You know the song that says “Every day I’m hustling”? Well, I would have to remix it before I’d be allowed to sing it because it feels like every day I’m struggling. It is a combination of things that’s been making me feel depressed lately.
And it’s in these moments, God feels far away.
Sometimes when I feel stressed, it helps me to bake it out. I’m not an artistic, so I don’t paint. I enjoy writing, but I think because I feel I need to write, it’s more of a gray cloud hovering above my head than a stress-reliever. Part of me feels like watching television helps, but that numbs me more than anything else. Baking, on the other hand, helps me feel like I am creating something.
So I set off to bake a loaf of banana bread.
But. I undercooked it and the middle sank in. I began to cry.
In the grand scheme of things, undercooking a loaf of banana bread is not a big deal. Logically, I know this. I also know crying over a failed banana bread loaf is the equivalent of crying over spilled milk. Neither of which is very mature nor adult. While the banana bread triggered the tears, I wasn’t crying because of the banana bread. I mean, I was, yes. But the tears were an indicator of much more.
I was crying because nothing feels like it’s been going right. Struggle City, population me.
Alright, so I don’t mean to sound overdramatic because I know I am blessed. Yet, can I just be real with you right now? Even though I know as a Christian, I should focus on the blessings. Some days it’s hard to hold onto the blessings.
Some days it’s raining outside and it’s raining inside me, too. Not in the poetic way. I mean, in the I-struggle-to-get-out-of-bed way.
I know being productive would make me feel better. I know emailing pastors and filling out job applications would make me feel better. I know crossing something, anything off my to-do list would make me feel better. But in actuality, I feel like a giant weight has been tied to my feet and it’s been keeping me down.
So how do you trust God in these moments?
First of all, I want to point out that there is a difference between feeling depressed and clinical depression. Right now, I only feel depressed (or sad or “blue”), so I do not believe I am clinically depressed.
If trusting God involves relying on his sovereignty, what can I do when repeating “God’s in control” over and over and over doesn’t seem to make a dent in how overwhelmed I feel?
Do I just write Psalm 46:1 on post-it notes and tape them all over my room? Well, no. Probably not. I believe reading scripture can help, but scripture is not just a “swallow this pill to instantly make you feel better” kind of thing.
Talking with friends helps. Even when it feels like we are alone, there are often people who are willing to listen and help. One of my friends just sent this to me in a message: “While we wait on God, He is doing a greater work in us.”
Happiness is a choice, and so is trusting God. Sometimes we have to fight for goodness until we see the glory of God. Sometimes it’s like driving in fog: you won’t always see what’s coming, but you have to keep moving forward.