Friday, April 26, 2013
Although people tend to think of depression as a mental, emotional, or spiritual issue, it is also a physical issue. It may not have a physical cause but it does affect the body. Many people who are depressed report physical symptoms such as headaches, stomach aches , and bowel irritations. The body also typically feels sluggish, lethargic and achy. An effective tool to help the body as well as provide mental and emotional recharge is physical exercise. Clearly physical workouts affect us emotionally. God designed us as whole beings. When your mind and heart are aching your body is affected as well. It is common for a depressed individual to feel an abundance of guilt and or shame. Guilt can be a helpful alarm system that signals when we have sinned against God and others. However if the guilt is true and appropriate, then it can be dealt with in a healthy way by confession and repentance and then moving on. Depressed individuals tend to hang on to guilt and more often than not make it about themselves rather than their behaviors, resulting in shame. If the guilt is false guilt as is often the case in depression, or if shame exists, then the individual needs to understand the grace and mercy of God. Depression triggers are different for everyone. Some of these include: work stress , burnout, family/relational conflict, poor eating/ binging habits, sleeping habits, alcohol and drug abuse, chronic medical conditions, post partum, feeling overwhelmed, and unresolved grief. Those who are depressed become overwhelmed easily and may need assistance with setting reasonable and realistic goals. Identifying time wasters and making lists to prioritize can greatly assist in small yet forward moving steps. Finally a depressed individual will find amazing relief in Gods word and prayer time. It is a relationship with the source of all peace, joy and faith that can bring the best out of us. Bring comfort to the hurting, forgiveness to the guilty and love to the forgotten. In Jesus anybody can find the cure for life's toughest problems. We must not walk away in difficult times, rather we must seek Him ever more with a desperate cry and He will heal us and comfort our souls.