Have you ever given up hope in a situation and felt like things were never going to get better?
This happens to the best of us at times. Yet, many people get uncomfortable when someone mentions depression. Some believe depression is caused by a lack of faith or specific sin. This is only true in rare circumstances. In most cases, these beliefs place a terrible burden of false guilt on the person experiencing depression. Extra guilt can worsen depression, doing more harm than good.
The truth is that depression can be caused by a number of factors: chemical imbalance, dietary problem, severe trauma, exhaustion, heredity or other factors. It affects people from all walks of life, all social strata, all ages and all faith groups.
Consider King David, known as a man after God’s own heart, a slayer of giants and a mighty warrior, yet thoroughly human. Psalm 69 shows him at a low point in his life. He felt alone, abandoned, hated and estranged. Yet, he felt free to express these dark emotions to God. He never gave up on the hope that his Creator would come to his aid. Again and again, David turned his thoughts to God rather than wallow in self-pity.
“Save me, O God!
For the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing;
I have come into deep waters,
Where the floods overflow me.
I am weary with my crying;
My throat is dry;
My eyes fail while I wait for my God,” (Psalm 69:1-3, NKJV).
David showed that it is normal to have times when you’re feeling really good and times when you’re really low. There’s a normal range based on what’s going on in your life and circumstances. It’s when you start feeling low most of the time that you should think about what to do about it. If you struggle with depression, you are not alone.
If there’s sin in your life, confess, repent and receive God’s forgiveness, restoration and healing. Don’t be afraid to get help if you find yourself still struggling with depression. Your chaplain, pastor or doctor would be good people to consult. Sometimes there may be a hidden hurt from the past that needs to be discovered and dealt with. Sometimes you are dealing with a trauma that requires therapy and antidepressants. Some people need to change what they eat.
The Christian life is not a fairy tale. You do not live on the mountaintops of emotion. Sometimes you walk in the valleys. But there is nothing that can separate you from God’s love, not even depression. You may not feel His presence all the time, but He continues to walk with you through the ups and downs of life.
The content of this article comes from “The Warrior’s Bible” (2014) and is copyrighted by Life Publishers International. Used with permission.