1 Kings 19:4-5 (NKJV) But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he prayed that he might die, and said, “It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!” Then as he lay and slept under a broom tree, suddenly an angel touched him, and said to him, “Arise and eat.” Depression is no respecter of persons, and it can affect the young, the old, the man on the street or to the CEO. It shouldn’t be a stigma if it is viewed as just another illness or sickness. It is not something that one desires but it just comes upon the person. Nobody wants to be depressed and it is no fault of the sufferer. We shouldn’t be harsh or hard on them because they are going through the deepest valleys in their lives. They cannot snap out of it even though they want to and there is no quick fix. They may need to receive professional and clinical help depending on the severity of it as depression has a wide spectrum. They need lots of support, encouragement and understanding. Therefore, we need to be gentle, patient and kind when we are spending time with people who have depression, especially those who are going through depression episodes, whose common questions will be “when is it going to go away?” or “why did it happen to me?”.
Does it only happen to those who are weak? The answer is no. Elijah was a mighty man of God who did great exploits for the Lord. We’ve heard of his powerful prayer to believe God for rain, and he called down fire from heaven to consume the offering when the prophet of Baal challenged him. He is described as a mighty man of God who prayed powerful and effective prayers in the Book of James, but Elijah was as human as all of us and had his good and bad days. When he received a threat by Jezebel right after a victory, it caused him to be afraid and to run for his life. He took a day’s journey into the wilderness and sat under the broom tree. He was so down that he had no appetite and wanted to die! Elijah went into depression right after a spiritual triumph, and God had to send an angel to wake him up to eat. It is never God’s plan for any of us to be in depression. He doesn’t want us to be fearful, anxious, or to panic, because He has given us His peace, His Word, and people around us to journey with us.
We should try to understand by listening, being present and spend time with those suffering from depression and stop giving advice or over-processing whatever matters they are facing and let them get the professional help that they need.
Sermon Series: Help! Go and Do Likewise
列王纪上 19:4-5自己在旷野走了一日的路程，来到一棵罗腾树下（罗腾，小树名，松类；下同），就坐在那里求死，说：“耶和华啊，罢了！求你取我的性命，因为我不胜于我的列祖。” 他就躺在罗腾树下，睡着了。有一个天使拍他，说：“起来吃吧！”