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How do I deal with depression?

Elijah was afraid and ran for his life. When he came to Beersheba in Judah, he left his servant there, while he himself went a day’s journey into the desert. He came to a broom tree, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, LORD,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.” Then he lay down under the tree and fell asleep.
All at once an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.” He looked around, and there by his head was a cake of bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again. 1 Kings 19:3-6

Depression has many causes, some physical, some emotional, some spiritual. That means that its root problem could be anything from chemical imbalance, hopelessness or demonic attack. We can’t lump all depression into one category.

Depression could be a response to horrific events in one’s life - a death, a job loss, a financial setback. In that sense it’s a type of mourning. Our body reacts in shock, trying to wrap our minds around the change and wondering what’s going to happen next. That’s natural, but it cannot go on too long. If that’s the case, the root cause could be a lack of faith, believing life will never get better.

Depression gets more serious, as in the case of Elijah, when it focuses too heavily on the present situation and finds no hope in future events.

So it’s hard to pinpoint a person’s depression. In the story of Elijah, he was a great prophet of God who, upon learning that Queen Jezebel wanted him dead, ran for his life. Circumstances caused him to crash (emotional) so he took a nap and got something to eat (physical), then an angel touched him (spiritual). Sometimes all we need is a nap and a healthy dinner. Sometimes we need God’s healing hand.

Whatever a person’s depression, God can get you through your hard times by giving you the emotional, physical and spiritual tools you need to cope.