If you are depressed (or struggle with depression) you have got to know about this book I just read!
You don’t have to be depressed!
Author and Christian counselor, Dr. Tim LaHaye, details how in this text that is going to be a part of today’s book review.
Having experienced a variety of losses in the past several months, I recently found myself really fighting hopelessness and despair. I felt depressed. It was a terrible feeling and I couldn’t quite figure how to gain greater victory over it.
Then, a friend loaned me some life-giving books, and one book I noticed she had on hand was entitled How to Win Over Depression.
Having been keenly aware of my losses, and trying to figure out how to appropriately address the resulting frustration in my own life, I thought it might be worth a read, and asked if I could borrow it. Permission was granted me, and I soon launched into the read.
Oh my…what a worthy read this was! I’d like myself a copy! (And I don’t typically like any extra “stuff.”) But this is a keeper. And if you struggle with depression, if you find yourself doing so in the future, or if you have a friend who might benefit from the truth therein, I highly recommend it!
Dealing with Depression
So what are the keys in successfully overcoming depression?
Some of the keys he references are the very same keys I found were involved in my overcoming fibromyalgia.
Confession of your sin to God is a key element. Dr. LaHaye talks about the sin of anger (but I’d say it’s more like what anger can turn into – the sin that results from anger, which could be resentment or bitterness) and the sin of self-pity.
Until and unless you recognize where you’ve fallen short, you’re going to keep chasing symptoms instead of resolving root causes when it comes to depression.
Now, you might feel a little afraid to be that honest about your sin. But here’s the thing – God is a God of love and forgiveness! And if you come to Him through faith in Jesus Christ (who paid for your sin by His death on the cross), then you can receive that love and forgiveness for yourself! So, see, there is no need to be afraid to come to God to tell Him where you failed. He is slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness, quick to forgive you.
Facing Fear & Falsities
So, for me, I had to realize that I was afraid God was going to leave me and I was essentially rejecting Him amidst the loss (“rejection”) I’d experienced from other people! But other people are not God!
I was running away from God, avoiding Him out of fear – the fear that He wasn’t with me, that He would reject me.
But that was a lie.
And that’s the other thing Dr. LaHaye addresses in his book – you have to address and repent of the ungodly beliefs that are driving your depression. If you believe “nobody loves me, everybody hates me” then guess what? You start to create that kind of reality around yourself. And people won’t want to be around you.
Unless and until you realize your acceptance in Christ, if you are depressed, you’ll likely have a tendency to isolate and withdraw from the very relationships you need and crave. Your own self-rejection can end up assisting in separating you from others.
But the good news is…THERE IS HOPE!!!
And I, already knowing Jesus Christ, but having gotten a little offtrack with the spirit of depression that was wooing me away from Christ, have found hope return anew! Glory to God!
God is our hope – and can bring to us what we cannot generate ourselves.
I’m really not kidding.
And it’s not about circumstances.
Tim talks about that in his book too.
And I found a similar thing in my own experience finding victory over fibromyalgia. I had to get right in my heart with God – not just being saved but confessing sin, rejecting ungodly beliefs, receiving the truth based on God’s Word and choosing to believe it (even despite my feelings). And over time, that kind of renewing of the mind can work wonders.
That kind of renewing of your mind in the truth based on God’s Word can change your perception about yourself and your life.
Your perspective changes.
And you change.
And then sometimes, you might find circumstances change.
They may get worse. That’s happened to me after a real breakthrough where God changed my perspective to more closely align with His instead of being in a pity party about difficulty I was facing.
Or your circumstances may get better. That’s also happened to me, even where my body was able to start to heal itself from fibromyalgia / health issues. It was like my body was able to heal after my soul and mind had received greater healing. Outward changes followed inner change.
Once you have a mind renewed in the truth, however, you can have JOY, PEACE, and HOPE that is unrelated to circumstances.
As Tim LaHaye explains, “It is safe to say that everyone becomes depressed at some point in his or her life.” (p. 4)
Isn’t that nice to know that you aren’t the only one who’s dealt with this?!?
But as Tim also says, “I am convinced that by using the formula in this book, you can avoid ever being depressed again!” (See back of book cover.)
That means, even though we may all be prone to it, none of us have to accept it!!
Oh, and one more key to not being depressed…you’ve gotta give gratitude.
Becoming a person of thanksgiving helps keep depression at bay.
Think about it: how can someone who is thankful be depressed?
If you want to read his step-by-step approach to ridding yourself of depression and see other stories that might be of help, get a copy of this book!
And whether you get a copy of this book or not, why not become a person of abundant gratitude?
You might just find it keeps that anger, self-pity, and potentially resulting depression away!