This is the eighth in a nine part series entitled “Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Suffering Paradigm.” For the various counseling options available from this material visit www.summitrdu.com/counseling.
The complementing studies are also available in a video and podcast formats at the links below:
- “Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Responsibility Paradigm”// video and podcast
- “Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Suffering Paradigm” // video and podcast
- “Towards a Christian Perspective of Mental Illness” // video and podcast
“When the Road Becomes Long More Than Steep”
PERSEVERE in the new life and identity to which God has called me.
“Some of the pain related to depression-anxiety remains [describe] but it defines me less. I am also experiencing more of what God has for me. I never knew life could include [list of experiences] again. I see now that God was not withholding these things from me, nor were they forfeited. I am learning to enjoy them without shame, fear, or guardedness. I have come to realize that ‘healthy’ means more than the absence of depression-anxiety. I am learning to trust and enjoy God in the rise and fall of my circumstances.”
Memorize: Romans 5:3-5 (ESV), “More than that, we rejoice in our suffering, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through this Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” As you memorize this passage reflect upon these key points:
- “Rejoice” – If you read the passage carefully, you’ll see we rejoice in the fruit of suffering; not the pain.
- “Endurance… character… hope” – Hopefully this captures well the journey you have been on in this study.
- “Shame” – God is faithful not only to redeem the suffering but remove the shame associated with suffering.
- “God’s love” – The perfect love of a perfect God enables us to live with painful emotions in an imperfect world.
- “Holy Spirit” – This seal (2 Cor. 1:22) of God’s permanent covenant provides us of assurance of his presence.
“One of the greatest catalyst to our pain was the sense that we were alone. Because we suffered mostly silently, we didn’t find other people who were suffering in the same way. And because those other suffering people were silent to, we all thought we were the only ones (p. 33).” Amy Simpson in Troubled Minds
“I think that people who have not dealt with such grief, either first or secondhand, simply do not know what happiness is, what joy is, because they do not know what the depths of pain can be. It is like this: you cannot know the import of the cross and resurrection unless you have grasped the weight of sin… That is, sometimes depression can be a blessing, because one can learn about God through his hiding (p. 28).” Kathryn Greene-McCreight in Darkness Is My Only Companion
“You are secure not because you have control or understanding. You are secure even though you are weak, imperfect, and shortsighted. You are secure for one reason and one reason alone: God exists and he is your Father (p. 31)… The temptation, in times of waiting, is to focus on the things we are waiting for, all the obstacles that are in the way, our inability to make it happen, and all of the other people who haven’t seemed to have had to wait… All of this increases our feeling of helplessness, our tendency to think our situation is hopeless, and our judgment that waiting is futile (p. 48).” Paul Tripp in A Shelter in the Time of Storm.
“Lasting change doesn’t occur in leaps, but in tiny and faithful steps. Small changes can make a big difference (p. 15)… Sometimes the pain of change makes us forget our former misery, and we revert to previous habits to feel better (p. 156).” Leslie Vernick in Lord, I Just Want to Be Happy
Other podcasts on emotions are available at: