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Summary: We can defeat discouragement in any situation and encourage ourselves in the Lord by turning immediately to God, seeking God’s counsel, and acting upon God’s Word.
Key Scripture (Matthew 11:28-30 NKJV):
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.
(Bible Reference: John 16:33)
There are 5 Major Causes & Cures of Depression:
#1) CHEMICAL AND BIOGENIC DEPRESSION
• If you have a chemical imbalance, treatment will almost always help you.
• As one therapist put it, “It brings you out of the pit, onto a level playing field where you can deal with life.”
#2) EMOTIONAL EXHAUSTION
• When we don’t ventilate our emotions in a healthy way and resolve them quickly, they turn inside and begin to consume emotional energy.
• We must learn to be sensitive to anything that is consuming us emotionally and learn to deal with it promptly.
#3) UNHEALTHY AND UNBIBLICAL THINKING
(Bible References: 2 Corinthians 10:3-5; Matthew 4:4)
• The thought processes that lead to serious depression and emotional problems are thoughts that:
◦ Omit God from the conclusion.
◦ Give no solution or hope.
◦ Disagree with Scripture.
• When we decide to believe in God and make Him our answer, clouds of darkness vanish and new avenues of hope will begin to shine before us.
#4) SPIRITUAL OPPRESSION
(Bible References: Isaiah 61:1-3; Psalm 149:6; Psalm 22:3; Psalm 100:4; Proverbs 18:21; Matthew 12:36-37)
• Praise is a critical discipline and foundation in our lives that keeps the devil from oppressing and deceiving us.
• Praise is also a powerful force that repels a spirit of heaviness from our presence and ushers us into the presence of God.
• In learning to overcome depression, we not only need to realize the devil’s desire to assault us with a “spirit of heaviness,” but we must also realize how important our confession—our words— is in defeating him.
#5) SERIOUS DISCOURAGEMENT
(Bible Reference: 1 Samuel 30:6-9)
• Discouragement is a decision before it is an emotion.
• According to the example of David, we defeat discouragement in any situation and encourage ourselves in the Lord by
1) turning immediately to God,
2) seeking the counsel of God, and
3) acting upon God’s Word.
(Bible Reference: Psalm 139:23-24)
• Are we truly turning immediately to God when discouragement comes?
• Are we truly honest with what is turned inwards over life’s circumstances?