Breaking the Chains: 9 Ways to Overcome Depression

A nagging at the heart. A heavy fog. A stabbing pain. Although spiritual depression comes in different forms, its effects are usually the same—lost zeal and sense of purpose, subdued energy, sadness, a weakened desire to do routine things, and even doubts about our usefulness to God and His plan.

Identify the Source

Whether I have sudden feelings of depression or they come on so gradually I don’t notice till I’m caught in a “fog,” I have to identify the cause of the depression. Sometimes it’s a prolonged, personal struggle. Sometimes it’s Satan trying to hinder me from living for God and serving Him. But as long as I don’t identify what’s going on, the fog, the nagging, the pain—it continues. 

 

 

depression, spiritual depression, healing, overcomers, Breaking the Chains, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

The Healing

The ache I’ve felt in my soul
The desire to be made whole
The longings that have gone unmet
The pain I want to forget

A Healer I’ve needed and prayed for
The Calmer of the stormy roar
My Hero in difficult battles
The Releaser of chains and shackles

 

 

Pain, anguish, depression, adversity, healing, The Healing, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Saying No to the Wolf

   I met my first wolf as a preteen visiting the city zoo in Paris, France. He was black, and I think he liked me. As I walked back and forth in front of his fenced habitat taking pictures of the wolves, he followed me. Head down. I got a kick out of this and started walking faster back and forth in front of him, hoping he would keep following me. He did. My mom called out for me to stop. I think she was wiser than I.

   Not too long after that, I encountered a different wolf. As a teenager, I began having tormenting, negative thoughts. After a while, my mom realized they were coming from a spiritual enemy. They hounded me until I understood they were based on lies and I could say no to them. It worked, and that wolf left.

   About fifteen years later, another wolf hounded me. In my late twenties, I experienced a spiritual battle that topped all of the others. 

 

 

spiritual battles, depression, Breaking the Chains series, Say No to the Wolf, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Breaking the Chains: One Way to Overcome Depression

The water was a brilliant blue and green. On my birthday this year, I visited my first New England beach. If you know me well, you know I love the beach. I even collect sand. Right now, my desk is littered with jars of sand, needing to find a permanent home. Every beach I remember visiting (I got started young) has made a home in my heart.

When my family discovered Nahant Beach outside Boston, I didn’t know I was going to discover the prettiest water that I remember seeing. The shallow water danced under the sun with a magical green tint, and as the shoal grew in depth, the water grew to a postcard-worthy blue. Gorgeous. It wasn’t until later that I realized I needed help seeing the brilliant colors of the water.

 

 

depression, hope, the right perspective, God’s perspective, Breaking the Chains: One Way to Overcome Depression

Out of the Darkness into the Light: A Way Out of Depression

by Jan Willis

“Put on the full armor of God so that you can fight against the devil’s evil tricks.
Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities
and the powers of this world’s darkness,
against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world.
That is why you need to put on God’s full armor.
Then on the day of evil you will be able to stand strong.
And when you have finished the whole fight, you will still be standing.”
Ephesians 6:11-13, NCV

Several components contributed to my spinning into the pit of depression. Physical, emotional, and spiritual weaknesses made me an easy target. Despair, defeat, and deception drowned me in hopelessness. Physically I unknowingly suffered from low thyroid, anemia, and exhaustion—all factors in mental health. Emotionally I experienced the trauma of being the target of work place abuse, having a daughter sexually assaulted, and watching cancer take the life of my mother. Spiritually I no longer met alone with God, reading His Word and talking to Him in prayer.

I believed every fiery deceptive missile the enemy shot at me. Satan bombed me with whispers of twisted or partial truth. He attacked through those around me by channeling his deception through them. Abusive supervisors and clients verbally crushed me. He twisted God’s words to convince me I was not perfect or good enough for Christ’s love. I believed my family would be better off without me. Bound by the enemy’s lies and stripped naked of all hope, I lay curled in a fetal position awaiting the death I believed I deserved.

depression, hope, healing, Out of the Darkness into the Light: A Way Out of Depression, Jan Willis, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies