Lift up your eyes and see


A lot can pass you by if your head is bent and you are preoccupied with something. I once missed a bus when I had my head bent reading a book! I did not notice the bus arriving or fellow passengers boarding. When I lifted my eyes the moment had passed me and the bus was gone.

Depression feels like that at times. We are preoccupied, in another world, as life passes us by. A downcast soul makes us miss our purpose and meaning in life. It leaves us feeling worthless and dejected. We must call ourselves out and lift our heads before we sink too deep and our whole lives pass us by.

Why are You Downcast oh My Soul

The Psalmist in psalm 42:5,12 and 43:5 asks the same question over and over again. If this is a song then this verse is the chorus/ refrain. It will not escape notice that the Psalmist is talking to himself as if he were two people. It would appear that the goings-on in his heart are against what is in his mind. You see, when we are depressed, what we feel is very different from what we know. We know that God is present with us but yet we don’t FEEL His presence. We know that there are people who love us and care for us, yet we FEEL that the whole world is against us. We know that there are good things happening, but we FEEL as though everything is falling apart. In reality, we anguish over our feelings! We are lost in the valley of emotions. We are preoccupied with the feelings of despondency within us.

We ought to call ourselves out of it. The Psalmist asks his soul, “why are you downcast? Why are you in anguish?” He is reprimanding himself for allowing his inner person to go through a moment such as this. Depression eats us up when we accept it as normal and sink lower in self-pity. We must rouse ourselves with such a call. Remember the same call in Psalm 121:1-2 “I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”

Lift up your eyes today, do not continue with a downcast soul!

Hope in God,

Believers are people of hope, though life knocks us down hard, we still see a bright light ahead! Though everything shutters right before our eyes we see restoration coming. Though numbed by death, we see resurrection on the horizon.

Depression dims the light of hope from our souls. It tells us that there is no hope for our situation. It corrupts the facts so that we only see the dark side. The truth is that there is always hope! They say that every dark cloud has a silver lining! Every problem has a solution! And every dark moment has dawned!

It is this hope that the Psalmist calls to here as he encourages his soul. Where depression tells him there is no hope, he responds that there is hope in God! One of my favorite verses when it comes to these feelings is Isaiah 41:10 “fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” It helps to put God before your fears and anxiety. It helps to confront hopelessness with God. It helps to fight worthlessness with God.

For I will Yet Praise Him

‭‭Whereas the words “hope in God” inspire courage, the next phrase is defiance. The Psalmist says he will yet praise the Lord, his salvation, and his God. The hope that he has is not just that he will feel better, it also includes going back to his duty as a Worship leader! He will not remain in discouragement, he will arise and praise the Lord once more.

Depression can incapacitate. It makes us have no joy in who we are and begin to wish we were someone else. Depression tells us that things will never be the same again.

We must rise against such despondent thoughts by predicting a great future for ourselves. We must see ourselves rise from the current situation and with God’s help to a much better situation. The whole of Psalm 34 speaks of such situations but I love verse 19 which reminds us “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.”

Desperate situations are momentary but God’s love for us is eternal. Do not allow yourself to be downcast, hope in the Lord, for you will yet praise Him.