There are so many things that can contribute to depression in a person's life.
Just recently we had gotten some life changing news about my dad. I could clearly see how, due to different circumstances in life, that people--even Christians, could fall into depression. Thankfully, there was a turn of events and things turned out for the better. But that brush with was a sobering eye opener about how easily things can change in a person's life.
Now I know that not everyone has a happy ending to their story. And things happen and then they find themselves where they did not want to be.
DEPRESSION CAN BE CAUSED BY THINGS SUCH AS:
- life events
- the way we think
I mentioned in an earlier post that I had the opportunity to hear a great sermon to help us understand depression better and how to combat it. I am sharing it with you so that if you do struggle with it or someone you know does, that you might find answers or some help here. He also has a thick Scottish accent that you might enjoy!
He shares some points that I will list here for you to read in case you don't have time to watch this (but I highly recommend that you do).
SOME TIPS HE RECOMMENDS TO CORRECT AN UNHEALTHY LIFESTYLE ARE:
REGULAR ROUTINE: When a person is depressed they are inclined to only do what they want to do--sleep or eat when and how they want. Restoring order and discipline is very important and regular sleeping, eating, and working patterns can help build self esteem and help a person to feel useful.
RESTORATION: Find time to relax is a must. It is important to calm down, pause, and seek God.
RECREATION: Getting exercise in important and has been proven to help balance the chemicals in your body for a healthier you all around. Sun exposure can do the same as well.
REST: Be mindful to set regular sleeping patterns and to get enough sleep. Many people like to stay up late into the night doing all kinds of things but it is more helpful to get the sleep that they need instead to go without . It is vital that the mind and body gets that time to rest and recharge.
REPRIORITIZING: Are you overwhelmed with priorities and obligations? Then you need to look at your schedule and reexamine what needs to stay and what needs to go. Check all the important areas of your life such as family, work, church, community and so forth.
CORRECTING FALSE THOUGHTS: Often times during depression there are false thoughts that need to be replaced and challenged with Scripture. We can see an example of this in Psalm 77.
CORRECTING YOUR SPIRITUAL LIFE - Praying, reading your Bible, going to church, staying in fellowship are all still important so don't neglect them but also don't set too high of a goal that you become overwhelmed or more depressed.
VISITING YOUR DOCTOR - Sometimes feelings of depression can be linked to real physical illness so we don't want to neglect this area regarding our bodies and treatment and we can receive to get better, so it might also be a good idea to checked out if you think something like this could be related.
You can find several of these tips and more helpful advice in his book. Dave Murray, the speaker above, has written a book titled, Christians Get Depressed Too, that can be found at Amazon.
"Many Christians mistakenly believe that true Christians don't get depressed, and this misconception heaps additional pain and guilt onto Christians who are suffering from mental and emotional distress. Author David P. Murray comes to the defense of depressed Christians, asserting that Christians do get depressed! He explains why and how Christians should study depression, what depression is, and the approaches caregivers, pastors, and churches can take to help those who are suffering from it. With clarity and wise biblical insight, Dr. Murray offers help and hope to those suffering from depression, the family members and friends who care for them, and pastors ministering to these wounded members of their flock."
It is available for Kindle and Paperback.
Obviously we can't cover everything we would like on this topic in a blog post but we hope that what is here is a starting point for you!
Finally, we wanted to share some Bible verses to encourage you:
"Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God." Psalm 43:5
"I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken." Psalm 16:8
Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." Psalm 73:25-6
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 2 Corinthians 4:16
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:6-8
Do you or someone you know struggle with depression?
What has helped you? Please share in the comments below.
Also, if you are struggling and need prayer, please share in the comments as well so we can pray for you!
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