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I have depression and this is what I want you to know

Title: I Have Depression And This Is What I Want You To Know
Materials: Illustration
Artwork by: Emilia
Description: Depression. What do you think about when you hear this word? Is it just someone experiencing an emotional low or having a bad day? Or perhaps you are familiar with the term, more familiar than you would like to be.

If you’re the latter struggling with depression yourself, we want to tell you that nothing can separate us from God’s love. Even in your darkest days, He still loves you and will save you from the valley of death (Psalms 23:4). If you have never had depression, we hope the following art project would help you to understand it better, and that you would have more compassion for your family or friend who is struggling with it.

Read more about Wendy’s struggle with depression here: http://ymi.today/2016/09/i-have-depression-and-this-is-what-i-want-you-to-know/

 

Depression is a heavy cloud hovering above my head
In God’s goodness and faithfulness, He can lift the fog of your depression, little by little.

 

Depression is a coldness creeping in my heart
Pray that God places people in your life to show you the love of Christ through encouragement, support and prayers.

 

Depression is a veil darkening my sight
In this difficult and dark season, He has been my light, my strength and my song.

 

Depression is days that move slowly and numbly.
Depression cannot separate you from the love of God, even if you feel numb to it (Romans 8:38-39).

 

Depression are nights of overflowing tears and thoughts.
Though the nights are long and filled with mourning, remember that joy comes with the morning (Psalm 30:5).

 

Depression is thinking to myself that I’m getting better one day, and completely breaking down the next.
He is the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction (2 Corinthians 1:3).

ODB: Strengthen My Hands

January 26, 2015 

READ: Nehemiah 6:1-9,15 

Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands. —Nehemiah 6:9 

Singapore’s first Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew, is the man credited with making Singapore what it is today. During his leadership, Singapore grew to be rich and prosperous and one of the most developed nations in Asia. Asked if he ever felt like giving up when he faced criticism and challenges during his many years of public service, he replied, “This is a life-long commitment.”

Nehemiah, who led in the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem, refused to give up. He faced insults and intimidation from the enemies all around him as well as injustices from his own people (Neh. 4–5). His enemies even insinuated that he had a personal agenda (6:6-7). He sought help from God while taking every defensive step he could.

Despite the challenges, the wall was completed in 52 days (6:15). But Nehemiah’s work was not complete. He encouraged the Israelites to study the Scriptures, to worship, and to keep God’s law. After completing 12 years as governor (5:14), he returned to make sure his reforms were continuing (13:6). Nehemiah had a life-long commitment to leading the people.

We all face challenges and difficulties in life. But as God helped Nehemiah, He will also strengthen our hands (6:9) for the rest of our lives in whatever tasks He gives to us.

— C. P. Hia

Dear Lord, sometimes it’s easy to get discouraged
when faced with criticism or challenges. Help
me to persevere and grant me the strength to be
faithful to what You have called me to do.

Life’s challenges are designed not to break us but to bend us toward God. 

ODB: It’s Worth It

January 14, 2015 

READ: 2 Corinthians 11:24-33 

If I must boast, I will boast in the things which concern my infirmity. —2 Corinthians 11:30 

“I can’t do it,” Robert said, throwing his pencil down in despair. “It’s just too hard!” Reading, writing, and spelling seemed impossible to our dyslexic 9-year-old. At last, a solution was offered. But it was tough. We had to do reading and spelling practice with him for 20 minutes every evening—without exception. Sometimes we just didn’t feel like doing it, and at times we despaired of seeing progress. But we were committed to getting Robert’s reading age and his chronological age to match, so we battled on.

After 2 1/2 years, all the tears and struggles seemed infinitely worthwhile. Robert learned to read and spell. And we all learned patient endurance.

The apostle Paul suffered all sorts of hardships as he pursued his goal of sharing the good news of Jesus with those who had never heard. Persecuted, beaten, imprisoned, and misunderstood, sometimes he faced death itself (2 Cor. 11:25). But the joy of seeing people respond to his message made it all worthwhile.

If you feel that the task God has called you to is too hard, remember that the spiritual lessons and joy that are wrapped up in the journey may seem hidden at first, but they are certainly there! God will help you find them.

— Marion Stroud

Sometimes we learn that hardships
Were blessings in disguise,
That earnest work and faith in God
Were proven to be wise. —Hess

The journey is as important as the destination. 

ODB: Struggling With Addiction

December 1, 2014 

READ: Hebrews 4:14-16 

God is faithful. —1 Corinthians 10:13 

Eric was struggling with an addiction, and he knew it. His friends and family members encouraged him to stop. He agreed that it would be best for his health and relationships, but he felt helpless. When others told him how they had quit their bad habits, he replied, “I’m happy for you, but I can’t seem to stop! I wish I had never been tempted in the first place. I want God to take the desire away right now.”

Immediate deliverance may happen for some, but most face a daily battle. While we don’t always understand why the temptation doesn’t go away, we can turn to God on whatever path we find ourselves. And perhaps that is the most important part of our struggle. We learn to exchange our futile efforts to change for complete dependence on God.

Jesus was tempted also, just as we are, so He understands what we’re feeling (Mark 1:13). He sympathizes with our struggles (Heb. 4:15), and we can “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (v.16). He also uses others, including trained professionals, to lean on along the way.

Whatever battles we may be facing today, we know this—God loves us much more than we can imagine, and He is faithful to come to our assistance.

— Anne Cetas

For Further Thought
Read Matthew 4:1-11 about how Jesus handled
temptations. Also read 1 Corinthians 10:11-13
to learn how He can help us when we are tempted.

We are not tempted because we are evil; we are tempted because we are human.