They talk as though it is their joy and hope that set them apart from the world. But what happens when they lose hope and their joy becomes overshadowed with depression? If it is joy that sets them apart then there is no such thing as a Christian. Christians experience depression sometimes greater than anyone else. At times their hope is drowned because they see a better way and yet cannot achieve it, they know the way for peace but no one will follow it. Pain is reality for everyone, suffering is everywhere, and everyone has known sadness. So then, what is a Christian when he loses hope though in Christ there is hope? What is a Christian when his joy has faded though the joy of the Lord should cause him to rejoice? Has he lost his Christianity? Has he lost his identity with the very thing that connects him to Christ? Maybe he’s not a Christian at all. Yet how could we say this? Is not God closest to us in our times of greatest suffering? Does He not draw nearer when we cry out?
If God is close to the broken hearted then how can we say that Joy is what makes our faith? He who makes such a claim does not know God for he does not know suffering. Pain is common to all and God is found in the greatest of pain. So let him be set apart from his depression and therefore become set apart from God for God does not celebrate our differences, He celebrates our accord. It is man whom God loves and so it is that which is common among man in which God will become most present. What makes us Christians is not our joy, though joy will come in the morning. It is our very cries of agony which make us Christians. It is the cries of our heart that God will hear with the greatest clarity for our cries are the truest voice we have because our suffering is sure. Pain is what connects us to Christ for He, the suffering messiah, has known the greatest pain. He has seen the end of hope. He has withstood the greatest depression. What sets us apart is that we cry to Christ the Savior. It is not joy because joy leaves us, it is not hope because hope can sometimes seem so far away. No matter how hopeless or sorrowful our cries may be they will surely reach the ear of God and He will not ignore them.