As promised, I am posting the entire message of Depression. Please use it any way you can, copy and paste and share with others. It has been a great help to multitudes of people as it has been to me.
(and we all get it at times).
One of the greatest downfalls of Christians and full time workers is the matter of depression.
Webster’s Dictionary says depression is: a failure of the spirit, low in spirit, melancholy or a lowering of vital powers.
Many say that the biggest reason for depression is money; others say that it is because of family problems.
What are the causes of depression, and how can we overcome not so much the depression itself, but the cause of it?
Here are some of what I believe to be reasons that people are constantly being depressed:
I. DISSAPOINTMENTS OR DISSALUSIAMENTS WITH OTHER PEOPLE OR IN EVERYDAY LIFE!
Here is a good rule: Don’t expect more of yourself than you are able to deliver. AND, don’t promise what you cannot deliver. On the other side of the coin sometimes we expect too much from others and are too lenient with ourselves. Our expectations of others are more than they are able to produce, and God uses man because of sincerity and willingness not so much ability.
We must remember: Failure is often the back door to success, because success only comes to those who have imperfections.
II. SEEMING FAILURES ON THE JOB OR FAMILY PROBLEMS!
We are working with imperfect people and as a result we suffer with disappointments and disillusionments, which lead to discouragements and depression
Don’t just try once and quit. Don’t let failure stop you, because you only fail if you quit. You may get knocked down but you need not be knocked out.
Always blame yourself and not others. “The Buck stops here.” Even if you fail, learn from it and don’t make the same mistake over and over.
God put you in a place where you can succeed.
By the way if you want to live for others, you cannot fail.
Note: preached to this point 9/21/03
III. UNFAIR COMPARISONS OF AND WITH OTHERS.
We compare ourselves with others, and… then we are too hard on ourselves.
Be the man, woman or young person God wants you to be. Don’t try not to be like someone else, be what God wants for you; and listen to me….if another person has what you need, don’t copy him, but learn from him.
Here is a good practical lesson: don’t always try to “measure up” to others expectations; just be what God wants for you.
Besides, there is really only one way to be successful: BE IN THE CENTER OF GOD’S WILL! In other words, be everything God wants you to be.
Someone said, “If you use God’s will as a measuring rod in your life then you cannot fail.”
You may be handicapped in some way, but God will give you the tools you need.
IV. REJECTION AND OR LONELINESS MAY CAUSE DISCOURAGEMENT OR DEPRESSION.
Respect and rejection often go together. Love and loneliness can be close buddies at times. The more you love the more you give and the less you get, right?
Here is a remedy: learn to love loneliness by being alone with God, and don’t let their lack of love bother you. You love anyway!
You must be alone with God sometimes. Your stand and belief will always offend people. The key: Don’t you be offended.
V. A FEELING OF BEING TRAPPED BECAUSE OF PRESSURE.
Going nowhere fast. Be led of God to start things, not because of pressure, pressure and more pressure. Be patient, and keep working at it.
VI. NOT ACCEPTING GOD’S FORGIVENESS CAN CAUSE DISCOURAGEMENT AND DEPRESSION.
We need to learn to put our sin under the blood and forget it. Weariness and exhaustion will surely follow if we do not forget about it and soon we become ineffective in our duties. That leads us to the fact that,
VII. GUILT OVER PAST SIN MAY CAUSE DEPRESSION.
Read Matthew 27:1-10 for text for Introduction on this: Judas confessed but not to Jesus. He felt guilt but went to the wrong place for confession – the Priests. As wicked as his sin was, he could have experienced forgiveness had he confessed his sin to Jesus. Preach on that for awhile!
Here is a good rule: If it is condemnation it is from the devil, and if it is conviction it is probably from God.
VIII. MONEY PROBLEMS IN HOME OR BUSINESS.
Think about Judas Iscariot, this was one of his problems: greed.
“Law of the medes and the Persians,” “If you don’t have it don’t buy it.” Build your future on common cents (get it? Cents).
In our ministry our goal ought always to build people not buildings.
Dr. Hyles said “Don’t use your people to build your work, but your work to build your people.”
Money problems in the home, business or church or a loss of purpose can cause the worst kind of depression, which leads us to,
IX. LOSS OF A VISION WILL CERTAINLY CAUSE DISCOURAGEMENT OR DEPRESSION.
Judges chapter 15 and 1 Kings 19:3-8.
A. Sampson is certainly a good example of defeat after a great victory. Preach it!
B. Elijah is another example of defeat after his great victory on Mt. Carmel. In
the next chapter we see him running from Jezebel.
When the excitement is over ask God to give you a fresh vision. Never do anything because of its excitement, but because it is right and needs to be done. If you have excitement as a bi-product, have it. Be motivated by the need rather than the excitement.
Major on the simple, obvious, needy and not on wishful thinking. Now, here is an important lesson:
X. THE DEVIL USES DEPRESSION ON GOOD CHRISTIANS.
Read Psalm 42-43 for this.
Chapters 42-49 were written by the sons of Korah, a Levite who rebelled against Moses. However, his sons and descendents did not join his wickedness, but they faithfully continued to serve God as musicians in the Temple for hundreds of years.
The important lesson in these chapters is that the Psalmist learned to focus on the goodness of God in times of depression. Rather than focus on his inability to help himself, he focused on the ability of God to help in times of trouble.
The lesson for each Christian reading or listening to this message is to focus not only on the goodness of God, but His ability, action and our attitude.
The higher you go the lower you fall and learn to enjoy working in the valleys…problems. The more success, the more valleys you will experience.
Depression can lead to bad attitudes or a yielding to and falling into sin.
The prescription for depression: Go to God, don’t complain to anybody, and get busy praying, helping others, and work a solution.
And always remember, 1 John 4:4, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”