A guest Post by: Bruce Nevin Haines
19 “A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. 20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. (John 14:19-20)
I have struggled with chronic depression most of my adult life. I have had seasons where the intensity has felt unbearable. Out of necessity, I have come to view bouts with depression the same way I view the weather. It comes and goes. It is a recurring test of my patience and trust in God. But he is entirely faithful and always provides a path to the other side of these temporary emotional storms.
Several years ago, an unexpected wave of this depression threatened to overtake me. As I was in the midst of this storm, I still knew God’s promises and believed them. But what I was feeling had little connection to these truths at the time. I was desperate to find his pathway through to the other side. To hear his voice speak to me.
I was not at the point of being a danger to myself, but thoughts of suicide had entered my mind on this particular morning. Satan loves to take advantage of our low moments to try and push us over the edge. His attacks were relentless. I pushed myself just to get through the day, and was in the middle of a few household chores. I was cleaning out from under our bed when I noticed a small rolled up piece of paper. A few years earlier a friend of my wife’s had given her a gift. A collection of little rolled up scripture snip-it’s, dozens of them individually clasped with a paper clip. All of these are kept in a basket in our home. This one (and no others) had fallen out of the basket and was under our bed. It was likely to have been there for many months. I was not aware of its presence until that morning, at that moment. I bent down to pick up the Scripture. I unwrapped the paper, and read this short simple phrase, “Because I live, You shall live also.” (John 14:19b) It was as if Jesus whispered right into my ear.
“Because I live, You shall live also.” No clearer or more fitting words could have been spoken to me in that moment. I had a despair for my life that was not founded in reality, but the despair was present nonetheless. God took away any sense of my “permission” to despair. Jesus spoke to me a clear and resounding “NO!” in response to my weariness of life. I was to follow him, and live as he did. No option of compromise was given. I had to live to obey him. To despair and even contemplate the idea of not living was rebellion. In the wake of such a direct and powerful wave of truth I had to obey, to live, to go on. My despair was replaced with peace. God was willing to intervene and speak to me in this undeniable and profound way. This moment became a victory that I now reflect on often. As David recounted slaying the Bear and the Lion when he faced Goliath, I now recount God speaking his life into my life.
I pray that God will speak to you now at the very heart of your need, whatever it may be. He will provide a pathway through.