Christine Duncan

Precepts & Life Preservers

Because You Were Here

Four little words but they changed my perspective.

And my mood.

Something delicious inside me flipped.

Something lifted. Something healed, even.

How could so much goodness come from four little words?

I roll the words through my heart even now, and wham, they do more than any outward show of love or appreciation could.

The week had been a battle. Just my chronic D acting up, but it can pack a punch. And what people don’t understand sometimes, is that self-worth and confidence are what your faulty neurotransmitters attack with a vengeance, a chemical shift that brings an emotional upheaval that does not respond ever to a “get over it” approach.

You are literally swamped with failure at every turn, defeat stares back at you in every reflective surface, and your brain and your disorder concede over and over that things will never feel right again because your synapses begin to play like a broken record that you have absolutely zero control over.

I pray we exhibit compassion and understanding the next time someone says they feel so overwhelmed they can’t go on. Because they honestly “feel” that they feel that way.

So there I was, desperate to keep going, feeling more and more the oozing helplessness as all of these things crept into every part of my day, looking around and seeing everything that was wrong, and for the life of me, so disabled by the dysthymia, that I couldn’t find where the function for looking upwards had gone to.

Blogs I couldn’t finish mocked me.

Dishes piling up threatened to swallow me up.

Every inch of me felt like it weighed a ton, (which is an actual physical symptom of my particular brand of disorder) and I couldn’t figure out how to do anything at home without wanting to give up.

Putting away mail. Impossible.

Sort four towels still on the bed. Couldn’t deal.

Order a pizza for dinner. (Please, there’d be no cooking in my state.)

I would read chats and messages four or five times before I could extract real meaning. Eventually I gave that up too.

And with every acknowledgement that I was useless, the pit became deeper and wider and more threatening.

Until the four words.

My husband (we like to call him *Perry for fun or *Wilson, sometimes both though neither are his name in any sense. And if you check out my instagram account you’ll know he likes to hide from the camera), ANYWAY, my husband had been racking up long work hours, much-needed, and suddenly had to make an hours-long drive right after all these hours in the shop to make a delivery in another city.

Made longer by the fact the weather was bad and they’d not given him clear directions.

He came home from a 19 hour day exhausted and wiped. And all I could offer him was cold pizza and a hug I almost couldn’t deliver.

And I tried valiantly to be present instead of in the pit, and caring, and concerned even though my brain was doing its wonky dance inside.

And as we laid there after only really seeing him for 5 minutes because his day started in 5 hours again, I told him I was sorry.

Sorry for his long hours. Sorry for the drive. Sorry for the pizza.

And already half asleep, he peeped one eye open and said it was okay.

That the whole awful drive in circles and home again, he knew he couldn’t wait to get home.

“Because you were here.”

Because you were here. *Perry didn’t know how much my soul needed such words. He was just being the nice comfy husband that he is, and saying four words out of our 21 years of love.

But God knew. Knew my heart would grab and cling at words my brain would’ve ignored.

And those four words. ย Within the guidance of the Holy Spirit released something.

Chains fell off.

Fog lifted.

Very slowly, I laid there in the dark and grabbed for them. Hung onto them. Fed off them.

Came alive with them.

And maybe the dysthymic episode was already lifting around the same time, and maybe God had decided enough was enough?

All I know is that those four words released the doom and invited in purpose. Foiled the brain chemicals. Paved new tracks for my train of thought once on depression’s schedule.

Because you were here.

I think of the Psalmist. How many times he threw out words and thoughts of despair and defeat and hopelessness.

Four words that changed everything.

And then how often he grabbed for and clung to the promises and the precepts of the Most High who is incapable of leaving us high and dry and allowed the words of the Lord propel him into emotional and spiritual health again.

“Lord, because You were here..!”

“Lord, because you saw me in my affliction!”

“Lord, because of Your precepts and all the things that make You God, because You were here, You preserve my life!”

Peel back all the layers of Psalm 89 or 119.

See how when life becomes endless circles and hard work and nomadic, the very fact that I Am is with us and never leaves us and is waiting for us changes everything.

Today I start my prayer for the day with “Because You are here Lord, I know You’ll preserve me, no matter what comes.”

Thank Him for being faithful to cut through the fog and crush of life.

We become proof once again that He will be proven faithful.

It’s our four words of declaration, of thankfulness from the pits of life.

“Because You were here!”

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Today’s post is lovingly tied to #livefreeThursday with Suzie Eller and Bonnie Gray’s #BelovedBrews!
Please, click on a hashtag above and join us for all the goodness happening today.


  1. Wow… this is so touching. Absolutely beautiful for one, because you’re husband loves you so, and two, this –>”And then how often he grabbed for and clung to the promises and the precepts of the Most High who is incapable of leaving us high and dry and allowed the words of the Lord propel him into emotional and spiritual health again.”
    Thank you for sharing this and encouraging <3

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 1:04 PM

      Rachel, thank you so much, wow. I appreciate your words so much, am glad you found them encouraging! We cling, and cling, and He draws closer and closer. It’s the most wonderful thing ๐Ÿ™‚
      Have a day filled up with blessing, Rachel!

  2. I have no idea why, maybe you weren’t around as much – I really don’t know unless it was a Holy Spirit thing – but I’ve been wondering if you’ve been getting hit with this. Thank God that, not only is He always with us but that He shows it in a physical manner through those He puts in our lives.
    To a lesser degree, and for a less serious reason, I get what you mean about just not being able to get past certain things – the towels become a physical barrier. (Check out my Broom Wielder post. I’m betting you’ll relate.) I think mine has to do with ADD. Again, nothing like what you struggle with but it does allow me to sympathize.
    Some are dragon slayers in a broom wielding world. Sharpen your sword with pride. I think you are awesome & so does Jesus! (The cool thing is your husband does too!!)
    Love ya sister!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 1:23 PM

      Angela, you wouldn’t be the first to say that, so it must be a God thing! I had a couple others leave me little messages just wondering if I was good ’cause I’d been a little less visible. God placed this in their hearts, and it reaffirms for me just how He uses the people in our lives to be that physical representation of His care like you say.
      How much do I love this giant community of believers who now feel like family. I’d appreciate if you’ll continue to pray for me, that this completely disappears.
      I will definitely read your post, (glory, I love your posts) and see what God wants to show me there too. I appreciate your encouragement, treasure it, and pray giant blessings for your week, Angela!!!
      Love back at’cha!!!

  3. It is truly a wonderful thing when we know that our words of encouragement spoken to another pour courage, strength, hope into their souls and an uplifting of the soul to God takes place. Once again, Christine you have so beautifully shown us how God’s Precepts are truly our life preservers! We cling to them and find life and I speak that same life into your soul! (next to you at Faith Baristas)

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 1:26 PM

      Jeannie, when we do meet one day, you’ll get the biggest hug so be aware ๐Ÿ™‚
      We never know how much a few words will pour life back into a soul feeling alone or defeated, and I hope I remember this as I go into the weekend, to pour good words into someone else!

  4. In tears, Christine! This is beautiful, and perfect. โ€œBecause You are here Lord, I know Youโ€™ll preserve me, no matter what comes.โ€…. YESSSSS!!!!! Thank you for your honesty and the beauty of these words! Praying for you in your chronic illness. I suffer from a silent chronic illness myself, and so strongly connect with everything you said regarding it’s stronghold. Blessings and prayers!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 10, 2015 at 10:45 AM

      Aw, thanks Crystal. I’m so glad that He’s using all this to touch hearts, He’s still working on mine as I type, an awesome thing for sure. Chronic illness, the constant enduring, it wears you down more than out sometimes, and I just keep trusting God for His strength. That’s all we can do sometimes, I’m sure you know… I’m so glad to have connected, Crystal. We can lift each other up, and I pray you have an amazing weekend of His relief ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Christine, that husband of yours is certainly a keeper and I’m so glad he breathed life into your parched soul with those words. What a great God we serve. I am covering you with prayer today and sending hugs your way, friend. Love you. xoxo

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 11:12 PM

      I will covet those prayers, m’dear, I really will. I know He’ll hear them. I know He’ll be faithful ๐Ÿ™‚ We serve an awesome God!
      I just love this community of sisters in Christ, what a great family to be apart of.
      You’ve been such a blessing, girl, please don’t forget it! Love you back!

  6. I find huge help in remembering God says the same thing to me (and each of us) — “I’m here because YOU are here. I want to be with you.”

    Jesus came and lived as a human, because WE are here.

    Big thoughts. Thanks for another great post, Christine.

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 11:00 PM

      He does want to be right where we are, like the loving father who watches over a child. So true, Cris!
      And even better, we make it through every day because He is here. And I’m so glad for lovely friends like yourself, that encourage and agree and pray. Have a great night Cris!

  7. Oh sweet Christine, give that hubby of yours a big kiss for me – I love this post and his heart for you and the way you always seek HIS heart! Thanks for your encouragement that always keeps me going too. Love ya!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 10:52 PM

      LOL… I did, Kim! He says thanks ๐Ÿ˜‰
      Some days it’s all I can do to keep seeking His heart, but that happens for every one of us I know. I just go day by day when needed, filling up on Him, and all the support from all of you!
      You’re sooo much appreciated, Kim, really thankful for every visit we have online! Love!

  8. Wow Christine,your blog was so sad yet so up lifting,as I felt for you as you poured out such honesty from the depths of your soul. I so identify with most everything you said and can empthise with you and woill be praying for you.So up lifting to read the four little words from the precious man God gave you for such a time as this,long tiring day for both of you,and God had the stage set for pit freedom once again.
    Oh how I love Jesus, and you too Christine !!!!!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 9, 2015 at 10:57 PM

      I’m so glad you got a chance to read this one, Edna, and journey with me. God uses the folks in our lives, husbands, sisters, friends, co-workers, grandma’s, He uses everyone to emphasize His love in our day to day lives, His nudge that He’s got this. And it’s rather wonderful, isn’t it?
      Glad to hear from you, praying much blessings for you the rest of this week!!!

  9. “Because you were here.” Christine, this was so beautiful!

  10. Beautiful, Christine! Words have the power of life and death. Your husband’s words gave life. Your words give life. Thank you! Visiting you today from #LiveFree Thursday.

    • Christine Duncan

      April 10, 2015 at 10:30 AM

      It’s great to meet you, Janet, thank you so much. Best of all, His words never fail to give life, isn’t that awesome to know?! I love joining up with all of you talented gals over at Suzie’s… so much encouragement. Thanks again, Janet, have a great weekend of blessing!

  11. Gosh girl I could just feel your struggle. Beautifully written. I loved this, “Today I start my prayer for the day with โ€œBecause You are here Lord, I know Youโ€™ll preserve me, no matter what comes.”

    Thanks for your transparency. ~visiting today from Christian Blog Comment Exchange and also we are both linked at Suzie’s and Bonnie’s place. Blessings friend.

    • Christine Duncan

      April 10, 2015 at 10:22 AM

      Started today day with that same prayer as well, Carmen, feeling like it magnifies His closeness and faithfulness right now for me! ๐Ÿ™‚
      I had no idea you were a part of the CBCE, that’s very cool! Yay!
      Thanks so much for visiting, have a fabulous weekend in Him, girlfriend!

  12. Beautiful. I needed to hear this. Isn’t it awesome when the Lord speaks such wonderful truth to our hearts and makes it come alive in our hearts. It “sticks” to us forever. We never forget it. And share it like you did here. Others will be ministered to

    • Christine Duncan

      April 10, 2015 at 10:41 AM

      I pray they will be, Debbie. For whatever they’re going through. Your words are comforting, thank you. I’m glad it’s resonating with so many… God is good!!!
      Have a blessed weekend, Debbie, and thanks again ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Is it enough that I say that I cried a little after reading your blog? Thank you so much.

    • Christine Duncan

      April 10, 2015 at 11:22 AM

      Aw, how sweet are you, my friend? Thank you for visiting, and letting me know it touched you, Ariella, that means so much.
      Have a most beautiful weekend! <3

  14. Ok, I’m trying to read this, but everything is just a blur!!!! So after many times of reading and thanking God for you and my favorite son in law, I’m still weepy!!! lol God is so good, and thankyou from the bottom of my heart for such honesty and giving me something that I relate to. I’m going to start my prayers also, with “because you are here”!! Thank Richard for me, and know that I always pray for him too.

  15. Sweet Christine,

    I am in tears after reading this beautiful post. I am sorry for the suffering that you endured. I can relate to the feeling of not knowing “where the function for looking upwards had gone to” – I know I should turn to God, to let Him be my strength, but sometimes I don’t have it in me to do what I know I should do. I love how God spoke to you through those four simple words, shared by your loving husband – and also how God helped you to see the greater meaning in them, that because He is there, we will make it through. So much hope in your reflection. Thank you for your honest sharing!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 14, 2015 at 2:31 PM

      I’m so glad you found some hope within this post, Kamea. We’re not alone, so many of us struggle with this and He will always be faithful to take us through. Thanks so much for your beautiful comment! God calls you His beloved, don’t ever forget that this week ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. The compassion of Christ was always something that drew crowds to him. It’s amazing what compassion can do. Wonderful thoughts!

    • Christine Duncan

      April 14, 2015 at 2:25 PM

      Very true, Andrew. Compassion can release us from things nothing else will! Thanks so much for visiting the blog, I truly appreciate it! Have a wonderful, Christ-filled week!

  17. Oh, such a beautiful post. Sounds like your husband is a keeper and our Lord and Savior too.

  18. Christine, this is so sweet! Praying for you, Friend! Thanks for sharing this encouragement!

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