Describing the indescribable: Depression

We all have our days that are not as good as others. Depression is something that some struggle with more than others. My heart goes out for those that struggle because I have struggled as well. That is why I found this poem, written by Sue Lubbers, to be something helpful. The idea that a Christian can struggle with depression is not foreign. David Murray, writing at the Gospel Coalition blog, says it well:

Three things make this poem especially touching. First, it was written by a Christian, which actually adds another layer to the suffering. The Christian with depression not only loses physical energy, intellectual ability, and emotional activity, but the most precious thing in their life feels lost – their spiritual relationship with their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Second, the poem is breathtakingly honest. It does not attempt to gloss over or minimize the horrific thoughts and feelings that stalk and haunt the soul in this desolate valley. It is so far removed from the shallow and artificial triumphalism of so much of modern Christianity. It is much more reminiscent of the deep and realistic piety we find in many of the Psalms, in Job, and in Jeremiah.

Third, the poem holds out great hope for those still passing through these deep waters. To get maximum benefit, don’t read across the two columns. Rather, read the whole of the first column. Then start reading down the second column, comparing it as you go with the parallel line in the first column. What a transformation! The Lord has revolutionized this dear believer’s life. If you, or a loved one, are still in column one, then read column two and see what our almighty and gracious God can do in the most desperate of situations.

Some of us will battle this constantly, but there is hope in a mighty, loving, caring God who is there.

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2 thoughts on “Describing the indescribable: Depression

  1. Great post. Thanks.

    Read the poem. It totally supports what God taught me more than a year ago. My son and others I know have struggled with depression. I have not. I began to ask God…why? What is this thing that drives some to destroy themselves? A few weeks later I was so overwhelmed with the most DESOLATE, SAD, EMPTY, LISTLESS, CARE FOR NOTHING…feelings. Not far into the first day, I KNEW God was showing me the depths of such ‘oppression’ which would compell a person to take his or her own life. By the third day, the DESOLATION was so overwhelming, I prayed and asked God to lift the shadow of desolation. If I had to live with that for a period of time…I would have taken my own life. There are no words to explain the depths of that ‘desolation.’ It was beyond depression. While there are some physiological basis for bouts of depression, I am convinced that the Destroyer has more influence in some cases than we realize. I never talked with my son concerning his struggle. He and his doctor managed it. But now in his mid-thirties…God is teaching his heart the cause, in his case, of the struggle. He is off medication. He is excited about life..even after a divorce two years ago. I praise God for his mercy, love, and watchcare over us. I lifted you up to our Father when I began to read the post. I wish you health and happiness.

    Again, good post.

    Carolyn

  2. Thanks for your comments. I really appreciated Sue’s poem because it was very Psalms-like. There was a great honesty about the struggles, but there was also hope there. That’s always good to remember and encourage one another when those situations arrive.

    Thanks, Carolyn.

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