That’s what Angie said to her friend Allie on the phone this morning.  She said that she was getting to the end of her rope and didn’t know what to do about all of the problems she was facing with her family and job!  Do you ever feel totally overwhelmed with life and your past or current dilemmas?

Depression is a widespread condition, affecting millions of people, Christians and non-Christians alike. Those suffering from depression can experience intense feelings of sadness, anger, bitterness hopelessness, fatigue, and a variety of other symptoms. They may begin to feel useless and even suicidal, losing interest in things and people that they once enjoyed. Depression is often triggered by life circumstances, such as a loss of job, death of a loved one, divorce, or psychological problems such as abuse or low self-esteem.

The Bible tells us to be filled with joy and praise (Philippians 4:4; Romans 15:11), so God apparently intends for us all to live joyful lives. This is not easy for someone suffering from situational depression, but it can be remedied if you are a Christian through God’s gifts of prayer, Bible study and application, Scripture memorization, support groups, fellowship among believers, confession, forgiveness, intentional gratitude, and counseling. Things like exercise, time outdoors, good sleep habits, and healthy nutrition are also very important in battling against feelings of depression.

Clinical depression is a physical condition that must be diagnosed by a physician. It may not be caused by unfortunate life circumstances, nor can the symptoms be alleviated by one’s own will. Contrary to what some in the Christian community believe, clinical depression is not always caused by sin. Depression can sometimes be caused by a physical disorder that needs to be treated with medication and/or counseling. Of course, God is able to cure any disease or disorder. However, in some cases, seeing a doctor for depression is no different than seeing a doctor for an injury.

There are some things that those who suffer from depression can do to alleviate their anxiety. They should make sure that they are staying in the Word, even when they do not feel like it. Emotions can sabotage our best efforts!  Need to talk?  E-mail rhobbs@dejazzd.com for more information.

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