For some reason today I’ve been almost overcome with a feeling of despondency. I lost my job over a month ago, and I’ve not been able to find a new one. Sitting in church this morning. It seemed as if everything was getting on my nerves and I felt worse by the minute. I kept asking myself, “Why do I feel so down?”
When we feel like this, the temptation is to look outward or inward. We look outward to other people and think, “Why do I have this problem and they don’t? Why do they get those good things and I don’t?” We look inward and think untrue thoughts about ourselves. We think we aren’t worth anything to anybody. We think we aren’t any good.
Looking inward is a lack of faith. We can make ourselves become depressed by telling ourselves things that are not true.
Looking outward is called covetousness. We’ve all heard the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” But with covetousness, we are asking, “Why do good things happen to other people and not to me?” Covetousness is where you tell God, through your desires, that either you don’t think He knows what is best for you, or that He is unable or unwilling to give you what you do not have. Coveting is a lack of faith in God.
When we feel down, when life seems to be pressing down on us, when we feel like nobody cares; that’s when we need God the most. Instead of looking inward or outward, we should look upward. We need to remember that God loves us, and if we are believers, there is an amazing home waiting for us to enjoy forever after we are done with this short, short life. And not only that, but Jesus said in John 10:10, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” God wants us to succeed in being he people He wants us to be.
I looked out today at the winter landscape. We had temperatures in the 50’s for the past few days, only to wake up this morning to fresh snow on the ground. After a record setting winter of snowfall, we are more than ready for spring. We want spring right now, not in a month or two.
I looked at the trees, with their bare branches partially covered with snow. I thought about how God has promised that spring will come eventually. Those trees, which are now bare and dead-looking, will burst with new life and fruit. And this reminds me that, even though right now I have no job, I don’t know how I’m going to pay my bills, and I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, God knows. He knows all things, He loves me, and He has a perfect plan for my life. His plan doesn’t match my plan, but His plan is infinitely better than mine.
As a result, I need to look upward. I need to keep trusting in God. I need to do my best with what I have and wait on Him to give me what He KNOWS is best for me.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your body
And refreshment to your bones.