...there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years and was bowed together and COULD NOT lift herself up. (emphasis mine) And when Jesus saw her……..Luke 13:10-13
Notice she could not lift herself up.
So often we treat depression as if the sufferer could just say the magic words and they’d be healed.
First of all, depression (real depression, not just a few bad days) doesn’t happen overnight. It is usually the culmination of faulty thinking, unhealthy habits and behaviors, and how the stresses of life are handled. If it is just a few bad days, it will resolve itself.
But once it sets up camp in your mind, it never helps to be told that a quick fix is all it takes to get better. Just do “this” or “that”. The truth is, the “just this and just “that”, is often helpful but only when a person is ready to hear it.
This woman found in Luke had suffered eighteen years. She was quite literally bent over and could only see the ground. Consequently, she would often be overlooked or nearly stumbled over. While the story does not say she was depressed, most of us would agree that she probably was.
Wouldn’t you be?
I wonder how many people might have told her in the beginning that if she didn’t stand up straight, she was going to be permanently bent over?
But Jesus saw her.
JESUS SEES YOU AS WELL.
Note this. When Jesus healed her, he did not say, “Your sins are forgiven”. There was no sin to be forgiven. She had been praying at the temple right along, despite her condition. She was devout.
There are Christians suffering depression for whom the same thing could be said. We know this women’s heart was right with God because first of all, she believed just touching His garment would heal her and secondly, the moment she was healed, she glorified her Healer.
Sin is not automatically the root cause of all depression although it may play a role.
Don’t ever judge someone’s faith by their depression. Some of the greatest pastors, clergy persons, authors, religious leaders have suffered and fight depression, John Piper, Charles Spurgeon, Beth Moore, and others.
We are all “bent over” in some way or another.
You will notice, she came to Jesus as she was, bent over but moving towards Him. She was not drawing attention to herself as so many do. She was intent on reaching out to Jesus. She believed He could heal her. There is no indication she was complaining about her condition.
From Charles Spurgeon: Some of God’s children complain about their own weakness, mourn about their own impurity and allow their own emotion to govern their decisions. The one and only subject of their thoughts is their own condition.
God understands our depression; He knows the world we live in. BUT, it is not what He wants for us. Over and over again He promises us we can live a life of joy. God never expects us to stay where we are. The only word we have to remember is “Come”.
That’s all that has to be done to come to Christ.
He expects us to keep moving towards him, even if the only thing we can see is the “dirt”.
He sees so much more.
Trust Him today on your journey to wholeness. He can and He will deliver you if you keep taking that next step.
God bless and have a good day.
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