Dear Dr. B,
I know you’ve gone through depression, help those who suffer, and have written a book about it. I’ve really been struggling and just can’t seem to get to the other side. I’ve heard you talk about the importance of reciting Scripture and standing on God’s promises, especially when someone struggles with depression or anxiety. Can you suggest any particular verses to use to get started?
Lost My Joy
I’m so glad you wrote because I have been where you are, and I’ve shared much of my story in my book “Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression.” But I understand how it can seem overwhelming to hold a Bible in your hands and not know which of the thousands of promises to apply to your situation! I suspect if you prayed about it, the Holy Spirit would guide you, but perhaps He did just that by prompting you to write and ask for guidance.
When I was in the depths of my depression, I needed verses that gave me HOPE! I needed verses that reminded me of God’s character and that despite my feelings, I could trust God to see me through any situation. If I can give you one piece of advice, it’s to not trust your feelings because our feelings are really just the outward manifestation of the thoughts we believe. Instead, trust the word of God which is truth. That is why I advocate so strongly for memorizing and reciting His promises, so that we can combat the lies of the enemy with God’s truth. It’s always our best defense.
Here are some of my favorite Bible promises for maintaining our hope when we are dealing with depression:
- The LORD hears his people when they call to him for help. He rescues them from all their troubles. (Psalm 34:17)
- Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)
- For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning. (Psalm 30:5)
- The LORD is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. (Psalm 9:9)
- “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
- Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)
- And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)
- No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. (Romans 8:37)
- I cling to you; your strong right hand holds me securely. (Psalm 63:8)
- But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)
When I was in the depths of my depression, I wrote out the verses that gave me hope on post-it notes and stuck them on my night stand, on my closet doors, on my light switches, on my bathroom mirrors, on the dashboard of my car, and any other place I would see them regularly. Each time I saw them, I recited them out loud because faith comes by hearing, so I needed to hear them, until they got down deep in me and I believed what they said. They were God’s message to my heart, and they helped me refute the lies that the enemy had been whispering to me for so long. By the time I was done, I had over 100 verses written out and posted around my house.
That’s exactly what I would recommend you do as well. These ten verses will get you started, but there may be other verses that the Lord puts on your heart or that you come across in books that you read, or that you hear in sermons that touch you in a meaningful way. Cling to God’s promises and pray them back to God. The Bible says that His word will not return to Him void, so when you pray His word back to Him, He has to fulfill what He has promised.
There are many other verses that spoke to me in my book “Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression” and more about how I learned to apply God’s word to my situation.
He loves you so much and never intended for you to feel this way. But because of Him, #HopePrevails!
(If you have a question you’d like Dr. B to answer, contact her here now. Your name and identity will be kept confidential.)
A short brief about Hope Prevails.
Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey through Depression
Dr. Michelle Bengtson
Speaking from personal and professional experience, a neuropsychologist unpacks what depression is, shows how it affects us spiritually, and offers hope for living the abundant life.
Neuropsychologist Offers Hope to Those Struggling with Depression
-By 2020, depression will be our greatest epidemic worldwide
- An estimated 350 million people worldwide suffer from some form of depression
- As with the bestselling My Stroke of Insight, the author experienced the same condition she treats
- Helpful features include personal stories, biblical truths, prayers, and music recommendations
In Hope Prevails, Dr. Bengtson writes with deep compassion and empathy, blending her extensive training and faith, to offer readers a hope that is grounded in God’s love and grace. She helps readers understand what depression is, how it affects them spiritually, and what, by God’s grace, it cannot do. The result is a treatment plan that addresses the whole person—not just chemical imbalances in the brain.
For those who struggle with depression and those that want to help them, Hope Prevails offers real hope for the future.
Hope Prevails is available now wherever books are sold. To find out more, see: http://drmichellebengtson.com/hope-prevails-book/.