yep. And it’s really cool how God also provides people in our lives to talk with too.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions and messages about depression lately, and I wanted to make a couple of really broad-stroke comments for all my brothers and sisters out there who are struggling with sadness:
It’s okay to cry.
It’s okay to struggle.
It’s okay to scream and lash out.
It’s perfectly okay to be completely honest about your emotions.
Sometimes Christians think that you can’t be honest about how you feel when you are really down because life with Jesus is supposed to be about triumph and joy. And don’t get me wrong - Jesus did come to give us life to the full, but that doesn’t mean you’re never going to suffer or struggle. Sometimes you get down and that’s okay. Sometimes you will be confused, caught off guard and unable to cope and that’s okay.
The question is, what are you supposed to do when you do feel that way?
Some Christians would tell you that you’re supposed to just suck it up, put on a smile and just sing “Hallelujah, praise the Lord!” But I don’t think the Lord would tell you that. The example that those Christians would give you would be Job, who lost everything in one day, including all of his children in a massive disaster and famously said, “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.” - But wait! Before Job ever gets to the worship part, he got up, tore his robes and shaved his head. Now, if you don’t know, tearing robes was a sign of absolute emotional unrest and distress. Calm people don’t tear their clothes. This wasn’t a ritual. It was a man on the brink of emotional collapse. He was furious. He was confused. He was unhinged to the core. The man grabbed his own collar and destroyed his garments by brute force and then shaved his head. He was extremely upset.
The thing I want you to know is that two verses later, the narrator tells us that in all this, Job did not sin. You see that? This emotional honesty was right on the money and it enabled Job to get to the place of trust and worship. Job’s worship was remarkable not because He put a good face on his suffering, but because He gave full vent to his pain and then worshiped God in the honesty of his pain and confusion.
If you’re depressed, you’re not sinning. Tell God how you feel. Tell Him everything. God is not afraid of your emotions. God is no stranger to your heart. He already knows every twist and turn better than you do. You will never really get to the place of worship until you have first been honest about how you feel. Start there. Tell God everything, and when you have said it all, you’ll be ready to listen.