Skip to main content

It's happening again.... depression wants back in

It seems I can't catch a break. The minute I begin to move toward something different, the old voices come back and see what sort of havoc they can create. No, I don't actually hear voices. I am talking about the inner monologue that plays inside my head and tells me what a failure I am...at everything.

Frankly, I wish the voices were telling me to paint the walls with spaghetti or to shop naked at WalMart. I would recognize that dialog as just plain nuts. Instead they take inventory for me. They point out every failure, every hope that was dashed upon the rocks, every bad idea and every shameful moment I have spent. They sound quite reasonable because they are partially based in truth. Can I get an amen from someone? Or are you going to pretend that it doesn't happen to you?

Bob Bennett wrote a song a while back. The first time I heard it I thought "That's it! He nailed it!" The song is titled "Lord of the Past" and the lyrics are here. As much as I enjoy the song, it seems to me that there is an important element left out. Understanding the sovereignty of God in every detail of our lives does help us live with the past but more importantly it should give us hope for the future. That's the part that is broken in me. That's where there is a crack in my spiritual armor allowing depression to seep back in. Hope is a foreign concepts to me. In fact, hope terrifies me. I don't have the ability to fight depression by looking forward. When depression comes knocking I can only take inventory of my life from that moment backward.

Admittedly, there is a wealth of positive and affirming information available to me when I review my history. I can see God's faithfulness in my life. I see how He has provided and how He has kept me safe (more often than not safe from myself). What I can't grab onto is the idea that He is doing whatever He deems necessary in my life that I should bring Him glory. Not necessarily in the here and now....but in the sweet by and by. I don't get heaven.

Oh, I get that hell is bad and that heaven is good and I like the idea of no more sickness, sorrow or war. I used to think that the best thing about heaven was going to be knowing whatever question I asked, I could bank on the answer. Will we have questions in heaven? I know precious little about it. I know I will worship God there but what does that really mean? How different is it going to be to worship Him without my sin getting in the way?

Being honest about your sin isn't pretty. Intellectually I can assent to the idea that He gets to do with me as He wants. Emotionally, I think He is a mean awful God who toys with me like a cat toys with a mouse. Make no mistake, attributing hateful things to God like him enjoying my suffering is sinful. God forgive me, and I mean that, when I am in this spot, that's how I feel. I think He enjoys breaking me. I think He gets off not on humbling me, but humiliating me. When I give in to the voice, when I let my flesh have the final say... those are exactly my thoughts. I can't get past myself in order to hope that there is a future for me in God's kingdom. I hear myself saying, "you can't possibly believe in the God who saves and Christ who redeems or you would have hope."

What am I left with then? What can I do? Taking every thought captive, what do I know about the future? For starters I know that the worst day here is better than a micro-second in hell. As simplistic as that thought is, it keeps me going when I am really down. I am trying to read "When I Don't Desire God: How to Fight for Joy," by John Piper. I don't much like it, but then I don't much like anything good for me when I am like this. I thought this book would be the place for me to go for some tools. So far, it's improving my pitching arm. I keep throwing the book in frustration. I want to get it. I want to have hope and experience joy. I don't want to be broken in this area but I am. When I read books that tell me what joy I should be having I think, "Great, there's one more thing I am doing wrong."

You know what did help? I picked up a book by Max Lucado. I can't remember the title or much about the book at all really, except for one bit. Lucado pointed out that God grew the very tree upon which Christ would be crucified . He provided the soil, the water, the sun to make it grow and the tool to chop it down, everything. He did that knowing what the tree would be used for. Similarly, He saved me knowing exactly who I am and what I would do. Knowing that I would think He was a mean, nasty awful God who toyed with me and enjoyed inflicting suffering on me, He still saved me. That's something to meditate upon. I need to reread Piper's "Future Grace." That's what this is all about....understanding that He will provide the grace I need, when I need it. Perhaps that will be future enough for me for now... knowing that He does trade grace for grace.

Perhaps you need to hang on to that thought too. Maybe you googled depression and for some reason my blog came up. I don't know how you got here but hang in there with me. One minute at a time... let's wait and see where He takes us and hang fast to the promises that are ours for just one more minute.

Lam 3:21-26
21 This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.
22 The LORD'S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail.
23 {They} are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness.
24 "The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I have hope in Him."
25 The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him.
26 {It is} good that he waits silently for the salvation of the LORD.
(NAS)


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Procrastination- Propaganda- Profundity

When I am studying something that bothers me, I do just about anything I can to stall. In doing so I stumble upon a lot of odd information. I love history and any student of history will tell you that most everything we are familiar with has had an odd beginning. Sometimes there will be different odd stories regarding the genesis of a myth, folkway or idiom. Somewhere in the mix the truth can be found. You just have to look.

While I lived in Australia I went to a visit a little town on the Murray River called Echuca. Echuca has a wonderful history and boasts the largest collection of paddle steamers in the world. It also has a coach house and carriage museum. It was during my visit to the carriage museum that I was told the origin of the expression to 'drop off to sleep.' According the docent, the carriage cheap seats were the ones outside and on the back. You had a platform to sit on and a rope or rail to hang onto for dear life. During a long trip a poor unfortun…

Sleep Snorkel Surprise

Summer colds. Blech! Is there anything more annoying that being too hot and having your nose run like Bridalveil Fall? Probably but nothing comes to mind right now. My nose is red and raw from all the sneezing and blowing and I have been using Puff's. Imagine if I had some generic sandpaper tissue instead? I could probably die from the pain. Death by runny nose rough tissue rhinoplasty.
I went to bed very early last night because I was feeling miserable. I have sleep apnea and therefore sleep with a bipap machine that keeps from crumping in my sleep. Now, I love my little bipap machine. I got it after my near death experience a few years ago when the nurses in the ICU turned me in to the doctor because I never slept. Once I was released from the hospital they sent me for a sleep study. I had to do it twice because they wait for you to fall to sleep and monitor your breathing in order to decide if you need a machine. Generally they try different types of machines and differe…

Super Church a song for the Emergent-sy

In the early 70s I was in a youth choir at my church. Our youth pastor was a musician and his way of connecting with us as a group was through the choir and music. Somehow there was an affiliation between him and The Continental Singers, New Hope and Jeremiah People. He was worked with Moishe Rosen of Jews for Jesus too, I think. Are any of these names familiar to you? Though I remember the church fondly I was a profoundly lost and troubled young woman during my years there. That and time have muddled the memories quite a bit.

Today I was digging through some old paperwork and one of the books to the musical we did. It's Getting Late For the Great Planet Earth, a folk rock oratorio by Cam Floria. Yes, that's right. Cam Floria put Hal Lindsey to music. There's a lot to laugh about and some to groan about but as I was looking through the songs and remembering, I found this little ditty and I only wish I could sing it for you. Just remember that this is circa 1972 and even the…