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SERMON SUMMARY: Many of us will suffer from depression; all of us will suffer from sorrow. Our world is broken and that means our hearts, minds, and bodies are likewise broken and prone to suffering. What are we to do with our sorrows? Should we stuff them away, meditate them away, drink them away, or find some other escape? Come join us this week as we look to a song of sorrow from Psalm 42.




Christians are particularly adept at numbing themselves against painful emotions. “After all,” we reason, “we should be joyful because we know that God is in control.” Negative emotions such as fear, anger, or depression are stigmatized as inappropriate because God is love and grants us peace.

Dr. Dan Allender


Faith feels many different ways. It can be buoyant; it can be depressed and lifeless. Feelings don’t define faith. Instead, faith is simply turning to the Lord.

—Edward T. Welch


My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.

Jesus of Nazareth




Psalm 42

1 As a deer pants for flowing streams,

   so pants my soul for you, O God.

2 My soul thirsts for God,

   for the living God.

When shall I come and appear before God?

3 My tears have been my food

   day and night,

while they say to me all the day long,

   “Where is your God?”

4 These things I remember,

   as I pour out my soul:

how I would go with the throng

   and lead them in procession to the house of God

with glad shouts and songs of praise,

   a multitude keeping festival.

5 Why are you cast down, O my soul,

   and why are you in turmoil within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

   my salvation 6 and my God.

My soul is cast down within me;

   therefore I remember you

from the land of Jordan and of Hermon,

   from Mount Mizar.

7 Deep calls to deep

   at the roar of your waterfalls;

all your breakers and your waves

   have gone over me.

8 By day the Lord commands his steadfast love,

   and at night his song is with me,

   a prayer to the God of my life.

9 I say to God, my rock:

   “Why have you forgotten me?

Why do I go mourning

   because of the oppression of the enemy?”

10 As with a deadly wound in my bones,

   my adversaries taunt me,

while they say to me all the day long,

   “Where is your God?”

11 Why are you cast down, O my soul,

   and why are you in turmoil within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

   my salvation and my God.


2 Corinthians 4:7–12

7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.



Triune God, source of all love and life,

We were made for you and our hearts are anxious, discontent, and sad until we rest in you. We confess that we often deny this truth about ourselves.

Instead of seeking you,

we occupy ourselves with distractions.

Instead of pouring out our sorrows to you,

we deny the pain of broken relationships with you, others, and the world.

Instead of praising you,

we pacify ourselves with self-pity.


Promise-keeping God,

have mercy on us.


Grant that we may hope again in your salvation, trust in your plan, and praise you for victory you have achieved in Jesus Christ. Amen.



SONG TO CONSIDER: Based on Psalm 42