Bite of Bread

How to Defeat Depression and Restlessness

Depression and Restlessness Engulfed Me

One day when I was up to my eyeballs in diapers and bottles, sippy-cups and Cheerios, I sat on a beach with my best friend.

It was a beautiful day. Life appeared perfect, but the tears would not stop. Life was a struggle for me. Restlessness refused to leave me alone, and depression sucked the “blessed” out of my blessings. I felt guilty. I had so many blessings.

I wrote about this day in the preface of my book, A Mary Like Me: Flawed Yet Called, because at that moment of self-pity, my dear friend reminded me to worship. It was a turning point in my life. Her words were something like, “Sing, Andy! Sing!”

I knew that worship needed to be done whether you felt like it or not through out the day. But I needed a friendly reminder.

As we sat in the hot Carolina sun that day I remembered . . .

“I knew what she was telling me. She was reminding me to worship the Creator who had formed the very waves rolling toward my feet, and who gave those waters their boundaries. She was reminding me to worship my Savior who had given me hope of everlasting life. She was telling me to take my eyes off the holes in my life and worship the God who alone could fill them with his perfect desires.

So, I sang, even though the singing didn’t magically make me feel better. But that day of worship has become a lifetime of intentional worship and the centrifuge where clarity and vision could rise to the top above the struggles of life.” (A Mary Like Me: Flawed Yet Called p. 14)

Worship with good music to chase depression

Playing worship music throughout the day when I was struggling, was key to my healing. There are so many good songs out there these days! I found a link to a Pinterest board that is filled with worship playlists. Check out these 21 Worship songs from Brittany Moses on her faith and wellness website.

More than a song to lift depression

We automatically think of music as worshiping, and I love it, but there is so much more.

Pastor Daniel Walters clarifies the difference between praise and worship.

He defines praise as “singing and speaking words of praise.”

And he explains worship as “a way we live.” 

Singing is as a way to worship Jesus, but music is just a method.

Worship is a way of life.

Our minds, hearts, and actions reveal who and what we worship.

 

Worship frees us. Worship saves us. Worship gives us purpose and fulfills our destiny. Click To Tweet

If life is all butterflies and bubbles . . . worship.

If it is painful and difficult. . . . worship.

And if you are depressed and restless, oh, please, worship.

Are you ready to dig deep into the Word this week and learn about worship and lift those soul shadows and restless spirits?  Let’s find out what the Bible says about this way of life.

Sneak Peek (Longer Bites than Normal!)

1 Chronicles 16:23-31:

Sing to the Lord, all the earth;
    proclaim his salvation day after day.
24 Declare his glory among the nations,
    his marvelous deeds among all peoples.

25 For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
    he is to be feared above all gods.
26 For all the gods of the nations are idols,
    but the Lord made the heavens.
27 Splendor and majesty are before him;
    strength and joy are in his dwelling place.

28 Ascribe to the Lord, all you families of nations,
    ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
29 Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
    bring an offering and come before him.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of his[a] holiness.
30     Tremble before him, all the earth!
    The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved.

31 Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
    let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!”

John 4:21-24 “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

Exodus 20: 2-6: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before me.“You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,  but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

Psalm 99:9Exalt the Lord our God and worship at his holy mountain, for the Lord our God is holy.

Romans 12:1-2: Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

1 Samuel 15:22: But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

Revelation: 4: 8-11Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:“‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.” Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever,  the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.”

Printable and Prompts

Click here for the free printable with these verses and extra questions and prompts for each day.

The Power of the Bible against Depression

John Piper wrote a great article on depression and how God can work in our dark days. He acknowledges that our sleep habits, exercise and what we eat can also affect our moods, yet sometimes the dark days are a spiritual battle God allows to strengthen us. But God has given us a source of strength.

God’s word, the Bible, is specifically designed for these seasons of testing. “For whatever was written” — this is amazing; this is sweeping — “Whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance” — there’s the key word: the endurance, or getting through tough things — “through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4). If you can, insomuch as you can just make it a few verses, be in the word every day. Even though you don’t feel like fighting, give yourself that medicine every day.

If the idea of God testing us bothers you, I loved this article by Lori Hatcher. She writes about the testing of Abraham, Joshua, and Hezekiah. In her words, the testing is for us, for our hearts to make a choice of who we’ll worship and serve.

Times of testing, when circumstances are overwhelming and God seems far away force us to make a choice: will we believe God’s promises, or will we allow our circumstances to steal our faith?

Hungry for God

 

The Power of Fellowship to battle Depression

You don’t have to do this alone. Each morning on Facebook I teach Bite of Bread for the day. Join me and fellow believers at 8:20 ET through Facebook Live for fellowship and prayer. I’ll be coming from the plains of Southwest, OK on Monday! This is one of my favorite subjects, so I CANT WAIT! I share the broadcast on my Facebook author page and You Tube also if you can’t watch at that time. Subscribe to the channel so you don’t miss a teaching.

Breaking Depression Doesn’t Happen Overnight

Be patient. Be consistent. And be hopeful. Depression doesn’t disappear overnight. But God loves you. He wants the best for you. (Romans 8:28 and Jeremiah 29:11) And there is a battle going on to try to keep you from your destiny.

 

Digging Deep to Worship past depression and restlessness,

 

Andy

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11 thoughts on “How to Defeat Depression and Restlessness

  1. You always have a way of speaking right to my need. Thank you for this.
    Knowing you as a woman of praise once struggled with this makes me feel better than someone just telling me to do it. Thank you! 😉

  2. Dearest Andy, Please, as you teach on this, clarify the difference between times of depression that everyone goes through, and actual mental illness which needs professional help. Thank you.
    Looking forward to joining you!
    Kirsten

  3. Good word Sis. Thank You this is how I needed to start my week. While God is making beautiful from my hard. Depression tries to creep in at every turn. Time to turn up my Warship!!!!! Love You.

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