Sunday, February 22, 2009

Peace and Depression....

It has snowed here....not one of those deep New England, or "lake effect" snows, but a typical Tennessee dusting. I spent the day in town, at work, and as I drove up the ridge, what was rain in the city became the country snow. I didn't really notice the full effect until I pulled into my driveway and saw white on the roof top, and clinging to blades of grass in the front yard. Peaceful. Still. Beautiful.

I thought back to the mornings of my senior year of high school. It wasn't my best year, but it does have some pleasant memories. One of my favorites is running to school in the winter. I especially loved the mornings when we'd had snow overnight. I'd arrange to have my homework and a set of clothes in the locker room the night before. That way, I'd wake, quickly shower, don my sweats and sneakers, and begin my journey unencumbered.

It was quiet. Peaceful. Very, very peaceful. A few moments of silence before a busy, chaotic day. Winter in New England brought some cold mornings, and often I could hear the jingling of the icicles in my hair along with the squeaking of the fresh snow underfoot. Mornings where the moon was still full and bright had a magical glow that mesmerized me as left, right, left I paced out the mile run to the high school.

Tonight, as I parked the car - aware of the peace and stillness of the cold night - I thought, too, of God's ironies. The paradoxes I often encounter as I live in this world. I suppose it is about balance and contrast, and the ability to see one thing better when it's held up next to an opposing theme. Tonight, I thought about depression.

I keep running into people with depression: medically diagnosed, self-diagnosed, un-diagnosed, transient, long-term, medicated, un-medicated, functional, not-so-functional. I've had my moments - as I think we all do - but nothing similar to what I'm encountering. My heart hurts for them.

I find myself praying for joy for these people.... for peace. For the ability to look past the curtain or wall or situation that is obscuring the view. I ask God to inspire the heart to seek Him. For there lies peace and there lives joy. His peace cannot be taken from us - but it must be acknowledged and accepted to be ours as well.

May I cling close to You.

I thank You for the snow.... I thank You for Your peace, and hope and life.....

Be with those who need You...

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