When we are suffering we tend to immediately assign the word “depression” to our feelings. The truth is, not all sadness is depression. In spite of the world’s catch-all label for life’s problems what the world labels as depression is not to be confused with genuine grief and sorrow over real loss, or temporary uncertainty in a crisis, temporary disappointment, or human failures that cause people to feel a sense of hopelessness that may not be warranted by the actual facts. These feelings are all a part of living in a sin-cursed world.
If you are struggling with sorrow or depression today, I am not going to discount your feelings and emotions, and I am certainly not going to tell you that what you feel is not real. You may feel sad. You may feel tired. You may feel hopeless and think all is lost.
The truth is, hope is not lost!
The truth is almost everyone feels sorrowful, overwhelmed, or hopeless from time to time. However, it is possible that your feelings and emotions may be working in complete conflict with the truth. You may feel you have a reason to sorrow when none truly exists. Your emotions are working, but they are motivated by unbiblical thought and may themselves be unbiblical.
I was listening to one of the speakers last night at the IABC Conference I am attending in Denver Colorado. He spoke on contentment and brought to mind many of the thinking errors we fall into that lead us to experience sorrow and depressive feelings. Often times, our feelings are the result of our not getting what we want or getting what we don’t want. It is your response to your feelings that will determine the outcome of the situation, and determine if you become depressed or not.
So many people have abandoned thought and reason for feeling-oriented living and it is rare to hear a person express a thought or a belief without prompting. If you listen carefully to other people speak, you too will hear how they “feel” everything, using the word “feel” in places it makes no linguistical sense!
The point is, it is not biblical to live life by how you feel and doing so will lead you down the road to emotional suffering and depressive feelings. The Lord Jesus (thankfully) did not live life by how He felt, because if He did, would He have gone to that cross?
Does Scripture tell us anywhere to live by how we feel?
As children who are under obedience, don’t shape your lives by the desires that you used to follow in your ignorance. 1 Peter 1:14 (CCNT)
This biblical counseling conference will all me and others to speak truth into the lives of people who are seeking and hurting and wanting to know what God and His Word has to say about their problems. Please pray today for me and all the rest of the speakers, that we might proclaim boldly the sufficiency of Scripture to address the problems of life. Please pray that God would be glorified!