From the title it is clearly understood that the article is about depression. You must
have read many articles on depression and know a lot about it but we will look at
depression today in a very different way. Depression is something that is growing
rapidly in this modern age of science and technology. According to the World health
organization in France, the Netherlands and America, more than 30 per cent of people
have suffered a major depressive episode, compared with 12 percent in China. I think
you must be surprised to read that India has recorded the highest rate of major
depression in the world at 36 percent! The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB)
statistics reveal that a total of 1,35,445 people committed suicide in 2012 which
amounts to an average of 15 suicides an hour or 371 suicides daily. Maharashtra
ranked second on the suicide index with Tamil Nadu topping it. Aasra, a 24×7 suicide
helpline based out of Mumbai receives about 50 calls daily from people who, almost
at the verge of suicide and are seeking out help. Firstly, let us deal with the question what is depression? According to Google,
depression is “feelings of severe despondency and dejection”. Depression is not just
feeling low or sad, it is feeling hopeless and sometimes even worthless which leads to
the thought of committing suicide. Now let us come to the question that what causes
depression? Nobody is sure what causes depression. Experts say depression is caused
by a combination of factors, such as the person’s genes, their biochemical
environment, personal experience and psychological factors. Answer to this question
is very simple. It is not the combination of various factors but it is because of just one
factor that “We have forgotten the fact that God cares for us.” If you have ever felt
depressed in your life, it is because at that moment you forgot that God cares for you.
This happens to many people even though they are in very close relationship with
God or are called as the man of God. Let us look at Elijah’s life. If you read from 1
kings 18 verse 16 onward, the story there is that Elijah had challenged the prophets of
baal on mount Carmel to bring the fire from heaven and burn the sacrifice. They were
not able to do it but Elijah prayed to God and God did a wonderful miracle by
bringing the fire from the heaven. Queen Jezebel then had vowed to kill Elijah and he
ran for his life and came and sat under a broom bush. At that moment, he prayed to
God that “ I have had enough Lord, Take my life; i am no better than my ancestors.” From this prayer we can clearly see that Elijah was depressed and wanted to die. Even
though just few verses before we see that God had brought fire from heaven
answering Elijah’s prayer, he forgot the fact that God cares for him.
Let us now see how God replies to Elijah. In v 11 we see that in reply to Elijah’s
prayer, God makes His presence known to him. This is so wonderful to read. Elijah
was depressed and wanted to die and in reply to his prayer, God makes His presence
known to him. Whenever you feel depressed, always remember that the presence of
God is with you. Ephesians 1:13 says that “ When you believed, you were marked in
Him with a seal, the promised Holy spirit.” We are sealed by God with His Holy spirit
and hence we always have the presence of God with us in the form of His spirit.
Whenever you are in trouble, whenever you are in the times of persecution, trails and
temptations, always remember that the presence of God with us. Your boss is
troubling you, remember God cares for you and His presence is with you. You have
no money to pay for the fees of your child, remember God cares for you and His
presence is with you. 1 peter 5:7 says that “ Cast all your anxiety on Him because He
cares for you.” It is so wonderful to know that the God of heavens and the earth, God
who is way beyond our imagination, full of Glory and power, He cares for us. Psalms
27:1 says “ The Lord is my light and salvation- whom shall i fear? The Lord is the
stronghold of my life- of whom shall i be afraid?”. When the Lord is for us, who can be against us?
We have our hope and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ our savior. Psalms 31:24 says
that “ Be strong and take heart, all you hope in the Lord.” Again the psalmist says in
psalms 42:5 “ Why my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put
your hope in God, for i will yet praise Him, my savior and my God.” When you feel
depressed over your situations, ask yourself this question, ask yourself why are you
depressed when your hope is in your savior your God. Don’t you think that the God
who sent His only begotten Son to die for our sins, who took our punishment, felt the
wrath that we should have felt, saved us from the ultimate problem of our life and
imparted to us eternal life is capable of taking us out of the situation we are in?
Whenever you are passing through the valley of shadow of death always remember
that God is teaching you something and when you are out of that situation, you will be
a blessing to others because you will be able to pray for them, empathize with them
and be an example for them. I will end by summarizing the points i have made.
(1) God cares for you.
(2) God’s presence is always with you.
(3) Cast all your anxiety on God.
(4) Put your hope and trust in God.
If you are depressed right now just pray to God that- God i know you care for me, i
know you are always with me, i cast my anxieties upon you O Lord, i have my hope
and trust in you, deliver me out of this situation. Amen.