Dear Ones,
Hope you had a delightful weekend. We were so blessed by our time with our friend from D.M. who came on Saturday.
Devotions from Judy’s heart
Would each of us say we are filled with joy of the Lord every day or would we admit there are times we find ourselves depressed and feeling down? The Bible is full of examples of those who felt depressed at times, although the word depression may not have been used. I was reading an article by author Barbara Latta who writes about 12 different Biblical characters who suffered from depression and what they did about it, which can be helpful for us.

King David came to my mind first as he describes so well all his feelings, happy and sad, and in Psalm 16:9 he said, “I’m happy from the inside out, and from the outside in, I’m firmly formed.” Another translation says, “But you will find joy in the Lord and praise the Holy One of Israel.” Along with great joy, David also had times that he felt depressed. One time when David and his army returned home, they discovered the Amalekites had raid their town and taken their families and possessions away.  David, along with his men wept with sorrow until they could weep no more. But we are told he responded by finding strength in the Lord and encouraging himself and was able go with his army to get everything back. Sometimes we need to give ourself a peptalk and encourage ourselves in the promises of the Lord, letting go of our negative talk.

Another example was Job who lost everything, including his family and his livestock and possessions, and must have felt devastated. And yet he refused to curse God and he remained faithful. In our times of devastation, we need to remember God’s faithfulness for even the things we don’t understand at the time. Job was rewarded twice as much after his time of testing.

Joseph must have felt pretty down when he was sold as a slave and put in a pit and later in prison. And yet he made the most of it and God rewarded Him. I wonder when we are going through dark times if we are willing to pray that God would work good out of our circumstances, and then make the best of it, believing that we would see the light again.

Abraham and Sarah must have had many sad times as she couldn’t get pregnant, and every month was a disappointment. She had to wait until she was 90 years old to birth a son of promise. And there was Esther who must have been filled with sadness and fear with the prospect of all her Jewish friends and family being annihilated. The list goes on and on.
Let us learn from the many examples in scripture and respond with hope and even joy.

Challenge for today: When you feel down and depressed, let go of negative talk, remember His faithfulness to you, make the best of it and let hope arise.

Blessings on your week and prayers and love, Judy