In counseling I hear this all the time – “My life is horrible! The cards I have been dealt are worthless and I cannot salvage anything from them.”
Of course this is a lie straight from Satan, and I always start by telling the people I am working with that very fact. H.A.L.T. is an acronym that I want you to remember, because Satan knows it all to well. Satan comes to attack you the most violently when you are:
H – Hungry
A – Angry
L – Lonely
T – Tired
Lonely tends to be the one where we are the most vulnerable. Always assess how you are feeling physically when you think you might be getting depressive feelings. Most likely you can pinpoint your feelings to one of these physical traits.
But whenever you truly are feeling that you just can’t do much with your life I want you to focus on these 5 choices you can make to turn your bad hand into a winning hand that will glorigy God and make you much happier in the process:
- I can choose to get healthier – eat better, get more sleep, exercise as your body lets you, and reduce stress.
Psalm 119:73 says, “You made my body Lord, now give me sense to heed your laws.” God never made our bodies to be able to process processed foods! It’s true! The more “real” your food is, the healthier you will be. Do you know where they grow Cheetos in the ground? You don’t, because they don’t! They are manufactured like most of the junk we eat. Fruits and vegetables and low fat, high protein meat is what you need. Exercise as your body will let you and then add to it. Before long, you will be healthier, thinner and ready to take on more in life
- I can choose to deepen relationships – build healthier relationships that you commit fully to.
The fear of rejection prevents connection! 1 John 4:18 says, “there is no fear in love.” Never be fearful of getting into meaningful relationships with people. Sure you may have been hurt, and you may be hurt again, but not all relationships will be that way. Keep taking chances and you will find deeper, truer, more love filled relationships.
- I can choose to trust God no matter what happens – trust God, not yourself
When left to ourselves without God, we will always make unwise choices. Psalm 34:1 says, “I will praise the Lord no matter what happens.” When you can truly say that you are doing this, then you can say that you are a follower of Jesus. Until then, you are a follower of yourself or others. Let God be your guide. You may be a product of your past but you are never a prisoner to it. Start trusting God now before you find you no longer get the chance to! God will never steer you wrong.
- I can choose what I think about – your memories are created by your mental habits
Romans 12 says, “Don’t copy the behaviors or customs of this world.” Would you rather think about what the Kardashians are doing, or would you rather be thinking about how you can help others achieve their goals? You should always be thinking about true, positive things. When you think more negative thoughts than you do positive, then you get depressed. Listen to me when I tell you this because it is truth – you are as happy as you choose to be! You are choosing to be as happy as you are right now, no matter what your circumstances are. Abraham Lincoln was a fan of this saying because he lived with a wife who was chronically depressed and he told her this every day!
- I can choose Jesus as my Savior – pretty simply huh?
Either you choose Jesus, or you choose yourself, others, the world, or Satan – none of which gave their life for you so that you can go to Heaven. Always remember that!
So you see, these 5 easy steps will let you take a hand that might seem like a loser, and turn it into a winner! Get healthier, build deeper relationships, trust God no matter what, think about positive things that God has done for you in the past, and make Jesus your Savior. If you do these 5 easy things, I guarantee there is no way you can ever be depressed again.
Pastor Brad Komgenick