A physician once told me that one way you know a depression needs medication is that the person states, “Life is going well but I’m still depressed.” When you can’t be happy and joyful in good times there’s a real problem. When you can’t take a different perspective, accept genuine help and support, or resolve a difficulty when life is not treating you well there is also a problem.
We don’t know why some people get depressed and others don’t. We do know there is a definite biological component. We also know that just as with heart disease lifestyle, stress, diet, and the way one approaches problems also can contribute. Many times depression doesn’t strike out of nowhere when things are going well. We help it along.
I thought about this when reading about Jonah this morning. He asked God to take his life because the people he wanted to go away (IE. die) remained and the thing that gave him comfort (IE. a plant) died instead. Have you ever been in a similar predicament, the bad stays and the good goes away? Need I write another page?
It’s human to be angry or disappointed when things don’t go our way. There’s something truly wrong if we want to die because of it. There’s also something wrong if the response is to feel helpless, hopeless, exhausted, and sullen over it or worse, unable to enjoy other things in life we used to enjoy.
Pray to God for help when things happen that we don’t like or that hurt us. God will give us strength. However, we don’t exist in the world alone. God provides the gifts of science and faith, on earth. Jonah was not alone. There was the faith of the people of Ninevah to inspire him and their knowledge of things he may not have known about that would have assisted with his mood. He could have had those had he accepted a change in perspective. God provided the opportunity.
Don’t be like Jonah when your mood, concentration, energy, and ability to enjoy life changes for the worse. Your biology might be betraying you. You may be helping it along with your stubbornness. Open your mind and heart to the many ways of healing God provides. Seek help.
Picture is mine, 2013. Quote in the title is by an unknown author