Christ Is Mine Forevermore

This has been a crazy week. Since my previous post I've had the opportunity to reconnect with so many old friends that have reached out to me. I've been so encouraged by your comments and messages. You would think this feeling of community would energize and motivate me, but the reality is I've been dealing with depression again for a little over a month.* I think it's getting better. Maybe it's all the rain or difficult circumstances. I don't know. Having gone through this before I'm seeing the same old signs, but dealing with it very differently.

I think you know you're depressed when you can watch How to Train Your Dragon 2 with your kids and almost start crying when you see Hiccup and Astrid talking... just talking. The mind starts to wander... Will I ever have someone like that again? It sure would be nice to have someone, just to talk to about everyday life, the future, silly goals, a funny thing that happened while flying on your dragon. Of course, you can modify it to fit your non-dragon way of life, but you get the idea.

This need for a person or a better life to truly make me happy... It's all a pack of lies at its core. The truth is all I need is Christ. He should be my All in all. He knows me better than anyone and He walks with me faithfully even when I am unfaithful to Him. All of this is true, but it is so easy to forget when there are reminders all around us of what could've been if the curse of sin wasn't flowing through every vein of a groaning creation. We see the death of friends, parents, unborn children. We see the abandonment of a spouse, a parent, a church, a job, or a friend. All of these things shout their false claims of being just the way it is, the reality we must live with because there's nothing else.

Sure, sometimes we see hope. But it doesn't last. From the trivial sports team that goes from a preseason #1 to mediocre all the way to the tragic 5 year cancer free woman who finally gets the news she's been dreading. I saw this on Sunday as my pastor got the news that his father, recently recovered from a life-threatening illness, suffered a stroke making a funeral just a matter of time. Putting our ultimate hope in anything attached to this fallen world eventually disappoints.

But in the midst of these "defeats" the Christian still gets to sing victoriously. Why? Because we know the truth; a truth that burns away the lies like a fresh breeze blowing through an open window of a sick person's bedroom. What we see isn't the whole story. This is the dim reflection of the true story (1 Cor. 13:12), and once you remind yourself of the truth the lies are far less damaging.

Our ultimate hope, our ultimate reward is Christ and all that comes along with Him. The difficulties I face, you face, are the sanctifying disciplines that will prepare us for the next life (Heb. 12:1-11). This week's song is an incredible reflection of these truths.

I know I say this about almost every song, but I love this one. CityAlight has been putting out some amazing music and I'm incredibly grateful for the gifts they're giving to the church. Many of their texts seem to be old lyrics simply because of their depth, and yet they are as fresh as the day to day circumstances they speak to in so many lives, including my own. This particular song reminds me of the difficult journey we all must traverse as we grow in holiness; the joy and peace that can only come through sorrow and turmoil. The second verse captures this dichotomy so well. "Mine are tears in time of sorrow, darkness not yet understood. Through the valley I must travel where I see no earthly good. But mine is peace that flows from heaven..."

Truly the Christian must look the fool to a watching world, having so much hope in the valleys of trouble. But we know the end of the story. We can shake our head in pity at those who are truly foolish knowing our eternity is secure.

I don't think there's anything wrong with hoping for good things in this life. I hope I find a new spouse, but that hope isn't what my hope is in. I can long for God's good gifts, always being satisfied because I've been given the Giver. Christ is mine forevermore.

Christ Is Mine Forevermore
by Jonny Robinson and Rich Thompson | CityAlight

Mine are days that God has numbered
I was made to walk with Him
Yet I look for worldly treasure
And forsake the King of kings
But mine is hope in my Redeemer
Though I fall, his love is sure
For Christ has paid for every failing
I am His forevermore

Mine are tears in times of sorrow
Darkness not yet understood
Through the valley I must travel
Where I see no earthly good
But mine is peace that flows from heaven
And the strength in times of need
I know my pain will not be wasted
Christ completes his work in me

Mine are days here as a stranger
Pilgrim on a narrow way
One with Christ I will encounter
Harm and hatred for his name
But mine is armour for this battle
Strong enough to last the war
And he has said he will deliver
Safely to the golden shore

And mine are keys to Zion city
Where beside the King I walk
For there my heart has found its treasure
Christ is mine forevermore

Come rejoice now, O my soul
For his love is my reward
Fear is gone and hope is sure
Christ is mine forevermore!

For More Resources Visit CityAlight

*A quick note about depression. I was diagnosed with depression over a year ago and took medication to help me manage. I am so thankful for those little pills that helped stabilize me through a dark time. I eventually weaned myself off the medication and have learned to deal with depression in other ways. However, if you have been diagnosed with clinical depression I would encourage you to follow your doctor's advice. Mine told me that I might just need to take medication for a season until my circumstances changed. That proved to be true. For you, the diagnosis may be different. There is no shame in utilizing the gifts God has given brilliant doctors in developing medicines to help with mental illness, just as there's no shame in taking an aspirin when you have a headache. Please, take care of yourself, and if you think you are depressed make sure you have someone to talk to. You are not alone going through this.


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