“Your praise will ever be on my lips”
And in that moment, I knew.
I flashed back to when I was before the church stage forcing the powerful words out of my lips. Tears streaming, body shaking, forcing my heart to exclaim, “Despite the depression, Lord, I will praise you.”
I thought back to lying in bed struggling to raise my arms to praise the One who saw my struggle. Crying out, “Even when it hurts like hell, I will only sing your praise.”
I remembered the feeling of the rock in my chest. The weight of the walls. The weight of my burden. The lack of joy.
I remembered the anger. The frustration. The agony. The urge to scream and pound on the nearest objects. How they crippled me.
The feeling of my knees on the floor. Screaming. Begging the Lord for relief.
I saw my body collapsed on the floor. Aching for it all to end. Whispering through the pain, “I know this is only for a moment. Everything is working for your glory. Please, Lord… hold me…”
I remembered the comfort of the weight of the covers. My hiding place.
I remembered the weight of my arms as I constantly forced my arms towards heaven, determined to not give up hope. “Even when the mountain rises, I will only sing your praise. Louder I will sing your praise.”
I remembered reading Daniel 10 telling myself that my deliverance was on its way! I only needed to wait – I needed to be patient, persistent. He was bringing relief – He had promised! I had prayed! I only needed to remain in the posture of receiving. I had to believe it was coming. My moment was coming. I just had to hold on to my promise.
“And that’s why I sing – your praise will ever be on my lips!”
Lastly, in that moment, I remembered the past week. How joyful, how light, how beautiful it felt. The energy, the passion, the love, the freedom – it was all back.
And in that moment, I knew.
I was healed.
He who had promised, had healed me.
The weight of raising my arms to heaven was gone. They floated up, unable to get high enough. Unable to thank Him enough.
My chest was light, free.
My smile came easy, laughed even.
My knees still hit the ground, and the tears still fell.
But it was praising the One who is worthy of it all. He is worthy of all the praise I can muster. His praise will ever be on my lips. He had kept His promise to me.
He was making me like Him, clothing me in white. He brought me out of the ashes and made me beautiful. No longer was I guilty, shameful, burdened.
He had heard my prayer the whole time.
In Daniel 10: 1-14, Daniel is begging the Lord for deliverance. God heard His prayer, and a decree for deliverance was sent out from heaven the moment Daniel prayed. But it took three weeks for Daniel to hear from the Lord. Why? There were spiritual battles that Daniel knew nothing about that the angel of the Lord had to fight before he could bring Daniel what he needed. And the only way that Daniel was able to receive his deliverance was because he remained in the posture of waiting for the Lord throughout those three weeks.
He outlasted the enemy. Daniel was persistent and waited for the Lord show up.
That was me. I cried out for deliverance. There were spiritual battles that I know nothing about. But I outlasted the enemy. I continued to praise him when it took every ounce of energy I had. And I was delivered.
Healing wasn’t a moment of power when I felt the depression leave. Healing came softly.
Without even realizing it, over the course of a week in a foreign country, God had taken my heart of stone and softened it. He flaked away at every wall I had built and revealed a heart that could feel His joy again.
And after a week of floating through life with a joy more powerful than I had ever remembered happiness to be, I realized it.
Standing before the same stage that I had just two weeks before begged for divine healing, I realized why my chest felt so light.
I was healed – I AM healed.
And His praise will ever be on my lips.
Songs that got me through and are quoted:
Ever Be // Kalley Heilingenthal
For A Moment // Elevation Worship
Even When It Hurts // Hillsong United