We are all familiar with the word “depression” and yet strangely unfamiliar with what a depressed person goes through every day. It is quite difficult for someone who has not gone through depression to understand a life without hope, full of emptiness and fear. What begins as just a general tendency to feel “low” rapidly snowballs into an avalanche of hopelessness, worthlessness, guilt, tiredness and helplessness, burying the sufferer deeper each day.
Perhaps no symptom is more debilitating and pestilential as “hopelessness”. Nothing is worse than believing that you cannot get what you want, that things are not going to be alright, that there’s no way out of that quicksand of anguish and despair. This feeling distances us from God, and with that comes nothing but further lack of hope.
This feeling is not just a state of mind. Deep depression is embodied emotional suffering, affecting one’s physical abilities as well. The all consuming feeling of despondency pervades every cell in the body, and the body reacts as the mind believes.
The only thing one needs to overturn all that is hope. Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there's no actual magic in it, but when one knows what one hopes for most and holds it like a light within, one can make things happen, almost like magic.
And there is no more hope anywhere than in our loving and caring God. He clearly intends for us all to live joyful lives, as Paul says in Romans 15:13:
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Whenever we are down, feel like we cannot make it, or are spiraling towards complete despair, we should think of Psalms 34:18:
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit”
God can inject hope in every hopeless situation.
Hope comes by knowing God, who is the author of everything, including hope itself. The more we walk with Him, the more we understand his wills and desires concerning us. He fills us with peace in His presence, giving us the ability to be content and joyful in every circumstance.
We should make sure we are staying in the Word, even if we don’t feel like it when all hope is lost. Emotions can lead us astray, but God's Word stands firm and enduring. We must maintain strong faith in God and hold even more tightly to Him when we undergo trials and tribulations. Remember,
“that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39).