I recently had the opportunity, given to me by a very brave pastor, who asked me to preach on the fact that even Christians get depressed.
I’ve talked to many pastors, who have told me that no one in their church suffers from depression. I then scratch my head and wonder what planet they are on. You only have to open up your Bible to see that Jonah, and Elijah, and Job, and David struggled with depression. David said numerous times, “Why so downcast oh my soul?”
“Why so downcast oh my soul?” I could have written that line back in the day when I walked through the valley of depression.
Read more for hope to overcome the giant of depression.
Nobody wants to be the poster child for depression. But now that I have gone through that and am on the other side, I’m thankful for my experience. Truly thankful.
As a doctor, as a neuropsychologist, I was always filled with a lot of compassion and empathy for my patients. Now that I have journeyed through the dark night of my soul myself, I have even more compassion for others. Even more empathy. I can step into that place and say, “Me too.”
I really do get it. I really do understand. Now I have a much better appreciation for so many in the Bible who suffered. Not that my suffering was as great or as prolonged as theirs, but to read the stories of Jonah, and Elijah, and Job, and David. I have a better appreciation for what they went through.
Even in hard times, you can rejoice. How do you rejoice when times are hard? And, why is it good to do so?
Several of my recent posts have centered on the topic of depression because depression is expected to be our greatest epidemic by 2020. Frankly, I don’t think we discuss it enough—especially in the church. It’s a topic I believe we need to have more dialogue about.
As a mental health professional, and someone who has journeyed through the valley of depression and is now on the other side, I’m willing to raise my hand and say, “Let’s talk.” By increasing our discussion of this topic, I believe it helps tear down some of the stigma and arrive at some answers.
Read more for hope and help in overcoming depression.
“How can I help my depressed husband?”
“How do I help my wife who is depressed?”
“How can I be helpful to my depressed friend?”
These are all questions I frequently hear.
October is Depression Awareness Month and I would be remiss if I didn’t also try to help those who have depressed loved ones.
There’s a Book Giveaway so be sure to read to the end!
Dear Dr. B,
I’m a man in my 60’s. Depression has been my Goliath as long as I can remember. I am a believer that has a fairly good grasp on Gods word. Yet I can’t muster the joy and happiness that the Word says is mine. I’m reading your book, “Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression” and have the companion “Hope Prevails Bible Study.” At times, I’m out of hope. A saying I learned as a professional airline pilot describing a crash site was, “The place where the pilots ran out of altitude, airspeed, and ideas all at the same time.” I’ve been close to that place more times than I can count. Can I realistically shed this Goliath in my life?
Ready for Joy