Depression's Antidote: Live in the Moment
Lately, I've been struggling with feeling depressed. I'm normally a happy person, so these pervasive feelings of sadness do not feel normal. I was praying about these feelings of depression when the verse Matthew 6:34 came to mind in which Jesus says "Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." (KJV)
I've read that verse many times in the past, but today, it just seemed to hold special meaning. I had to step back from my depressed thoughts and take a look at my life. When I did, I realized that, in that exact moment, nothing was really wrong or depressing. All was actually quite good in that moment. It was my thoughts for the future that were causing the black cloud to hang over my day. Thoughts like "things are never going to change" and "it will always be like this" and "I don't know if next month will be better" and "it's only going to get worse from here" were intruding upon my every moment and making me feel a sadness that just did not exist in the moment.
I realized that I needed to stop letting thoughts over what would happen next week, or next month or next year steal the joy of the blessings that I was experiencing right now! Jesus, the ultimate Counselor, knows that it is easy for the evil one to steal our joy if we allow it. It is easy to let your thoughts linger on "what if" and "maybe" and "could be" so that you don't truly enjoy the moments that you are blessed with right now.
If you've been experiencing depression or thoughts of hopelessness for the future, read Matthew 6:34 and memorize it. Repeat it to yourself often, and then try these simple steps to alleviate your fears for the future:
- Take an honest look at your current situation. How do you feel about this moment?
- Be mindful of your blessings. Look around and count them. If you are honest, don't your blessings outweigh any bad things that are currently happening?
- Give thanks for your blessings and truly try hard to live in the moment and "take no thought for the morrow."