Fighting back against depression

0
168

Psalm 77 reads like the worst possible day, ending with the best possible circumstances. It was a song sent to the music composers by Asaph. Oh that brings joy to my heart to think how very much God loves music and what an important role it plays in my own recovery from depression. I’m sure it doesn’t work that way for everyone, but… it’s a worthy try is it not? Depression is such a wicked tool of Satan and his minions and such an easy snare to fall into.

This Psalm was written by Asaph, David’s worship leader. Imagine being in such a terrible state of mind and being in charge of worship? I’ve been there! I’ve written some pretty sad songs in that frame of mind, so I get where he’s coming from, even though I don’t know the circumstances that lead to it. From the sounds of it, it sounded a lot like 2020 and 2021. But what Asaph and many other song writers and composers find out, is that God works through the valley of those lyrics to bring us back to the mountain top of genuine worship. Glory! Keep reading and see if I’m not saying what’s so!

Cries In the Dark

Psalm 77:1-20 KJVS

[1] I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me. [2] In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: my sore ran in the night, and ceased not: my soul refused to be comforted. [3] I remembered God, and was troubled: I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed. Selah. 

Depression and heartache almost always seems multiplied by darkness. It’s during those wee hours of the night that Satan has free reign to our minds because they’re not occupied by anything other than rehearsing the troubles of the day. I speak from experience. For years (a decade or two)  in my unsaved state, I literally went on three to four hours sleep a night, because you can do that when you’re young and because I wouldn’t lie down in the dark. I knew when I did it would only lead to terrible thoughts. And so I stayed awake, drank coffee and smoked cigarettes. That was my happy place pre-salvation.

Unlike Asaph, I didn’t always remember God, but He always remembered me. Getting saved didn’t stop the night terrors, (it did stop the smoking) but I was no longer in it alone. When I felt overwhelmed it was as if God would remove the cloak of darkness that weighed heavy on my shoulders and replace it with His tender arms of mercy.

Castaway in the Deep

[4] Thou holdest mine eyes waking: I am so troubled that I cannot speak. [5] I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times. [6] I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart: and my spirit made diligent search. [7] Will the Lord cast off for ever? and will he be favourable no more? [8] Is his mercy clean gone for ever? doth his promise fail for evermore? [9] Hath God forgotten to be gracious? hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies? Selah.

Who hasn’t felt like they’ve gone too far? “God is surely done with me…” I know it’s at that point that I’m usually done with me! I’ve given up, why would God not give up? Asaph is there where we’ve been. David’s worship leader has gone to the dark side and cannot seem to find his way back. He thinks God’s mercy is over and His graciousness is done, and the only thing left to do is throw his hands up in the air and give way to the dark. At this point he doesn’t even know what to say…

I’m not so sure that’s not what the church is doing in America. They’re assuming God is done with us because we’ve gone too far and there’s no coming back from this. Well, I’m not ready for that Asaph! Sing me a song of praise and worship because I believe God’s got some more work for us to do before His return. Yes, there will be a day when God says, “Son, call Your children home, they’re work is finished.” But until then we need to fight our way out of this dark hole we’re in, back into the light and show the lost that there is a way out.

Church in the Deliverance

[10] And I said, This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High. [11] I will remember the works of the Lord : surely I will remember thy wonders of old. [12] I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings. [13] Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God? [14] Thou art the God that doest wonders: thou hast declared thy strength among the people. [15] Thou hast with thine arm redeemed thy people, the sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah.

I love it when Asaph says “This is my infirmity.” He realizes that the problem does not lie with God but it lies with him and his stinkin’ thinkin.’ Have you been there? Have you forgotten how many times before you’ve been in a dire straight and God has brought you out? Why is this time different? I cannot tell you the joy in my soul right now as I write the words, “Get to church!” that’s what Asaph finally figures out. It’s in the sanctuary of the Lord, that place of worship and surrender that he finds the light to lead him out of the darkness he’s in. And it’s the place everyone of us can find the solution to America’s problem now. I only have to miss one service for Satan to be on me like white on rice, but I only have to go back to realize that through Christ, anything is possible. I’m not making that up…. that’s Bible!

 

Mark 10:27 KJVS

And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.

The first station of any battle should be the house of God. It’s there that you’ll receive direction for the battle you are in.

Clarity in the Direction

 [16] The waters saw thee, O God, the waters saw thee; they were afraid: the depths also were troubled. [17] The clouds poured out water: the skies sent out a sound: thine arrows also went abroad. [18] The voice of thy thunder was in the heaven: the lightnings lightened the world: the earth trembled and shook. [19] Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known. [20] Thou leddest thy people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.

Now more than ever leadership matters for us. As Asaph worked his way through those hard times by writing (boy oh boy can I identify), he looked back at the leadership God had provided Israel in the past. Not the typical leadership. Aaron was the mouthpiece but Moses was the Motivation. God never fails to send the right people for the job. But are you listening? I can’t help but think of that murmuring tribe he lead who constantly gave him grief about his leadership and picked the worse case scenario of what might happen.

Yes, I’m a little Susie Sunshine in a world of doom and gloom. There are plenty of Negative Nancies that will tell you to get ready for the end. God keeps telling me “Keep working until we start the new beginning.”

Previous articleMade to Be Like Him
Next articleEasily Angered?
Shari Johnson. (aka The Jesus Chick) has been encouraging women of faith and youth for a closer walk with Christ for over ten years. Having a burden for the leadership in American Churches, much of her writing is meant to spear on the servant of God to do more for the cause of Christ in these uncertain times. With humor, transparency and solid bible teaching Shari outlines messages that are easily understood, life applicable, and often with easily remembered points to ponder in hopes that they’ll be reflected on throughout the day and serve as encouragement on the go. Her servant’s heart is grounded in her own local church believing that it is there that the greatest impact can be made and unfortunately suffers the greatest neglect across America. Shari speaks at women’s gatherings in hopes of leaving a giggle in their soul and a burning desire to serve in their own local body of believers having it said of her “I laughed, I cried, and I was drawn to the foot of the cross…” Which is what it’s all about. For information on scheduling Shari, call her direct at (304)377-6036, message her via email at talk2shari@gmail.com or find her on Facebook!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.