Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Why, my soul, are you downcast?

Collage by Altered Angel
A few days ago, I wrote about taking every thought captive.  David frequently fought depression and fear, yet his actions rarely showed his inner struggle.  Throughout the Psalms, he gives us great examples of how to take our thoughts captive.  One of the best examples is in Ps. 42 and 43.  The chorus of the song always comes back to:

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God. 

David recognizes that his emotional state is temporary so he disciplines his thoughts to return to the good times before God rather than staying in a place of agony.  Even when his thoughts return to his pain, he drags them back to memories of worship.  He meditates on the possibilities of worship in the future, turning that thought over in his mind again and again. 

During my own long seasons of depression, I remained in the Psalms for years.  There are 150 Psalms, which means you can read 5 a day every month or you can take 5 months to go through the book.  The 31st of each month I'd do a few stanzas from Ps 119--just because it is long.  The praise would lift my heart.  The cries of distress would echo my own aches.  Through it all, I would be continually reminded that God is good and recentering my thoughts on Him would yield fruit if I waited. 

It will yield fruit for you too...

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