"I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another."
John 13:34 (NRSV)
Prodigal Thoughts: Why the photo of a sad/depressed person? Well, that’s how some folks feel, yes, even folks that follow Jesus. Quite honestly, this is what I have felt like the past week. I know that each of us are loved by our heavenly Father. So, I’m depressed because I don’t have enough faith? That’s what many well-meaning Christians have told me in the past. And to that, I respond, "HORSE MALARKEY!!!" For me, the majority of my depression is due to a chemical imbalance. Yes, I take medicine for that. No, that doesn’t mean I’m a bad person or lack faith that Jesus can heal me. Sometimes, Jesus heals through medicine. (I can just imagine a number of "evangelicals" that I know or are related to that are gasping for air right now.) Can I show the love of Christ to others even though I am depressed and don’t really love myself? Yep! Sure can. Is that a double-standard? Maybe. Sadly, there are times where I am struggling so badly but I don’t really share because of the well-meaning, yet idiotic things people will say. Sure, they are probably attempting to encourage, and I appreciate that. But sometimes what I really need to hear when I am so deeply depressed is something like "Hey, buddy. It seems you are a bit down. I just want you to know that you are more wonderful than your thoughts and feelings say you are." I know I will come out on the other side in the coming days/weeks when this cycle of depression eases up on me. Until then, I will continue to do my best within my flawed, human capacity to show others that they are loved by a Father more amazing and wonderful than they have ever known. I already know and am incredibly thankful that I have this army of believers that are praying for me even right now. YOU are loved and appreciated, both by our heavenly Father and by me too.
Prayer for today: I pray that for those that are dealing with depression, either personally or the results of someone else’s depression. I pray that we would be strengthened to stand in the face of our struggles in order that we can be a beacon of hope and love to those around us. That those who are depressed would be able to reach out in their brokenness to others who need the hope of Jesus to show that Jesus accepts us right where we are. Lastly, I pray that we would each come to know the love of our Father as fully as we can accept, and may the Holy Spirit continue to grow our capacity to understand the love of God more each day that we follow Him.
Need prayer? You can reply here or you can send me a facebook message through the Prodigal Thinker page. If this encourages you, feel free to share it. Feel free to reply with feedback as well. I’m always open to discussion.
God’s grace on you…