Recently, the LORD has been speaking to me concerning some of the areas many Christians are experiencing difficulties in handling depression. Almost everyone have experienced periods of sadness in their life in one way or the other. Depressions are of various degrees and are not to be unified. The worst thing is many are depressed but they don’t even know. However, most people gets over such periods on time while some have a prolonged periods of it, which is actually the genesis or the cause of their depression. In this episode, I want to dwell on how to handle depression when the periods are prolonged.
In 2005, I had a very bitter experience few days before my graduation day from University that sent me into a state of total darkness and it was not funny at all…
I had a course in 100 level of which the results were not shown to us until almost our graduation day due to nonpayment of dues to the lecturers by the federal government. While the excitement was everywhere being the last days in school, suddenly the results of those who are graduating were published and my name was no anywhere close. Imagine, I did not have any carry-over course all through my 5 years at school until that saga happens. On following up with my course lecturer he said to me that my exam paper was missing and that he could not manufacture scores for me which means that I will have to repeat the course the following academic year.
That piece of information sent me into a total darkness, as I will have to stay in school for one more year. I could stay neither school nor travel back home due to shame and the humiliation of wasted resources and right there depression sets-in.
The mistakes most people make is that, they do not understand what it takes to be in such state so when they talk to you they speak as though you should just jump off from that state of depression. I mean nothing was working and the whole world was collapsing at a time. I hope you feel me? However, I spent another year in University, as it was the will of God for me to endure.
BELOW ARE SOME TIPS THAT CAN HELP YOU OUT IN HANDLING DEPRESSION:
- LOOK FOR A GOOD FRIEND: This is a tip that helps but again at the same time you must be extremely careful in selecting friendship this period. People who have prolonged depression finds it difficult to relate with people especially when in total darkness. You must be able to identify a true friend who prays and understands as well as spiritually sound in mind. The Bible says in Proverbs 18:24. “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” This is the type of friend you should confide in. The type who will not take advantage of your present weaknesses especially if he or she is opposite sex to avoid stories that touches. You must avoid gossipers as friends otherwise; your story would be in CNN, BBC or NBC news which is worse.
- AVOID WRONG THOUGHTS: It is impossible to stop wrong thoughts from coming into your mind but you can avoid them. Words like, I’m not good; nothings works for me; nobody likes me; I’m all alone; my depression; I’m not able, my family is known for depression etc. should be avoided. Try to remember what God has said concerning you and confess them accordingly. Believe in God for every Word spoken concerning you. The same reason apostle Paul said in Ephesians 1:18 “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in His holy people”. Know that God has called you into His glory. Each time evil thoughts shows up respond with positive confession and be joyful. In Proverbs, 17:22 says, “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit dries up the bones”. Stop being sad; stay joyful.
- SEEK MEDICAL GUARDIAN: Most times people do not understand that it is necessary to seek medical help when things are getting out of control. Some even fast and pray when they have fatal car-accident, aaahh really? The part of their lifes that is physical is often neglected. This was the same reason why a question was asked without an answer in Jeremiah 8:22 “Is there no medicine in Gilead? Is there no physician there”? Why is there no healing for the wounds of my people? Some people spiritualize everything until they have nervous breakdown. There are parts of our body that requires physical exercises, which necessitates physiotherapist’s assistance. They say seeking medical help is ungodly. That is ignorance my friend. However, after all said and done, you must be able to identify or understand the state of your well-being. If your spiritual life is very sound, there will not be any room for depression in the first place, so therefore; work on your spiritual life.
Your prayer life should improve drastically. The only place where you obtain confident and authority over overwhelming depression is in your prayer life. Getting out of depression requires your responsiveness. Merely wishing of getting out of depression is like a man traveling to another country without an international passport. Re-establish your spiritual life through Bible reading, prayer and fellowship with other Christians. Join a local Bible-believing church and not places where the word of God is secondary. Being an active member in a church is a good way to begin to grow spiritually and learn an overcoming faith.
God bless you.
Pastor Okezi. O