Choose Your Attitude

by | Mar 30, 2011 | Spirit-Led Living

sad womanIF
WE WILL FOCUS ON GOD, HIS TRUTH WILL STRIP AWAY THE SPIRITUAL DYNAMICS
THAT CONTRIBUTE TO DEPRESSION AND BEGIN THE HEALING PROCESS

God
has a potent, supernatural prescription for depression—His Word!
Hebrews 4:12 says, “The word of God is living and powerful, and sharper
than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and
spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and
intents of the heart” (NKJV). The Word will not only diagnose our
condition, it will also prescribe a potent treatment program that drives
depression out of our lives and sets us free! God’s Word is the
ultimate antidepressant.

God’s
plan for dealing with depression is very different from the world’s
plan. The world wants us to reopen our wounds and recall every injustice
from the past. The Word tells us to focus on the Healer.

When depression tries to come upon you, determine to look at Jesus—not
at your distress. When you focus on God and His Word, the cause of your
depression becomes irrelevant. God’s answer is the same: “For though we
walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons
of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down
strongholds” (2 Cor. 10:3-4).

Depression
has many causes—in both the spiritual and the natural realms.
Spiritually speaking, generational curses in a bloodline can predispose
members of certain families to suffer from depression. In the physical
realm, medical treatments, chemical or hormonal imbalances, fatigue, and
just plain stress can be the culprits. Additionally, unresolved
emotional issues or abuse can bring overwhelming sadness, anger and the
inability to function normally.

The
bottom line is: Depression is a supernatural spirit of destruction
straight from the devil, and as such, needs to be treated like an enemy.
We must take a strong stand against it and refuse to give it any power
in our lives.

Depression
stems from an underlying root of unbelief—unbelief in God’s care,
goodness, faithfulness, presence in your life or ability to get you out
of seemingly “impossible” situations.

Unbelief
is more than simply harmful to you; it is sin. In Mark 16:14, Jesus
rebuked the disciples’ “unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did
not believe.” We cannot afford to make excuses or convince ourselves we
have a right to be depressed. Instead, we need to take the supernatural
prescription God has provided.

BIBLICAL EXAMPLES
The
saints of old had to do the same thing. The Bible indicates in 1 Kings
18 and 19 that Elijah was at the pinnacle of his “career” as God’s
prophet. Yet, at the end of chapter 19, he has plummeted from his
highest high to his lowest low, sinking into a deep, suicidal
depression.

Elijah began to
look at his circumstances and feel very sorry for himself. This opened
the door to destruction and caused him to cry out to God, “I’ve had
enough….Take away my life. I’ve got to die sometime, and it might as
well be now” (1 Kin. 19:4, The Living Bible).

Elijah
focused on the past and on the unfair treatment he had received from
Jezebel. He forgot about the amazing things God had done in his life and
now found himself hiding in a cave, alone and depressed.

I
love God’s response to Elijah: “Then He said, ‘Go out, and stand on the
mountain before the Lord.’ And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great
and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces
before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an
earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the
earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a
still small voice” (1 Kin. 19:11-12, NKJV).

God
came to Elijah and spoke in a still, small voice—the voice of the
Spirit. When depression comes to your door, don’t open it! Listen to
what God says to your spirit.

As
He did for Elijah, God will give you a truth that will take you through
despair. Freedom occurs as you listen to His quiet voice. “‘You shall
know the truth, and the truth shall make you free'” (John 8:32). When
you find yourself physically and emotionally exhausted, His gentle
Spirit will remind you of His faithfulness—past, present and future.

King
David struggled with depression throughout his life. Sometimes it was
self-induced, brought on by his own sin. On one such occasion, he said,
“For my life is spent with grief, and my years with sighing; my strength
fails because of my iniquity” (Ps. 31:10).

At other times David’s despair was the result of his enemies’ treatment of him. This was the case in 1 Samuel 30.

Before
David became king of Israel, he and his 600 men were on the run from
both King Saul and the Amalekites. They took up residency at a place
called Ziklag (which means “overwhelming despair”).

Once,
after David and his men had been away, they returned to discover that
the Amalekites had attacked the city, set fire to it, and taken their
wives and children captive. “Now David was greatly distressed, for the
people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was
grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David
strengthened himself in the Lord his God” (1 Sam. 30:6).

This
was one of the worst days of David’s life. All seemed lost. There was
no one around who could help him or lift him up out of the horrible pit
he was in.

That’s what
depression does. It isolates us from others and steals our joy. David
cried out, “I am desolate and afflicted. The troubles of my heart have
enlarged; bring me out of my distresses!” (Ps. 25:16-17) Yet, in the
midst of his despair, David took God’s prescription for his depressed
state and “encouraged himself.”

How
did he do this? Listen to Psalm 25:5-6: “On You I wait all the day.
Remember, O Lord, Your tender mercies and Your lovingkindnesses, for
they are from of old.”

As
David spoke of God’s faithfulness to him, he was literally speaking his
deliverance from the depression and oppression threatening to destroy
him. In Psalm 32:3 he wrote, “When I kept silent, my bones grew old.”
David knew the importance of speaking the Word in order to walk in
victory.

How can you
“strengthen yourself in the Lord” when depressing thoughts and
circumstances rise against you? Read the Word and say what it says.
Refuse to speak negatively. Instead, agree with the Word.

What
does the Word say about you? That you are more than a conqueror…that
you can do all things through Christ…that you always triumph through
Christ…that all things will work together for your good…and so much
more! (See Rom. 8:37; Phil. 4:13; 1 Cor. 15:57; Rom. 8:28). Revelation
12:11 confirms that we overcome “by the blood of the Lamb and by the
word of [our] testimony.”

It
was the Word of God that spoke to David’s heart! It was the spiritual
“secret weapon” that set him free from the overwhelming circumstances of
Ziklag. If you read the rest of 1 Samuel 30, you’ll see that David
gained a mighty victory—he rescued his wives and children, and
recovered all the spoil that had been taken!

Jeremiah
is another Old Testament prophet who dealt with depressing thoughts and
situations. For 37 years, he preached to the unrepentant Israelites.
They had turned away from God to worshiping idols, and Jeremiah was
called to confront them. His heart was broken for Israel’s sins and the
judgment of God that was coming upon the people (see Jer. 8:21-9:1).

Yet
Jeremiah used the supernatural weapon of the Word to resist depression:
“Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your word was to me the joy
and rejoicing of my heart” (Jer. 15:16). He was set free from the
depression and filled with joy.

How
did Jeremiah get his joy? He ate God’s Word! When we are attacked by
depression, we need to take our “faith pills.” We need to “eat” God’s
Word—to read it, meditate on it and speak it.

If
circumstances pile up, simply “eat” more Word. Unlike a traditional
prescription, there are no adverse side effects from the Word and you
can take it as often as needed!

The
truth will not only set you free from depression, despair and
hopelessness; it will give you joy in their place. Jesus said, “‘These
things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that
your joy may be full'” (John 15:11). He promises us a double portion of
joy—His and ours!

What is
the source of your joy? Circumstances? Money? Health? Your spouse? Your
job? No, the Word is to be the source of our joy, and God’s supernatural
double-portion joy will defeat depression every time!

YOUR WORD PRESCRIPTION
Depression
is of a supernatural origin. Therefore it’s going to take the
supernatural—a greater truth and stronger anointing—to gain the
victory and keep depression out of your life. Here are some important
steps to take.

Repent.
If you’ve allowed unbelief into your heart, causing you to become
depressed, the first thing you must do is repent. Accept God’s
forgiveness and ask Him to give you faith in place of your unbelief.
Then you can claim with the psalmist: “I acknowledged my sin to You, and
my iniquity I have not hidden. I said, ‘I will confess my
transgressions to the Lord,’ and You forgave the iniquity of my sin”
(Ps. 32:5).

Speak your deliverance by speaking God’s Word.
You must refuse to speak the negative, doubt-filled lies the enemy
tries to get you to agree with, and instead agree with God’s Word—out
loud.

Accept the Word above your circumstances.
As you look to Jesus and the Word, not your troubles and trials, you’ll
find the victory you need. The Bible tells us He is our Deliverer. As
the psalmist declared: “He sent from above, He took me; He drew me out
of many waters. He delivered me from my strong enemy, from those who
hated me, for they were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day
of my calamity, but the Lord was my support” (Ps. 18:16-18).

Make a choice to rejoice.
As you “eat” the Word, God will replace your depression and despair
with peace and joy. Make Psalm 103:2 your daily confession: “I will
bless the Lord and not forget the glorious things He does for me” (The
Living Bible).

A FINAL PRESCRIPTION
Have you ever noticed that depression and anxiety often come at night?
God in His mercy has given us a nighttime prescription in Psalm 4:4,7-8:
“Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still….I will both
lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in
safety” (NKJV). You can go to bed and have sweet dreams; you can lay
your head down and not be depressed.

What
about when you wake up? Have you ever faced discouragement in the
morning? God has written a prescription for that too! Psalm 5 is your
morning dose of the Word: “Give heed to the voice of my cry, my King and
my God, for to You I will pray. My voice You shall hear in the morning,
O Lord; in the morning I will direct it to You, and I will look up”
(Ps. 5:2-3).

Morning, noon
and night, you can take your supernatural antidepressant. As you focus
on God’s Word, listen to the Spirit’s voice and allow Jesus to give you a
double portion of joy, you can walk in victory over every spirit of
depression that tries to disable you or sidetrack your life! God’s
prescription for joy will keep you depression-free!

Marilyn Hickey
is founder and president of Marilyn Hickey Ministries in Denver. She is
an anointed teacher and author whose ministry reaches the world through
television, books and crusades.

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