Depression can sometimes feel like a dirty word to a believer.
A few weeks ago I got into my own head and once there, my thoughts spiraled downward. I have some physical problems that left me in a dark place. Nothing life threatening, but two unrelated, painful issues that will stay with me the rest of my life.
And that really bothered me.
Due to flare ups, I wasn’t physically able to do normal, day to day activities. I couldn’t leave the house for long periods of time or do easy household tasks. I couldn’t even do the things that I enjoy, like my sewing or simply playing with my grandkids.
Slowly, day by day the darkness crept in. “Is this it, is this how it’s going to be from now on? What am I even good for? What if I’m never the same again?”
I have this picture in my head of what I’m supposed to be as a Pastor’s wife, as a mom. I tend to over analyze my performance in these areas (which is a root of worry over what others think of me, and a sin I tend to battle) Satan knows this, and by the end of the week depression had made a home inside my head. I felt like a huge disappointment, worthless and unloved.
All within 7 days.
I had no other words and found myself just asking God to please help me over and over, not so much from the physical pain, but from where my thoughts had taken me. I stayed in His word, reminding myself of His goodness and blessings~
but even when we do these things, sometimes the “hard” is still very hard. By Sunday night the tears wouldn’t stop and decided I was going to stay in bed all day Monday because~what was the point of getting up anyway, right?
But God didn’t leave me in bed. Even when I was 100% sure that my thoughts were real, He broke through and showed me a different picture.
He always does. I have been here before. Times that lasted much longer than 7 days. Over and over again throughout my life, He has delivered me when I was sure there would be no deliverance.
Did my pain and physical issues go away? No, but all that darkness in my head did. God used a simple text from someone going through their own darkness, a podcast that stumbled across my path, a song that could’ve been written for me…
I listened to the words of someone else who had the same fears I did, who was saying exactly what I was feeling… “What if this was it? What if I’m never the same?” His words stayed with me and I asked myself, “Do you believe God is still good and that He loves you? Do you believe He knows exactly what’s going on and He is in control?”
I believed and I whispered to God, “Help my unbelief.”
What if my greatest calling now was simply to be my husband’s cheerleader from the sidelines? His prayer warrior and safe haven. That would be enough. Even if I could never leave the house for long periods of time, or pick up my grandchildren or pen a note of encouragement. Even if I couldn’t play the piano, sew or garden, run or simply hand my husband his dinner plate, I knew in that moment that God was still good.
And that He loves me.
And I suddenly felt freedom from all that blackness that had collected inside my head.
It’s scary for me to even share this, to be vulnerable and honest. There is a stigma attached to Christian’s and depression. The thoughts can easily get to me again. Worry over appearing overly dramatic or attempting to seek attention. But I am clinging to that gift of freedom God has given me, because maybe it could help someone else who might be having dark thoughts of their own.
God has not given up on you my friend. He is good. He loves you. He’s not going to let you stay in that bed of depression. He’s going to continuously use His words, His Spirit, people and things to pull you out from under the covers of despair.
Because He understands.
What a comfort and peace that brings!
And then, the miraculous will happen. He will use you to help others. Your darkness and deliverance has purpose. He will use you to break through someone else’s darkness. He will use you to share His love.
Your circumstances may never change, but there is freedom in releasing that to God, knowing He is good. Knowing He loves you. Knowing you can be used by Him. Suddenly you will no longer see the negative, but all the goodness wrapped up in the words~
YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AGAIN.