I must say, if you allow events in your life get to you, you could be in trouble with your emotions. You could get into the secular mode that is called depression. But since I don't believe in depression for more than ten minutes as a biblical response to events in our lives, I try to respond in a manner that will allow me to react better than what my emotions are telling me.
MY PERSONAL TRAINING IN COUSELING:
Since I have my counseling training in several schools of thinking. One in the Liberity University of Life Long where I worked on my master's in counseling. Second, Institute For Nouthetic Studies training for a number of years, while in Kansas as Pastor/Teacher for 17 years. Thirdly, the Master's College where the training emphasizes the proper interpretation and specific application of Scripture in ministering to people. And, a number of other, Charity loves Dr. Bill and Anabel Gillham counseling. And I have a number of other resources on the subject of counseling both in the secular and in the Christian community.
"It is true that NANC (which stands for the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors) once had their office at Faith Baptist Church, Ind, , it is also true that Bill Goode (former Senior Pastor at Faith Baptist Church – now with the Lord) served as a president of NANC. However, FBCM and NANC have always been separate organizations. Technically speaking, NANC is a certifying organization that does counseling training where FBCM is a counseling and counseling training center which is part of the overall ministry of Faith Baptist Church. "I have taken these courses a number of years as well while in Kansas.
MY TOPIC HERE IN THIS POST IS DEPRESSION:
- Depression is the buzzword for our time and culture. Every other commercial seems to be an advertisement either from a mental health institution or a drug company offering a sure cure for people who find themselves depressed. If you have ever been depressed, you know that it is a terrible state in which to exist. It is as if you are carrying around a 300-pound pack on your back, being forced to walk uphill, while having a terrible case of the flu. So those who are depressed will pursue any possibility for a cure. But before a cure for depression can be found, we must be sure we have a proper understanding of this terrible condition.
- Almost anything can be at the root of the counselee’s depression: a recent illness in which he gets behind in his work, hormonal changes, a reversal of his fortunes, the consequences of simple negligence, guilt over a particular sin, self-pity arising from jealousy or a disadvantageous turn of events, bad feeling resulting from resentment, worry, etc. The important fact to remember is that depression does not result directly from any one of these factors, but rather comes from a cyclical process in which the initial problem is mishandled in such a way that it is enlarged in downward helixical spirals that eventually plunge one into despair.
- The downward cycle of sin moves from a problem to a faulty, sinful response, thereby causing an additional complicating problem which is met by an additional sinful response, etc.
What is depression?
According to the DSM-IV, a manual used to diagnose mental disorders, depression occurs when you have at least five of the following nine symptoms at the same time:
- a depressed mood during most of the day, particularly in the morning
- fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
- feelings of worthlessness or guilt almost every day
- impaired concentration, indecisiveness
- insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping) almost every day
- markedly diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities nearly every day
- recurring thoughts of death or suicide (not just fearing death)
- a sense of restlessness -- known as psychomotor agitation -- or being slowed down -- retardation
- significant weight loss or gain (a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month)
Depression Types (for the secular point of view)
- According to the National Institute of Mental Health, major depressive disorder is characterized by a combination of symptoms that interfere with a person's ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy once-pleasurable activities.
- There are times you may feel sad, lonely, or hopeless for a few days. But major depression -- clinical depression -- is disabling. It can prevent you from functioning normally. An episode of clinical depression may occur only once in a person's lifetime. More often, though, it recurs throughout a person's life.
- In addition, with major depression, one of the symptoms must be either depressed mood or loss of interest. The symptoms should be present daily or for most of the day or nearly daily for at least two weeks. Also, the depressive symptoms must cause clinically significant distress or impairment in functioning. The symptoms cannot be due to the direct effects of a substance -- drug abuse, medications -- or a medical condition, such as hypothyroidism, nor occur within two months of the loss of a loved one.
And what happens, how the culture and the medical field define depression, we as Christians pick up the same definitions, and symptoms. And as a Christian believer we all could say we have some form of depressive symptoms daily.
Of course most people know the symptoms:
- Most of us know about the emotional symptoms of depression. But you may not know that depression can cause physical symptoms, too.
- In fact, many people with depression feel pain or other physical symptoms. These include:
- Headaches. These are fairly common in people with depression. If you already had migraine headaches, they may become worse if you're depressed.
- Back pain. If you already suffer with back pain, it may get worse if you become depressed.
- Muscle aches and joint pain. Depression can make any kind of chronic pain worse.
- Chest pain. Obviously, it's very important to get chest pain checked out by an expert right away.
- It can be a sign of serious heart problems. But chest pain is also associated with depression.
- Digestive problems. You might feel queasy or nauseous. You might have diarrhea or become chronically constipated.
- Exhaustion and fatigue. No matter how much you sleep, you may still feel tired or worn out.
- Getting out of the bed in the morning may seem very hard, even impossible.
- Sleeping problems. Many people with depression can't sleep well anymore. They wake up too early or can't fall asleep when they go to bed. Others sleep much more than normal.
- Change in appetite or weight. Some people with depression lose their appetite and lose weight. Others find they crave certain foods -- like carbohydrates -- and weigh more.
- Dizziness or lightheadedness.
I guess all of us have had some of these physical symptoms at one time or another.
So it seems we all at times want to get depressed when we have these physical symptoms. Well maybe we don't want to get depressed, but we do.
DEFINE DEPRESSION: Biblically. While I do not see the term depression in Scripture, there are other terms that might describe the word.
- Overcome by fear
SO IT'S TRUE WE ALL AT TIMES STRUGGLE WITH THESE SYMPTOMS.
So the issue is how do we control our emotions, our fears, our worry, or anxiety?
- Life is hard and full of drama and we respond in various and troubling ways. People have problems and tend to react problematically, struggling with big and small issues alike: everything from annoying habits that are hard to kick to full blown addictive behavior, from little conflicts in relationships to complete communication break down, from anxious thoughts and mild anxiety to severe panic attacks and the deepest, darkest depression. Human beings often live lives of quiet desperation, wearing masks, fearing what others think, feeling like hypocrites, longing to be different, but having no real hope for authentic and lasting change.
- I will address in another post. Which will deal with:
- Biblical counseling is built on the simple truth that God has spoken to us in his Word, and revealed everything we need to know about him, ourselves, and how to live in his world. The Lord, who made us, sees, evaluates and speaks to every aspect of human life and understands the deepest complexities and struggles of the human heart. Scripture speaks to the heart, where we trust and love either the true God or some other God-replacement in our lives such as pleasure, control, peace or prosperity. The Bible is not an encyclopedia or a how-to book of techniques for change, but rather a grand story of redemption that ultimately points to a relationship with the person of Jesus Christ. It is in relationship with this Jesus –through his life, death, resurrection and rule that people become different and experience true and lasting change in the midst of their various human struggles.
We will review some Biblical ways of handling these emotions and struggles