Appreciating DepressionApril 18, 2010
April 18 AP 108– 2 Corinthians 12 and Depression. Anxiety, depression, anxiety, depression. If it’s not one it’s the other, and sometimes both at the same time. I hate anxiety. Hate it. HATE.IT. But I’ve never altogether hated my depression.
Don’t get me wrong. It sucks. It is about the most horrible feeling on Earth, I’d say third to grief and anxiety.
And I’m feelin’ it now. Not just the numbing kind that you can try to fight through to get through the day with a smile on your face for the benefit of others. No, today I have the dead weight in your tummy, elephant on your chest, sad sad sad kind. I want to curl up in bed in the safe haven of my blanket and pillow cave and cry and do nothing and be nothing. I just want blackness… unconsciousness… to cease to think, feel, exist. (Not to be confused with suicidal thoughts. I’m not suicidal.) I know this isn’t the worst it can get, either. But still… I don’t mind it.
"7To keep me from becoming conceited
because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
I cling to Him when I am depressed. I turn to Him. I have physically felt him hold me, you guys. It is all too clear to me that I am His, and this life is His, and I run to nowhere and gain nothing when I try to take control and live for what I want.
I don’t think God GIVES me depression. I think it is a natural result of my chemical makeup, and of a fallen world. God planted his seed and tends to his beautiful creation garden, and whether by a simple snap of His fingers or a beautifully and perfectly crafted evolutionary process, I am the way I am. I know that God will not take depression away from me. I know this. He’s made it clear. He’s given me the strength and willpower to fight anxiety and panic attacks, but I know in my heart of hearts that depression is a lifetime companion for me. But He uses it– He uses it to soften my heart, to humble me, to slow down my otherwise racing thoughts so that I can Be Still Know That He Is God. He uses it to break down my walls so that I may accept His strength and comfort.