I wrote yesterday about how much I hate my depression – and I DO hate it. But I realized today that because God has allowed this illness into my life, there must be some things about it for which I can be grateful.
Experiencing depression (along with anxiety and OCD) has allowed me to better understand other people who are struggling with the same illness(es). I’ve received messages from people who stumble across my blog and are so grateful, because it helped them feel like they were not so alone in their struggles. For this I am thankful to God! I’ve also become more empathetic towards people that I meet in day-to-day life. Everyone struggles with something, and I’ve found that because of my fight with depression, I am more sensitive to what others may be going through.
I’m also grateful for how it has taught me to rely on God more fully. When everything is going well in my life, I have less cause to reach out to the Lord for help. But when I am in a moment-by-moment battle, it forces me to cry out to God for strength, wisdom, and peace. So although I hate my depression and all that it entails, I can also be thankful – because my Father is teaching me that I can’t fight this battle in my own strength. I need His help!
Another reason why I can be grateful for my depression is that it’s taught me to think more positively. When you have depression, you often feel like you’re stuck in a deep, dark pit. You don’t exactly feel like being positive! But by keeping my eyes open each day for things to be grateful for, God has enabled me to change my perspective and to focus on the good things instead of the bad.
Depression has helped me to understand more fully the value of life – of each day, each moment. There have been times when I’ve wanted to end it all…when I didn’t want to go on anymore. Thank God He protected me! And even though I still struggle sometimes to see the purpose in another day with depression, I think that the Lord is slowly teaching me that He has a plan for me – and that each day is a gift.
Lastly, struggling with depression has shown me that I have many people in my life who love me, support me, and are willing to help me in any way that they can. From my husband, to my family, to my friends, to my neighbors, to my blogging community – I have a lot of people on my side. And that means…that I am not alone.
So although there are many reasons why I hate my depression, there are also reasons why I can be grateful for it. And I pray that God will teach me new reasons every day. ❤
Photo Credit: Eli DeFaria