From the Depths of Sheol

For great is your steadfast love toward me;

you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol. (Psalm 86:13, NRSV)

In the Bible, Sheol is the place where departed souls go after death to await resurrection. It is sometimes depicted as a place of torment, but often it is simply a state of tedium and nothingness.

In my life, I have experienced Sheol as the place I go when I am in particularly dark moods. I go there for indeterminate periods of time. I never seem to know how I got there or how to get out.

Sheol is a dark bedroom with the curtains closed.

Children playing outside, unwatched.

Disembodied voices on the radio sharing unending bad news.

A lifeless womb,

A tomb of unknown

Lost opportunities.

While in Sheol, it seems I’ll never get out, but I always do. God has consistently delivered my soul from the depths. With the saving faith of Jesus Christ, I trust this pattern will continue, and one day I’ll leave Sheol behind for good.

For now, I will put my faith in the grace of God through Jesus Christ, who has descended to the depths to pick me up. There is no depth to which Christ will not descend to rescue us. Even the depths of Sheol—in this life and beyond.

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