Friday, May 18, 2012

Defeating Depression

Statistics show that over 50% of people have dealt or are dealing with depression. How do you overcome? How do you escape, as Charles Spurgeon said, “dungeons beneath the castle of despair”? Let me give you a solution and perspective that will help. The Psalmist said, “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God” (42:3-5). We have to remember that our attitude affects our actions. We change our attitude by overwhelming it with truth instead of lies.

Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” Whenever depression tries to creep in you must remember God is for you not against you (Romans 8:31). I constantly tell myself this phrase: “I will never change my life until I change the way I think.” We must get rid of the stinking thinking that brings us down. Remember, the devil is a liar. John 8:44 says, “When he (the devil) lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” Ask yourself these questions: “Who are you listening to? God or the devil? Truth or lies?” Listen, the devil will lie to you and the world will try to pollute you. We must no longer live in the futility of our thinking with darkened understanding and separation from the life of God (Ephesians 4:17-18) but take every thought captive and make it obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5).

Sometimes our problems confuse us. We think God is far away and oblivious to the struggles going on in our lives. Remember this: Psalm 10:1 and 17 say, “Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? …You hear, O Lord, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry.” This is GREAT NEWS!

When we are depressed we need to remember a few things. First, God’s compassion and mercy never fail and are new every morning (Lamentation 19-23). Great is His faithfulness to us! Secondly, we will never change the way we think until we renew our minds. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” We must think like Jesus and think about ourselves just like Jesus thinks about us. Romans also tells us that those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. If your sinful nature controls your mind, there is death. But if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace (8:5-6).

Do you want peace and true life free from depression? Then you must devour God’s word instead of letting the words of the devil and the world devour you. His Word is living and active and can divide not only soul and spirit but can judge the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Are your thoughts and attitudes depressing and hopeless? You must read God’s Word daily to gain a new perspective on your life. It is time to suppress the depression that oppresses by allowing God to impress upon you His true expression of abundant life.

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