First of all, thank you to you who have done my polls. It's fun to geat feel for some of your thoughts when you come to SFE. I have taken the music off for now and may find a happy compromise of easy listening since you seem to be in somewhat of a tie on that issue. More on that when the poll closes.
My friend Amy at The Word Works posted a blog post that was quite short but to the point. Please go here to read it so you understand the following in context.
I felt for her, I understood the impression she was getting about women in our stage of life being depressed/depressing. I have been learning a lot about trusting God from Jerry Bridges book "Trusting God Even When Life Hurts". However, my prayer even this morning was that the Lord would show me how these truths meet with my emotional life. Again, more on that later.
For now I have a treat for you. I asked Tami Rutledge for her quick take on the post from Amy. So, I come here to just share what the Lord gave her. I would like to thank her for taking the time and getting back to me so quick. Tami, feel free to add if you have any more thoughts.
I looked up the synonyms of “Depressed”
to get a feel for the emotion it is meant to portray. Here are the words my computer gave me.
down in the dumps
the dictionary definition is sad and gloomy; dejected; downcast.So on that note….
The scripture quoted on the blog was from Luke 1 and the version is The Message.
Luke 1:67Then Zachariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel ; he came and set his people free. He set the power of salvation in the center of our lives, and in the very house of David his servant, Just as he promised long ago through the preaching of his holy prophets: Deliverance from our enemies and every hateful hand; Mercy to our fathers, as he remembers to do what he said he'd do, What he swore to our father Abraham— a clean rescue from the enemy camp, So we can worship him without a care in the world, made holy before him as long as we live. And you, my child, "Prophet of the Highest," will go ahead of the Master to prepare his ways, Present the offer of salvation to his people, the forgiveness of their sins. Through the heartfelt mercies of our God, God's Sunrise will break in upon us, Shining on those in the darkness, those sitting in the shadow of death, Then showing us the way, one foot at a time, down the path of peace.First we must make sure we understand what those verses are telling us. This section of scripture is a prophecy about Jesus Christ.Jesus saved us from the hand of our enemies (“clean rescue from the enemy camp”) we were under Satan’s spell so to speak but God saved us from his grasp.“ So we can worship him without a care in the world, made holy before him as long as we live. “This passage … in the NASB says 74To grant us that we, being rescued from the hand of our enemies, Might serve Him without fear, 75 In holiness and righteous-ness before Him all our days.This means we are saved, and are His. So when God looks at us He does not see a sinner, He sees us as “holy and righteous,” This is of course because Christ’s blood covers us! even though we still sin God does not see that He sees us as pure and holy. We get to serve Him with out a care in the world… that simply means we don’t have to worry that salvation depends on our efforts! Our salvation is secure not because of what we do or don’t do, our salvation is secure because of what Christ did.This doesn’t mean we are carefree and happy flitting around like butterflies in a meadow!
The following quote is from the blog post…..
When I read "without a care in the world" it makes me think of someone
happy, laughing, smiling, energetic, child-like, lovable, creative, hands lifted
high and twirling!!
This joy that God is offering us is something far better… this is salvation from eternal hell, eternal separation from God. we should dance with joy.But if you think the abundant life looks like the happy life then you will continually be frustrated with God. Because God does not pursue our happiness He is in pursuit of our holiness. Happiness is temporal and based on circumstances.Joy is based on faith in the God of all circumstances!Happiness is the emotion you experience when things go your way.Joy is what you experience when you know that He who began a good work in you is doing it! Everything God does is for your good and His glory.The following quote is from the blog post.
We are to be living exceeding abundant lives, full and HAPPY! Lord,
how do we get there? What's the root and hold of this sadness... I'm
really burdened by this and expecting Him to guide me in this truth so
He can set me and others free!!
The abundant life is the life that has joy and peace no matter what the circumstances. This person rejoices in everything.Remember Joy and happiness are different. God doesn’t call us to be happy in the midst of trials He calls us to rejoice.Now to the point – why are women so depressed? It is simple. The goal they are I pursuit of is being hindered.We are born convinced that our happiness, comfort, security, ease of life etc is what will bring us the most fulfillment and satisfaction in this life. But the truth is… our greatest joy and fulfillment is found in serving God and pursuing the goal of pleasing God.We consider things to be “bad” if our pursuit of happiness is thwarted in any way. We live depressed because things do always go according to our plan. Husbands don’t romance is – kids don’t consider us – people don’t honor us as we would like to be. We are so self focused that we constantly see where our pursuit of ease of life is thwarted and we become resentful, bitter and full of self pity.Trials you see are vast – from spilt milk to cancer and God uses them to increase our faith in Him so we can live the abundant life – the life that is so convinced that God’s word works that we simply Trust and Obey and it is there that we find the abundant life – the life that is at peace at all times because it is resting in the Lord…. Not a care in the world.The abundant life is not about happiness it is about joy!
The following quote is from the blog post.
Lord, how do we get there? What's the root and hold of this sadness... I'm
really burdened by this and expecting Him to guide me in this truth so He
can set me and others free!!
You will be set free when you begin to clearly focused on the goal … the goal we pursue must be to please God, this brings us joy. If you read John Piper the happiness he talks about is JOY.When you are in pursuit of the goal of pleasing God the you will see that in everything God is working to increase your faith so you can please God more.When you are in pursuit of happiness you will grow weary and discouraged because God won’t be seen as faithful.Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek himI was diagnosed with Parkinson’s when I was 39 – and other than my salvation it is God’s most precious love gift to me. Why? Why so much joy? Because it helps me in pursuit of my goal… not happiness but holiness!