You Can Defeat Depression

Depression is no light matter.  However, whether it’s experienced occasionally or chronically, the emotional weight can be lifted.

Even though emotional bondages can be complex issues, there are a couple of practical tools I’d like to share with you that work!  How do I know?  I and many other people I know successfully “work” them.  Here they are:

  • Don’t Think
  • Thank
I guess that needs some explanation, right?  Of course, right!
When I say, “Don’t Think,” I don’t mean never.  I have a brain and I need to use it…as long as it’s engaged in guiding me in God given, productive, powerful, potential thoughts.  The problem with depression is the fact that it stems from “stinkin’ thinkin’.”  Thoughts that are occupied with…..too often…..”somebody done me wrong songs.”  The depressed thoughts also focus us on the subjects of…

“What I still need and God has taken care of for me”

I heard Bill Johnson, the Senior Leader at Bethel Church, Redding, CA, first say several years ago, “I’m only about 10 minutes from depression any given day of my life.”  It was in context of Bill also saying, “I’ve discovered the key to never living life depressed.”

This was the key:  Only allow yourself to think on these two areas…

  1. What God has done
  2. What God is doing

Never allow your brain to walk the “what God has not yet done” path.

It’s an acquired mental taste.  It won’t come easily or naturally at first if you’re used to eating mental spoiled bologna.  However, just like taste buds literally change every 10 days, so can the flavor of one’s thoughts.

Here’s where the “Thank” part comes in.  It’s much easier to develop a new mental palette if you add the component of thanking God for what He has done and what He is doing.  Thanksgiving is like adding a super vitamin to your diet.

As I said earlier, I’ve “worked” it.  Others I know have done the same.  And…IT WORKS!  Up to you, but I highly recommend it!

Gary

I Just Want To Be Happy by Gary Ellis

Like sugar is sweet, we all want to be infected with large doses of happiness, right?

Nothing wrong with that.  Absolutely nothing.  It’s in our genes.

I can hear someone saying, “It’s not about happiness.  It’s about joy.”

Can we say, “COP-OUT!!??”

I don’t really care about the precision of word usage here.  The exactitude of accuracy in breaking words down to tiny fragments of meaning isn’t my purpose in this post.

What I care about is the fact that people have a legitimate desire to experience positive emotions that fills their outlook with some enthusiasm, courage, and hope.

Our natural world is a cesspool of tragedy, graft, and greed.  So was the one that Jesus entered when He was born in flesh into this world.  However, the Bible says He was anointed with joy even above all His brethren.  The scriptures also say that the joy of the Lord is our strength…and…the Kingdom of God (which is near us) is righteousness, peace, and joy.

(I hear someone saying, “Uh-huh…see…joy, not happiness.”>  <SMACK> <—-That’s the sound of me slapping you out of your argumentative religious bad self)
This isn’t a theological treatise here.  It’s an attempt at practical wisdom.  So, thanks for listening for the point instead of what sounds spiritual or not. 🙂

Reality Check:  Learning to feel happiness is not as much about being thankful that you got what you wanted, but being grateful when you get what you DON’T think you want.  It’s about making choices.  Lot’s of them.  Especially while a habit is being formed.  It’s about turning your back on judgment and embracing gratitude.

It will not be easy at first.  It will take practice.  But it’s more than worth it.  It’s an acquired taste.  It’s an established habit.  And, the payoff is HUGE in peace of mind and authentic feelings of happiness/joy whatever you choose to call it.

The Scriptures say, “Rejoice in the Lord always.  Again I say rejoice.”  (Philippians 4:4)  They also say, “In everything give thanks…” (Ephesians 5:20)  As a matter of fact you can hardly turn a page of your Bibles without seeing statements on rejoicing, thankfulness, and praise.

The only safe assumption is that God knows something we don’t know.  He knows how to experience the joy of the Lord that makes us strong.  On the flip side, the devil knows how to drain us of all strength through depression.  It’s important to realize that depression is a direct result of judging something, or someone, including yourself.

A man tells a story of being at a very low point in life.  He finally sat down and wrote God a letter.  He questioned, “Why would you let this happen to me??!!”  He heard these words, “Are you asking me for answers or are you just venting?”

We all do a lot of venting that doesn’t bring any solutions.  God knows the ways of inner life and death. We would do best to start listening.

Gary