by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
He may walk in darkness—but he goes on walking ...
When the mood comes upon us, we allow it to dominate us and we are defeated and depressed. We say that we would like to be delivered, and yet we do nothing about it ... we must away with ‘dull sloth and melancholy’ ... there is a sense in which what the Scriptures do is to teach us how to speak to ourselves.... You must talk to yourself and say: T am not going to be dominated by you, these moods shall not control me. I am going out, I am breaking through’. So get up and walk, and do something. ‘Stir up the gift.’... If you allow these moods to control you, you will remain miserable, but you must not allow it. Shake them off. Do not recognize them. Say again, ‘Away dull sloth’.
But how do you do that? In this way—your business and mine is not to stir up our feelings, it is to believe. We are never told anywhere in Scripture that we are saved by our feelings; we are told that we are saved by believing.... Never once are feelings put into the primary position. Now this is something we can do. I cannot make myself happy, but I can remind myself of my belief. I can exhort myself to believe, I can address my soul as the Psalmist did in Psalm 42: ‘Why art thou cast down O my soul, and why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou’ ... believe thou, trust thou. That is the way. And then our feelings will look after themselves. Do not worry about them. Talk to yourself, and though the devil will suggest that because you do not feel, you are not a Christian, say: ‘No, I do not feel anything, but whether I feel or not, I believe the Scriptures. I believe God’s Word is true, and I will stay my soul on it, I will believe in it come what may.’... Yes, J. C. Philpot was right... the child of the light is sometimes found walking in darkness but he goes on walking.... He does not see the face of the Lord at this point, but he knows that He is there; so he goes on.
Spiritual Depression, pp. 116–17
“Text reproduced from ‘A First Book of Daily Readings’ by Martyn Lloyd-Jones, published by Epworth Press 1970 & 1977 © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. Used with permission.”
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