By Debbie Legg
“Food tastes like oatmeal and color is just shades of gray.”
That was me describing a bout of depression. For me, depression results from turning anger in on myself.
Over the years I’ve learned some good ways to avoid going down that road. One particular source might seem a bit unconventional—a King who lived about 3,000 years ago.
David writes in Psalm 55, “my thoughts trouble me and I am distraught at the voice of the enemy…they bring down suffering upon me…My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death assail me…If my enemy were insulting me, I could endure it…but it is…my companion, my close friend.”
That’s a little more intense than gray oatmeal. More like a steaming hot iron, pressed down and running over his chest, searing his heart and soul.
David is not in denial about betrayal. He isn’t holding back. He knows what happened, who did it, and how he feels about it. Rather than stuff it all down inside (as I tend to do), justifying, or blowing it off, he pours it out, expressing his feelings in a prayer to God, which is much healthier.
David takes the next step and imagines justice in the situation, telling God what he wants Him to do: "Confuse the wicked, O Lord, confound their speech…Let death take my enemies by surprise, let them go down alive to the grave."
This is where I would have stopped, where my prayers would have ended. I would have continued to focus on myself and the problem. Then I would have turned it inward.
Fortunately David didn’t stop there, and shows me the better way. David reminds himself of what he knows about God’s character and the ways he has seen God come through before: “But I call to God, and the Lord saves me…He hears my voice. He ransoms me unharmed from the battle waged against me, even though many oppose me…Cast your cares on the Lord, and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous fall….But you, O God, will bring down the wicked into the pit of corruption; bloodthirsty and deceitful men will not live out half their days.”
Reminded of God’s love, protection and provision, David leaves it all in God’s hands to do what He wills. I love how David closes out his prayer. In the simplest and shortest of closings, David writes, “But as for me, I trust in You.”
And that is the secret. Focusing not on our pain, not on those who hurt us but on God and His ways, leaving it all in His hands.
Pursuing my calling in confidence becomes a whole lot easier when I’m focused on God’s goodness.
My taste buds and vision are equally thankful.
A Little Bit More
A special place where we take turns sharing our hearts, minds, and God.