We live in a world today where the rate of depression is skyrocketing especially among the young. I myself had an episode over a year ago, which led me on a quest to find a suiting remedy and so I resorted to reading, something I usually enjoy doing which often takes my mind away from any situation. It is no surprise why some depressed individuals end up commiting suicide, If you don’t believe in Jesus Christ and his gospel, then suicide would seem like a suitable alternative, but I’m here to tell or remind you that it isn’t the way out. If not for my personal and intentional relationship with God, I might as well would have resolved to suicide.
However thank God for the holy spirits guidance which led me to this book “God’s answers to life’s difficult questions” by Pastor Rick Warren, which has help me greatly. So I thought it wise to share some excerpts from the book and I believe it will help you get through not necessarily depression but whatever it is you are going through in private.
Playing the mental Game
Elijah got depressed because he played four mental games that we all play when we get depressed.
Focus on the facts, not on your feelings
“Elijah was afraid and ran for his life. When he came to Beersheba in Judah, he left his servant there, while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He 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.”- 1 Kings 19:3-4 NIV
- His first mistake, he focused on his feelings rather than the facts.
- As most psychologists believe, one key to health is to get your feelings out in the open. Venting your feelings out is not the complete remedy, because feelings are unreliable.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”- John 8:32 NIV
- The Bible did not tell us to get in touch with our feelings but to get in touch with the truth, because it’s the truth that sets us free.
Don’t compare yourself with others“
while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He 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.”-1 Kings 19:4 NIV
- When we start comparing oursleves with others we get depressed.
“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.”- 2 Corinthians 10:12 NIV
- It’s both unwise and harmful.
- There’s only one person that can be and that is you and that’s you.
- You have to be honest with yourself and be who you are. That’s all God wants; that’s all he expects.
Don’t take false blames
“He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”- 1 Kings 19:10 NIV
- Elijah blamed himself for failing to change the nation, and he took it personally.
- When we assume responsibility that God did not intend for us to have, it is too heavy a burden.
- People react in many different ways, you can’t assume responsibility for their responses.
- God has given each of us free will.
Don’t exaggerate the negative
verse 10- I am the only one left they want to kill me…..
- But the fact is almost nobody was against him, only one person violently opposed him and her threat wasn’t a real one.
- But instead of taking a thought about it, he listened to his feelings.
- He did not evaluate the threat instead he just ran away.
- He exaggeated the problems and he sank lower than normal.
APPLYING GODS REMEDY
Take care of your physical needs“
Then he lay down under the bush and fell asleep. All at once an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.” He looked around, and there by his head was some bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again. The angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched him and said, “Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you.”- 1 Kings 19:5-7 NIV
- God’s first remedy for him was food, drink and relaxation.
- When you are physically and mentally drained, you are prone to depression.
- If you are depressed, first take care of your health needs.
Give your frustration to God
“There he went into a cave and spent the night. And the word of the Lord came to him: “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”- 1 Kings 19:9-10 NIV
- He poured out all his inner feelings to God.
- It often helps to share your inner feelings with a Christian friend. It’s a catharsis
Get A Fresh Awareness Of God
“After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.”- 1 Kings 19:12 NIV
- Even today God still speaks to us in stillness of voice.
- Take you bible and read it, get alone with God, let God love and speak to you.
- There’s no antidepressant than communication and fellowship with God.
Gain A New Direction For Your Life
“The Lord said to him, “Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram.”- 1 Kings 19:15 NIV
- The quickest way to defeat depression is to quit sitting around in self-pity.
- Get your eyes off yourself and start looking at the needs of other people.
- Let God give you a new purpose and direction.
You Can Change
- People who live for themselves are guaranteed to get depressed.
- You need something greater that draws you out of yourself, and that is a vital relationship with Christ.
~Excerpt From: “God’s Answers to Life’s Difficult Questions” by Rick Warren~