Life doesn’t quite look like how we’d all imagined. It’s been interrupted with illness, fear, and divisions-all weighing heavily on our minds, an overload many find difficult to handle. The despair begins to set in; the darkness takes hold and consumes the small crevices of our hearts. It is…a lot.
Maybe this is something you’ve experienced or are experiencing right now. The darkness can be heavy and walking through it can feel lonely at times-it can make you feel isolated from the rest of the world; it can make you feel isolated from God. The darkness can leave us feeling confused and like our faith is slowly slipping through our fingers. God can feel far away, just out of our reach.
If this sounds familiar, know you are not alone. Believers everywhere struggle with the darkness. Believers struggle with anxiety. Believers struggle with depression. We are not immune to these hardships. We live in a fallen world. Because of the fall in the Garden of Eden, darkness will find its way in at some point in our life. Not only do believers experience these struggles, but we read about similar instances with some heroes of the faith in the Bible. We see David’s hardships repeatedly throughout the Book of Psalms. He was a man specifically chosen by God, and yet, we see his cries for help over and over again. David experienced depression, and sorrow, and walked through deep grief. But, he never failed to reach out to his God.
This brings us comfort. We are not alone in our struggles, in our darkness. We all experience despair and distress at some point. We are not isolated in our emotions from the rest of the world. In fact, God gives such amazing grace, and His help so we, as Christians, are able to move forward hand in hand with Him in every season we face. God so tenderly provides us with so many tools we can use to help guide us through the darkness. He gives us His Word, power in relationships, and everlasting hope. To help us fight and persevere through these valleys:
Let us open our Bible. His Truth is so richly filled with love and advice on how to navigate this life. In our difficult seasons, our thoughts and emotions can seem overwhelming, and at times they overpower and drown out the voice of God. In these times, let us gently remind ourselves His Word is true. We read in His Word that Jesus walked this earth. He experienced grief and sadness and loneliness. He’s familiar; He knows; He understands. Let us read His love letter and write it on our hearts, letting it sink deeply into our souls so when those whirlwinds of emotions come crashing down on us, our trust can stand firm in the Truth. Proverbs 30:5 (ESV): “Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.”
Let us pray. Our prayers bring us into a deeper relationship with Him. Cry out to our Savior. Call on Him during these difficult times. Be honest and open with Him about your thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Do not hold back. He already knows. He knows the deep recesses of your heart. He knows your thoughts before you know them. Trust Him with it all. Even when you have no words, sit quietly before Him, let the Holy Spirit move within you, and let Him hold you through your sorrows. Romans 8:26 (ESV): “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.”
When we open our Bibles, and when we pray to our Father, we will slowly begin to feel the peace and hope only God can provide. The darkness can seem it is never-ending or there is no way out, but our God is our redeemer, restorer, a loving Heavenly Father, and lover of our heart and soul. Trust Him through this season. Trust Him through every season.
Hebrews 6:19 (ESV): “We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain,”