Sadly, many people have a difficult time during the holidays.
If you’re dealing with depression, whether it’s caused by devastating circumstances or is a chronic emotional struggle, this Thanksgiving may have been a sad Thanksgiving for you.
Years ago, I suffered with chronic depression that resulted in multiple hospitalizations. I understand some of what you’re experiencing. I know firsthand the darkness and hopelessness depression brings so I’d like to share a few thoughts.
First, don’t believe the lie that no one cares. Sometimes people say all the wrong things and lose patience with your timetable for overcoming depression. They don’t mean to be insensitive. Truth be told, I often fall short when dealing with others’ ongoing struggles – even though I battled depression for years.
Second, I’d like to suggest something you’ve probably heard before, especially from your church friends: Pray. If someone has said this, you’ve probably felt frustrated. You have prayed – and prayed and prayed. But since friends and family aren’t able to provide everything you need at this time (as much as they’d like to), consider going, once again, to Someone Who is bigger than your depression.
Cry out to God – even if you’ve cried out more times than you can count. Tell Him about your sadness, disappointments and fears. Tell Him you’re scared you’ll never get better, and how you’ve already worn out everyone around you. Shut everything off, spend time with God and allow your heavenly Father prove His inexhaustible compassion for you.
Hebrews 4:16 (ESV), one of my favorite verses, offers a lot of encouragement:
Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Draw near to the throne of grace – with confidence.
God is fully aware of your reality. He will listen for as long as you need Him to. You can’t wear Him out. He longs to tell you He loves you, over and over again. Especially now.
Spend as much time as you need reading God’s Word, talking to Him and allowing His Word speak to your heart. Displace the darkness by focusing on Him. When you meditate on God’s Word, you’ll rediscover how much your heavenly Father loves you.
You can survive depression.
You can experience true hope.
I pray you find that hope this holiday season.
What about you?
I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post. (Others might also benefit from your comment.)
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