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A Devotion For The Melancholy:

I've always been a little melancholy. Actually alot. Hard to tell huh? It comes in seasons. I think it started as a kid, seeing our home burned to the ground by our neighbors who wanted our land. Justice denied in the Deleware County War. That day has haunted me to this day. The heat and smoke caused the first headache I could ever remember. To this day, I think the heat and ash are still with me. Mother married four times. Used to seeing people come and go. Her cries I heard in the night still haunt me. I got used to disappointment, feeling forgotten (but I wasn't), getting the short end of the stick( so I thought). I always felt I would die young. At the age of 33 to be exact. But it wasn't me who died when I was 33, It was my mother. I grew up with a fear of losing people or having them turn on me. Partly because of my grandfathers alzheimers. I watched him turn bitter towards me for no reason other than the alzheimers changed him. But before he died in a moment of clarity he let me know he loved me.

I've come to expect a Shakespearean tragedy around every corner. Samson lost his eyes, John the Baptist his head, David missed out on the temple, Moses missed out the promise land. Though they missed out on earthly treasures, they gained a far better kingdom. It seems some folks have two left feet. Childhood trauma, dyslexia, anxiety, and depression etc. Alot of us are in that boat and can share that testimony. Always looking for leaks in the boat or expecting life's check engine light to come on before you reach your destination. But at the same time hope in Christ, and a trust in His sovereignty that surpasses my own understanding. Jesus was betrayed but arose from the grave. Tragedy gives way to triumph. Stephen stoned but sees Christ on the throne. James ran through with a sword, but was already smitten by Grace. I expect no less.

Sometimes no matter what you do, earthly success seems to be just out of reach and your greatest fear is that you may very well die alone surrounded by good intentions (but you won't). We are never truly alone but like I said, you get used to loss and come to expect it. It's not a healthy outlook and neither is Murphy's Law. I used to say I'm not a pessimist but a realist. But now I know a realist is a pessimist in denial he's a pessimist, who worries to much. With to much time to think about everyone and everything that's come undone. Anyways I'm chasing rabbits who are missing their lucky feet. Did I mention I'm self diagnosed with ADD? Anyways, for some Christians the road is easy. For some Christians its uphill both ways, in the snow, barefooted, balancing on jagged rocks like a tenderfoot with a Charlie horse. But nevertheless, with eyes fixed on heaven, I'm determined to take the bloody hill. Even if it kills me. With the name of Jesus on my lips, and a never ending plea for His mercy, I move forward. With every arrow that pierces the soul, I'm in awe of His great love. With every setback and failure, I realize continually, my greatest need of His grace.

Nothing I touch will ever turn to gold, sometimes the heavens are like brass. But I don't walk by sight, emotions, or the perceptions that bounce around in my head. I walk by faith alone, in Christ alone, by His grace alone, according to scripture alone. My melancholy is not reality. God is reality. He defines me. In victory or defeat. In disappointments or fullfilled expectations. He defines me. Not my past, not my present. Not my brokenness. But He and He alone. Guaranteed by His blood, proved by His resurrection. It wasn't me who died on that tree but Him. Knowing full well I would be one of those pecurliar sheep with a limp until the day I died. But I would be His. I'll walk through heavens gates with my head held low. But nevertheless I'll walk through them by the Grace of Christ. Head held low, but not for long. Jacob had a limp and saw the blessing fullfilled. Hope realized, with Angel's ascending and descending. With plenty of regrets and failures, God still claimed him, and led him. Proving all things work together for the good of those who love God. Melancholy and all.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

2 Corinthians 4:7‭-‬9‭, ‬16‭-‬18

"...chastise hostile thoughts with the whip of the intelligence and banish them, giving them no place, no abode within the bounds of your soul. Or, to speak more fittingly, slay them completely with the sort of prayer and divine meditation, so that when the robbers have been destroyed, their chief may take fright...a man who examines his thoughts strictly is one who also truly loves the commandments. "

~Theodoros of Edessa

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

~2 Corinthians 10:5

"Often depression of spirit and great misery of soul are removed as soon as we quit our idols and bow ourselves in obedience before the living God. We need not be captives."

~ Charles Spurgeon

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

~Romans 12:1‭-‬2

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