Sometimes I have a hard time writing! I think I have to be clever (try at least) and optimistic and I want to send the positive message of Christ and his love so there are days that I feel I cannot write on my blog because my feelings are far from optimistic, my heart is heavy and there is no dancing in my soul. At least that is what I thought until my daughter shared with me about her favorite singer. This singer, like me, has chronic depression. My daughter explained that she can feel her pain in her songs but even better she hears the hope in the Lord that she also possesses and relays through her music. I should know this since the Bible is a collage of people who is, at times, down trodden, discouraged, defeated and depressed. There are those who suffer, not only physical pain but mental pain also. If they would all end up in the office of some unlucky therapist, you would find a very colorful waiting room. This cast of characters would include of course King David also Jeremiah would be there using up all of the tissues with his weeping and for sure Paul would have to explain the problems he has with that pesky “thorn in his flesh”. How about poor Peter, who after promising Jesus his life, denied Him three times. I know Job would be there trying to figure out why he would curse the day he was born.
If you want to catch up with King David you could take a tour through the Psalms. Many times he tells God of his pain, his hurt, his regrets and the fear that was at times his constant companion. Yet, David in Psalm 42:11 says “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” (NIV). Jeremiah 8:18 says “God, you are my comfort when I am very sad and when I am afraid.” (NIV) (this comes from the “cry baby” prophet!). Job lets his crazy friends know that no matter what he would always put his hope in God. I love to read in Job chapter 12 that Job told his friends to pipe down that they didn’t know everything. Peter was given hope when Jesus told him that when he returned he should help his brothers and Paul says in Romans 12:12: “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer.” (NIV) I also like Isaiah’s take on things, he proclaimed in chapter 40 that those who have hope in the Lord will receive fresh strength, they spread their wings and soar like eagles. They run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind.
So you see if you are afflicted in any way or downcast or are afraid or like me depressed we sit in good company with God’s faithful, His colorful cast of characters. Their words have brought hope to millions down through the ages. Not with their perfect life in a “perfect world” but with the same problems that you and I share and we too can have the hope that prevails all through scripture. Go ahead don’t be afraid to tell others of your afflictions, weep if you need to but always proclaim the hope we have in Jesus Christ! Don’t be afraid to be you even if you fit into this colorful group!
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31