How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? (Psalm 13:1-2)
We can all struggle with bouts of depression from time to time. Falling into a time of grief or sorrow or depression or discouragement does not necessarily mean a person lacks faith. Throughout the history of the church there have been great and godly men who have had bouts with depression from time to time (e.g., Jonathan Edwards and Charles Spurgeon). We even see examples of this in the Bible among the saints of God’s people. Psalm 13 is just such one example. There David writes, “How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day?” We can’t know for certain what David was struggling with, but one thing is for certain, he feels as though God has forgotten him and he is wondering how much longer this will go on. How much longer must he take counsel in his own soul or have sorrow in his heart? He then cries out to God and says, “Consider and answer me, O LORD my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,…” David fears he is slipping into a dark place from which he may never return. So what does he do about it? What is his response to this dark place he finds himself in? “But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me” (vv.5-6). Three things he will do. First, he will trust in the steadfast love of God. Regardless of what he is going through, he knows God still loves him and is looking out for him. Second, he will rejoice in the Lord’s salvation. If nothing else, he knows he can be thankful that this life is not all there is, that when this life is over, whenever that is, he will spend eternity in the presence of the living God. And third, he will reflect on the many ways God has dealt bountifully with him. He will count his blessings. He will choose to focus on the positives God has brought into his life and not focus on the negatives.
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