cloudy Dawn", pastels on pastel paper, 8 1/2" x 11".

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