It's my opinion that depression has been the silent killer of this generation. I've watched as it has taken the hearts and minds of my friends and family captive, and one by one it has started taking us out. It seems that depression has become so popular in the younger generation that it is even "trending." It has been my experience that this selfish disease of the brain has started to be romanticized on social media and even in the relationships of people around me. A generation that was once overflowing with passion, creativity, and purpose is now being suffocated and silenced by anxiety, fear, and depression.
I started feeling depressed when I was just ten years old. I had just started middle school, which is famously known as the puberty era, so I didn't really think much of it then because I was just growing up and it was normal for my emotions to be all over the place right? Wrong. The years go on and suddenly it's the summer before my senior year in high school and, not only am I still depressed, but that depression has intensified so much so that I'm contemplating taking my own life. By that point I had tried pretty much everything. I'd been to counselors, I tried sozo ministry, I tried medication, I tried just "getting over it" on my own, I tried creating an environment in my home that wasn't capable of enabling my depression and anxiety, but nothing worked. I was stuck. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying none of those things are viable options, because they most certainly are. I know lots of people that got help from most of those venues. The difference between me and them is this: I tried all of those things while also keeping the Lord at a distance. I woudn't allow Him to come in and heal me. Then one night I had a dream that changed everything.
In my dream I'm stuck in a really deep hole and I'm at the bottom screaming and crying at the top of my lungs. The desperation in my voice is echoing throughout the abyss, and I can see myself digging. I'm not digging at the sides, I'm digging at the bottom of the hole, making my hole even deeper. Then my dream pans out and I can see on the other side of this pit that there's a ladder that leads all the way up to the top. At the top of this ladder is Jesus, and he's weeping with his arms outstretched and I hear him cry out, "My daughter! I am here. Let me save you." But his cries are being drowned out by my screaming and digging. Then the dream is over. When I wake up I can hear God say, "why do you keep digging your hole deeper when all you need to do to get out of this pit is let me in?"
As soon as I allowed the Lord to heal me, it was like a switch had been flipped. Everything in my life completely changed. I was no longer depressed, I didn't have any anxiety, I didn't have any suicidal thoughts. Everything was different, and as my relationship with the Lord grew, my problems just got smaller. He is it. He is the answer. It truly is as simple as that. God isn't trying to make things hard for us. There's no test that you have to pass before you can have a relationship with Him. He just wants us to trust Him. He wants us to have a faith in Him that surpasses all the other obstacles around us. It's as simple as that. So when depression comes knocking, just lean on him. You can't lean on yourself, your friends, your family, or society and expect things to change if you are not willing to first, lean on Him. Receive His love and you will be set free. Be open to everything He wants to give you and your will overcome.
Our strive to achieve perfection and create a false identity through the world instead of through Christ has weakened our defense. These ventures will always leave us empty handed and has created holes in our armor. Depression slips in through those cracks and seeps into our mind, body, and spirit. We are left feeling hopeless and insecure and become a slave to this infirmity called depression, but I'm here to speak from experience and say that our mighty God wasn't playing around when He told us that through Him nothing is impossible. Just like He set the Israelites free thousands of years ago, He longs to free us from this bondage and lead us to the promise land where depression has no right to cripple us and where his freedom reigns for all eternity.
"The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?
2 When the wicked advance against me
to devour me,
it is my enemies and my foes
who will stumble and fall.
3 Though an army besiege me,
my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me,
even then I will be confident."