Monday, December 05, 2011

God Speaks to us in the Midst of our Depression

Our priest gave an interesting homily this morning.  He said that the Jewish people were depressed because they had been in exile and were waiting for their Messiah when the prophet Isaiah gave them a message of hope:
Strengthen the hands that are feeble,make firm the knees that are weak,Say to those whose hearts are frightened:Be strong, fear not!Here is your God,he comes with vindication;With divine recompensehe comes to save you.
I had never heard the word "depression" used in this context before, but as someone who struggles with depression,  I appreciate the connection.  The Lord is always there to bring us out of our dark days, whether through a word,  a smile, or a helping hand.   


I know I have to remind myself often not to give into feelings of despair and despondency.  Knowing that God is ready to listen makes a difference.  

4 comments:

newguy40 said...

Yes. Although we don't think about that aspect of the captivity, how could the the Israelite's not been depressed? They were in exile, their people dead or dispersed, their home and seat of their worship destroyed. I seem to recall a Psalm or one of the other books refer to how the exiled Israelites were forced to sing songs of thier homelands? Surely, we'd call this post traumatic stress syndrome?

My older son suffers from OCD, ADHD and a minor eating disorder. I know the toll of that strain, too.

Dymphna said...

Good point about PTSD.

"Sing us one of the songs of Zion. How can we sing--sing the Lord's songs--in a foreign land?"

Barbara Schoeneberger said...

I never connected the Biblical depression with my own. I sure can identify with the way the Israelites felt. Oddly, for me, when I feel depressed now I immediately find myself thinking of God and start praying. Although I am doing much better these days, I still have to be alert for those "sinking" spells.

Dymphna said...

I try to remember to lift up my worries in prayer--it is astonishing how infrequently I actually do this.

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"Slavery ended in medieval Europe only because the church extended its sacraments to all slaves and then managed to impose a ban on the enslavement of Christians (and of Jews). Within the context of medieval Europe, that prohibition was effectively a rule of universal abolition. "— Rodney Stark

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