No Stinkin’ Thinkin’ (Lesson 1)

As many of you know, I spent 30 years of my life buried in depression.  Even today, if I am not on guard and rested, I can lapse back into psychological darkness.  Depression is not fun! 

To help Pam (my wife) to understand depression in my life, I described it to her in physical terms.  It was very helpful to us.  Finally, she could somewhat understand and share my pain. Because of the impact on our relationship, I often ask people battling with depression to physically describe “what it feels like” to bring a bit of understanding to their spouse and/or to others who may be important to them.  The following are a couple of descriptions from individuals:

  • “I am stuck in quicksand and can’t get out.  The harder I fight, the deeper I get.”
  • “I am stuck in a small room with no hope of getting out.  The room is without windows and doors, has sterile white walls with a dim light strung on a naked wire from the ceiling while sitting on a cold concrete floor.”

You can tell from the above descriptions there seems to be little hope.    

“Stinkin’ Thinkin’” comes from believing the devil’s lies.  These lies spew constantly in the mind of a depressed person often out of control.  John 8:44 declares, “He (the devil) was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”  The devil speaks lies only.  That’s just his “nature.” His tactics to the depressed are deception (lies) followed by accusations which lead to the fear of rejection, failure, incompetence, doubt, uncertainty, etc.  Hence, there seems to be no hope.

In the very same chapter as above, John 8:31&32, the knockout punch is delivered to the devil, “So Jesus said, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” The key to being delivered from depression and staying mentally healthy is T-R-U-T-H.  The application of truth in your personal life is God’s Word.  So, these verses say to “abide in” the words of Jesus, continually obeying His teachings and living in accordance with them.  In other words, live constantly in the sphere of truth which sets you free.

I want us to start the “stinkin’ thinkin’” discussion contrasting life with Jesus abiding in His word and living life under the deception of the devil. John 10:10 speaks to this very clearly, “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I (Jesus) came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).”  Start this very day throwing off the lies of the thief as he attempts to steal your life, and abide in the almighty, powerful words of Jesus.  Meditate on the above words as you live out life this week.  Because of emotions that have been haywire for years, change will not come quickly but change will slowly break you free.

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