I had a conversation with someone the other day and thought, “I really need to blog this.” As the individual discussed various concerns, I found myself thinking that what makes a difficult situation (a seemingly unsurmountable challenge, a relationship that is on the rocks, a season of unemployment, financial woes, depression, struggles with anxiety and fear, a sense of purposelessness, or ____________) even worse is when you believe the lie, “This season will last forever.” Of course, this lie takes on different forms:
- “This season will never pass.”
- “This is the way that I am going to feel for the rest of my life.”
- “I will never turn a corner.”
- “I will never be healthy again.”
- “I am never going to have someone that I can truly trust.”
- “I am never going to succeed at anything.”
- “Nothing is ever going to change.”
- “It is always going to be this hard.”
- “I will never catch a break.”
This list goes on and on and are the type thoughts that can lead someone to the brink of suicide. Let is suffice to say that when you and I bite into this “fruit” (Genesis 3:1-6), we are playing right into Satan’s hands (Yes, I believe in an actual evil being who possesses significant power and who is masterful at lying; does Jesus himself not refer to his archenemy as the “Father of Lies”?). When you began to feel these things, you are on a fast track to psychological and spiritual darkness. One of the main ingredients that constitutes depression is hopelessness, and what is more hopeless than the thought that nothing is ever going to change when you are, from an emotional vantage point, lying face down in a ditch.
If your daily diet has consisted of biting this fruit, find help. Start reading a Psalm a day. Read a Gospel (Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John). Read one of Paul’s letters. See how Jesus lifts handles broken people. He truly is the lifter of our head (Psalms 3:3). Have a talk with a parent, close friend, or pastor that you trust. If you do not have someone, then force yourself to get involved in a local church until relationships begin to form. You must face any insecurity and awkwardness and make yourself do what you need to do so that relationships can eventually take shape. We so desperately need people. One of the great advantages of having people in your life is that you hear other stories of change. In other words, other people who have felt the same thing only to find out later than we do adapt, God is faithful, and that the sun will break through the otherwise deceiving clouds. Only a few things last forever.
Do not mistake that which is impermanent for that which is permanent, and do not mistake that which is permanent for that which is impermanent.
This too shall pass.