navigating depression

Van Gogh, “Orchid in Bloom with Poplars in the Forefront”

Liturgy of the Passion (Sunday, April 1, 2007)
Psalm 31:9-16

“Be merciful to me, O Lord, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and body with grief. My life is consumed by anguish and my years by groaning; my strength fails because of my affliction, and my bones grow weak” (Psalm 34:9,10).

Well, David, good morning to you! Boy does that guy sound depressed… If anyone should have been able to avoid depression, wouldn’t it be David, the “man after God’s own heart”? Well, maybe this was around the time of his moral failure with Bathsheba. Aha… that explains it.

Possible, but not likely. More likely is that David experienced the full range of emotion throughout his life as have many great men of God. Sometimes this range will wander into the territory of depressive thoughts and even seasons. How does a man, no, scratch that, “man or woman”, no, scratch that, “person”… (Do we seem just a little preoccupied with gender?)

How does a man or woman of God cope with, manage, and respond to such seasons? By:

  • taking refuge in the Heavenly Father’s ability to deliver him (or her) (v. 1)
  • trusting in this deliverance (v. 14)
  • letting the Lord direct one’s priorities (v. 15)
  • keeping one’s eyes on the Lord’s unfailing love (v. 16)

I’ll throw in a bonus tip. If all else fails, go to the gym, get on the treadmill with some good music on your IPod, and let your mind unwind. With God watching over you, it’s going to be okay.

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