It is important to make sure that our ideas come from the Bible, and one prevailing attitude is that you should not or will not be sad if you have Jesus. 

False.

Jesus wept twice in scripture. 'And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace!' Luke 19:41-42

God was sad over the fact that the city would be destroyed and that the Jews would turn away from Him. 

And there is another example in John chapter 11. Jesus visits the tomb of His friend Lazarus, and the Bible says poignantly, 'Jesus wept'. John 11:35

The Bible also says that there is a time to every purpose under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:4 says there is, 'a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;'

Sadness is a normal human emotion, and sometimes depression is a response to adverse circumstances, hormonal imbalance or faulty brain chemistry. It doesn't mean we don't love Jesus. It doesn't mean we don't have enough faith. 

It means we are human.

We often come under the false assumption that life will be rainbows and that we will be immune to life's hurts, because we have trusted in Jesus, but Jesus does not remove our humanity. 

Many of the prophets endured extreme sadness. There was Jonah, Elijah, and David, to name a few. Elijah would have likely been diagnosed with clinical depression today. 

And while there is a time for mourning and weeping, there is no shame in getting help for depression, in fact, it is a very good step to take toward one's mental health. Praying harder does not always cut it, and sometimes God wants us to put action to our prayers. 

When I was very sick and bedridden, I prayed that God would heal me, and I wondered why He didn't. I was a brand new Christian and didn't know why He required that I go to the doctor so that He would heal me. Couldn't He do it without a doctor? Yes, but He will also send you to the doctor to get your healing. It doesn't mean He didn't heal you. All healing does come from God. It's just that the methods will differ. 

Well-meaning Christians will often add extra pressure that we measure up or give off a certain appearance to show we are good Christians, but the Bible does not require that of us. Jesus knows we are dust and that we are fragile. He doesn't ask us to pretend. We are actually to beware hypocrisy. 

There is no added shame, because we are sad or even because we are depressed. God does not add to our burden; His burden is light, and His yoke is easy. He is not sitting up there judging us for 'failing'. It doesn't work like that. He doesn't put a premium on being upbeat. 

He may seek us to get help in the form of medical attention, in fact, He will often implore us to do so. Like the prophet Elijah, He may invite us to remember to eat and to take our rest for a time, but He does not leave us. He desires us to have life and to have it more abundantly. He is telling us to be of good cheer, because He is right here with us no matter what.  

Stay Gutsy,

Rosa  

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Rosa A. Hopkins

Radio Show Host. Writer of words. Teller of stories. Singer of songs. Dreamer of dreams. Owner of a shapeless hound. Musician. Recording Artist. Songwriter. Record Label Owner. Producer. Hater of Coffee. Lover. Friend. Mother. Not all at the same time though.

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