“Depression can seem worse than terminal cancer, because most
cancer patients feel loved and they have hope and self-esteem.” – David D. Burns
Depression is an awful thing, it pulls at your very core, and because it is emotional and mental it knows your deepest, darkest, innermost secrets. Secrets that it uses to tear you down, and if you let it, destroy you. Now whether you realise it or not, depression affects everyone in their own way, everyone out there alive or dead has had days where they feel sad or just down in the dumps. The severity is also very different from person to person, some may hardly even notice that they are a little out of sorts if you will, while others feel like the entire world has just swallowed them up whole. I usually lie somewhere in the middle, occasionally I dip down towards the deeper end of things, but such is life.
My main problem is that I don’t ever feel that I am good enough, that being me may as well be like being a piece of dirt that sticks to the bottom of a shoe. To whom the shoe belongs to it doesn’t matter, the fact is that I’m dirt, and at the end of the day if that dirt fell off the shoe, not only would the owner not care or notice, but it may in fact be a ceremonious occasion. That is how I feel from time to time…if I just disappeared, would anyone care or even notice? Sometimes however I can trick my mind and I can lie to myself. Usually that involves some form of feeling that I do make a difference and that I do matter, but I usually come to my senses in the end. The fact is I don’t…It does not matter what I do because I have no purpose, I was put here merely to be nothing else…no excitement here. I may as well not even exist, right?!
I may think that from time to time, but then the strangest thing happens, God intervenes. He shows up with some sort of saving Grace that lifts me up and out of even the darkest depression. It could be something simple like my dog jumping up into my lap for a little afternoon nap, my Momma calling just because she missed me, or a text from a friend saying “Hey, I was just thinking of you.” And from time to time He pulls out the big guns and throws you a tow rope that stops you from sinking right there, He can do that because like depression, God also knows your innermost thoughts and dreams, and all your hidden secrets.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.” – Psalm 139:13
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you…” – Jeremiah 1:5a
But unlike depression, He doesn’t use them against you, instead He uses them for you. God can look at you, see how badly you are hurting and know what will take all the pain away, and then right there He gives it to you…there are no games that you have to play, no passing go to collect your reward, all you have to do is to ask for help, and it will be given to you, it is that easy.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” – Matthew 7:7
“And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up…” – James 5:15a
It helps to remember when you are deeply depressed and feel all alone in the world, and that no one cares, that God is right next to you, He’s the one holding your hand, or rubbing your back, or when it is really bad…He carries you through it.
“One night I had a dream —
I dreamed I was walking along the
beach with the Lord, and
Across the sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand;
One belonged to me,
and the other to the Lord.
When the last scene of my life flashed before us,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that many times
along the path of my life,
There was only one set of footprints.
I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in my life
This really bothered me, and I questioned the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said that
once I decided to follow you,
You would walk with me all the way;
But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life,
There is only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why in times when I
needed you the most, you should leave me.
The Lord replied, “My precious, precious
child. I love you, and I would never,
never leave you during your
times of trial and suffering.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you.” – Mary Stevenson (Footprints in the Sand)