I have been battling depression for a few months now. This battle has been a roller coaster of great proportions. It has made me question my mental health enough that I have sought professional help; again. I have literally gone from feeling great happiness and joy to dropping to an immense depression within days. I am not bipolar, my official diagnosis is episodic depression. It’s just when I am riding this roller coaster I know something is off. Sometimes, it’s within my environment. Other times, it’s a medication change that is needed. Yes, I have had some major events happen in the last few months–moving, troubles in the workplace, the death of my grandma–but none of these events; even taken together warrant the darkness in my mind at times. So, a medication change is being considered.
The issues with my depression have gone from feeling like an occasional skirmish to an occasional drawn out fight, to a battle–that has required strategic planning; a retreat for supplies, food, and rest and the re-entrance to a full onslaught war. Some days I feel like it’s a blitz-attack and I am just retreating into a walled-in compartment to survive the explosions around me. It’s becoming harder and harder to climb out after the bombings stop because I feel like the explosions are going to start again in a short time. But, so far, I have had the strength to climb out and face reality. I thank God, my family, my friends and my mentors for that.
Today I wasn’t able to make it to church because of an issue with the bus system I use, but I heard a sermon online from Elevation Church that I needed to hear. I recommend that when it gets posted here, you should listen to it. Okay, so Elevation Church is a little charismatic for me but, if you can get over that; the worship and sermon are worth it. First, the first worship song that was played was “Echo” (It hasn’t been recorded yet) but one of the lines was, “When my mind says, ‘I’m not good enough,’ You God are enough for me.” I Needed to hear that. Today the pastor who was speaking has three daughters one with medical issues, one with Cerebral Palsy and one with Cystic Fibrosis. He spoke about what it was like for him and his wife to receive the information about their daughters when they were first born and even now as they take care of them. Often times, when stories about taking care of people with disabilities are shared it is often with this weaving of “they are a burden, and they make life so difficult” and I hate hearing them. But this man, this father, this pastor, spoke with such honesty and love, not one ounce of “burden” could be heard.
The three points of his sermon were:
Face the facts but fight your feelings.
Face the facts but don’t forget God’s faithfulness
Don’t go by your own facts, go look at the face of Jesus.
I have to face the facts that I have made a lot of mistakes and wrong, sinful choices and that are why I am where I am. I have to face the fact that the world and society think I am worthless, that I have nothing of value to contribute and would prefer me gone, so I stop draining our economy. I have to face the fact that the people I work for think I am incompetent and not worth their resources. I have to face the fact, that yet again, some of my circumstances look bleak. I have to face the fact that I think I’m not doing anything of value. But, I also have to face the fact that some of these “facts” are based on irrational feeling. I have to also face the fact that what is real–my God controls. I also have to face the fact that my God is faithful, he always has been. I will keep my eyes focused on his face and always remind myself of his goodness. I will face the fact that he knit me together in my mother’s womb and prepared a purpose for me before any of my days ever came to be. Facing this I will trust I have a future worth living for.