Wednesday, June 25, 2014
June 25 – Why are you depressed?
For I was once walking along with the great throng to the temple of God, shouting and giving thanks along with the crowd as we celebrated the holy festival. Why are you depressed, O my soul? Why are you upset? Wait for God! For I will again give thanks to my God for his saving intervention. (Psalm 42:4,5 NET)
When Israelites travelled to the Temple for the three annual festivals in the past it was a joyful, uplifting experience. Walking together in groups, singing as they went, all eager to enter God’s house, feel His presence, and have the privilege of sacrificing to Him — it was something they longed for. It was something that built up their faith, reminded them of the wonders that God had done in the past, and helped them to focus on putting Him first in their lives.
Today the Temple is our bodies — being filled with the Holy Spirit — even though gathering together at church brings us the exact same type of joy (at least it should). Our church has just completed an amazing replica of the Temple of Solomon in Sao Paulo, Brazil as a modern-day version of this very thing, which we believe will be the epicenter of a wave of the Holy Spirit washing over people all around the world. What people experienced in the past, what people will experience in our Temple in Sao Paulo, we should also experience today: an aching hunger, and craving for God’s presence and His Temple.
Twice in this psalm and once in the following psalm, David speaks to himself and asks, “Why are you depressed? Why are you upset?” If we are not careful, it’s easy for our emotions to get carried away with what we see and hear, trumping the Word of God in our minds and creating depression, doubt, fear, frustration, and every other demonically-inspired emotion. At these times we have to slam on the brakes, put a stop to our feelings, and turn our minds to the greatness of God. This is the time to remember how we’ve experienced the amazing presence of God in His Temple, how we once had unshakeable vision and faith, and how God came to our rescue and destroyed our enemies. No matter how many exhilarating experiences we have of God, there will always be deserts to walk through, and the good times need to pull us through the bad. When we’ve met God face-to-face and experienced His blessings, it’s a well of living water that we can draw on in times of trouble which brings victory and conquest.
Don’t allow your heart and soul to be depressed and upset. Turn your mind to the greatness of God and determine victory!