Year after year I witness people graduating from all levels of education. As exciting as I am for them, I can't but remember my college graduation on May 11, 2002. A day starting with a feeling of achievement and accomplishment ended in tragedy and pain that changed the course of my life.
I can remember vividly waking up and eating breakfast with my family before graduation. Walking across the stage hearing my family and sorority members scream my name and chant our AKA call was exciting. My uncle, whom I hold dear to my heart since I could identify him as being a family member, could not make it but called me immediately afterwards to tell me "Congratulations and I'm coming to see you later today." To put it in perspective, my uncle Terrence started me on a path of achieving the highest grades since elementary. He held me accountable all the way through, so to hear him say congratulations was HUGE.
Like many graduates, your family plans a graduation party to celebrate. The phone call my aunt Lisa received that evening during the party changed the course of our family. "Come to the hospital, Terrence was involved in a motorcycle accident." To my aunt Lisa, it didn't seem like a big deal. Little did we know, it was. The following phone calls was "Come pick up Joshua and Brittany (Lisa and Terrence's children), Terrence didn't make it."
The overwhelming feeling begin to overtake my emotions. I carried the guilt that if he wasn't coming to see me, he would be alive today. I was so distraught from the viewing of the body, I couldn't make it to the funeral. DEPRESSION begin to creep in.... Since 2002, I being to allow events, people, guilt and circumstances add to the level of depression I felt. On the outside, I seemed, normal but on the inside, I hated to very person I saw in the mirror.
Depression is defined as a state of feeling sad; a serious medical condition in which a person feels very sad, hopeless, and unimportant and often is unable to live in a normal way.
The rate of depression is growing 20% a year.
30% of teens that have a history of depression, develops substance abuse issues.
80% of people depressed never receive treatment due to fear, shame, and embarrassment.
Proverbs 12:25 NKJV
“Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad.”
I believe depression is a spiritual warfare. The enemy continues to bombard your mind with negative thoughts to make you feel ugly, unworthy, fear, pain, angry. When you talk to people, because you don't want to feel embarrassed, you say "I'm Fine." You practice wearing a mask because you don't want to feel shame. You tell yourself, people in the church don't understand or think I'm faking. When in essence, these are the people you need to surround yourself with.
Depression continues to attempt to consume my mind. About a month ago, I finally told my husband that I had a dream that brought up what I had been trying to bury. I know the dream was God showing me that I needed to deal with this and allow my husband to help me. People wonder why I wake up wake early every morning to workout. I’m constantly having to fill my spirit with praise. To tell myself that I'm not alone. If the enemy can just get you to think about it and allow it to consume you, he will have you. The bible is so consistent in the New Testament about what you think about:
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:7-8
Depression is like quicksand, the more you move and fight by yourself, the more you sink. When you allow someone to reach for you then you will begin to be pulled out. The enemy doesn’t want you to communicate how you are feeling to anyone, he wants to isolate you, oh but God will hear your cry.
“I waited patiently and expectantly for the LORD; And He inclined to me and heard my cry. He brought me up out of a horrible pit [of tumult and of destruction], out of the miry clay, And He set my feet upon a rock, steadying my footsteps and establishing my path. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God; many will see and fear [with great reverence] and will trust confidently in the LORD.”
Creflo Dollar said “Change what you think and it will change how you feel.” In order to attack this spirit, I have to use the word as my weapon. Don’t let the enemy steal your life. Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” Deal with the way you think.
I have to do a constant renewing of the mind daily. Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to discern what is good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.”
“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.”
I CHOOSE LIFE…
Additional Scriptures to weaponize your mind:
1 Peter 5:6-7
2 Corinthians 1:3-4
I Peter 4:12-13