Read (from the New Living Translation)

Psalm 42:1-6

1As the deer longs for streams of water,
so I long for you, O God.

2 I thirst for God, the living God.
When can I go and stand before him?

3 Day and night I have only tears for food,
while my enemies continually taunt me, saying,
“Where is this God of yours?”

4 My heart is breaking
as I remember how it used to be:
I walked among the crowds of worshipers,
leading a great procession to the house of God,
singing for joy and giving thanks
amid the sound of a great celebration!

5 Why am I discouraged?
Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God!
I will praise him again—
my Savior and 6 my God!
Now I am deeply discouraged,
but I will remember you—
even from distant Mount Hermon, the source of the Jordan,
from the land of Mount Mizar.

Go Deep

With a name like “Joy” – depression was never something Joy Summers thought would be part of her story. But it is. Joy opens up about her struggle and the ways she has learned to overcome it in today’s video.

 

Joy explains her story and process of dealing with depression, then says, “… The key part for me, had to do with my walk with God… That’s when I turned to the Psalms. I think if anyone in the Bible dealt with depression, it was David… David is telling his emotions the truth even when he’s not feeling it.

So, when I was feeling like God completely abandoned me, I had to tell myself, “You’re gonna put your hope in God” because I knew that was true even when I wasn’t feeling it. And now that I’m healthier and on the other side of it, I see that God never left my side. Those were lies that I started to believe… And like David, I want to continue to remind myself to put my hope in God because He’s not going to fail me even when I’m struggling with depression.”

Notes from the Beyond Suffering Bible

Direct Your Longings to God – When suffering is extended or severe, we yearn for the past—a time when the pain wasn’t so intense, relationships were whole, and the future seemed bright. But dwelling on the past only brings discouragement. Instead, we can learn to redirect our passions and longings toward the God who is able to give us what we need most: hope.

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141 Comments on "Day 3: How Did Joy Overcome Her Struggle with Depression?"

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Unathi
Member

Thank you, Joy, for sharing your testimony. I find myself telling myself, “No matter what, God is faithful”. Sometimes I’m bawling my eyes out when I say it, but you’re right, and David was right: I’ve got to choose to put my hope in God. After all, He’s not failed me even through the worst of times. And He’s bigger.

Joy Summers
Guest

So proud of you for still reminding yourself of the truth even when it’s hard!

jackhlong
Member

Thanks for sharing Joy. Most times, we only see the “professional” side of life and we need those friends to be real with us about how we are going through life. We need the truth, we need comfort, but most of all, we need to realize God is our strength when we have none. I’m so thankful God does not change and loves me no matter what.

Shannaw
Member
Amen!! Thank you Joy! I have struggled with depression for many years and didn’t want help. Did all the wrong things and fell deeper in. I believed God could help “important” people but I wasn’t one of them. I was exposed to something early in life and it sent me into a “fairy tale life”. So, balancing my real life and my fairy tale life without anyone noticing was a daily thing. When I first was introduced to Jesus the fairy tale life went away for awhile. I had joy in my life again! I was learning the truth finally… Read more »
T Swift
Member
This is such an important topic to talk about! I agree that we have to remind ourselves of the truth, even when we don’t believe it. I feel like those lies are so insidious and they creep in without me realizing it and brainwash me into believing them (when Joy says that the lies say you’re too much and at the same time not enough… exactly that!). I have to make the conscious effort to do “reverse brainwash” and bathe myself in the truth. Sometimes I don’t do that, which is why I’m loving this World’s Biggest Smallgroup! Since September… Read more »
goodbooks8943
Member
I, too, have suffered with depression – probably all my life. I was diagnosed in my twenties. I cope by staying focused on the Lord, talking and processing with fellow Christians, and by taking a prescribed antidepressant. Just today, before I read today’s posting, I replied to a text from a friend and told her that I have been fighting discouragement. I haven’t been gainfully employed in almost a year and my savings are almost exhausted. I am sitting for an elderly couple but I do not earn enough to cover all my expenses. Today’s scripture reading, Joy’s testimony, and… Read more »
Joy Summers
Guest

So glad this was timely and what you needed! Sometimes God can speak to us through anything and I’m glad you were encouraged by a reminder that God is faithful!

Claudia
Guest

Thank you for sharing.

Claudia
Guest

Lynn, thank you for sharing. I, too, trust in the Lord and take medication.

Heidi W.
Member

Love this!! Needed this message today! Thank you! Amen!!

Doris Ripczinski
Member

Joy, very well said. Thank you for sharing.

Catherine Waters
Member

Thank you for sharing! Depression is one area of my life that I continually hide from everyone- family, friends, co-workers, end even doctors. It is hard work at times. I know God is faithful and will pull me through it one day, but it has been a struggle for a long time. It is good to hear and know that others have made it to the other side. It gives me hope. Thank you!

Lori Hollinger
Member

You’re worth helping.
It’s o.k. to ask for and get help.
💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙

Joy Summers
Guest

I get it Cat. I tried to hide it for a long time too but that didn’t help me at all. Talking about it with a few trusted people at first was so helpful. Seeing a Christian counselor and talking to my dr is what really kick started my healing process. I encourage you to start talking to those you trust about your struggle. Things hidden in secret can hold power over us when God desires that we be free!

Asher
Member

I agree that dwelling and wallowing in the past can bring discouragement (from the Beyond Suffering Bible notes), but I find that looking back on the times God has pulled us through other challenging times actually brings hope during suffering. So thank you for sharing your story and bringing us hope, Joy!

Kelly
Member

Agreed – sometimes looking back to His faithfulness through the years is what pulls me through. Thank you for sharing.

Charcarr
Member

It can be really difficult not to go on feelings and not to believe some of those lies when having been raised in a home where you’re told you’re not good enough and will never amount to anything. I know God has plans for my future and He gives me hope in Him to let Him take control. My mantra: God’s got this.

Yvonne
Guest
Thank you for sharing Charmell. I also came from a home where I was told the same things so I know what you have experienced in that regard. For years I believed God had the power to do anything, but not for me because I didn’t rate his help. I know now how wrong I was to believe those lies, but it is an everyday struggle to remind myself of my importance to God. I also struggle with depression and have gotten help for it, which does not diminish God’s power, it just helps me to keep my thoughts on… Read more »
SEATON27
Member

thank you Joy, I think that line that I love the most was “I was too much, and not enough at the same time”..wow I feel that every day!! Thank you again!

Margaret Rice
Guest

Hello, yes I know depression and yes this is me for way too long! I am tired of being depressed just so tired. Since the death of my only son ( a long time ago) I am just not my self and NEVER will be, I miss him with all of my being. My only hope is in God and I know I need to trust him more. Thank you Joy for sharing your story. Please pray for other parents who has lost a child.

WAY-FM
WAY-FM

We’re praying for you Margaret!

Ann
Member

I relate to this so much. Even at this moment I am going through more than I feel I can handle. So I am crying out to God and praying for help.

T Swift
Member

Always remember that when it’s more than you can handle, it’s never more than God can handle. Hugs!

Thekingoftoys
Member

❤️Ann, Trust in God with All your heart❤️

Pam
Member

Thank you Joy, this was exactly what I needed today!

Sandie
Member

Separating emotions/how we feel from the Truth is sooo difficult. We’re always told by society to “follow your heart”, or “trust your gut”, but we always have to weigh those things against the truth of the word. Thanks for sharing, Joy! I’m betting you helped a lot of people today! <3

vsroberts41
Member

Thank you for sharing.

Lysa
Member

Putting my hope in His will allows me to get through difficult times much easier:)

WAY-FM
WAY-FM

We’re praying for you!

Bernice E. Smith
Member

Amen.

Ann
Member

Also, thank you Joy for sharing your story. Listening to you I kept thinking “me too” and “yes”. Lately, I feel like I’m stuck in a boxing ring getting hit from all sides and can’t get up, can’t catch my breath. Every time I stand up for myself against “attacks” I get hit harder and by more people. I feel like I’m drowning but I pray. I read God’s word. I cry to God. Thank you for allowing me to feel I’m not alone.

Princess Ronda
Member

Thanks Joy!

Kelly
Member

Thank you Joy! I am encouraged by your testimony.

MishiBrozen
Member

Thank you for sharing, I am dealing with an injury at this time. I have been struggling for months and am going to have to have another surgery and I find myself in a time of depression more often then not. This was a very encouraging word. Remembering to praise at all time and not to dwell on the struggles. Just the reminder I needed.

WAY-FM
WAY-FM

Thanks for writing. We are praying for you.

M.Mouse
Member

Thank you Joy for sharing your story. This is so true !!!! We buy into the lies the enemy is telling us & we forget the truths we know from God.

aarussell
Member

Thank you for encouraging me even though you don’t even know me. I am beginning the process of seeking counseling and working with my doctor to control my anxiety, and to hear that it is okay that I am doing that is very encouraging. I know I am learning things just like you said “are hard lessons I need to learn”, and I will come out on the other side a better person for it. Thank you Joy for being courageous enough to share a bit of your story, and encouraging others through it.

Jodie Clark
Member
Thank you Joy for your candor and willingness to talk about something that has become an almost taboo subject. I have dealt with depression, and I think a lot more people than anyone realizes have dealt with or are dealing with depression, but have learned to hide it. We live in an image-driven society, where how we present ourselves becomes sadly, more important than who we are and how we’re really doing not only to ourselves but those around us. I have noticed that our modern society does not tolerate open “negative” emotions like those David expressed very easily, so… Read more »
sanchezkarla
Member

Thank you so much for this comment! It mirrors so many out my own thoughts, but you expressed it so beautifully.

Member
I fell into a struggle with depression 2 yrs ago. I almost died. After, because I have chronic pain from 17 surgeries and Fibromyalgia I was not only depressed but tearfully angery with God. Why? Because He didn’t take me home. 9 months previous my 25yrs old cousin died from an accidental over dose from pain meds due to RSD. I was 42. Why wasn’t God ready for me yet? I struggled daily with severe pain, and literally clawing myself out of a huge hole of depression. In addition moments of rage towards God allowing me to continue to suffer… Read more »
sanchezkarla
Member

You are so brave! Thank you for sharing part of your painful story and journey of healing and faith. During similar circumstances, I found comfort in reading many of Paul’s words as he suffered with his pain. I knew then that I wasn’t alone. I am glad you have found a support group in your church and here. You are meant for something good!

Juanita
Guest

That was fantastic Joy thank you for sharing the truth that some of us are saying to share I love that no matter what you put your faith in God

HES
Member

Whenever I am going through a rough time, I always remind myself of two things: ‘This too shall pass’ and ‘God is still in control’. The first couple of times I did this, it wasn’t until afterwords that I could really tell it was true. Now that I have seen it in the past all I have to do is remind myself and I am instantly comforted.

Robbie
Guest

Joy brings up a good point about David possibly being depressed. I also like how she talked about her walk with God. I have had low times in my life, but I know He has never left me. I may have veered off the path, but He hadn’t. I want my walk with God to be strong. I love Him so much. I constantly need to work on my walk with Him.

Samantha
Member
I, myself, have dealt with clinical and situational depression off and on since I was a young teenager. As a child, my family went to church fairly often. But my parents got divorced when I was about 12 or 13 years old and we stopped going to church. I didn’t really understand who God was at that point in my life, but I did struggle to maintain any sort of faith in Him because I thought He had abandoned me. I became very depressed and even self-harmed all throughout middle school, high school, and even into my first year of… Read more »
Kdizne
Member

Thanks for sharing Samantha

kellyfreestone
Member
My friend and I were doing a Psalm a day. At the same time, I dealt with depression. I had just had my daughter, and felt so anxious and hopleless. I sat down on my carport, baby in the bumbo and I literally cried out psalm 27 to God. I felt like I was drowning in the enemies lies, verses 1-3 were my cry. “…even if I’m attacked I will not be afraid…” I was so afraid to be the mom that went crazy! Seems silly now, but I knew I was headed there! Verses 4-6 were my cry. “…the… Read more »
Kay A
Member

Kelly, I love the way you used this psalm to give words to your heart’s cries. Thank you so much for sharing it with us!

Brenda Paryzek
Member

Thank you Joy for sharing

Debbie
Member

that was lovely Joy. You are so fun to listen to daily and this was another side that the casual listener doesn’t see. He is by your side and He is already there. Thank you for being bold enough to share your struggles and doubts. There is a person in all of our lives (if it isn’t ourselves) that struggles daily. Your reminder was a blessing

JennyChestnut
Member

The Psalms give such a sense of peace! Thank you for sharing your story, Joy!!!

nick.wellenbrock@gmail.com
Member
nick.wellenbrock@gmail.com

This is such a great way to start the morning. Thank you WayFM

Kdizne
Member

((((JOY)))))

Thank you for sharing your story and your hope!!!

XOXO

Jstnthrgal
Member
Today’s notes from the Beyond Suffering Bible really hit home. When it is talking about yearning for the past — a time when the pain wasn’t so intense, relationships were whole, and the future seemed bright. I find myself doing that quite often this past year. My mom passed almost two years ago, my husband has been without a job most of a year, and I find myself looking back to when I was younger and had my life planned out and look around and of course nothing is as I had it planned. My husband is not a believer,… Read more »
Patti
Member

I’m praying for you and standing in agreeement that blessings are on the horizon! I’m a single mom and lost my job while pregnant with my last child. For a year I was unable to find work. I can look back now and see all of Gods provisions. The day I had my son I also was offered my dream job! Everything fell perfectly in place. And it will for you too. If Won’t bring your sweet mom back but maybe you can find peace in her passing.

Cody D
Member

I will be praying for you too.

Patti
Member

Thank you for sharing your heart! I have been hit with deiessuin too. This message meant so much to me today! I’m digging in the psalms now!

Alileffall96
Member

Thanks that is such a powerful psalm and I have recently gone through one of those deep depressions and that psalm is an amazing truth that even when we don’t feel like worshipping its still the better choice and just like David I’m going to put my hope in God because he is my savior and my God.

TriniluvPack
Member

Thank you Joy for sharing your story. That part about focusing on the past and how that can lead to discouragement, wow, what an eye opener. I never thought about it that way. Just keep my focus on God to receive the hope that he provides that I need to keep going.

Kari
Member

Thank you Joy for sharing your struggle with depression. It is one of those things that I don’t think people can truly understand unless they themselves have gone through it. God is faithful even when we aren’t “feeling it”. On days when I struggle I find myself finishing every sentence and every thing that I am doing with the statement “God is good”. It just helps allow me to remember that He is always lifting me, especially when I cannot lift myself.

Tinaab
Member
This resonates with me I know people dealing with inter pain they seem mired in the past my words to them are these If you spend all your time looking in the rearview mirror while trying to move forward you are bound to crash A few Things you will find 1 you will never be able to get back there 2 you will end up lost your driving blind looking at what was not at what is 3 You will miss seeing all the opportunity and the joy that is around you or, just up ahead Life has no reverse… Read more »
Cody D
Member
I suffer from depression too. By God’s grace and help from my counselor, I overcame my depression and feelings of worthlessness, but it really grabbed a hold of me for 2-3 months. It was all triggered by a girl at my school named Sierra who took her life after being constantly bullied. I didn’t know her, but it still broke my heart and made me very sad that people can be so mean. Above I said that I SUFFER from depression because even though I am not depressed now I believe it will be something that I continue to deal… Read more »
WAY-FM
WAY-FM

Praying for you Cody!

jsmith279
Member

I do the same thing Joy does, if I can make it to the car I allow myself to break down in the car. But NOWHERE else.

Stephannie
Member
I have never dealt with depression, until this past year. After becoming very sick and spending a lot of time in the hospital, I came home and couldn’t seem to snap out of it! I have three children and a husband, my mother even came to stay, but yet I felt so alone. I’m thankful that it’s past and I’m slowly coming out of the valley. I find today’s study to be extremely relevant to my life. It’s true the most important thing is to press on and worship even when you don’t feel it.sometimes just holding on to the… Read more »
Katie
Member

Psalms is one of my favorite places to turn to in times of need! My family has been struggling alot with some things and i always am comforted by the words of David and how he took suffering and replaced it with something beautiful! Thank you Joy for your testimony may God continue to bless you!

Joni
Member

One thing we surely all need is HOPE! Only in God can we find hope. Always. I have pain in my body all of the time. Sometimes it wakes me in the night and keeps me up. Pain has robbed me in many ways and because all of the reasons for my pain have not been discovered and no treatment brings much or lasting relief, I have to cling to Jesus often and to the hope that he alone can give.

stanfieg
Member
Thanks Joy. I too suffer from depression. It hit me the hardest when I was 39. I called it my zombie time. I was the father of 2 boys (10 & 8). Divorced, with full custody. I went to counseling, and medications. It still took me almost a year to get over it. I have had several bouts with major depression since, (I am 60 now). My problem is it never totally goes away. I am a catholic, I am very involved with church. I have been on team for 7 ACTS retreats. I pray daily, say the rosary with… Read more »
WAY-FM
WAY-FM

Gary.
Thanks for being vulnerable and honest. We are praying for you today.

Sherry
Member

I’ve always struggled with depression ie(chemical imbalance), it’s tough when you don’t know really why your feeling the way you do, certainly if nothing has happened. I find it helpful to spend some quite time alone and talk to God. I really need to spend some time in Psalms, I’m not a huge reading fan, but I really like this verse. Thanks for sharing your testimony.

cdm6566
Member
Joy gives one of the Bible’s best examples of how an individual dealt with depression. David is describes as a “man after God’s Own Heart”, and some might not expect David to be depressed, but as seen in Psalm 42:1-6, he definitely dealt with depression. I believe this is one of the purposes of God’s word, for God to show us how we should realize that people all throughout history have gone through depression, and how He (God) has always brought His children through. I find that bringing my focus back onto my Heavenly Father and drawing near to Him… Read more »
Conney
Member
Joy, Thank you for sharing! My daughter is 37 years old and has intellectual disabilities. She is beautiful and is a blessing from God! Last November she started having hallucinations.One morning as I was preparing for my very early run i heard what I thought was rain. I realized the door was open and checked Katy’s room. She was gone! She has never done anything like this before. I had to call 911 and they found her in the wetlands behind our house. I know God laid her down and put his angles around her to protect her until she… Read more »
Becky
Member

Walking thru what I am experiencing now I know God is with me but I still ache for relief.. That relief I had before my life changed on a dime. I wrestle with the fact that God is there but what, when, and where this will end and I can be happy again.

WAY-FM
WAY-FM

Thanks for the note, Becky. We are praying for you today.

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