Why doesn't God cure my anxiety and depression?
I can’t help sighing when I read this question. I have often wondered the same thing. In Psalm 77:1–3, the Psalmist writes, “When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands, and I would not be comforted. I remembered you, God, and I groaned; I meditated, and my spirit grew faint.” Here the psalmist expresses an honest and vivid lament.
Some of the great saints of the faith struggled with depression. John Bunyan, who wrote Pilgrim’s Progress, also wrote a spiritual autobiography called Grace Abounding that expresses his agony over never feeling quite secure in his faith, though he was a staunch believer. Augustine, one of the church fathers, was given to anger and severe depression. Charles Spurgeon struggled with chronic depression because of overwork, illness, politics, and other limitations. He wrote, “I could say with Job, ‘My soul chooseth strangling rather than life.’ I could readily enough have laid violent hands upon myself to escape from my misery of spirit.” He even told his students about his depression so they would understand when they too were afflicted.
The hard reality is that we do not escape the maladies of this life. We are caught in a fallen world. Christianity is not the quick fix it is often mistakenly presented as being. We are, however, given Christ, whose death and resurrection guarantees us the hope of eternal life where all things become new. And because He came to earth as a man, He understands us and offers His presence in the midst of our sorrow. In the words of the Psalmist again, “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord” (Ps. 27:13–14).