Have you ever cared for a friend who felt hopeless all the time? Have you ever come across a person suffering severe depression or frequent bouts with despair? Those are the moments when truth seems trivial, when advice seems callous. Grand depictions of God’s glory come across like diatribes and sermons about hope are receive as hype.
What do you do when you come across a friend in the dark? Tell them you love them. Tell them you’ll be there for them no matter what happens, that you won’t leave, that you’ll be glad to hear their deepest fears and their most depressing doubts. Tell them you want to hear about their pain until you understand it a little better. Enduring love increases the capacity to hear truth.
And when you do speak, lace your words with small phrases of Scripture. Don’t overload the depressed person with four chapters, or a dense systematic argument. Give them small sips from the fountain, a few words with a gentle tone. God is faithful. Their spirit will get the taste for the Word and thirst for another drop