Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Christmas Season Attack of Depression--YOU don't have to feel bad this year!!! 

--Christmas Season Attack of Depression--
YOU don't have to feel bad this year!!!

Silent night, holy night!

All is calm, all is bright.

Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child.

Holy infant so tender and mild,

Sleep in heavenly peace,

Sleep in heavenly peace!

"For you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture!"--Malachi 4:2

     Christmas Season is here! Workers have been 'decking the halls with boughs of holly' and singing, 'fa la la la laaaaa, la la la laaaa!'

 Christmas is a happy time where friends and family members enjoy love, peace and salvation through celebrating Jesus coming into the world. All people during this time should enjoy being together and remember that everything we have is because we have each other through Jesus' love and mercy.

However, the Christmas Spirit (which should be our Holy Spirit) does not always reach everyone. Many people reject Christmastime as either 'the Christian religious holiday' or they reject the idea of spending money and buying gifts for others.

Many people also get discouraged and depressed during Christmastime.

Why do people get depressed during Christmas?

Here is a brief list:

1) People are lonely and they don't have a husband or wife or children. They feel socially isolated.

2) When families get together, they argue over money or career choices, religion, politics or other difficult issues to deal with. They feel their family rejects and oppresses them.

3) People get depressed when they don't have enough money for gifts or to pay for special clothing or to pay for big parties. They feel financially isolated.

4) People get depressed because they don't feel understood by family members. They feel like they have disappointed the people they love.

5) People get depressed because church members spend more time with their own families than with friends at church and those without families are just alone. They feel spiritually and personally rejected and isolated.

6) People get depressed because they don't get invited to parties or they feel like they are forgotten. They feel unworthy and rejected.

7) Seasonal change in the weather like less sunlight can lead some to depression. They feel unwell and oppressed...

     I know that I sometimes feel bad on Christmas morning when I wake up with no presents and no family and everyone is having fun and sharing their photos of great Christmas parties and family time on Facebook with all their friends and family.

That is why many people believe that social media can be bad for a person because they see others having joyful times; yet, they are alone. Social media doesn't really show how we all can be lonely and how we can all feel forgotten, at times...

Of course, Christmas Depression doesn't help when a Christian friend prays for you and rebukes the depression out of you. Most of the time a person just feels worse and their Christian friend moves on and leaves the person alone and still feeling depressed!

I had a vision yesterday of an attack of Christmas Depression trying to hit people right now.

Depression can easily be triggered in some people because they have a chemical imbalance or because of past events that have challenged a person's confidence and self-esteem.

Depression can be fought by most people. Depression is like a temptation from The Enemy to forget the good promises that Father God has for us like Jeremiah 29:11.

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."--Jeremiah 29:11.

Here is what I suggest:

When you start to feel depression, you should acknowledge that you are feeling upset and down. Then you should try to identify why you are down.

Are you feeling depressed because you are missing a loved-one that has passed away? Are you down because you are sick or very tired or haven't eaten right that day? Are you down because your employer or your parent or spouse said some difficult things to you?

  • First, if the depression is serious, seek out the help of a qualified mental health professional.
  • Set personal boundaries regarding the money spent on gifts and the number of social events. Don't become too tired and overspend.
  • Don't accept any "perfect" representation of Christmas that the media, institutions or other people try to make you believe. Lower your expectations and enjoy each moment as best you can.
  • Become involved in giving in a non-monetary way through charities and worthwhile causes that help less fortunate people.
  • Be grateful for what you have in your life, rather than focusing on what you don't have.
  • Avoid excessive thinking about your life.
  • Take action and do interesting and fun things.
  • If you are religious, take part in church activities that focus on the bigger meaning of Christmas.
  • Focus your thoughts on all the good things about Christmas--the opportunity to engage in loving kindness, generosity of spirit, and gratitude for others in your life.

And remember...Holy Spirit will bring a sense of joy and tremendous peace and rest to you this Christmas Season and you will be very shiny to many people around you with the joy and love of God!!!

Have a very Merry Christmas Season and don't feel alone and depressed...but let Jesus encourage you always and lift you up during this season and through all time!


Pastor Ken Harley :-)

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