Friday, January 29, 2010

Am I Depressed?

In the majority of depression cases, there is no objective evidence to prove that the body is functioning abnormally. No tests exist that will produce definable and measurable data; therefore, no basis exists to conclude an organic illness is present. Here’s the question of the hour: If we cannot prove a medical/biological issue exists in depression, is it wise to treat a person medicinally?

Therein is the major area of controversy in helping people with feelings of depression. Do we treat the feelings with medication and artificially cause the person to feel better, or do we address the root cause of depression itself? Instead of trying to decide whether using antidepressant medication is “right or wrong,” questions might be asked: Which is the better option: dealing with the root cause or covering up the depressive feelings with medication? Which will offer the counselee hope and real solutions to their feelings of depression?

I believe that if there is no basis to prove a medical cause, a wise counselor will go forward with the understanding that the counselee does not have an organic brain disorder, but rather, a spiritual issue.

If you are depressed, your problem may not necessarily be the difficult situation in which you find yourself. Rather, your problems may be caused by a wrong or unbiblical response to that situation. God has provided the means to live in the midst of the trial, but you must avail yourself of His grace.

It is important to understand that rarely does a person go from “problem” to “immobilized.” Depression is a process or a result of continued wrong responses to various situations and repeated wrong thinking.

The (non-organic) depression process can be halted at any point in the progression by correcting unbiblical thinking and replacing it with biblical thinking that honors and glorifies God and restores hope to the one who suffers.

Depression that is non organic can be resolved by examining key spiritual reasons why people experience sorrow without hope. When looking at depression biblically, we must examine the root causes for the way we feel. Whether or not we have a medical diagnosis, there is a critical component that the Bible addresses directly.

From the Bible we can safely determine that essentially we are comprised of two parts—material/organic and immaterial. While there are certainly various diseases can cause or contribute to depression (thyroid condition, uncontrolled diabetes, heart attack to name just a few) if the problem is not proven to originate in the material (organic) part of the person, it must
then originate in the immaterial (non-organic) part of the person. The root cause of non-organic depression is found in the immaterial part of man in what the Bible refers to as your heart.

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