Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Overcoming Depression’s Destructive Self-Talk

RECALLING times past, times when my mental health resembled a tiny craft on the choppy high seas, brought memories flooding back of the state of my thinking and how perilous it was.
Easily I would think of myself as useless and worthless, despite the fact I coveted my faith in Christ dearly.
On one such day I remember reaching out to my wife; I didn’t want to be alone. I needed her companionship that moment; someone to talk to.
I explained where I was at. I’d just done a simple repair job around the home and it almost went horribly wrong, and I had been berating myself. “Sometimes I just feel absolutely useless and worthless,” I said. Sarah simply looked into my eyes and said something like, “You’re a child of God… it won’t always be this hard… sure, there will be more times like this, but it won’t always be like this.”
Those words brought me immense comfort.
To know that life won’t always be the way it is right now.
I quickly found that I replaced my tremulous self-doubt with this new knowledge and I was able to move on into the rest of my day. God’s Word also does this. If we open our Bibles up when we feel compromised mentally, God’s Spirit warms our hearts with a fresh dose of courage. We are in-couraged (encouraged).
The fact is it’s only the enemy of God who wants us feeding on a negative self-concept only the devil would have us believe.
We need to hear God’s voice through his Word. We need to hear the Word speak and the Spirit breathe hope into us.
It certainly doesn’t hurt to get past our anger and sit in the sadness of our depression for a time. Indeed, the truth in our depressed thoughts can often carry us through to acceptance — if we were to adhere to the grief recovery model.
Overcoming depression’s destructive self-talk is necessary in growing through the hardship of pain. Finding hope enough to live a good day is all we need.
The last thing we’d want to do is pretend it was easy. It’s never easy. But it’s possible and achievable and worthwhile doing.
Being realistic is important, just as bringing our thoughts captive is. When we become aware of the destructiveness of a thought we analyse it for its truth, through the eyes of someone who loves us.
***
You will get through this. It won’t always be this hard. But as hard as it is right now, keep looking up in hope, and know God loves you.

© 2015 Steve Wickham.

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