Depression is very draining and will take its toll on a person. The battle is physically and mentally exhausting. The struggle may sometimes cause us to skip out on everyday activities that would otherwise better our lives. This can worsen depression and spawn other problems.
When hardship stacks up, it’s hard to imagine climbing out of such a dark hole anytime soon. We long for inner daylight, but not many things can truly promise instant relief. In our search for hope, we fill up on good things, but they usually don’t last.
For someone living with depression, it is vital to feed the mind with the right words, daily. Being intentional about reading God’s word may not seem like a huge deal, but hope begins on the inside of us.
10 Verses about Depression in the Bible to Comfort Us
The Word of God is alive. During dark seasons, however, it’s common to feel like the opposite. When heavy hopelessness sets in, we often don’t want the very thing we need, or at the very least have zero energy to attain it.
It’s like being dehydrated and falling to the ground before reaching the water fountain. But even if we could reach the water fountain, it wouldn’t be enough because, by that point, our bodies need a higher level of hydration than a few slurps can give us.
Having God’s words within reach is advantageous when it comes to our mental health. It’s like a living fountain that never runs dry, injecting energy and hope into our souls through the power of story.
But do we ever see examples of depression in the Bible? Let’s look at 1 Kings chapter 19 as an example. The story of Elijah the prophet includes an eye-opening section where he was overcome with fear, which turned into hopelessness and despair. He fled eighty miles with his helper plus a day’s journey alone into the wilderness where he told God he wanted to die already.
He napped a lot, and we find out in between naps, an angel provided him with food and water to regain his strength. From there, he journeyed further and napped some more in a cave before he had a couple of stirring encounters with the Lord.
There’s reading Scripture in context, and then there’s asking God through prayer, to allow its words to help us in our time of need. That’s what it’s there for, to be learned from and moved by.
Reading stories like Elijah’s confirms that we are not the first to experience difficulties and that God loves us and wants to walk this life out with us, no matter what we might be facing.
Read the verses below slowly. Post them where you can easily see them. Don’t feel weird for going beyond the norm to remind yourself of the truth.
There are people who write helpful Scriptures on their mirrors, listen to audio versions while driving, and more.
A family once taped an encouraging verse across from the toilet, and with little effort, everyone in the family memorized that Scripture. Day after day, they were subjected to those words, and it got into their minds on such a deep level that they started talking about it and reciting it to one another.
Finding hope in the Word of God isn’t a box to be checked. We aren’t doing it because we have to. Reading God’s Word to fill up on hope actually works. Whatever we take in goes somewhere. Why not drink in a hope that has no expiration date?
No darkness is going to keep God’s care out of reach. Even right there beneath the blankets when we feel like we can’t move, He is with us.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38-39
I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul makes its boast in the Lord; let the humble hear and be glad. – Psalm 34:1-2
O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you. My heart throbs; my strength fails me, and the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me. My friends and companions stand aloof from my plague, and my nearest kin stand far off. – Psalm 38:9-11
I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. – Psalm 40:1-2
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. – Psalm 42:11
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. – Colossians 3:3-4
Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all. – 2 Thessalonians 3:16
So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. – Hebrews 4:9
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. – Hebrews 4:12
… if we are faithless, he remains faithful for he cannot deny himself. – 2 Timothy 2:13
The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song, I give thanks to him. – Psalm 28:7
We need to get God’s Word in us somehow, no matter how crazy or dull our day might be. Timely Scriptures will help fight off the lies that say hope is nonexistent, and that we are forever stuck as things are right now.
While there might be things we can’t change, we can make time to encourage ourselves with specific verses that pierce through numbness and uplift in times of pain.
If we find it challenging to crack open our Bibles because we don’t know where to start or doubt it will do any good, we can try to view reading the Bible as an experiment, much like doctors do when trying to help us find a medicine that works for us.
Depression affects everyone differently, and it is not wrong to find creative ways to get filled up on God’s Word. Playing music in the background while reading Scripture and/or praying helps lifts our spirit too.
The Bible Gateway App is a great tool for those who have smartphones. They’ve improved this app with different colored emojis that are clickable and will take its user straight to the Scriptures that match that feeling.
Resistance is real, so the main thing is finding the method that works for us, to get that hope inside our minds and hearts. Healing words go deeper than we know.
We will benefit greatly by giving ourselves time to get this habit of feeding on God’s Word, rooted. Let’s not give up if we don’t see or feel a change right away. Let’s remember the promises in our Father’s words and keep them close by.
Let’s keep filling up on words that impact us personally and try to remember that when we feel the least motivated to read or listen to something helpful, it is usually when we need it the most. That dark place feels so strong when we are in it, but God is able to hold us and penetrate even the thickest of fogs.
Christian Counseling for Depression
If you could use some additional help dealing with depression, please contact one of the Christian counselors listed in the online counselor directory here on this site. We would be happy to work with you to overcome the depression you face and help you find peace and hope.
Featured image: “Down,” courtesy of Chad Madden, unsplash.com, CC0 License