Depression: Why God Never Forgets About Us in Hardship

Battling depression is a terrifying thing to deal with in this lifetime. You see the world through darker glasses, everything is heavy and painful. You struggle to identify where it hurts exactly, and you feel that if you suffer physically, at least the pain would be localized.

Instead, depression seems to be hitting the very depths of your soul, affecting and breaking everything in its path. Another way to describe it is you feel dead even though you are walking. You feel completely numb.

Maybe the worst part of it is that you remember how life felt like before, and there’s a poignant contrast between then and now which makes the pain even worse. There are many things that are difficult to tackle right now.

Difficult to say the least. All the things you used to take for granted, whether it’s a good night’s sleep, having positive goals, or simply being optimistic about the future, now they all seem beyond your reach. Your relationships are also compromised. The people who dearly love and care for you seek some sort of emotional response from you, but you’re stuck.

Would it help to know you are not alone? Nowadays, depression affects as much as 25% of the population. Even if it has always been a human issue, no one really knows why we suffer from it.

However, as Christians, we do know that God isn’t silent when it comes to our suffering. On every page of the scripture, God’s depressed children managed to find hope and a reason to endure hardship. For instance, take 2 Corinthians 4:16-18:

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen, but more to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Photo by Africa Studio from Shutterstock

Allow God to help you in your suffering

You could start to experience the inward renewal that the apostle Paul went through when you allow God to help you in your suffering. God seems very far when we suffer, I know. But He is not, even if you don’t see any of His “blessings” at the moment. Sometimes, His blessings are hiding behind a wall of trials.

That’s why you need to be strong in your faith. God hasn’t promised to explain absolutely everything about what He does and what He allows. However, He encourages us to start with Jesus. Jesus is God the Son, and He is definitely very loved by his heavenly Father.

Yet, Jesus also went through more suffering than anyone who ever lived. That’s how we learn that Love and Suffering can co-exist. When you start reading the Bible and meet people like Job, Jeremiah, and the apostle Paul, you might get a sense that suffering is, in fact, the well-worn path for God’s favorites. Of course, this doesn’t answer the question, “Why are you doing this to me?”

But it cushions the blow when you know and feel that God understands. That you are not alone. If there’s anything to know about God, then we know that He comes closer to those who suffer, so make sure you keep your eyes open for Him.

God speaks to you in the Bible

Make sure you keep your open to the fact that the Bible has a lot to say to you when you aren’t feeling well. Here are a couple of suggestions of Bible passages you might revisit and might turn to be helpful. Make sure you read one everyday and let it fill your mind as you go about your life.

  1. Read about Jesus’ suffering in Isaiah 53 and Mark 14. How does it help you to know that Jesus is a man of sorrows and He knows grief well?
  2. Also, you can use the Psalms to help you find words to talk to God about your heart. Make Psalm 88 and 86 your own personal prayers to God.
  3. Try to be alert when it comes to spiritual warfare. Depressed people are quite vulnerable to Satan’s claim that God is not that good. Jesus’ death on the cross is enough of a proof of God’s love. It’s the only powerful weapon that stands against Satan’s lies. (Romans 5:6-8, 1 John 4:9,10)
  4. It might help to know that others have walked this path in the past as well, and God didn’t let them down. He never does.
  5. Remember your purpose for living. (Matthew 22:37-30, 1 Corinthians 6:20, 2 Corinthians 5:15, Galatians 5:6)
  6. You can learn about persevering and enduring while going through hardship. (Romans 5:3, Hebrews 12:1, James 1:2-4)

One step at a time

I know it seems impossible. How can someone live without any feelings? Without them, you don’t have any drive, no motivation. Could you even imagine walking without any feeling in your legs?

It’s not possible. But what if you were able to walk because you practiced in front of a large mirror and watched your legs moving? One step, wobble, another step. It would seem very mechanical, but it can be done. People have long learned to walk in the midst of depression.

It might not seem natural, even if other people won’t notice the awkwardness or the heroism that is needed. The trek truly begins with one step, then another. And remember: you are never alone.

Many people have taken this journey before you. As you walk, you might find that it is quite necessary to use every single resource you can and persevere through hardship. It might involve a lot of moment-by-moment choices.

You might have to take one minute at a time. Read one short Bible passage every day. Care for someone else. Ask someone how they are doing, and so on. You will also need to do this with your own relationships. When you don’t have any feelings, your love must be reshaped. Love, for you, needs to become an active commitment to patience and kindness.

Photo by hikrcn from Shutterstock

Eliminate what accompanies your depression

As you put one foot in front of the other, make sure you remember that depression doesn’t exempt you from the other issues that generally plague human beings. Some depressed people might have a hard time seeing the other things that creep in.

I’m talking here about anger, fear, and even an unforgiving spirit. Also, look carefully to see if your depression is even associated with negative things. What do I mean by that?

Well, I’m talking about negative, critical, and complaining thoughts. Those could point to anger. Or feeling the need to stay in bed all day because you want to avoid some things in your life.

Will it ever be over?

I know what you’re wondering. Will you always struggle with depression? That’s similar to asking if the suffering will ever be over. Well, while we might have some hardships in this world, depression rarely keeps a constant grip on anyone.

If you battle with hope, purpose, power, and the comfort you only find in Christ, you will be able to anticipate a ray of hope or a lifting of the spirit.

What about medication?

The difficult pain of depression makes you really welcome anything that could bring relief. For some people, medication could bring relief for some symptoms. The majority of family physicians are qualified for this type of medication. But if you prefer going to a specialist, you might want to get a recommendation for a psychiatrist. Make sure you ask all the relevant questions, such as:

  • How long will it take before it is effective?
  • What are some of the common side effects?
  • Will it be too hard to determine which medication is effective?

From a Christian point of view, the choice to medicate is a matter of wisdom. There’s no such thing as right or wrong. The thing you should ask yourself is whether or not it’s the best and wisest thing you can do for yourself.

Latest Posts