BY PASTOR DORAL PULLEY
“I will give you beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness (Isaiah 61:3).”
Depression is a feeling of sadness, helplessness and hopelessness. We all can recall times in our lives when we have had the symptoms of depression. Some common signs of depression are extreme increases or decreases in appetite, weight or sleep. Other indicators include but are not limited to loss of interest in pleasurable activities, lack of energy and thoughts of suicide.
Normal depression can last a day or two. We often call it Blue Monday or Hump Day Wednesday when we are just not feeling like ourselves. Have you ever had a week where you felt it just hasn’t been a good week? Sure, you have. The symptoms of depression can even persist for a week. If the signs of depression persist for two consecutive weeks, then it is time to ask for help from a minister, counselor, therapist or social worker. If you have a friend, neighbor, family member, co-worker or classmate who has exhibited the indicators of depression for a couple of weeks, encourage them to seek assistance from a mental health professional.
It is God’s desire that we live a happy, healthy and prosperous life. Joy is one of the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). God desires for us to manifest the joy that is within us. “For the joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).” When we realize that we are blessed, we know that we don’t have to live in a state of depression. We can come out of it ourselves (less than 14 days) or we can come out of it with the help of others (14 days or more).
When we affirm the words, “I AM blessed,” we are empowered to release any sadness, helplessness and hopelessness. If the feelings of depression arise, affirm: I AM too blessed to live depress!