Focus: Loneliness and depression
Psalm 34:18 (NKJV) The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit.
I recall a day when I had to pick up a couple of documents at the city government offices. There were fees due, so I was standing in line at the cashier’s desk. As I was waiting, I noticed a sign above the window, “Pay Utility Bills Here”.
The heavyset woman ahead of me was in her late twenties or early thirties. She was wearing a black t-shirt and shorts. She looked tired. It was easy to see she hadn’t been to a hairdresser in some time. The cashier was well dressed with carefully chosen accessories to compliment her matching skirt and blouse. Her shiny brunette hair was recently styled.
The client paid her bill with cash and quietly said, “When will it be back on?” The cashier responded, “By six p.m.” The client said, “Thank you”, and the cashier said nothing—not “you’re welcome”, or “thank you”, or “have a nice day”. The client turned with her head down and made her way to the door.
I was thinking about loneliness and depression at the time—and felt sure I had just witnessed both. I too, paid my bills and left the window with no response from the cashier.
So, you might be thinking the person paying her utility bill in order to get her power turned back on was the one who was lonely and depressed. I’d say from all appearances, you’re probably right. But, was she the only one? What does loneliness and depression look like? People wear their problems in different ways.
Sometimes circumstances cause a person to be lonely—and on the other hand—some people are perpetually lonely. There are people who are in a period of depression—and there are others who live in a condition of depression…
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Because, in spite of the fact they are lonely and depressed, they are neither broken nor contrite. Until a person becomes broken and contrite—it is my belief they will just continue to be lonely and depressed…out of habit.
While they don’t like being lonely—they don’t like people, either. They don’t like being lonely and depressed—but it’s a result that comes about when they’ve made the choice to keep people at arms length.
You’ve been lonely and depressed—but have you given much thought as to “why”? How would you classify yourself? Are you lonely and depressed because of circumstances—or is it a condition?
You may not think it’s that important to analyze. What difference does it make anyway? You may feel that being lonely and depressed is what it is. People with a condition of depression have been in that state for a long time and may not even think about another way of life. But, a person in a period of depression desperately wants to find another way. The good news is—either type of person is not without hope. As far as which person is a better candidate for the mercy of God—it would be the person who has a broken heart and a contrite spirit.
You may be a person who has neglected their personal appearance—or one who obsesses over every detail. God loves either person just as much and desires closeness with both. Whether you are in a period of loneliness and depression or it has become a condition for you—there is hope.
When you are lonely and depressed and you want a better way—you need to keep things very simple. Just focus on a single thought you might have known so long you don’t even fully appreciate it anymore. Keep your mind on how much God loves you. In His sight, you are very special. He wants you to be close to Him forever. He paid a huge price to ransom you from sin and death.
God can work with any person who wants to build a better life—a life that won’t crumble because it rests on a solid foundation. So, what would be a solid foundation, now that everything in your life is in shambles? The only thing solid that is not going to change is your salvation–the salvation that was bought when God’s only begotten Son became a perfect sacrifice for your sins so that you could have eternal life.
Your salvation is your foundation. It is lasting and secure. You can build on it.
Declaration: I will find new strength as I focus on the unconditional love God has for me—which no one can take from me. God will help me build a better future. Everything in my life rests on an unchanging foundation–my salvation in Jesus Christ. By this truth and the power of the Holy Spirit, I will keep moving forward.
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All NEW STRENGTH posts are Copyright by Christina Cook Lee 2012. Please request permission to re-post or re-blog.