Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. Ps. 43:5
Heavenly Father, we come to your throne of grace today on behalf of those who under the weight and wait of sadness—from mild melancholia to deep depression. Father of mercies and God of all comfort, teach us how to offer your kindness and presence to our friends. And teach us how to steward our own stress and distress.
Continue to free us from simplistic (sometimes, harmful) views of depression, Father. David asked the right question in his season of duress: “Why, my soul, are you downcast?” (Ps. 43:5). Help us understand the various reasons for a downcast, distraught soul.
We pray for friends whose depression is spiritually generated—the pain of living with no sense of the wonders of your love, the riches of your grace, and the peace of the gospel. Father, whether they are believers or not, draw them to yourself, in fresh, peace-giving, and heart-encouraging ways. Reveal Jesus as a merciful, and mighty Savior—full of compassion and kindness, welcoming us in our brokenness and sin.
Father, for friends who suffer from depression generated by physiological or genetic reasons, lead them to the right kind of medical care and counsel. Give us wisdom and grace, patience and kindness for walking with them.
We pray for friends who suffer from depression fueled by the lord of darkness, himself—Satan. His condemning, blaming, and shaming voice generates deep forms of despair, and O how he loves to feed on our stories of trauma and deep wounding. We are so thankful that He who is in us if greater than anyone or anything in the world. May the truth of the gospel sabotage the many lies of our defeated, fury-filled foe (Rev. 12:12).
Father, lastly, help us steward our own “downcast-ness.” May our default mode of withdrawal and isolation, or medicating in foolish ways, be replaced with running to you and collapsing on Jesus. With the Psalmist, we gladly acknowledge you as our Savior and God, balm and ballast, our hope and healing. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ compassionate and victorious name.