May 9, Depression

Today’s reading: Psalms 41-45

“Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God” - Psalm 42:5.

The psalmist was experiencing some mental depression for whatever reason, and was confronted with two choices. He could either cooperate with his depression, welcoming it as an inevitability of life. This would have contributed to his mental downward spiral. His second option was not to accept his depression and talk himself out of it with some healthy and accurate self talk. The psalmist chose the second option and confronted his depression head on, reminding himself of his relationship with God and its power to lift him from gloom. While some depression has medical causes, in this case, it was the result of faulty thinking, and the writer opted not to accept it but to fight back. The Lord spoke to Cain, prescribing the same procedure as the psalmist employed when Cain was angry and discouraged: “Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast?  If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it’” (Genesis 4:6-7). Do you need to confront your depression or mood? What do you need to say to yourself to get yourself back on the right track?