Welcome to part 2 of my mini blog series: Overcoming Depression. Last week I shared with you my personal story on struggling with depression. If you haven't read it yet, feel free to jump over here and read it.
So today I want to talk more in depth on how I personally overcame depression and how I am free from those chains. Part 2 is titled "Renewing Your Mind". Now to do this, it isn't a one-time decision and you automatically are free and have a new mind set. Instead, it's a daily decision that you have to choose to make-- in your life you have choices. You may not always get to choose what happens in your life, for instance tragedies, getting laid off your job or becoming ill, but you do have the choice on your outlook on those circumstances and life in general. Renewing your mind involves making daily decisions to think positive and hope-filled thoughts towards everything in life. How do you get to deciding that you even want to think positively when it's hard enough to get out of bed every morning and even have the drive to live?
Proverbs 12:25 says, "Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, But a good word makes it glad" (NKJV).
It took me time, to daily make those changes to "punch back" with a positive thought and good words right after thinking a negative thought. The more positive thoughts I thought, the more it became natural to me. Don't get me wrong, I'm still human and have feelings and thoughts that I sometimes don't want to have, but this is where I pray and seek God for help. With His help, I'm able to overcome any negative thoughts that go through my head, no matter how big my problem(s) seem to be.
Philippians 4:13 says, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (NKJV).
This brings me to sharing with you that once I made the choice to give all of myself to Christ, was the only way I was going to experience true joy. How can I say that when I have a wonderful husband, 2 beautiful kids and a comfortable life, don't they give me joy? Of course they do, but without Christ and having a real relationship with Him, there will always be "something" missing and that's Him. God is our creator and created us to have a relationship with us all. Jesus is His son who not only gave His life for us (rose again and is alive forever), but He desires us to know Him in the fullest way. I believe true and pure joy comes from Him-- once you understand what He did for you, you'll realize there is no greater love you'll ever find on this earth or anywhere. This is the biggest component of overcoming depression. He will walk beside you through life and carry you when you need to be carried, freeing you from all pain, sadness, fears, addictions, etc. if you just give it all to Him. He wants you to give it all to Him by the way.
1 Peter 5:7 says, "casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you" (NKJV).
We're not strong enough to carry everything on ourselves, but Jesus is our savior, deliverer and hero, and He will wipe that away from you if you just tell Him to take it and make the daily decision to keep pressing forward.
Psalm 18:2 says, "The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold (NKJV).
Praying daily to God, waking up every morning and asking Him for strength and to think positive thoughts throughout the day to get through your day is very important. I also encourage you to read the Bible because it is His love letter to us. Look in the mirror while you're getting ready and tell yourself that you are loved by the King, and that you love yourself (even if you're thinking right now that you don't love yourself-- in a short amount of time I believe you'll feel differently). Tell yourself that you are blessed, you are strong-minded, you are valuable, you have a great purpose in this life and that you are beautiful. Remember, a good word makes your heart glad! You could even write little 3x5 note cards and tape them to your bathroom mirror, beside your bed, in your car, wherever.
Words have a lot of power. Stop thinking negative, hopeless and defeated thoughts and start thinking positive, good, hope-fillled thoughts. Give all your cares to God and give Him authority over your life so you can start overcoming depression and start living the life He created you for. You are valuable, you are blessed, you are strong-minded and you have great purpose in this life. Start living the life you were meant for!
This mini blog series will continue next week with Part 3. I hope you'll come back to read more!