Depression

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Chet, Aug 22, 2001.

  1. Chet

    Chet
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    Sadly we live in a tough world. A world who is always throwing everything at you and
    just uttering the words “deal with it”. A world where we are often disappointed with
    people, even the Godly people we love. This is my problem, I am often disappointed and
    certainly I get discouraged and disheartened to where sometimes I want to just quit everything and just become a hermit [​IMG] (Hey I can hunt and fish! hehe) It is a very stressful world, it is evident that Satan is the god of this wicked mean world.

    Often it leaves even the best of Christians depressed. I get discouraged but I don’t think I have ever really been deeply depressed. But I council people who do. I would like everyone’s impute on this topic and really two simple questions. Do you really think its right for a Christian to seek out a psychiatrist and ultimately take a drug to help your depression?

    Now my thoughts. I say that is the worlds way. Its not the Christian way. God told us not to seek the advise of the ungodly. And most worldly psychiatrist are atheist who believe we evolved here anyway. And I also believe that drugs are nothing more than a mind altering drug. Paul said:

    Rom 12:2
    And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your
    mind
    , that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
    NKJV

    Not to seek a mind altering drug.

    And I think that we are in a sad situation to not let Christ feed us, and help us overcome our thinking. Ultimately it is our thinking process that messes us up in the first place. Worrying about things that just won’t happen, or too small that they should not affect us.

    I really like what Paul said in Phillipians:

    Phil 4:6-7
    Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving,
    let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all
    understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
    NKJV

    Here is an excellent cure for our depression. God sure knew the right word to use, anxious. But through prayer we cast all our cares upon Him, as Peter tells us, and when we start thinking of all the things we have we tend to forget all we don’t have. It makes our mind think on the blessings. We become thankful. And when we are in supplication our talk with God becomes so wonderful it helps us to forget our troubles. One of my favorite songs is "Sweet Hour of Prayer". And then the peace of God will come. He will put such a peace in our heart it can’t be understood. This is what guards our hearts.

    Well end of my sermon.

    Any thoughts?

    With love,

    Chet

    [ August 22, 2001: Message edited by: Chet ]
     
  2. bustr

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    "Do you really think its right for a Christian to seek out a psychiatrist and ultimately take a drug to help your depression?"

    "Now my thoughts. I say that is the worlds way. Its not the Christian way. God told us not to seek the advise of the ungodly."


    I was gonna address it point by point but I don't think it's necessary. You know how you feel fatigued and grouchy when you have a cold? There is something physically wrong making you feel bad. Same thing with Depression. Most cases of depression are treated with Selective Seratonin Re-Uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). There are Christian Psychiatrists around that a patient can go to. However any doctor can prescribe SSRIs. There is no need for a psychiatrist. So is it right for a Christian to seek medical help with depression? Only if he wants to feel better.
     
  3. Brother Adam

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    Any thoughts??? Oh yeah. Especially since I suffer from a mild form of depression and take celexa for it.

    Depression is not purely a state of mind. It is also genetic. My mom has depression, my brother has depression, i have depression.

    Let me ask you a question- would you advocate that people with psychotic breakdowns and schophrenia be left to rot in godless mental facilities or get the help they need through medicine and have a chance at normal life?

    My experience with getting help has been a true blessing. I feel happier, my attitude has changed, and I have made more friends.

    There are Christian psychatrists out there [​IMG]

    Until Next Post, Adam
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    My wife sees people in all forms of mild-to-severe depression on a daily basis. These are REAL illnesses, and must be recognized and dealt with.

    To say to someone with a broken leg, "Hey, read these verses" or "You ought to get out soul winning" is absurd. You mend and heal the leg. And everyone is supportive. :cool:

    But chemical imbalances (often from foods we eat, soda pop, chemicals in our homes or workplace) can upset the fragile system in our brain. [​IMG]

    You tell such a person "get your heart right and your head will straighten out" and I'll wager that they may go postal on you. :mad:

    Or, more often, on themselves. :(

    I'd encourage anyone to visit our website at www.phr.net and give us a call or email about some natural help for anxiety, panic, depression, worry, or fear.
     
  5. HankD

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    Hi chet,

    RE: Mind altering drugs,

    About 25 years ago, I went on a series of fasts (no food just water) the last of which lasted about 30 days. I began to hallucinate, have visions of angels and some other bizzare happenings. Actually and for the most part, it was quite pleasant. Everything seemed beautiful especially colors, and all my senses were magnified.
    My wife became concerned about my behavior and took me to the hospital. The doctors thought I was on acid until she explained about the length of time of my fasting. They said that a prolonged fast would indeed produce the symptoms of having ingested hallucinogenic drugs.
    I had protein acids and ketones in my blood which caused this "trip".
    Fasting is approved of by God, so then would you say that He approves of mind altering under the condition of fasting?

    HankD
     
  6. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
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    There are two kinds of mental depressions: hose attributable to chemical causes (imbalances) and those that are not. A chemical imbalance is a medical condition that is testable and the chemical that is imbalanced can be identified. In such cases, it is appropriate to treat the person with the appropriate drug to restore chemical balance. What is most commonly called depression and diagnosed as such is not tested by medical means. It is diagnosed by asking how someone feels about themselves and their relationship to their circumstances. It is most often self-diagnosed (the dr. asks questions to determine the illness). If you doubt what I am saying do a generic search for "depression" on the net and look at some of the sites that come up. SEveral months ago I preached a message on Emotions of Melancholy and was surprised by what I found at a number of sites.

    Depression is most often treated by isotropic drugs that are mood-altering. Depression in many people is treated by such things as a Friday night trip to the bar to "forget the cares of the world." By others, it is treated by a trip to a mistress's house in the name of a mid life crisis. Other by a trip to the mall to shop it off. Lest you think that any of these are made up or isolated, they are all among the many documented ways that people deal with depression. Others do it by prescription.

    Dr. Bob talks about depression that comes from certain kinds of eating habits. Those are treatable by changing eating habits. If it is a chemical imbalance, it can be identified by medical testing and then treated. However, only in rare cases is such testing done.

    Depression that is not medically testable is the result of mental state. A mental state is something that can be controlled (2 Cor 10:5, Rom 12:2). While certain cases do draw sympathy, it does not excuse the continuation of unbiblical thought patterns. Simply throwing prozac or some such drug at a refusal to think biblical thoughts is attacking the symptom rather than the problem.

    Those who fail to control the way they think are unbiblical. I realize that sounds hard on people. However, I think our commitment to biblical solutions for spiritual problems demands a more discerning approach than is demonstrated by many today.

    [ August 22, 2001: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  7. Ars

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    According to some TV commercials, the Book of Mormon will help too...
    :D

    OK, that was bad... I'm sorry ... :( ;)
     
  8. Bible Believing Bill

    Bible Believing Bill
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    My wife suffers from Bi-polar disorder. That is the new term for manic-depression. I would not wish this illness on my worst enemy. I have seen what this chemical imbalance has done to her, and it is the most terrible thing I can imagine. There is no way for me to know how it makes her feel, but from the little I can know it is very scary. The drugs she takes help to stabilize her disorder and to lead a normal life. Without thoes drugs she would live in a very dark, dangerous, world within her own mind.
     
  9. donnA

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    Depression is not a mood, it is not an attitude. You have no control over it. Depression is an illness. A mental illness.
    If you or your child had terrable flu, that just wouldn't go away. Would you go to a doctor? et you say someone with an illness can't. Would you give your child medicines? Over the counter or prescription? Yet you say others can not.
    I have depression, and have had for several years. I don not see a psychiatrist for the very reasons you gave. But I do take medicines. I was able to have my dosage cut down, and then had actually stopped taking them for several months, then found I was going to have to go back on sooner or later. My husband hoped sooner. I turn in to a raving maniac without them. I had to start back when my son was arrested. I was so nervous I could stand it anymore.
    Depression is not fun, people don't choose to be depressed, we'd all like something different now please.
    I have a personal relationship with God, and He has shown me many things through out this whole experience, He has used it in my life. So my relationship with God isn't lacking at all, like you seem to suggest.
    And my thoughts aren't altered, my thoughts are more plain and clear, at least I can focus to think, I can mentally function now.
    We all get sick, we take drugs to get batter, even if it's just an aspirin. God takes care of us, but we still get sick. And we will as long as we live in this sin sick world. Depression is no different from any other long term illness that anyone else gets, and takes drugs for.
    Untill you personally know what depression is and isn't, don't make judgements on the rest of us who do have it.
     
  10. Chet

    Chet
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    Hello everyone!

    First off I want to strongly apologize if I offended anyone, that is not my intention at all. Believe me I understand about being depressed, it is a terrible thing. Please allow me add a few more thoughts for consideration. [​IMG]

    In Phillipians 4:6-7 as I pointed out there is an interesting phrase “Be anxious for
    nothing”. God is asking this from us, which can only mean it is possible not to be anxious. I suffer from this greatly! I am a worry wort, hehehe. So it is curable, but how? Prayer, thanksgiving, supplication. If we worry, we are lacking something - dependence upon Him. Dependency is the key to it all, where does our dependency lie?
    Is it in Christ, or something else?

    Dr. Bob Griffin I appreciate your post, you brought out something I want to touch on,
    You said, “You tell such a person "get your heart right and your head will straighten out" and I'll wager that they may go postal on you.” I agree!! I think we live in a cold world and it usually don’t warm up any inside our churches. In fact it can get worse. When any of us have a problem what is the first thing we say? “I’ll pray for you”. Perhaps a pat on the back with that? Or in some cases its blamed on sin, or not reading your bible, or not praying enough ect... Lets see what God says:

    Gal 6:1-2
    Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
    NKJV

    Rom 15:1-4
    We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to
    please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to
    edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, "The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me."
    NKJV

    This requires action. Buster pointed out that there are Christian Psychiatrists. But do we need that? I believe the Bible teaches us we can study nature, and learn from it. Humans can be studied by humans. But I think we live in a society where we seek “quick” fixes, and as Christians we have something incredible! We have Christ. We do have the Word, and we do have (or should have) the love of other Christians. I believe we should counsel people, and we should seek counseling when we need it. But what kind we seek is important. And like Dr. Bob Griffen said, it should be more that a quick “get your heart right” statement. Sometimes it takes time.

    Pastor Larry, I would be more interested in studies. We can test things like a broken leg, or a cold, or the flu. But in my humble opinion I just feel that in this society we are quick to look to the head doctor and let him just soothe our minds by diagnosing we are schizophrenic, take this prescription.

    Recently, I watched a show on Dateline NBC about a 17 year old girl. She was adopted and she killed her mother. These were church going people, and it was a baptist Church. This girl fell “in love” with some guy and her mother disapproved of him. She went ballistic one day and stabbed her mother 27 or so times. Her defense was, I was insane. They said the chemicals in her brain went haywire. This girl’s biological mother was found and testified in court that she suffered from depression, and how much she was border line “mental”. Then the defense moved to the idea that this girl inherited her mothers problems. Hmmmm. I just have some problems with that. We need to take a look at where we put the blame.

    I also believe depression is real, Elijah was depressed and wanted to die, Job was
    depressed and wanted to never have been born at all. Mourning is a real even all
    throughout scripture, and it can lead to a deep depression.

    Perhaps it is plausible that there is a chemical imbalance and we need to seek medical help, but I feel that in most cases what we really need is a renewed mind. And that may take a long time, and it may require the spiritual guidance of Christian people. Certainly reading
    the Scripture, praying, soulwinning, ect... will help! It will certainly do one thing, get your mind off of self and on to something or someone else.

    Again, please don’t anyone take offense to these words. If anything please take these
    words as an attempt to help not to be judgmental. I am not the kind of person who seeks to hurt people.

    Matt 11:29-30
    Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you
    will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
    NKJV

    With love,

    Chet
     
  11. Gina B

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    You posted the first post, then closed the second one with the words NKJV. There's nothing left to say BUT ouch! Here, have a NIV so you can put a little more salt in the gaping wound. :D
    Hee hee hee.
    Gina
     
  12. DocCas

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    There are two types of depression:

    a. Organic - symptoms from a physiological cause.

    b. Functional - symptoms have a psychological cause.

    Distinguishing between mental and physical causes:

    1. Usually the mental depression develops over a long period of time, the physical more suddenly.

    2. A combination of the two can occur which complicates the problem; i.e., an unstable person with a head injury can become depressed. Or a person suffering from an organic depression, will develop a functional depression. (Being sick can be depressing!)

    So, if the depression is organic (caused by a physical problem), treat it organically with medicines. Only a fool would tell a diabetic to stop taking his insulin, and only a fool would tell a person suffering from an organic depression to stop taking his SRIs!

    If the problem is functional (psychological) then it should be confronted. These sorts of functional depressions are caused by sin. the sin nature wants something, and the person cannot have it, so the person gets depressed. It is the adult expression of the childish tantrum. It must be confronted, confessed, forgiven and forgotten.

    From my syllabus "Pastoral Counselling" a course I teach at the seminary. [​IMG]
     
  13. Larry

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    I have a couple of thoughts on this.

    For starters, I'm not trying to open a can of worms, in the KJV, Philippians 4:6 says, "be careful for nothing" I think that means, "be full of care for no thing". In verse 10 of the same chapter Paul says "But I rejoice in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye also were careful, but ye lacked opportunity."

    I think what he is saying is don’t worry about things, do worry about people. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. God designed us in such a way that if we touch a hot stove, we instinctively jerk our hand back. God also gave us emotions, if we are full of care, we should instinctively take it to the Lord in prayer. In the same way that we sneeze, we should cast away being full of care over things. Notice it says careful not caring, we have to give some care to things but not to the point that we are full of care.

    Somehow we have gotten the idea that a Christian should be this carefree happy go lucky Ned Flanders (Bart Simpson's Neighbor) king of guy. We are told that it is a good witness to the world when, if we Christians go threw some great trial, we paint on a fake smile and clap our hands singing Jesus makes me happy happy happy! Acutely the world looks at that kind of response as repulsive.
    What is a good witness is when it's "a time to morn" for a Christian, we get real and say that really heart BUT "I can rejoice because my name is written in heaven". It's a witness, when the world notices that "We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed" and we have peace that "passeth all understanding".


    I know that the way we think and the things we eat can have an effect on our bodies. If I eat a spicy meal just before going to bed, it has a physical effect and sometimes, I believe, effects the way I dream. I know that taking certain medications can cause me to become irritable and so on.

    What I question is the "chemical imbalance" thing. I have had a lot of experience with people who say that they have a chemical imbalance but when I ask what chimerical is out of balances they don’t know. I doubt that they are low on Prozac. From what I have observed, it seems that for whatever reason, someone can get overwhelmed and the "imbalance" is the result of and not the cause of their actions. I have personally observed people who "just lost it" receive help chemically, it kind of puts things on hold and gives them a chance to gather their thoughts. The ones that made a full recovery were the ones that used the time to change whatever action caused the imbalance. On the other hand some couldn't get things straitened out and became dependent upon the chemical.


    This is turning into a long post so I'll make this short. I heard a talk radio show about a psychologist from Colorado, I think, that has written a book that basically says that Psychologists heart more than help and he advocates a tough love approach with no chemicals… about that time, I lost the station. Dose that ring a bell with anybody? I would like to read the book.


    PS: I don’t think it's hereditary, more than likely it is learned behavior.

    Anyway I reckon I'm instilled to an opinion.
    [​IMG]
     
  14. donnA

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    Thomas Cassidy=
    You wrote.....If the problem is functional (psychological) then it should be confronted. These sorts of functional depressions are caused by sin. the sin nature wants something, and the person cannot have it, so the person gets depressed. It is the adult expression of the childish tantrum. It must be confronted, confessed, forgiven and forgotten.

    You sound like Job's friends.
    Not all sickness is due to sin. I guess it must be easy to point a finger at others and yell "sinner!!!".
    You neglected to put on your list that some depression is an imballance/malfunction in the brain. A malfunction of electrical impulses.
    I'll take my doctors word for it.

    [​IMG]

    [ August 23, 2001: Message edited by: katie ]
     
  15. Bible Believing Bill

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    Katie,

    I believe the imbalance/malfunction was covered in Dr. Cassidy's post as organic.

    However, I would disagree with Dr. Cassidy that all functional depression is caused by sin. This type of depression is usually brief and caused by an outside force, i.e the death of a loved one. Many times situational depression could be caused by sin, but not all times.

    (Did I really disagree with Dr. Cassidy in public? Maybe he dosn't intimidate me as much as I thought.)
     
  16. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>... some depression is an imballance/malfunction in the brain. A malfunction of electrical impulses.
    I'll take my doctors word for it.[/QB]<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Katie,

    Thomas, Chet, and I (and perhaps someone else) have all said this already. If there is an imbalance in the brain, it can be identified and treated. It is not generic; it is identified by testing. If it is not identifiable as a physiological issue -- i.e. no one can tell you what chemical it is, then it should not be treated as physiological disorder.

    In my experience, both personally and professionally, most of the time, depression is an attitude, a thought process, that focuses on the hopelessness of the situation rather than the greatness of God. Treating it with drugs does not help the problem; it only postpones it.
     
  17. katie

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    Larry, you just wouldn't know. And you already admitted you have no personal experience. You don't even know any of the people you are talking about, but feel it is ok to judge them oZ
     
  18. bustr

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    Depression has to be experienced to be appreciated. Dysthemia (sp) can be analyzed by a doctor with an interview. It doesn't take a blood test. This isn't something that should even be debated. Medications work and should be used immediately upon analysis of the condition.
     
  19. KeeperOfMyHome

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    I agree with what Larry said concerning allowing a situation to completely ovetake our lives. Instead of trusting God, a person constantly meditates on their problem, and the only thing they gain is depression and ulcers. Case in point . . . my sister-in-law's husband was found to be a drug addict. Not only this, but he was forging prescriptions, and was subsequently arrested. It's a long, horrible story, but he's also a thief and a liar. This whole situation has been really terrible, and she has allowed it all to overtake her life to the point that she throws up all the time, cries all the time, can't fall asleep until the wee hours, and then is awake within a couple of hours. She looks very sickly. She has been going to a good, Christian counselor who happens to be an associate pastor. He has helped her alot, and yet she is still plagued by these problems. I think that he has, for the most part, counselled her as much as he possibly can . . . the rest is up to her . . . she must now take to heart the word of God and the power of God in her life before she can be well again. She was given a prescription for her depression, but I don't think it is more a lack in her trust in God than a chemical thing going on.

    Now, on the other hand, when I was 16, my mom started having panic attacks, thoughts of suicide, fatigue, and other ailments. Her doctors at first told her . . . no, insisted . . . that it was all in her mind. Eventually she was led to a doctor who understood that she had a chemical imbalance, was given something to correct that, and has done very well since that time. It was a very, very scary time in our family. She recently tried to reduce her medication or get it in a different formula (can't remember which), and has not done well on it at all.

    So, our families have experienced both of these dilemmas. I can clearly see that their is depression caused by outside circumstances that we allow to control us, and there are times when our bodies just don't function as necessary.

    My youngest is very timid in many situations, and may suffer, to some degree, from anxiety attacks. And she is only 7 years old! This is so scary . . . I used to think she was just shy . . . and possibly easily intimidated . . . but as time wears on, I can see it's more than that. A close friend of our confided that she (our friend) suffers from anxiety, and has begun taking something for it. She says that the way her medication works is that it builds a reserve for those times when situations arise, and her brain releases the appropriate chemical thanks to the medication. I don't know if my daughter needs this at her age . . . I don't want to medicate her if not necessary, and yet if she truly has a problem, and help is available, I would want her to be able to function as the rest of us do.

    Ok, so y'all found out more about my family than you wanted! LOL . . . sorry this was so long. I used to doubt the use of drugs for depression, but I know there is a time and a place, though not everyone needs them.
     
  20. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by bustr:
    Depression has to be experienced to be appreciated. Dysthemia (sp) can be analyzed by a doctor with an interview. It doesn't take a blood test. This isn't something that should even be debated. Medications work and should be used immediately upon analysis of the condition.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    What is the physiological issue in Dysthemia? How is it diagnosed? What is the problem and what do the medications do to fix it?
     

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