Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dealing Biblically with Depression

It would probably be to no surprise that many today, even in the Church, are struggling with depression. Often times, those who are struggling with depression may not even know it, and for those who do know it, they often do not know how to deal with it, which just makes matters worse. For those who think they may be depressed, for those who know they are and for those who desire to be an encouragement to someone that is depressed, this book by Ed Welch is a must read.

In the first chapter, Welch makes several good observations for just beginning the process of attempting to understand depression. He are a couple of excerpts from the first chapter (which can be previewed in pdf format for free here). First, Welch understands depression to be a form of suffering:
Depression is a form of suffering that can't be reduced to one universal cause. This means that family and friends can't rush in armed with THE answer. Instead, they must be willing to postpone swearing allegiance to a particular theory, and take time to know the depressed person and work together with him or her. What we do know is that depression is painful and, if you have never experienced it, hard to understand. Like most forms of suffering, it feels private and isolating.
Welch's design and intentions for the book are reflective of his understanding of depression:
My hope is that the book will encourage partnerships between depressed people and those who love them. Suffering is not a journey we should take alone. There are too many places where we are tempted to give up and too many times we can't see clearly. So if you are depressed, read this book with a wise friend. If you want to help, ask the depressed person to read it with you, or select particular chapters to read together.
If this is not enough to whet the appetite, here is a brief clip of Welch himself sharing the story of his own father's depression and how to think biblically about depression.

[HT: James Grant]


  1. I was just reading through your blog and wanted to thank you for the latest entry on depression. I think it's so important for Christians to realize that depression is real, and that not everybody has to be, or even can be, happy all the time, and it needs to be talked about. A dear friend of mine who struggled with depression the past couple years just committed suicide two weeks ago. It's been an incredibly painful and difficult thing to deal with. Depression also runs in my family.

    So, I hope your post will help to open people's eyes to something that is very real and that destroyed the life of someone I loved, and even prompt people to feel the freedom to get the help that they need.

  2. GOD is the answer for any problem. He had solution for every thing. All we need to do is keep trust in GOD and continue our effort to solve problems. Whatever be the reason of depression, overcoming depression is very easy. All we need is good support and a little effort. I've found out plenty of techniques which can be used to beat depression.