Mental Health Monday- Devotional for Awakening from Darkness

Psalm 139:11-15 (ESV)

If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

Living in Depression

Depression has haunted me most of my life. The debilitating hopelessness creates a space of seclusion. In that secluded getaway, I sit with my eyes closed and unaware of my self-induced darkness. It happens when life becomes overwhelming, and my emotions battle to keep up. Even when life moves in harmony, that internal sadness brings me down. 

Jesus is Light

The very opposite of the dark expression we use to clarify depression. However, if we deny ourselves the chance to open our eyes, we cannot see the light.

“.. even the darkness is not dark to you.”

These are powerful words for those who have a mental illness. In bipolar, I fear movement and cast a shadow over myself that darkens with each passing day. For instance, I recently noticed the sun out my window, and my eyes opened for the first time as if I had slept through the autumn months. 

Light returns

“When did the sun return?” I asked myself. 

Since that day, I have experienced an odd awakening. This bout came after months of turmoil swirling in my life. As I began to drown in circumstance, my eyes closed, my back turned, and my focus shifted. Rather than stay strong in Christ, I ran scared into myself. I don’t see what Jesus sees. Even my darkness is not dark to the Lord. When I see black, he sees white. To be illuminated in hope is a choice. 

I can’t promise to remember this moment each subsequent time depression hits, but I will pray ahead of it from this day forward. It is reassuring as I climb back, eyes open, leaving the darkness behind, and visualize nothing but brilliant light.

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