Monday, February 25, 2013

A Psalm for the Depressed and Grieving

I started out today wanting to make a blog post and an info-graphic of Psalm 42 verse one which reads "As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God."

I found a picture of a beautiful stag and I started researching fun factoids about deer to include in today's devotion.  I wasn't sure who wrote the Psalm so I started researching that as well.  Come to find out the only real information we know about who wrote this Psalm of the Bible was that it was written by someone who was struggling with depression.  The direction of my post completely changed.

I've received a handful of e-mails over the past week from women struggling from depression and my heart beaks for them.  What breaks my heart even more is that these women have been told to "snap out of it" by family and friends.

Sadly, grief is not something you can snap out of.  Clinical depression is not something you can snap out of.  As I read this Psalm, I can almost feel the writer telling himself to "snap out of it."  He knows in his mind that God is his rock (vs. 9) but he still continues mourning.

This Psalm doesn't have a step by step cure for those with heavy hearts, but in it we can see a person whose depression was used for the Glory of God.  We can see that despite, great pain and heart-ache, this Psalmist still chose to Praise God.

Praising God when we ache is never easy, but sometimes that's all we can truly do.

"Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God" Psalm 42:11

 I encourage you to read the whole chapter today.  What passages of scripture have blessed you in times of sadness.

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