In times of depression, our own feelings and thoughts often betray us. The Truth that we so firmly believe becomes clouded by sadness, doubt and guilt. “Feelings are real, but they are not reliable.” One of my church’s pastors, Todd Wagner, often says this when he is reminding us that our feelings aren’t to be trusted, but God’s Word is. This is exponentially true for someone in the throes of depression. In times when our feelings and moods are crowding out everything else, it is crucial that we go to Scripture to be reminded of truth. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, “Every scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the person dedicated to God may be capable and equipped for every good work.” Scripture truly has everything we need!
The Bible provides us with direction, guidance, and encouragement for when we experience depression and anxiety. Below are verses that encourage me when I am struggling through a depressive episode, and I pray the Lord uses them to encourage your heart wherever you may be in your journey.
VERSES PROVIDING DIRECTION & GUIDANCE
1 Peter 5:7
Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You because he trusts in You.
1 Peter 1:6
So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think on these things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me, put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Fear not, for I am with you. I am your God. I will strengthen you. I will help you. I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
VERSES OF ENCOURAGEMENT
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
I John 3:1
How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God.
The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
I lift up my eyes to the hills from where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made Heaven and Earth.
From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.
I wait for the Lord my whole being waits and in His word I put my hope.
The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves those who have a crushed spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers them all.
The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
If you or a loved one suffers from Depression, you may benefit from other posts I’ve written on the topic. You can find them on the Depression tab.