An old man offers the hero a sword to help him defeat the bad guy and save the princess.
That phrase, from The Legend of Zelda video game, has spawned a thousand memes on the internet. But it’s a valid principle, especially when I’m dealing with the dark places in my own mind.
When I’m in the middle of a dark episode, I just want to hide and protect myself. And even if I wanted someone to help me, the effort it takes to reach out seems like more than I can do.
My tears have been my food
day and night,
while people say to me all day long,
“Where is your God?”
“I have no peace, no quietness;
I have no rest, but only turmoil.”
But I’ve been on this road a long time. I’ve learned that when I’m sliding into depression, I have to take a step back and see the darkness as a place – a dangerous place.
And I don’t need to go there alone.
Of course, as a Christian, I’ve got God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit inside me.
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
I need to remember that, because when I pull in to the depths of my own mind, the rest of the world seems very far away.
But that’s not the only sword that will help me defeat the bad guy (depression) and rescue the princess (my sanity).
God knows how dark and dangerous depression is. So He provided people to help me.
Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
I usually read that verse from the perspective of the one carrying other’s burdens. But if I’m the one overwhelmed, then I can take comfort in this verse because it means that Jesus has told others to help carry my burdens.
Asking for help is hard – especially when I’m in the middle of the darkness. I can barely understand what I’m going through myself; how am I going to explain it to someone else?
And when they ask me what they can do to help, what if I don’t have an answer?
I just need to take someone’s hand.
I Corinthians 12:27
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
God has connected me, spiritually, to my brothers and sisters in Christ. And He taught me and led me to build close relationships with a few people when I was not in the dark. That’s because I need those people when my world starts closing in.
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
I need to know they’re praying for me. I need to know I’m not alone and that I’m not being judged.
I have found this kind of support in my local church and in Celebrate Recovery. But it’s my job to accept the help God has provided.
If you don’t have someone in your life that you can hold onto, then cry out to God for help and He’ll send someone into your life.
For he will deliver the needy who cry out,
the afflicted who have no one to help.
If you can’t get yourself to where the people are – church or therapy or a recovery group – then reach out to someone via email or social media.
Depression tells me I’m all alone and no one cares. The darkness pressures my mind and I don’t want to even open my eyes.
When I feel all this, I need to remember that God has not left me and He’s got a few people close by to help me through. I just need to reach out my hand and let them help me.
Who in your life can you reach out to when your mind starts going to the dangerous place?
Photo credit: Alexas_Fotos