Monday, May 22, 2017

And Then Depression Set In

This past month hasn't been very enjoyable for me, personally. I have been in a car accident, totalled my car, injured my back and neck. It's been raining more often than not, I have been unable to lift anything, work on my Tiny Home, or find a replacement car. Oh, and I had a trip to the dentist just to round things out. What an amazing month! Not. But wait . . .

While it is true that there have been times when I have felt down, discouraged and depressed. I have hope and excited about the future. Why? Two simple words . . . But God . . .

God always finds ways to bring me out of what ever funk I find myself in. Usually the light in my heart begins to shine again when I stop thinking about myself and begin focusing on others. This time was no exception.

This past Saturday was Ruby's Pantry. Ruby's is a local food distribution for those in our community who have a need. Food is the main thing provided on the third Saturday of each month at Ruby's but prayer is also made available. And love. There is LOTS of love at Ruby's Pantry.

Saturday I saw an old Ruby's friend named Tom. A Vietnam veteran, Tom walks with a limp, has no teeth but always has a cheery disposition and a story to tell. I hadn't seen him for several months, making me concerned for his well being, so seeing his face lifted me up Saturday morning.

Then there was Patricia, another 60-something veteran of life. She too wasn't walking very well. She had a bad knee and a bad back. Doctors told her they could no longer help her, largely because she has no insurance and no money. She told me there are days when she struggles to find a reason to go on living.

I prayed for Patricia, standing right there in the line of people waiting to get their food.

And then there was "Red." I call her that because she had red hair. I never caught her name. She arrived at Ruby's with no coat on a 40-dgree morning. Her lips were blue as she stood outside in line shivering, so I gave her my coat to wear. No big deal.

All of these people showed me that my problems weren't really as bad as I thought they were. God lifted me up emotionally and spiritually by allowing me to speak into their lives, to pray for them and encourage them. But God was not done yet.

The lady I lent my coat eventually returned it to me that morning. Later, still at Ruby's, I was reaching in my coat pocket for some Kleenex and felt a small scrap of paper. That's funny. I don't remember putting a piece of paper . . .

I took it out and opened it up and there I found a hand-written note that said, "Thank you!"


So I sought her out and spoke with her about Jesus and how He had transformed my life.  What a blessing that was!

Gee. Where did my depression go? It was totally gone. I was feeling amazing. Why? Because I was thinking about others, not myself. It's that easy.

If you ever find yourself feeling down and depressed, remember those two little words . . . but God. He always has a way of turning a frown upside down and a cloudy day into one filled with sunshine. So rejoice! God is about to do something amazing!

"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!"

"Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand."

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." - Philippians 4:4-8

Do Something - Matthew West

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