Imagine the walls of your life caving in and having no power to stop it, not having any motivation to accomplish anything during the day and not enjoying the things you usually enjoy. Those are some of the feelings that people living with depression deal with on a daily basis.
Depression is a very serious condition that affects an estimated 350 million people worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. The organization says the illness’ effects are immense and felt in all areas of the affected person’s life.
With such a large number of people suffering from depression worldwide, it is only natural that some of these people are Christians. Oluchi, a woman from Nigeria, is one of these Christians.
Where is God in the Pain?
Oluchi has struggled with one lingering question for many years as her depression has weighed heavily on her heart: Where is God in her pain? When her illness strikes, it feels as if the Lord doesn’t love her.
“It's obvious God hates me or maybe He has turned his back on me. I feed on my tears day in day out. I ask for peace and I never had it. Even when I was a child, I loved God, prayed for so many things and got nothing. Rather pain is all I see. I need you to tell God to take my life. I am tired of living in misery and pain. I see Him bless others but when it comes to me and my family He ignores and we all love him so much. Mum barely sleeps, she cries to God in prayers, for years now. Not even a word or sign from God. Am tired, am weak. I just want to go far away from this world. Seems like it has no place for me.”
Her words show the desperation the disease causes, even for someone who has a knowledge and faith in the Lord. It causes her to doubt the love and mercy of our God.
A Spiritual Breakthrough
During the first few months of messaging her Online Missionary, Jack, Oluchi still wasn’t experiencing much joy. She was struggling with depressed thoughts and wondering if God had a plan for her life. Jack continually shared the truth of the Gospel with Oluchi and tried to help her understand God’s immense love for her.
Finally, there was a breakthrough. Through an extended time of prayer, Oluchi was able to see the Lord in a positive light for the first time in years. She was finally able to see the Lord as a true Savior of all of her life, capable of caring for her even through her depression and tough life circumstances.
“It makes perfect sense. I have buckled up in my prayers. I strive to live a holy life. I am no slave to sin anymore. I wake at midnight to pray. Praises never ceases from my mouth. I try to read my Bible too.
Contrary to what people see about me, I see a God who saves and delivers me. … I am turning a new leaf. Pain made me realize this much. I should be grateful for all I had to go through because it makes me a better person.
You helped me so much [Jack] and I am glad you pray for me and you lead me right. I couldn't have asked for a better tutor in Christ.”
The pain of the journey was indescribable, but the Lord used it to bring another daughter closer to him. Through her pain, Oluchi is now able to understand the goodness of God and see what great things He is able to defeat just by the power of His name.
What Lies Ahead
The journey of growing closer to God is one with great peaks and valleys. While Oluchi is at a peak right now, she will certainly have more valleys throughout her life. However, thanks to your support, she now knows that God truly loves her and has this time in her life to look back on to see a great example of God’s faithfulness. To help more just like Oluchi overcome the chains of depression with the love of Christ, give a gift today.