Find encouragement in God’s Word as we look together at the 5 best Bible verses for depression and sadness.
Is God really here when I'm struggling with sadness?
When you’re struggling with sadness and wondering how to control depression, it can feel like God is completely absent.
My friend, He is not absent. He’s right there with you.
Today, we’ll take a look at 5 of the BEST Bible verses for depression.
When you’re in the middle of busy mom life and you’re trying to do All The Things for your Christian family, you can’t let a season of sadness steal your joy. Open God’s Word and find the hope you’re longing for in the love of Jesus.
If you want to journal through these Bible verses with me, grab your free Bible study here.
Let’s dive in.
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Reading the Bible to help with depression
Emotions can be very overwhelming – especially when they are hard emotions.
We would all love to feel joyful and happy every day, but that’s just not the reality of life!
Recently, we’ve looked at some very practical steps that the Bible gives us for how to manage depression. Those action steps are really helpful when you’re struggling with emotional control and trying to still connect with your family.
One of the best things a Christian mom can do when feeling sad or depressed is to turn to God. Cry out to him with your pain and struggles. Pray regularly even if it feels like God isn’t listening. (Because truly, He is listening!)
And open your Bible to seek his wisdom, encouragement, hope, and help.
God cares about your emotions
The Bible actually has a LOT to stay about our emotions.
In fact, that’s one of the reasons why emotional control is a foundation of my ministry here at Love Your People Well. Not only do I see emotions pop up every single day in the counseling room as I help women and their families… I see emotions pop up all throughout the Scriptures.
God cares about your emotions.
He notices when you’re feeling sad or anxious. And He responds to your prayers and offers hope and peace that is beyond our human understanding.
The simple fact is that your emotions have a huge impact on your family relationships. You cannot enjoy Christian family life if your emotions are out of control.
There are plenty of reasons why Christian moms (and everyone else!) might struggle with sadness and depression. God understands all of that. He is not offended or upset when you struggle with your faith because of hard emotions.
He wants to meet you in your pain and offer hope.
Let’s look at the 5 best Bible verses for depression. Grab your free Bible study here so you can reflect on these verses with me and journal your thoughts and prayers.
The 5 best Bible verses for depression
These 5 Scriptures for depression at the ones that I turn to again and again as a Christian counselor. They are so helpful and encouraging!
Plus, let’s be honest. You might be struggling with your emotions, but you’re also a busy mom. It can be helpful to know right where to turn in the Bible to find some encouragement and hope.
So let’s look at these Scriptures together, which I think are some of the best Bible verses for depression, sadness, and hard emotions. (Want a free Bible study printable to walk you through these 5 Bible verses for depression? Grab it here.)
1 Kings 19
This chapter of the Bible is probably not one that you’ve read a whole lot. We don’t often turn to the Old Testament for hope and encouragement. But there is so much goodness here from God!
In 1 Kings 19, the prophet Elijah has just finished a big encounter with God. He confronted the false prophets and leaders of the Israelite people. And God showed up in a big way. God poured down fire on the people, consumed Elijah’s offering right in front of everyone, and destroyed many of the prophets who were worshipping idols.
If anyone has ever seen God’s power right in front of them, it was Elijah at this moment in time.
And yet, in the very next verses, we start reading chapter 19 and find out that Elijah wound up dealing with fear and depression.
After God’s big display, the people threatened Elijah, and he ran away. Here’s what the Scriptures tell us in 1 Kings 19:4
[Elijah] came to a broom bush, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.”
If you’re asking God to take your life, you are struggling with depression. (And if this is you, don’t wait to seek help. Find a counselor, talk to your pastor, or in the USA you can call 9-8-8 for immediate metal health support.)
And if you continue reading the rest of this chapter, you’ll see how God shows up.
God does not yell at Elijah. He doesn’t ignore him. There’s no laughter, criticism, or lecturing.
Instead, God sends an angel to comfort Elijah, provide him with food and rest, and then God himself shows Elijah his presence and speaks words of encouragement to him. (Find out the 4 specific action steps that God uses here to help Elijah in his depression, so you can do them too!)
This chapter of the Bible is so helpful for seeing what depression looks like, how God responds to it, and finding some practical steps and biblical HOPE for managing depression and sadness.
Take some time to read through it and seek God in the same ways Elijah did.
Psalms 42 and 43
These two psalms were originally written as one song to God, and they give us a realistic picture of depression.
When you are feeling sad or depressed, God can feel so far away. Verse 1 of Psalm 42 paints a picture of the longing and desperation of these emotions: “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.”
The emotions of depression are not new to our modern world. And they are not new to Christians! God’s people have struggled with sadness throughout all of history.
Not only do these psalms encourage us with a realistic picture of what depression can feel like, they show us a path forward through these hard emotions.
First, find hope in knowing that you are not alone in this painful struggle. “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me?” The psalmist felt this, just like you might feel it today.
But the psalmist did not stop there. He continued on: “Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” (verse 5)
This is how we move through depression and toward the other side. We cry out to God, lay our emotions before him, and choose to continue trusting in him and praising his Name.
Depression leaves you feeling weary. Burdened. Exhausted. Overwhelmed.
But Jesus has a solution for that.
In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus gives us a ray of hope for these hard emotions.
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Do you feel weary? You need the rest that Jesus offers. When you feel burdened by the weight of the world, your emotions, or your family struggles, you need the gentleness that Jesus gives.
These verses do not promise an easy, happy, carefree life. No, Jesus gives a much better promise.
Instead of promising an easy life, Jesus promises himself. He offers us his own life. While his “yoke” is easy, He knows that life is not easy.
What is the “yoke” and “burden” that Jesus calls us to? It is simply the act of following him. Seek him. Spend time with him. Give him your anxiety, fear, sadness, and stress.
This is such a helpful passage of Scripture! It had to be in on the list of the best Bible verses for depression.
In fact, in this short passage of the Apostle Paul’s letter to the early Roman church, there are 3 incredible promises for Christian moms who are struggling against sadness and depression.
First, in verses 26-27, we are reminded and encouraged that “the Spirit helps us in our weakness.” The Holy Spirit prays for you, searches your heart and mind, and intercedes for you. You might feel alone and confused, so God does the work on your behalf. You are never alone with God.
Then, in verses 28-30, we find an amazing promise that God is working all things “for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
In your sadness, you might feel like everything is meaningless or that God has no purpose or plan for you. Those feelings are not true! We are reminded here that God is working, and that he predestined, called, justified, and glorified YOU. As a follower of Christ, you can be confident that you have been chosen by God and are being protected by his love.
Finally, in verses 31-39, we are reminded of the incredible, powerful, faithful love of Christ. Absolutely nothing can separate you from God’s love. “[Nothing] else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
This psalm gives great encouragement to Christian moms struggling with sadness and depression.
It describes the experience of being attacked, cursed, and tricked. You may or may not feel like this is actually happening in your circle of relationships, but we all experience this spiritually! There is an Enemy – Satan. Spiritual warfare is real. You are under attack from the Enemy.
BUT you are being protected by a much stronger, more powerful, all-loving God.
When you struggle with hard emotions, God is your rock. He is your refuge and your fortress. You may feel like everything is falling apart around you, but God is standing firm – and He is protecting you so that you can stand as well.
Truly my soul finds rest in God;
my salvation comes from him.
Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.
Find encouragement in the best Bible verses for depression
I hope that these Bible verses have reminded you of God’s faithful love and care for you. Depression can be overwhelming. Sadness makes it difficult to enjoy family life.
But God can get you through all of that. He is your peace, hope, and joy. When you’re struggling, turn to him.
If you need help starting a daily habit of reading God’s Word and drawing near to him in prayer, grab my free Holy Habits 45-Day Bible and Prayer Challenge. It will be a helpful, practical resource to get you more comfortable reading the Bible on your own.
Listen to Episode #132
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Disclaimers: I am a licensed therapist but my podcast, blog, and resources are not professional or personal advice. I am an affiliate for many of the resources that I link to, and may earn a small commission if you purchase through my link. Read my full disclaimer here.