Friday, June 01, 2012

God's Prescription for Your Depression

I hate that I struggle with depression. I've been sinking lately. I'm not sure for how long but yesterday was pretty bad.

I didn't really come to a full realization of how far I'd sunk until this morning when Glenn told me that he missed me and that he wondered: if I even loved him anymore, if I was mad at him, and what he had done wrong. His questions made me so sad and I started crying as I told him that it wasn't about him and that I had no idea what was causing me to feel so low. As he held me he told me that he could think of several reasons why I might be sinking and I agreed that there are quite a few but I don't know which one was the trigger this time. I rarely do.

I've struggled with depression on and off for a lot of my life so I was grateful that we had to be back in Rochester for a Sunday back in 9/09 when we were homeless because a message was preached just for me (I'm sure others benefited from it as well) called "God's Prescription for Your Depression." If you ever struggle with depression you really should click and listen to that sermon. David Whiting, Northridge Church's pastor, was in a series on Life Lessons from Dead Kings and Israel's Famous Prophets that summer and this particular sermon was on Elijah from 1 Kings 19.

I have my notes from that Sunday written out in a condensed form on a 3x5 card that I pull out on mornings like this one so I can re-read over them and be reminded of what I need to do. I want to post them here because they have been a help to me and maybe they will be a help to others as well.  

"God's Prescription for Your Depression"
from D. Whiting, Northridge Church, 9/6/09
1 Kings 19

Common Steps/ Warning Signs:
1. Wear yourself out v1-5
2. Shut people out v3-4
3. Engage in self-pity v4
4. Believe lies v10

God's Prescription:
1. Eat & rest v5-9 "planned neglect"
2. Replace your lies with God's truth - depression grossly exaggerates the truth
3. Be still and know that He is God v10-13
4. Do what is right no matter how you feel v15-18
"To struggle with depression is not a sin - how you handle your despair and discouragement could be."

*Do all you can to get your mind off yourself

2 Final Challenges:
1. fight your depression everyday. God may never give you total and complete victory over it - make it your goal to please God through your depression.
2. Don't just fight depression - fight victimization and self absorption. Don't let depression be an excuse to sin!

Someday I would like to print this up on cute little prescription paper to give to people (wouldn't that be fun coming from a doctor's wife?) because it has been such a help to me but I haven't gotten there yet so I am posting it here.

The warning signs are there, especially #2 (sorry Glenn & kiddos!). I know what I need to do.

Lord, thank You for this reminder. Please help me to focus on You and Your truth, to do what is right no matter what I feel, and please You through my depression.

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