If you have faith in God, depression can be similar to a perceived betrayal by Him. After all, you have trusted Him to care for you, yet you are still depressed. You may have heard from your childhood that, as a Christian, you were to experience and exhibit joy, peace, patience—all the fruits of the Spirit spoken of in Galatians 5:22-23. This sense of betrayal may haunt your sleepless nights and invade your despairing thoughts. Feeling forgotten by God, you may even be angry at Him.
This anger at God can contribute to your depression by provoking feelings of guilt. You don’t think you should be angry at God, or you don’t think you have the right to be angry at God. Also, you may get angry when you pray and He doesn’t fix it. The more you pray, the more you are convinced that He could fix it, and you don’t understand why He won’t. You doubt His love. But you’ve also memorized John 3:16, which begins, “for God so loved the world…” so you’ve been told He does love you. Looking at all of this, you conclude He’s got a lousy way of showing His love, at least to you.
Or you may think, Perhaps I don’t deserve His love. Maybe He doesn’t change my situation because I don’t deserve joy and peace in my life. Possibly the things I’ve done are so bad that He wants to love me but can’t because of who I am. And if God can’t love me, then I’m not really worthy to be loved by anyone. And if my life is to be empty of love, hope is impossible. If you look at it this way, depression is completely understandable. Or is it?
Have you picked up on this stream of thought in this line of reasoning? It takes snippets of truth—God loves you, and Christians are to live lives of joy—and twists those around into something meant to injure you and not give you comfort. This line of reasoning is not from God; it is from the Deceiver. Rage is a deceiver. False guilt is a deceiver. Abject despair is a deceiver. Depression is a deceiver. That is why, when you are in the midst of depression, you must replace your own negative self-talk with God-talk, which is based upon truth. This God-talk will support your positive self-talk by agreeing with affirming statements such as these:
- I deserve love.
- I deserve joy.
- I am strong enough to learn and grow each day.
- I can experience contentment in my life.
- I am able to respond to my circumstance, instead of react.
- I can look forward to tomorrow.
How do you fill your life and your mind with God-talk? The Bible is full of life-affirming messages. It is, at its heart, a love story. It is a story of a loving God, who created you to love you and to be loved by you. Like every great love story, there is a separation, which must be overcome by terrible sacrifice.
Through God’s sacrifice of his Son, Jesus, you are able to confidently say, “I can live happily ever after.” Through God’s most precious act of love, you can find healing, strength, and hope to recover from your darkest days of depression, overcome the deceivers, and live out a life of joy in God’s endless grace.
If you are struggling with a dark cloud of depression and feeling betrayed by God, our team at The Center • A Place of HOPE cares, and we can help. In addition to physical, mental, and emotional treatment of depression, The Center • A Place of HOPE offers Christian support to address the spiritual components and struggles in a person’s life. If you are ready to regain true joy and happiness in God, fill out this form or call 1-888-747-5592 to speak with a depression recovery specialist today.