I try not to write too much about my depression, but I also know it’s an opportunity for the Lord’s faithfulness to shine, and I want to honor that.
If you follow along with the blog and/or receive my weekly emails, you’ve probably noticed that the topic has been leaking out here and there this winter. I try really hard not to make depression the focus of my writing because I even get tired of hearing about it! But the Lord reminded me that my job here is to be transparent and to use my journey as worship to Him.
So I’m hoping to share one more insight from the past few months, and then move on to more universal topics!
This week’s verse, written by the weeping prophet himself, Jeremiah, was a good reminder for me that the Lord always provides an end to the darkness, and in the meantime, He seasons my days with beautiful mercies.
Because of the Lord’s faithful love
we do not perish,
for his mercies never end.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness!
I say, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will put my hope in him.”Lamentations 3:22-24
My Reflections on God’s Faithfulness
On good days, I’m in the doldrums. On bad days, I despair. If you’ve dealt with depression, you understand: there’s often nothing to despair about–there’s no reason to be down. Life is good, but you can’t celebrate it.
Thankfully, this winter has had more doldrum days than despairing days–it been an absolute a blessing from the Lord. Not all my winters have been so bearable. But days, weeks, and months of antipathy take their toll. I’ve struggled to write, I’ve struggled to see my purpose, and I’ve struggled to feel God.
It’s not a new struggle for me; I go through it almost every winter. And each time, God has been faithful. It does end. My vibrancy and joy come back. I don’t have to continue faking an interest in life; I truly love it.
This bout has had one notable difference that was very new for me though, and I know it was a mercy straight from God. He has been extending His love to me in a language I can understand–art. I’ve dabbled in watercolors for years, but I’ve never been really serious about it, so I was surprised that it called to me and helped me so much.
One of my early signs that depression is looming is that I get sucked into social media. It’s mind-numbing. It’s something for my eyes to look at without having to think too hard or even engage in. But I know full-well that it’s unhealthy.
So a few weeks ago, I stuck my watercolors beside my computer, and every time I needed a break from writing, I put some paint on paper instead of popping over to Facebook. I’m not a very good painter, so in the past, I’ve become easily discouraged. But this time, maybe because of the depression … I didn’t care about my ability. Painting had nothing to do with whether or not I could do it well. I just enjoyed watching the water pull the colors together. It’s a mesmerizing process, and much healthier than Facebook. (If you follow me on Instagram you’ll get peeks from time to time.)
I have to admit, I got a little obsessed. Painting took over my brain a bit, and I’ve been doing a lot more of it than writing. But it’s been a healing mercy … something healthy and beautiful to fill my mind instead of negative self-talk or social media comparisons. I’m so thankful to the Lord for His faithfulness and giving me this outlet that I hadn’t considered before.
He truly is a faithful God. And right now, as I write, the robins are singing, the cat is chattering at them, and the sun is shining. Spring is almost here!
Are you able to see the Lord’s mercies extended toward you in the midst of a hard season? I’d love to hear about them and pray for you.
And I’d enjoy hearing what you’ve been meditating on this week. Were you focused on our weekly verse? Or did the Lord lead you somewhere else?
Feel free to comment here or in our Facebook group.
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