Depression is a serious thing. Debilitating. Hurtful. A hopelessness that takes over it seems and debilitates the person, incapacitates the person, who is no longer themselves as it were. Despondent. They are in a deep state of hopelessness. Psalm 42 gives us some wisdom in how to wrestle with depression and how the Psalmist shows what he did in confronting it and giving the answer to escape the tyranny of it’s mental and emotional clutches. He breaks the chains, the handcuffs that have imprisoned him, his thinking, his mental and emotional movement, from one of oppression, suppression to one of freedom from despair and emotional turmoil.

” Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him
For the help of His presence. “-{Psalm 42:5}

“DESPAIR.”– { shachach/sahah} literally means to be brought low… in some instances it can mean bow in sense of to walk in a stooped posture, for example  describing  a person who is dejected, such as at a time of mourning -(Ps 35:14 Ps 38:6 or to crouch – Job 38:40). Physically (literally) the bringing down of a wall- (Isa 25:12, } also used of the crumbling a mountain Hab 3:6). The word spoke of “no hope.”  “Notice that the literally (etymological) rendering of “despair” is “no hope!” It is a a state of depressed mood and hopelessness. The Cambridge Dictionary says despair is “the feeling that there is no hope and that you can do nothing to improve a difficult or worrying situation.”- {Preceptaustin}.

“DISTURBED”- {Hamah}. It is a verb. It was ongoing. The root meaning to cry out, make a loud noise,to moan, turbulent. It was used of Waves that roar (Ps 46:3Jer 5:22). Nations “roar” (Ps 46:4). A city is in an uproar (1Ki 1:41). People murmur (Psalm 55:17). The heart pounds (Jer 4:19). It means to cause inward commotion, take away calmness of mind.

The word “Hamah”  in Psalm 42:5, 11; 43:5, translates with the Greek verb suntarasso(sun = with + tarasso = literally to shake or agitate like water in a glass sharply jarred, figuratively to cause inward commotion, take away calmness of mind) which means to throw (or be thrown) into complete confusion, to profoundly disturb, to greatly vex, to confound, to disturb. -{preceptaustin}. Who at times have not known this mental state of disturbance.

Psalm 42:5, 11; 43:5, means to throw (or be thrown) into complete confusion, to profoundly disturb, to greatly vex, to confound, to disturb.

The word “hamah” is used 32 times in the Old Testament and 20 different English words or phrases to try and express it’s meaning among the words used are “disturbed, mourning.”

“HOPE IN GOD” In the Greek {elpizo} is the translation of the Hebrew word  and in the Hebrew it is a command and is aorist tense which means to do something now, and the Psalmist tells what to do now, “HOPE NOW” Do this now. It is urgent. Don’t delay. No need to think about it and have a meeting over it. Do this now, HOPE NOW!

This is God’s remedy, His answer, His wisdom from above to you, to do now. His remedy is HOPE for despair, sorrow, emotional sorrow, grieving, sadness, distress, depression, emotional turmoil and mental unrest.

To “Hope” in God is not the hope of a gambler, the hope of chance or the hope of uncertainty, a “wish so”  as “I hope I get the job,..I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow. I hope they get better…” the hope of uncertainty. But the “Hope” of God for His people is the Hope of certainty…of FUTURE  GOOD! The word hope” means “Confident expectation,” in God. The strength of hope is God’s ABILITY and RELIABILITY to fulfill all of His Promises. It is the confident assurance in Him behaving as Him, He is faithful,unchanging, cannot lie and does all that He says He will do.

Despair looks at the difficulties, circumstances and see them as insurmountable. Hope looks to God and says,… all things are possible…with Him!

“At the south of Africa the sea was generally so stormy, when the frail barks of the Portuguese went sailing south, that they named it the Cape of Storms; but after that cape had been well rounded by bolder navigators, they named it the Cape of Good Hope. In your experience you had many a Cape of Storms, but you have weathered them all, and now, let them be a Cape of Good Hope to you.” (Spurgeon)

It begins with Obedience- I choose to obey God and Hope in Him.

1.It Begins in THINKING Right about The LORD.

“This I recall to my mind, Therefore I have hope. “-{Lamantations 3:21-24}

And what does he recall to his mind?
The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
 They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I have hope in Him.”-{Lam 3:22-34}

“At the south of Africa the sea was generally so stormy, when the frail barks of the Portuguese went sailing south, that they named it the Cape of Storms; but after that cape had been well rounded by bolder navigators, they named it the Cape of Good Hope. In your experience you had many a Cape of Storms, but you have weathered them all, and now, let them be a Cape of Good Hope to you.” (Spurgeon)

He recalls the LORD’s loving kindness. He begins with thinking about the LORD. The word yahweh speaks of Him in the Old Testament in various passages as Creator, Provider, Promise-Keeper, Self-Existent, Sovereign, Unchanging.

He begins with right thinking about the LORD and who He is…”Existing One,” who had no beginning and is the forever “I Am.”

“But this I call to mind and therefore  I have hope…{in} The LORD

 

2.He THINKS first about the LORD’S “LOVINGKINDNESS.”

“Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, And consider the lovingkindnesses of the Lord.”-{Psalm 107:43}.

LOVE  – The writer’s hope is based on “the Lord’s great love.”  Note his foundation is a Person- “The Lord!” And flowing forth from Him, His character revealed and Him in action.

The word means “great love.”The Hebrew word used for this love is “hesed,” it speaks of the constant love that God shows to His people because of His covenant relationship with them. Whether translated “lovingkindness,” “unfailing love,” “constant goodness,” or simply, “love,” the word always refers to God’s loyalty. It is a love that gives and gives and gives, for this is the nature of God. It is an unbreakable, unchanging loyal love of commitment. It’s  love that never fails or gives up on His own.

” I will sing of the lovingkindness of the Lord forever;…”-{Psalm 89:1}

“But this I call to mind and therefore  I have hope… The LORD is …Great in Love…

 

3. He next THINKS on the LORD’S “COMPASSION.”

ḥeseḏ” love flows because of God’s compassion. And the writer says: “His compassion’s never fail.”  The Hebrew word, has to do with tender love, great and tender mercy, or pity. The same word is used in Isaiah 63:7 and translated “compassion”: “I will tell of the kindnesses of the LORD, the deeds for which he is to be praised, according to all the LORD has done for us—yes, the many good things he has done for Israel, according to his compassion and many kindnesses.” The LORD has pity on His suffering people. His compassion, mercy, never ever fail. “Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, And consider the lovingkindnesses of the Lord.”; “The LORD is good to everyone. He showers compassion on all his creation.” -{Psalm 145:9 NLT}; ” He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, “-{Titus 3:5 NLT};

People fail, governments fail, society fails but not God’s compassion, mercies. They are forever unfailing.

The word “rahamim”, compassion,’ ‘mercy’, derived from a word meaning ‘womb.’

As bad as things were he wanted them to know that there was compassion, the LORD’S compassion was not used up and because of that the people were not consumed. His tender compassion was not spent, and in this was great comfort amidst the sorrows. And with each new morning there is fresh provision of the LORD’S  tender Compassion, mercies, to be received by faith and look forward to in hope Of His New daily provisions. With each new day, God has provided, just as He provided daily manna for the people -{Ex 16:1-31,35}. Jesus exercised compassion,”When He went ]ashore, He saw a large crowd, and felt compassion for them and healed their sick.”-{Matthew 14:14}. His mercy is Great-{Eph 2;4}. His mercies are Rich.-{1 Peter 1:3}. His mercies are New each morning!

The LORD provides tender compassion, mercy for each new day! Each morning. His mercies are new each morning as He knows new compassion, mercies are needed for each day you and I face. Every morning God is gifting to you whether you recognize, realize or not. He keeps giving and giving new mercies. Think of how old you are. How many days? Years? For every day of your life He has been providing tender compassion, mercies!

The Hebrew word for “New”is “chadosh” which means “BRAND NEW.” It is not a recycling, or a restoration, it is something different, something that is “brand new.” It is not “left over” from yesterday for those mercies were for yesterday. It is not tomorrows mercies for those will come if you have another tomorrow. They are “brand new” for this day, specifically for…you to avail of! Every morning God expresses His love, tender mercies to us. It is “Brand New,” from Him to you to experience of Him. With each New Morning He has provided “brand new” mercies for that day for… You!

Every Morning New mercies of Strength for the day -{Deut 33:25}

Every Morning New mercies of Help Available -{Heb 4:16}

Every Morning New mercies of Forgiveness for new sins-{1 John 1:7,9}

Every Morning New mercies of Grace that is Sufficient-{2 Cor 12:9}

Every Morning New mercies of Comfort in afflictions-{2 Cor 1:3-4}

Every Morning New mercies of Wisdom to walk worthy of Him.-{James 1:5}

Every Morning New mercies of loving-kindness

Every Morning New mercies of compassion

Every Morning New mercies of Faithfulness

Each Day’s  Mercies, kindness Are Tailored For You For That Day by The LORD Himself!

“But this I call to mind and therefore  I have hope… The LORD is…Compassionate, Merciful…

 

4. He next THINKS on the LORD’S “FAITHFULNESS.”

“Great is YOUR Faithfulness.” God is Great.” He is superior than all. “Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is unsearchable.”  -{Ps 145:3}. “For You are great and do wondrous deeds;You alone are God.“-{Psalm 86:10}. “For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods. “-{Psalm 96;4}. “But as for me, I would seek God, And I would place my cause before God; Who does great and unsearchable things,Wonders without number.”-{Job 5:8-9}.”Who alone stretches out the heavens And tramples down the waves of the sea; Who makes the Bear, Orion and the Pleiades, And the chambers of the south; Who does great things, unfathomable, And wondrous works without number. -{Job 9:8-10}. He is to be worshiped because He is great- “But the Lord, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear, and to Him you shall bow yourselves down, and to Him you shall sacrifice.”-{2 Kings 17:36}.”and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might.”-{Eph 1:19}. “looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus,“-{Titus 2:13}. “and since we have a great priest over the house of God,”-{Heb 10:21}. “And they were all amazed at the greatness of God. “-{Luke 9:43}. “Praise Him for His mighty deeds; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness.“-{Psalm 150:2}. “For Your righteousness, O God, reaches to the heavens,You who have done great thingsO God, who is like You?“-{Psalm 71:19}.

He is The Great God who does Great things, and is to be praised and worshiped for His Greatness.

His Greatness including being Great in faithfulness. Faithful in Great Love; Faithful in Great Compassion. The word “faithfulness” comes from a root meaning “be permanent, secure, and reliable.” His compassion never fail for He is faithful. His love is permanent. His faithfulness is Consistent, permanent, secure, reliable. You can count on Him! There is no inconsistency with Him. It is who He is. Faithful, reliable to Keep His Word, He has the power to do so and the love to execute each and every promise! Hope founded on love, that is reliable, consistent, permanent, and no need to doubt Him. As He was, so He is and forever will be – Faithful, consistent, reliable, permanent!

Jacob knew this aspect of God; “I am unworthy of all the lovingkindness and of all the faithfulness which You have shown to Your servant, for with my staff only I crossed this Jordan, and now I have become two companies.”-{Genesis 32:10}.The Psalmist knew this; “For the Word of the Lord is upright, And all His work is done in faithfulness.”-{Psalm 33:4}. “Trust in the Lord, and do good. Dwell in the land and feed on His faithfulness.”-{Psalm 37;3}. The Psalmist Testified of His Faithfulness.” I do not hide your righteousness in my heart; I speak of Your faithfulness and your saving help.I do not conceal Your love and Your faithfulness from the great assembly “-{Psalm 40:10}. “…To all generations I will make known Your faithfulness with my mouth.”

He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.”-{1 Thess 5;24}.” No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. “-{1 Cor 10:13}.”If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.”-{2 Tim 2:13}. “God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”-

And we read of the LORD Jesus, “And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war “-{Rev 19:11}.

God is Faithful.His Work is done in Faithfulness, Jacob, The Psalmist, Paul testified of it, The LORD Jesus is the FAITHFUL One! And in Lamentations 3, Jeremiah testified and said,

“But this I call to mind and therefore  I have hope… The LORD is…Faithful!

 

5. He next THINKS on who the LORD is to him, “MY PORTION

“My PORTION” –  Note he recalls His character,  and the personal relationship he has with Him, in sayingMy Portion.” The Lord Himself, is his lot in life! As the Psalmist also said,” You are my portion, LORD; “-{Psalm 119:57}. Jeremiah had found his significance, satisfaction in the LORD.

While we often put our “hope” and trust in such misplaced “hope” such as materialism for our security, significance, Jeremiah goes beyond the superficial, the temporal, which can be destroyed, lost in the blink of an eye to Him who is Eternal, the God of “ALL HOPE” -{Read Romans 15:13}; God is LOVE -{Read 1 John 4:7-8};  and He is LIFE { Read Acts 17:28; John 1:3-4; Job 33:4; John 14:6,}. The Lord Himself is his portion.

“But this I call to mind and therefore  I have hope… The LORD is… MY Portion…

Thinking Right on God produces Hope. Hope based on His Love, who is Faithful!

 

THE RESULT OF SUCH RIGHT THINKING?

“THEREFORE I HAVE HOPE IN HIM!

The LORD could not be His hope until first He had been his Portion, satisfaction to him. He is our pathway to His Hope! As Paul wrote to Timothy, “Christ who is our HOPE.” -{1 Timothy 1:1} .

The first step to wrestling depression to the mat as it were and defeating it to no longer have power over your thinking is to choose to THINK RIGHT about the LORD and His Character and Provisions for you, as revealed in His Word. It takes faith in Him to do so as you feel so so bad, but God honors faith is pleased with it and as you begin to THINK on His Word the means to thinking right Hope will be birthed. Notice what Paul says are one means to Hope springing forth in the heart.”For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.“-{Romans 15:4}. God uses His Word to encourage us SO THAT we might have “Hope!”

Perhaps reading is difficult for you to concentrate, don’t panic, ask Him to remind an bring to memory some verses so you can chew on and be encouraged by and that will birth hope, confident expectation in Him that will strengthen you and bring you out of the depression. One of the problems of the tyranny of depression is the  thinking of the hopelessness.

Hopelessness looks at the difficulty, circumstances and concludes there is no hope. Biblical hope looks to God and says… All things are possible …with Him!

He is near the broken- hearted. He heals the broken- hearted. He comforts the depressed-{2 Cor 7:6}. He is the lifter up of our head.

Depression can be a physical thing, hormonal imbalance, it can be a thinking thing, where we get a thought and embrace it, dwell on it and fail to recognize it’s goal is to deflate us, dishearten, discourage us, overwhelm us, leave God out of the equation as He who is caring for us, Sovereign over the circumstances and and desires once again you be free from the bondage of depression and experience His HOPE!

Note what the Psalmist said and did

HE CONFRONTED HIMSELF.

So often we listen to ourselves. Voices, thoughts stream into our mind and we do not take them captive, examining them but we listen and before you know it are consumed by them effecting us mentally, emotionally, and at times physically and spiritually…INSTEAD OF LISTENING TO what at times can seem an onslaught of negative hopeless thoughts. CONFRONT yourself. Don’t allow your mind to be pinned to the mat as in a wrestling contest. You take the INITIATIVE. You go on the OFFENSIVE. You be the leading INTERROGATOR. YOU TAKE CONTROL! Follow the lead of the Psalmist whose word are recorded in the Bible for us. “The things revealed belong to us and our children.”{Deut 29:29}.God wants us to know and learn from. The psalmist begins to interrogate himself by asking QUESTIONS of himself!

” Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?

He does not deny he is emotionally sunk low, in despair, distraught, depressed. But he asked himself specifically “why?” ” Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me?

HE ANSWERS HIMSELF  WITH THE SOLUTION!
“Hope in God,”

The solution is God! And to place, deposit, entrust, hope, that confident expectation in God. Confident, assurance of  God undertaking and fulfilling all of His promises to you. Hope in God’s Sovereignty. Hope in the Sufficiency of God’s Grace for you -{2 Cor 12:9}. Hope in God’s genuine Care for you.{1 Peter 5:7}. Hope in God’s Goodness .

Or as the writer in Lamentations points out  that he chose to  “recall” – God’s great Love. God’s  DAILY Compassion. God’s Faithfulness… AND THEREFORE had HOPE!

HOPE ARISES

“for I shall again praise Him
For the help of His presence. ”  He knows He will again praise, speak well of the LORD and the reason being that He is his helper!

Christ died that we would not live in depression, He arose victoriously and though at times we fall, encounter and are as it were smothered by it, feeling hopeless, isolated, downcast, He has provided us with His solution.

I love Psalm 50:15 which says, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble;
I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me.” What should we do in the day of trouble? He tells us to “Call on” Him and when we obey the command to do so we  honor Him in doing so. This trouble is an opportunity to honor Him and see Him deliver.

HOPE IN GOD

THINK ON THE TRUTH ABOUT GOD– Change what you are continually thinking about that has brought you so low. Philippians 4:8 says “whatever is True… let your MIND dwell on these.”

TALK THE TRUTH TO YOURSELF– Ask questions. Answer yourself with His Word- the truth. Recognize the disheartening, despairing, depressive thought and immediately REPLACE it with TRUTH. Paul said we are to be continually “renewing our mind.” Why the mind? The first and greatest commandment is to “Love the LORD your God with all of your heart… and MIND”-{Luke 10:27}. The purpose of your MIND as mine is to LOVE God with. And the evil one sows thoughts if he can to our mind to think on them and in doing so displace the LORD and spiral down into despair. And it began with one thought,one hurt, one emotional blow of loss of a loved one… and the fears and anxieties that accompany often paralyze us. Does it mean we are not to grieve, to feel? No. But to handle our grief His way, is the best way.  THINK RIGHT…TALK RIGHT

DO RIGHT- “Hope in God.” Often we can hope in circumstances… or hope in others and can be let down, hurt, disappointed, dejected, discouraged, depressed. DO choose to Hope in God… for He is the Helper for you. How wonderful the LORD has taken us on and not left us on our own, thought the lie of hopelessness would say otherwise,. For He says, ” for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,”-{Hebrews 13:5}. In the Greek here are five negatives to make one positive and powerful assuring and reassuring statement- the LORD IS ALWAYS WITH YOU!

And like the Psalmist you too  will praise Him for who He is and how He met you and can testify, just like the Psalmist has to us and preserved it in His Word for us so we too can receive His Wisdom and knowledge and how to apply to our own lives when depression would seek to wrestle us emotionally and pin us to the mat, “BUT GOD…” has made a way for us because He is our way, he is our Hope and We PRAISE Him for that!

God never wastes anything and in 2 Cor 1:3-4 we see He comforts the afflicted and in verse 4  says “SO THAT YOU WILL BE ABLE…” to  comfort others with the comfort He has comforted you with in their affliction! God comforts us and commissions us to comfort others! God can take what the evil one means to dishearten discourage depress and divert us from loving God and turn it into something that is good, and beneficial to others by making us ministers of comfort to those who are crushed!

“Hope in God!” Praise Him for He IS – present tense your Help. Help to arise from despondency. Help to obey his command to “Hope NOW.” Help to recall His WORD. HELP TO APPLY His Word. He is your helper. “Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”-{Hebrews 4:16}. I love the way it is written, “the needy ones” can come to His Throne and what should they expect  to “receive”from Him?  “Mercy, Grace to HELP” When? “In time of need!” Are you in need? Then come, talk to Him and receive from Him who loves you, cares for you and will help you in this time of difficulty, this time of need!

Remember the encouraging word from Psalm 50:15 – , “Call upon Me in the day of trouble;I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me.“. Go ahead and call out to Him….

You are eternally loved and the cross of Christ is the demonstration…