Living in the middle of the United States makes for interesting weather. Yesterday was in the mid-50s and today the temperature is 15 degrees (F). Last week we had a wind chill of -25 degrees. We’ve had ice, rain, snow, fog with zero visibility and that’s in past few weeks. Nebraska weather is ever changing.
Living with anxiety and being married to someone diagnosed with severe depression is a lot like living in Nebraska. There a days when all seems well, even joyous. Other days, it is debilitating. We both take medication to help balance out our body’s chemistry and we’ve both been in counseling. Each piece has made a positive impact in our lives. We also have our faith.
Our individual faith journeys have helped prepare us for our marriage and brought us through difficult times that would have brought others to divorce. Anxiety and depression are different from the other battles we’ve faced together. Our diagnoses can battle each other. My anxiety can trigger his depression and vice versa. It is through a lot of prayer and Bible study that I am able to see the underlying issues. I miss the root of it at times, too.
Often well intentioned folk will tell you not to worry so much, “The Bible says, ‘Do not worry.’ You need to believe more.” Or “The Bible says, ‘Do not fear‘ 365 times, that’s one for every day.” Quoting Scripture is vital to my walk, but it is not an instant fix in the middle of an anxiety attack or a depressive episode.
Each person is different when they are battling their anxiety and/or depression. The overall encouragement is being present in that person’s life. No perfect verse, quote, platitude, or fix is needed. It takes patience. It may take hospitalization. It absolutely takes time, maybe a lifetime.
Scripture is my personal blessing. I have studied and memorized verses that echo in my heart and mind when my anxiety is spiking. One of these verses whispers to my heart often, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit,” (Psalm 34:18 NIV).
God already knows what I am battling and He is by my side. The Holy Spirit is comforting me. The weather conditions in my life will change, sometimes by the hour. One thing that will not change is God. He is with me always (Matthew 28:20) He will complete what He has begun (Philippians 1:6). I will put on the armor needed for battle and I know He will stand with me (Ephesians 6:10-20).
Best Beloved, if you know someone who is struggling with anxiety or depression please make the time to check in with them. Encourage them, listen to them, walk with them, and if distance prevents these options- above all, pray for them. Prayer is crucial. If your dear one does not say it: Thank you for listening ♥️