Friday, December 31, 2010

I Shall Again Praise Him

"Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God." ~Psalms 42: 5-6

Yesterday was a very difficult day for me, as it marked the one week anniversary of Ginger's death.  Ginger's death - I hate seeing those words side by side.  My mood plummeted Wednesday evening & remained in a pit of black numbness that was shot through with piercing anguish all the way through last night.  I had a faint hope that things would be better this morning after a good night's rest, & truthfully I do feel better today.  I had to give myself a sobering pep talk when I woke up, though.  I told myself that it's okay to grieve; it's only been one week, after all.  I'm going to cry, I'm going to be sad, I'm going to miss her terribly.  But, knowing myself as I do, if I continue to wallow in my melancholy, I will fall into a depression & it will take a very long time to claw my way back out.  I can grieve, yes, but I have to fight against the temptation to bathe in it or I'll drown.

I've struggled with clinical depression off & on since my early teens.  Perhaps that's the reason that I have little patience for prolonged lamenting; I know what it can lead to.  It's been a few years since I've been plagued by this foe, & I'd like to keep it that way.  Thankfully, I now know how.  When Michael & I first met, I was on Prozac.  It kept my moods pretty level, & since anger is how depression expresses itself in me, my dad cautioned Michael in his desire to have me off of the medication.  "Trust me, you don't want her off of that!", he warned.  Mama & I echoed his admonition.  Michael heedlessly rejected this counsel & gently pushed for me to do away with the Prozac.  Against my better judgment - because I love him & want to honor him - I stopped taking it.  And do you know what I found?  Much to my amazement, I discovered that Michael was right, & I didn't need it.  Oh, my mood fluctuated & I felt anger more than I would have liked, but in my reading & instruction from Michael, I realized that my problem wasn't depression, my problem was sin.  I had come to view my anger as acceptable & justified; it was just a part of who I was &, furthermore, people shouldn't do things to make me angry!  Besides, "the experts" say that it's healthy to vent your anger.  But, in reading God's Word, I found that my anger was not normal, healthy, or acceptable.  It's sin, pure & simple, & no pill can cure me of that.  I had to acknowledge my sin for what it was, repent of it, & rely on God to rid me of it.

My sorrow is no different.  Sorrow is expected in my loss; I'm not denying that.  But to wallow in it & despair is sin.  I have no reason to despair in my grief because I have God.  If I do so, then I have shown that God has not been my highest love, & Ginger is an idol.  I don't want that.  I want to love God supremely, so I have to willingly let Ginger go if He bids me to.  He has, so I must.  And I proclaim with Job, "though He slay me, I will hope in Him"!