Depression is growing and rampant in our generation. It is a mood disorder characterized by extreme sadness, poor concentration, loss of appetite, sleep problems, and hopelessness, that often results in a loss of meaning and enthusiasm for life. Anyone can experience depression, including Christians.
One of the most powerful men of God in the Old Testament was Elijah. God answered Elijah’s prayers for the rain to stop, for the dead to rise, and for fire to fall from heaven. Yet, he was not exempt from depression.
In 1 Kings Elijah obliterated 450 prophets of Baal. When Jezebel heard about this, she sent a life-threatening message to him. Elijah was afraid and fled. We read in 1 Kings 19, that Elijah goes into the wilderness, and under a broom tree prays, “I have had enough, LORD, take my life, for I am no better than my ancestors.”
Based on chapter 19 of 1 Kings, we see will 5 intentional decisions that can help defeat depression and enjoy a life that God intended.
First, decide to live a physically disciplined life.
After Elijah pleaded with God, “he lay and slept under a broom tree, suddenly an angel touched him and said to him, ‘Arise and eat.’” (1 Kings 19:5).
Three key ingredients to begin fighting depression are healthy eating, good sleeping patterns, and regular exercise. Depression affects people’s sleep and eating habits, so they find it difficult to get out of bed or to fall asleep and as a result, they lack the energy to cook healthy meals.
Before resorting to medication for support, create a discipline of making healthy choices in your food consumption, sleep intake, and physical activity. If you make it a constant discipline of being physically healthy, you will see and feel the effects on your body, mood, and emotions.
The Bible tells us that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. God designed and created your body; your body matters to God, so it should matter to you. When you take care of the temple of the Lord, you will experience the compensation of the Lord.
Choose to live a healthy lifestyle.
Father God, I come before You today acknowledging that there are many times when I feel hopeless, miserable, and distressed. I don't want to continue like this. As I start by taking care of my body, help me, and strengthen me. I pray this reading plan is a guide for me to live in Your purpose and in victory in Jesus’ name, amen.