Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Spiritual Depression

How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with any thoughts, and every day have sorrow in my heart? (Ps. 13: 1-2)

But if I go to the east, he is not there;
if I go to the west, I do not find him.
When he is at work in the north, I do not see him;
when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him. (Job 20: 8-9)

O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, and am not silent. (Ps. 42: 10)

I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like parched land. (Ps. 143: 6)

These heart-wrenching cries are prayers -- addressed to a God who seems either deaf or completely absent. Perhaps more surprising, they are IN THE BIBLE! This leads me to conclude that perhaps a season of spiritual depression -- a state of God-forsakenness -- is normal. Perhaps it is even to be expected.

In some strange way, today I find some comfort in that.


Kyle R. said...

Psalm 13 has very special meaning to me. Beginning July 2006, I forever read that Psalm differently.

The strangeness of that comfort you write of is inexpressible but it is the truth.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, those are cries in desperate times. Yet it's passages like these that I continue to find God's faithfulness. He hears the prayer of the hurting. He recognizes the cries of His own - especially in times of mourning. And He provides!

We continue to pray for the Holy Spirit to provide all of you with the peace that is beyond our understanding. Even from 1500 miles away, we embrace you with our love.

rcorum said...

I don't know you, but I minister close to your son, Josh, and I just cannot imagine a true believer not winding up in some sort of pit after going through your loss. I hesitated to comment because I don't have a clue of what you are going through. I have been near death, but that was me. I have never lost a family member who wasn't old. I am not sure that any comment from others is very helpful right now. I just appreciate the openness in which your family has shared this journey.

Gorgana said...

I too am hesitant to comment Rick as I know that those of us who have not been where you are can't really know your pain. But I have left Beverly a note on FB and wanted to tell you too simply that I love you both and I am so very sorry.

Lynn Leaming said...

Rick, I am so thankful we have a God that walks with us through the valley of the shadow of death. I am grateful that His love continues even when we are struggling to understand the why's. Easy to say "your ways are not our ways" but harder for our hearts that are breaking to find any comfort in that. I am reading Randy Alcorn's book "If God is Good" in hopes of strengthening my own faith. But this I know. He loves you none the less in your times of "why's and where are you?" May you continue to feel our prayers standing in the gap for you.

Jennifer said...

Mr. Ross,
I am so sorry for your loss. I did not have the privilege to know Jenny personally, although I know our paths have crossed over the past few months at the basketball courts at FBC Keller. I was sent a link to pray for her and have been doing that, and following her story. Her story, your story, has touched so many people. I cannot tell you how many people, believers and non-believers who have asked me if I had heard about Jenny. People are watching you grieve with hope and have been touched by Jenny's wonderful service. Thank you for being vulnerable during such a painful time in your life. God is being glorified in this. Your Jenny continues to make a difference. I will continue to pray for you and your family as you walk in this valley.

Anonymous said...

No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.
-- C.S. Lewis

Rick, We are here to lock arms with your family and help to carry you through this season.

We wait and listen for God, in spite of and because of, the fact that there is no earthly explanation for your losing such a wonderful soul as Jenny.

God, in our confusion, frustration, anger, and loss, we love you and praise you anyways.

Wayne Mask

Anonymous said...


I'd never thought about a "spiritual depression" like that. I know we all struggle and question at different times of our lives. As I read the passages you'd listed, I couldn't help but remember Christ's words on the cross: "My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?" Could it be that even Jesus went through that dark place for a moment? If so, you're in the right company.