Showing posts with label #depression. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #depression. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

DEPRESSION

Our church has a prayer loop. I noticed this week three requests for someone suffering from depression. It's real. It's devastating. It's one of the devil's best tools, but God can and will heal it. Praise His Name.
 

The devil delights in causing depression for saints. He whispers lies in our ears. We repeat them over and over until our spirits are so defeated only a miracle can redeem us, but God is in the miracle business.

 

Depression isn’t new.

 

Look at the prophet, Elijah’s words.

 


“I’ve had enough,” he told the Lord. “Take away my life. I’ve got to die sometime, and it might as well be now.”

                      1 Kings 19:4 Life Recovery Bible

 

 
Jeremiah poured out his depression on the page.

 


He has filled me with bitterness and given me a cup of deepest sorrows to drink.

                 Lamentations 3:15 Life Recovery Bible

 

 

In that same chapter of Lamentations in verses twenty-one through twenty-three, Jeremiah tells us the answer to depression.
 
 
 
Yet there is one ray of hope: his compassion never ends. It is only the Lord’s mercies that have kept us from complete destruction. Great is his faithfulness, his loving-kindness begins afresh each day. 

(That's one of my favorite verses.)
 

Our only hope.

 


God is strong enough to lift our burdens and loving enough to mend our broken heart.

              Life Recovery Bible, note on page 843

 

 
All forms of depression bring a wedge between us and God.


Like Jeremiah, the only remedy is soaking in the Word of God, allowing it to soothe and encourage, and reminding ourselves of His faithfulness in the past.

 

Depression is like an elephant sitting on you and you can't get up.
 

“If God never sleeps, why should both of us stay awake?”

                       The Freedom of Letting Go

                        by Donna Clark Goodrich

                 

"Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right."
                                                      ~ Henry Ford



Depression kept me down for years. I tried to eat myself into an early grave. I felt unworthy, unable to cope. Praise God for His healing. I still have days when I feel the effect on my thoughts, but His mercy is new every morning, so I know I must look up. I had one of those days Saturday. God is helping.

 Loss or betrayal can, at any time, throw us into a spiral of depression. Our only hope is through Jesus Christ. I pray today for all those battling with depression's effect.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Depression at Christmas

Christmas lights twinkle. Logs burn in the fireplace. Songs cheer weary shoppers with visions of family opening their gifts. Pastors preach about the peace of God, and most of us are excited by the season, but not all.

Those who come from dysfunctional families, and the ones, who this year, lost loved ones to death, divorce, or distance vision the world without cheer. Depression runs rampant the more joy is expressed. 

To those ones today, I offer this poem, and my prayers. 


       Trampled Violets

 

     Trampled underneath

     By uncaring feet

     Bruised and crushed

     The petals scattered

     Violets in first blush

     Of bloom.

 

     Disillusioned, hurt

     By cruel words

     Stomped and torn

     The child succumbs

     To hatred of his known

     Small world.

 

     Mocked and spit upon

     By His own

     Stabbed and slapped

     His hands were pierced

     His words were spoken

     Forgive

                  Divine Dining: by Janet K. Brown

 


Many of my friends suffer depression during this time of year. Most of us have been there at some point of our lives.

Jesus is with the broken-hearted. He understands depression, betrayal, and disappointment, and He will never, never leave you.

God bless those right now who are less than joyful.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

How Can You Battle Depression and Overeating?

Being depressed means you can spend all day in bed, and still not get a good night’s rest.
                                                               Anonymous
 

 

I feel inconsequential, unimportant, empty.                       
                                                            My personal journal from 1984
 

Overeating is a symptom.
It isn't the food. It's the fix.

The devil hits us with a double-whammy of depression and overeating.

The compulsion brings on depression.
The depression fuels the compulsion.

The 1-2 punch renders many Christians ineffective for God's work, or even to our family and friends.

The first quote described my oldest daughter during her rough time. She slept all day every day but could never get enough. Panic attacks struck my middle girl when she lost her daughter. My quote revealed my self esteem. I believed my family would be better off without me because I was fat and fussy. 

Symptoms of depression are many and varied; not only being unable to sleep, but unable to make decisions, detached from activities you usually enjoy, or like in my case, stuffing my face until I was sick.

In the Bible, David gave us his description of depression.

    I am weary with my groaning, all the night make I my bed to swim; water my couch with my tears.
    Mine eye is consumed because of grief. It waxeth old because of all mine enemies.
                      Psalm 6:6, 7

Elijah fought depression just after his mountain top experience confronting the prophets of Baal on Mt Carmel.


Let’s discuss some of the answers to help us with depression.

 

1.     Sometimes we need a psychiatrist and medicine.


2.     Christian counseling


3.     Praise music – This was one Tara Johnson recommended in her book “Hollow Victory.” She’s a musician, so that makes sense.


4.     Prayer


5     Read your Bible if you can, or quote Scripture you have memorized if you can.


6.     Make small goals. (leave the house, call your mother/daughter, eat 3 fruits that day)
 
 
7. Get out in God's great outdoors.
Mountain waterfall
 
 
8. Let go and let God.
 
 
 
 
 
To "let go" is not to deny, but to accept our powerlessness.
To "let go" is not to regret the past, but to grow and live for the future.
To "let go" is admitting we can't do it by ourselves and ask for help.


       9. Ask if you need to H.A.L.T.
     H - hungry
     A - angry
     L - lonely
     T - tired

“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.”
C.S. Lewis

That's one of my favorite quotes.

 Remember, what the devil means for evil, God can use for good just like He did for Joseph.

Is Satan using this weapon on you?

What do you need right now to help?

Feel free to contact me at Janet.hope@att.net if you need someone to talk to.



        

Saturday, March 7, 2015

What's the Solution for Depression?

Think depression is something new to the twenty-first century? Think again. Ever since God kicked Lucifer out of heaven, that mean-spirited, beautiful ex-angel has been using every weapon in his arsenal to defeat God. One of those is depression. Listen to Elijah's story back in the time of the Jewish kings.

     So, Elijah fled for his life; he went to Beersheba, a city of Judah, and left his servant there. Then he went on alone into the wilderness, traveling all day, and sat down under a broom bush and prayed that he might die.
     "I've had enough," he told the Lord. "Take away my life. I've got to die sometimes, and it might as well be now."
             1 Kings 19: 3, 4 Life Recovery Bible
  
        But the Lord said to him, "What are you doing here Elijah.
     He replied, "I have worked very hard for the Lord God of the heavens, but the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you and torn down your altars and killed your prophets, and only I am left, and now they are trying to kill me, too."
             1 Kings 19: 9, 10 Life Recovery Bible

 
Another prophet of old by the name of Jeremiah was called the weeping prophet. He wrote a whole book about his sadness. At one point in his ministry, here's how he felt.
 
      All hope is gone, my strength has turned to water, for the Lord has left me.
           Lamentations 3:18 Life Recovery Bible.

 
Symptoms of depression include:
     Insomnia or sleeping all the time
     Inability to concentrate or make decisions
     Loss of appetite or Inability to control overeating
     A feeling of emptiness
     Unconcern for normal enjoyments of life
     Change of habits
     Listlessness
     Crying over inconsequential things
     Outbursts of anger
     Panic attacks
     Thinking about suicide
     Inability to pray



Not everyone will have all these symptoms. There are degrees of depression, anything from “a little down” to physical, chemical depression requiring medication. All form of depression brings a wedge between you & God.
 
My devotion book, Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness, shows my depression at the time I wrote this.
 
     I call out to God but only trust in my own abilities, because He is far away. I lost thirty pounds with a weight support group, but put it back on, plus some. I whittled off forty pounds with shots and pills only to find myself in deep depression and succumbing to old behavior patterns. When I purchased a diet franchise after losing a hundred pounds, the stress of keeping off the weight drove me to underground eating and gaining, until I lost my business. I had failed. I couldn't lose. I couldn't maintain what I lost. I was worthless.
 
 
Like Jeremiah, the only remedy to depression is soaking in the Word of God, allowing His Words to soothe & encourage, & reminding yourself of His faithfulness in the past.

On page 843 of the Life Recovery Bible, this note tells us, "Turning our life over to God includes giving him our pain and suffering. In our times of grief and shames, we can hope for the time when God will overcome the problems we face. God is strong enough to lift our burdens and loving enough to mend our broken heart."

                         
Lamentations 3:21-23 gives us the solution to depression.

     Yet, there is one ray of hope: his compassion never ends. It is only the Lord's mercies that have kept us from complete destruction. Great is his faithfulness; his loving-kindness begins afresh each day. 

 
Tara Johnson's book Hollow Victory: How to Identify & Disarm 5 Landmines that make Victorious Christian Living Feel Like a Lie tells us "Here's the thing about depression: you cannot operate based on how you feel. You have to cling to what you know." 
 



One Scripture that ministers to many of us comes because of Jeremiah’s struggle with depression.

 

“For I know the plans I have for you, saith the Lord, plans for good & not for evil, for hope in your future.”
                              Jeremiah 29:11

 

 
I look through the table of contents in The Freedom of Letting Go by Donna Clark Goodrich for all the things we must learn to let go of and deal with.
    Grief
    Failures
    Successes
    Fear
    Doubt
and the list goes on. One of the hardest things to let go of is control. Allowing God to take control.

I love Goodrich's quote from that book, "If God never sleeps, why should both of us stay awake."


Another promise from God to cling to:
 

 
When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up--the flames will not consume you.
                   isaiah 43; 2-3  Live Recovery Bible

 

Let’s list the things that verse says about what troubles we might face.

 

When we face waters – – He will be with us.
 

When we face rivers – We will not drown.

 
When we face fire – We won’t be burned.

 


Notice God says "when" we go through these things, not "if."

 
In life, we will go through bad things. So, we must remember God's solution that He gave us through Jeremiah.
 

Are you teetering on the brink of depression? Is the darkness calling you away from worship? Has there been a time in your past when depression has been a part of your life?

Do you need to remember the solution?