How To See Light In A Season Of Darkness
Jesus says in John 10:10 that he came that we “may have life, and have it to the full,” and yet mental health issues like depression and anxiety are constant thieves of the abundance we’ve been promised. We are saved, yes, but we don’t always feel very saved. And, sometimes Jesus’ command to the man by the pool in John 5 seems too far-fetched of an idea while we are lying in bed overwhelmed by the notion of simply showering or eating breakfast.
Jesus asks, “Do you want to be healed?” And if our answer is a resounding “yes,” then as our Savior, from his death to our daily, he provides the way out. He says, “Get up, take up your mat, and walk.”
“Rejoice not over me, O my enemy, when I fall I will rise, when I sit alone in darkness the Lord will be a light to me.” Micah 7:8
Don’t give up; get up! You might feel like Lazarus, wrapped in a tomb of death, depression, and despair, but even he rose from the dead through the power of Jesus.
Take up your mat.
“For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.” Romans 14:10, 12
Whether our mental state is a result of a chemical imbalance, an injustice done to us, or poor personal habits, we have been gifted rule over our minds, and have a responsibility to seek the help we need for a healthier mindset.
“For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” Ephesians 5:8–11
Walk in the light of the Lord and in the abundance of life you’ve been freely gifted. Pursing mental freedom is a step by step process.
Lastly, remember, that the story of Jesus healing the man by the pool in John 5 did not end with the man walking away.
Jesus Never Stops Working On Our Behalf
The story picks up in verses 14–17:
“Later Jesus found [the healed man] at the temple and said to him, ‘See, you are well again!’ The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.
So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jewish leaders began to persecute him. In his defense Jesus said to them, ‘My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.’”
Jesus never stops working on our behalf, no matter the darkness you’re in. It doesn’t matter if it’s the Sabbath, the worst day of your life, or just one more dark day of many. Our Sovereign God is constantly working in and through us, and we are freed to trust him with our lives.
“My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.”
So, friend, get up, take up your mat, and walk, but when you cannot find the strength to do so, hold onto his promises.
“The LORD lifts up those who are weighed down.” Psalm 146:8
Next Step Questions
Of the three steps Jesus laid out for healing (get up, take up your mat, and walk), which is your next step?
What are some practical ways you can take that step?
How can knowing that Jesus is always working in your life help you achieve that step?