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Even When the Rains Fall

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I was just listening to the NEEDTOBREATHE song 'Washed By the Water' from a coworkers office down the hall. I love that band and that song, but the lyrics hit me a little different today after some of the things I've been reading and hearing. "Even when the rains fall. Even when the floods start rising. Even when the storms come. I am washed by the water." Simple enough, right? Then why do we so often let those waters wash our joy away?

Jeremiah 29:11 says "I say this because I know the plans that I have for you.†This message is from the Lord. “I have good plans for you. I don’t plan to hurt you. I plan to give you hope and a good future."

Hope and a good future doesn't sound like depression. As a matter of fact, I'd say they're the exact opposite of depression. You see, God doesn't want us to feel dejected, rejected or alone. He wants us to be hopeful and eager for the day and the possibilities it holds!

In Matthew 11:28-30 Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

Jesus understands our dark feelings, our doubt, our discouragement, and yes, even depression; and his desire is to help us. Often, we ignore the fact that our spiritual condition and psychological state of mind are highly affected by what is happening to us physically. Sometimes depression is simply the result of exhaustion. In 1 Kings 19, we read how the prophet Elijah, worn out from his struggles to defeat Jezebel and her prophets of the pagan deity Baal, is so depressed that he cries out to God to end his life. In response, God tells Elijah to eat a good meal and go to bed, and that he will feel differently in the morning. As Matthew says, t is a great comfort that we can take our burdens to Christ, and He will give us rest.

Phillipians 4 has a lot of good stuff on how to overcome depression, in particular verses 1-8. It's also interesting to note that Paul talks to two women (Euodia and Syntyche) and one man (Clement) as women are twice as likely to suffer from depression as men are. "I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to live in harmony in the Lord. Indeed, true companion, I ask you also to help these women who have shared my struggle in the cause of the gospel, together with Clement also and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoic
e! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with gratitude let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you."

That is great news for those fighting depression! Don't worry/stress/fear for anything, and do that through prayer and a grateful attitude. If we pray and are grateful, God's peace is promised to guard our hearts and our minds, and if that wasn't good enough alone, Paul even shares things for us to think about other than those that might depress us. Things that are right, pure and lovely (just to name a few) will guarantee the peace of God will be with us!




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