Depression can hit people of all ages and send God’s precious ones deep into a world of darkness. The young daughter of some dear friends battled the death grip of depression for years, and at times, it looked as though she would lose her battle.
Her parents shed many tears, crying out to God to help their daughter. And when all hope seemed lost, God answered their prayers.
I’ll never forget the day my friend Kent read this poem of victory, penned by his then twelve-year-old daughter, Zoe. Zoe…what a beautiful name. It means life. We rejoiced together for Zoe’s triumph over the darkness of depression. She had found life again!
I pray the words of her poem will encourage others who battle depression. May it serve as a reminder that there is Hope and there is Light in the midst of darkness, and His name is Jesus.
You may not have battled depression, but perhaps you have hidden your true self, your pain, and your sin. Like Zoe, you’ve covered up and put on a fake smile. Let this young lady be an example of courage that leads you out of your hiding place and into the light.
A poem by Zoe:
Trust me, I know what it’s like,
To feel all alone, find relief in a knife.
I couldn’t look in the mirror without having tears roll down my face,
And asking myself, “Why am I here in the first place?”
I called myself fat, worthless, and unwanted—
There didn’t seem to be a time when I didn’t feel haunted
By the mistakes I had made, and all of the pain
That had burned its way deep inside of my veins.
At school it was behind long sleeves and a fake smile that I’d hide
All of the anxiety I felt inside,
And I didn’t want to tell anyone,
Because I was so scared they’d turn against me and run.
If anyone asked me, I’d tell them I was fine,
Every day, I told them this lie.
I would hold it in all day and when I got home, all I could do was cry.
It became a habit, I barely got any sleep at night.
My parents tried their best to help me stand up,
But I was trying to save myself from that rut.
Counseling didn’t work, and I was starting to think that I couldn’t be fixed.
I didn’t know myself anymore, my feelings were all mixed.
I didn’t understand, I didn’t know why,
I got to the point where I wanted die.
I’d cry out to God, “Please take me now!”
I couldn’t see myself being rescued, I couldn’t see how.
Every day I had thoughts about ending my life,
Every day I was tempted to pick up that knife.
I was hurting myself, bringing myself harm,
I bruised and cut my own arms.
But the harm didn’t help, nothing did,
I couldn’t stand it anymore, I wanted it all to end.
I felt so hopeless that I made plans to kill myself,
But my parents found one more person that they hoped could help.
I expected the meeting to go like all of my counseling appointments,
I told myself that it would be the same.
But something happened during that meeting, something changed.
I opened up, and by God’s amazing power, I was freed.
A real smile spread across my lips, I was as happy as I could be.
The cage around my heart had been opened, I could fly free!
The sun had come up, I was finally able to see the light,
It pierced through my dark and endless night.
Now maybe God will use me to help others when they are struggling,
So that they can understand the pain and the suffering,
Because when I was there, I’d wanted someone who knew what I was going through,
And later on, I feel like that’s what God wants me to do.
Yes, I have scars that mark my skin,
But I don’t count them as losses, I count them as wins,
Because I defeated depression with the help of God’s grace,
He rescued me from that horrid place.
Depression was a place where I couldn’t see the light—
If it weren’t for Jesus, I honestly don’t think I’d be alive.
And so it is to Him that I owe everything,
And I am so thankful for God, our King.