Depression. A mental health disorder characterized by persistent discouraged moods or a loss of interest in liveliness, causing significant impairment in daily life.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression. At its best, depression is often disguised by anxiety, a busy lifestyle, or hundreds of other coping mechanisms that avoid its presence altogether. At its worst, this troubling feeling of despair can lead to self-harm, intrusive thoughts, and suicide.
While I have never struggled with this worrisome darkness to the point of self-destruction, I have watched countless family members attempt its luring vices and reside in shame when their act was not successful. I have struggled with self-harm of orthorexia and anorexia that left me shallow in a puddle of grief, desperation, hopelessness, and anxiety.
In those times of hurt and confusion, the Lord often led me to Scripture and worship that elevated His Word above the noise of everything else. It's my prayer that these ten powerful songs will challenge your depression today, pulling you from the brink of darkness and setting you free in the beauty of His glorious light.
When life seems uncertain, depression can feel staggering and hindering to our faith. We feel as if we've come undone, and no matter what we do, our walk in this world is crippling. Yet even when our world is falling apart, Christ is in the business of pulling everything together.
Know this, the God of the Universe, both heaven and earth, sees and controls all. Even when life may be figuratively unraveling like a ball of yarn falling from the seams, or crumbling at your fingertips, hold on tightly to Him.
Joshua 2:11b praises, "The Lord your God is God in heaven above and on earth below." He sees every loose end and is sure to sew it up because He's sewing into you.
Feeling worn, ragged, tired, and old is something most of us have thought about at some period in our lives. I believe the age-old question of 2020, for instance, has been, "Why am I so tired all of the time?" At the core of our exhaustion is a weak and weary soul in need of a peace that only the Father can give.
Philippians 4:6-7 declares, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Our Heavenly Father knows every anxious thought, and though our hearts are heavy, He will give us rest when we come to Him (Matthew 11:28).
3. "No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus” by Steffany Gretzinger
Slide 2 of 6
If my heart could tell a story If my life would sing a song
If I have a testimony If I have anything at all
No one ever cared for me like Jesus His faithful hand has held me all this way
And when I'm old and grey And all my days are numbered on the earth Let it be known in you alone
My joy was found Oh my joy, my joy
As a child, my depression would undoubtedly stem from a lacking relationship with my father. What was once a kindled friendship slowly smoldered in the fire from the weight of crippling disabilities and crumbling mentalities. Over the years, we grew distant, and as a result, sometimes, my picture of God as a Dad grew fuzzy as well.
When we realize that depression has a voice, it is easier to filter the lies from the truth. In the middle of your sorrow, remember that your Father, your Heavenly Father, also has a voice, and He calls you His own, right where you are.
Romans 8:14-16 gives this confidence in that "For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, 'Abba, Father. The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.'"
Oh, my soul Oh, how you worry Oh, how you're weary from fearing
You lost control This was the one thing You didn't see coming
And no one would blame you though If you cried in private If you tried to hide it away
So no one knows No one will see If you stop believing
As a highly organized individual, I would be lying if I said that I love giving God control. Control is something that I have always struggled with, and if I'm honest, it often controls me more than the other way around.
Learning to "Let Go, and Let God" is a Christian catechism that's easier said than done. It is simple to make a statement like that apart from chaos and believe it to be true. Oh, how our souls cease to seek authority over every single detail. But Jesus didn't die on the cross for us to be in charge of our lives. He died so that He could reign over our sinful hearts that desperately need His guiding, saving, and loving, truth and grace.
Matthew 11:28 reminds us to lay down these burdens to the one who controls all. "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Surrender, like control, is a word that often leads to a bad taste in our mouth synonymous with weakness. We believe the lie that if we surrender to anything, that means we're small and ineffective in the fight.
James 4:7, however, tells us that no matter the quarrel or circumstance, we should submit ourselves to God. "Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." Submitting to God means following His Will, His Way, and resting in the promise that even if things don't turn out the way we intended, they are still for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28).
I have unanswered prayers I have trouble I wish wasn't there
And I have asked a thousand ways That you would take my pain away
I don't know about you, but I feel butterflies and fairytales, comfort and serenity when someone holds my hand. Why should resting in Jesus' hands look any different?
In life, we often cry unanswered prayers and wonder where God is because He doesn't feel close right here, right now. Scripture reminds us that even when we can't sense it, the Lord never leaves our side. 1 John 5:14 reminds us that He bends down to listen and will always hear the prayers of His faithful followers.
"And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.”
You asked me to let go, but I thought I knew better
Afraid of surrender and what I don't know
I've always had a plan, but now I'm so weary
And I can't see clearly, forgot who I am
How many times in life have you "thought you knew better than God" and tried to go your own way? I know I sure have, and to be honest, it is exhausting fighting the Lord's plans for your life because His will always undoubtedly prevail whether we agree with them or not!
Releasing control is a difficult concept to grasp, or I mean let go of, but it is one worth investing our time and thought into. Proverbs 16:9 reminds us of this truth: "In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps."
It is only at the end of ourselves that we realize our need to be rescued. Praise the Lord that we serve a good God who rescued us when we were anything worthy to be saved. At our worst, Jesus Christ died to save us. Never allow your mental state to convince you that you're hopeless or forgotten.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 prays, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God."
After a long hard day of fighting with anxiety and depression, I want to remind you that hope is to be found. Within the fullness of Christ, there is a peace that speaks over and above every fear. At the name of Jesus, every head must bow in authority to His presence, including our doubts and insecurities.
Even amid these places, I speak Jesus, and so can you. Psalm 94:19 resounds, "When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”
Allow His presence through these 10 powerful songs challenge and put an end to your mental struggles today.
Amber Ginter is an aspiring 25-year-old writer that currently works as an English teacher in Chillicothe, Ohio, and has a passionate desire to impact the world for Jesus through her love for writing, aesthetics, health/fitness, and ministry. Hoping to become a full-time freelancer, Amber seeks to proclaim her love for Christ and the Gospel through her writing, aesthetic ministry team (Aisthitikós Joy Ministries), and volunteer roles. She is also the author of The Story I've Never Told, which is currently in the publishing process. Amber has freelanced for Daughter of Delight, Kallos, Anchored Passion, Crosswalk, No Small Life, Darling Magazine, Called Christian Writers, Southern Ohio Today News, The Rebelution, Ohio Christian University, and The Circleville Herald. Visit her website at amberginter.com.