During my last few posts, I’ve talked about some of my struggles with depression. I may have left you with the impression that my depression was cured with diet and exercise alone. But that’s not the truth.

From my perspective, depression is more than am inherited chemical imbalance or the hormonal changes that accompany menopause. At it’s core it is a soul issue.

My bouts of depression were fueled by years of built up disappointment. This disappointment began early in life  when I’d hope that my parents wouldn’t fist fight. Or I’d hope that my real father would come and whisk me away from the chaos that swirled around me. And then my hopes turned into unrealistic daydreams.

I remember daydreaming that Elvis Presley would be driving down Highway 54 in Fayetteville and his car would break down. In my daydream, he would come to our little fishing cabin on the lake and ask to use the phone and then he would fall in love with my mom and take us home with him.

I outgrew those daydreams but I never outgrew hoping for a better life.

As I got older, I began to make my hopes much more spiritual by attaching a scripture to them. My disappointment would grow exponentially when God did not perform as I had hoped He would.

As an adult, I decided that God wasn’t too concerned with what I really wanted to I would want what He wanted. And what He obviously wanted was for me to be the perfect pastor’s wife in a church in Gallup, New Mexico. If my only hope was what I thought He wanted then I’d never be disappointed again.

Scripture states:

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire is fulfilled, it is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12 

Isn’t that the best definition of depression you’ve ever read? My heart was sick with disappointment. There came a time that along with the anti-depressants, the dietary changes, and daily exercise that I had to deal with my sick heart. I had to do some serious forgiving…..

I had to forgive my mom for the chaos that swirled around my childhood. I had to forgive my biological father for only being a sperm donor.  I had to forgive Hank for not giving me everything I wanted. I had to forgive God for not performing as I expected.

And I had to forgive myself….. You see, I had decided that I was the common denominator for things not working out as I expected them to. I wasn’t good enough to be loved and protected by a father. I didn’t deserve the nice things in life. And even God couldn’t trust me to build His church in Gallup.

I had to stop looking at everyone and everything around me and do some soul searching. It was at that time that I decided rather than focusing on being Bert’s daughter, Hank’s wife, Hannah’s mom, or the Stronghold’s pastor, that I would simply be God’s daughter. And all I would expect from Him is what I’ve seen Hank do for Hannah.

That’s where the second part of that scripture comes into reality:

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire is fulfilled, it is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12 

If you are dealing with depression, may I suggest that you see a doctor who can help you with the medications you may need along with making the dietary changes and adding daily exercise to your life. And will you consider taking it a step farther and seek out someone who can help you deal with the heart issues? I don’t want you to have a sick heart anymore…….

 Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled. John 14:27

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