I have just finished the book Healing for Damaged Emotions by David A. Seamands. This post is about this book, and I am sharing some of its ideas here. I give this author full credit. He wrote about anger, guilt, depression, inferiority, and perfectionism. I think most of us can relate to one or more of those topics! There is no judgment or condemnation in this book for the Christian (or nonChristian) who is experiencing any of these, or who is still in denial about experiencing any of these. I mention this because all too often we are told that if we “really were” Christians or if we “weren’t doing something wrong,” we would not be having these problems.
The truth is, we all have junk in our past that we have to deal with. The junk affects our life. We think we can shove it deep down inside and just ignore it. Sadly, the truth is that it affects our decisions and our actions. Dealing with our junk is not about blaming someone else; it is about accepting responsibility for how we respond to it.
Let us focus on depression and the steps the author recommends (pp127-129).
1. “Avoid being alone.” Do not isolate yourself. Choose to be with other people. Force yourself if necessary.
2. “Seek help from others.” A trustworthy friend can help you get a true perspective on that molehill you’ve distorted into a mountain. A true friend can also create joy.
3. “Sing – make music.” It may not be easy to start, but it will lift your spirit. In 1 Samuel 16:14-23, we read how only the beauty of David’s music could lift up King Saul.
4. “Praise and give thanks.” Praise God even when you don’t feel like it. Praise God even when you don’t feel His Presence. He IS with you, whether you feel His Presence or not. In 1 Thess 5:18 we read, “In everything give thanks.”
5. “Lean heavily on the power of God’s Word.” Scripture ministers to us. The Psalms in particular minister to us. David often began by freely sharing his frustrations and depressed feelings, and then transitioned to praising God.
On page 128, the author lists the following Psalms: 6, 13, 18, 23, 25, 27, 31, 32, 34, 37, 38, 39, 40, 42, 43, 46, 51, 55, 57, 62, 63, 69, 71, 73, 77, 84, 86, 90, 91, 94, 95, 103, 104, 107, 110, 116, 118, 121, 123, 124, 130, 138, 139, 141, 142, 143, 146, and 147.
6. “Rest confidently in the presence of God’s Spirit.” Seek His face – His Presence. Jesus promised us the Holy Spirit, Our Comforter (John 14:16.)
This may be a really big step for someone who sees God as an angry, demanding God. I guess that’s a great topic for another post. Until then, let us hold on to the truth found in one of the most well-recognized verses in the Bible. In John 3:16 we read, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” Father God loves us so much that He allowed His Son Jesus to carry the weight of all our sins to the cross and die for us. God is Love.
I freely give the author full credit for this work. I have been greatly encouraged by it and would love others to be encouraged and helped by it. I highly recommend that you read this book. Most importantly, I wish to give the author honor for bringing this message in a way that is compassionate, sensitive, genuine, and non-confrontational. It is truth, given in love, with the sole intent of helping others.