I was just on my back patio enjoying the beautiful colors of the sunrise peaking through the trees and enjoying the birds singing. It is a peaceful morning, full of God’s promises of His faithfulness.
There are many in my life who are facing difficulties now. And as I told you several months ago, I was in a deep depression. This morning I read the following passage that reminded me that no matter what difficulties we face, each day the Lord has new mercy for us. “I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.’ The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.” (Lam. 3:20-26)
I was reminded that in my spiraling depression, I was guided by the Holy Spirit to grab the Lord’s hand and trust that He would pull me from my depression. “Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.” (Ps. 16:5) And I’ve learned since then that He was able to use the depression to take me to the end of myself, to realize that I didn’t have it within me to even take one more step without Him. And that is where He wants us. “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.'” (Jer. 29:11-13)
During this time I cried out to Him, and He answered in small things. Each day I began to feel stronger in His strength, not my own. I sought Him and found Him, and I found Him faithful. “The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.” (Lam. 3:25-26)
He guided me, through prayer and Bible study, to nail to the cross of Jesus shame I had held onto for decades. The shame caused much of my depression, my feelings of worthlessness. And in giving up the shame, I was able to receive forgiveness from myself, because I was able to remember that the Lord had already forgiven me. “Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore He will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for Him!” (Is. 30:18)
He has been leading me, and I am trusting in Him. I have to honestly say that I’m not always personally happy with what appears to be the directions He is guiding me. But I trust in Him, in His faithfulness. He has plans for each of us, and we can rest in joy knowing that He only wants the best for us. “You make known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” (Ps. 16:11) I have found joy in the Lord, and I thank Him for His faithfulness, glory, compassion, mercy and patience with me.