As we continue our Praising God When Life Hurts series, I am happy to welcome Chelsey Coffey to the blog. Chelsey’s desire is to help women grow through Christ’s love. Her writing is a refection of the hope and encouragement that can be found in Christ alone. Below, Chelsey is going to share about her personal struggle with depression and how praising God through those dark moments brings victory.
Many of those who know me are surprised when I tell them that the biggest struggle I face on a consistent basis is one with myself. I guess I hide it well. Since I was a young girl, I have suffered from depression. And to be completely honest, it has never really made sense to me. Doctors say it’s a chemical imbalance, some people say it’s all in my head. Regardless, the pain I feel is completely real.
For me, it goes in spurts. There are times where I am fine for months and months. And then there are the times where my husband or my mom have sat with me, watching me cry, asking me what is wrong… most of the time I just don’t know. I feel guilty for feeling the way I do because I am so incredibly blessed. God has given me so much love and so much beauty in my life – what right do I have to be sad when others are physically suffering all over this world?
But for whatever reason, the sadness takes over. Not forever, but just long enough to throw me off and to hurt, a lot. And then the shame comes – a leader in ministry like myself should not suffer from depression. I know my God is stronger than this. I know that I shouldn’t let it get the better of me.
Some days, I just feel hopeless.
Have you ever suffered from depression? If not, maybe a loved one of yours has. It is more common than we may think and even widespread in our local church. But I want to tell you this truth – in the midst of the hopeless feeling, God still loves you. He is right there with you and He won’t give up on you. 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” And suffering from depression doesn’t make you any less of a Christian.
I don’t know why depression plagues some of us, but we live in a fallen world and it does exist. The most important thing we can do in the midst of this time of deep sadness, it to cling to God. Stay close to Him in prayer and His word. We must surround ourselves with other believers who are there to help lift us up and comfort us. Because if instead of staying close to God and we fall away, the deeper and darker that hole will get. And it’s then Satan gets foothold to separate us from our Father.
I am so thankful that our God is a God of hope and His purpose is always good. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “‘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.’”
When I remember God’s promises to me, the tears eventually dry and the sun starts to peak through my dark sky. In life there are high points and low points, and they are both only temporary – but we always have the hope in Jesus Christ.
Having a wonderful God who loves us – so much He sent His son to die for us so He could be with us forever is amazing hope we can cling on to. So during this time, praise God. For He has never left you or forsaken you. He loves you.
So even when it hurts, I’ll always praise my wonderful Father in heaven.
“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” Romans 12:12.
Chelsey Coffey is a Christ-follower, writer, wife and mother. She and her husband are currently in the beginning stages of planting a church. She writes about faith and spiritual growth at her blog: chelseycoffey.com. You can also connect with her on Facebook and Twitter