I remember a time of chasing shadows, running so fast as a little girl trying to outsmart the stretched out version of me. I wanted the sunshine not the shadows and even as an adult I still want that very same thing.
Last week I wrote about my very real battle with seasonal depression, Where The Sad Girls Go, How to love someone who is depressed. I am unafraid to be vulnerable with you because I know that God unlocks places within us for a reason. My freedom journey is sweeter when I take others with me. Joy has returned to me, but my heart has turned to those who still wrestle and wonder when things will change for them. They are waiting for the dark cloud to lift.
I typically refer to depression as “the dark cloud” but this morning as I was reading scripture I felt a tug on my heart as I read these words:
“Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings…”
(Psalm 17: 8 KJV)
I felt like God was whispering to my heart.
It was never a cloud, but the shadows where you were hidden and tucked away with Me.
As a child, I tried to outrun my shadow but the faster I ran; the faster my shadow followed me. An outline of my form elongated, a shadowed version of me; I could never outrun it. I wasn’t mean to.
We want to run from the dark moments we face when we simply need to find rest in God. Instead of dwelling on what is wrong in our lives, we can fix our minds on Christ to dwell with Him in such a way that it changes our perspective. Each time I experience a set back I know God is going to teach me something profound. A temporary pause and time of rest can make a huge different in our spiritual journey.
“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” (Ps 91:1)
In Exodus 33, Moses meets with God and doesn’t want to leave unless the presence of God goes with them. In verse 18 he said, “Please, show me Your glory.”
But, a full discovery of God would overwhelm him. So God gives Moses a way to be hidden and still experience the presence of God. He couldn’t see the face of God, but could see His back.
“When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by.” (Vs. 22)
Throughout scripture it talks about being hidden in the hand of God, or in the shadows of His wings. Everything about this speaks to me. He is a God who protects us and shelters us. The cloud becomes a shadow, a hiding place tucked away in the safety of God. A shield and a refuge from the storm, hidden in the One who numbers our days and knows exactly what we need and when we need it.
Don’t go through this alone, talk to a friend or a counselor. Share your heart with someone who has been through the same thing as you. The minute I go quiet or off the radar my best friend of twenty years always reaches out to me. She already knows so I don’t have to hide or put on a brave face with her. Don’t be afraid to share your ugly moments with someone who loves you, let the walls down and let them love you enough to see the real you, the one who is struggling right now.
Trust that this too shall pass, because it will. Relax your need to produce and just be.
When we can’t form the words to pray He knows the unspoken needs in our heart.
It’s not the dark cloud, friend. You are hidden in the shadow of the Almighty.
The things you wrestle with tucked inside of your heart, God sees. They are not hidden from Him, you are hidden in Him. Joy will return to you like it has to me.
Much love and prayers,