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Tasha opens up
about depression

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Latice reveals her
social anxiety

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Richard Smallwood
battled depression

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Depressed? Get
Michelle's advice

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Christian and Depressed: My struggle, my shame and my
journey to understanding
Article By Charlene Sanders // EEW Magazine Lifestyle
Posted February 22, 2017
GETTY/BLEND IMAGES JGI/TOM GRILL
No one would understand. They couldn’t, I thought. So I suffered in silence.

I was singing on the Praise and Worship team. I had joined several committees and was very
active in ministry. I was eager to do whatever was asked of me. I especially loved attending small
group sessions and doing Bible study.

By all accounts, I should have been happy. But I wasn’t.

I just felt alone, like I was the ugliest person in the world. Despite having a good job with decent
pay, nice car and beautiful apartment, I somehow felt unworthy to receive anything good.
Unworthy of happiness.

Unworthy of being successful.

Just generally unworthy.

I began calling off work and sleeping in. Those extra hours of snoozing, turned into days and
then, into weeks. I was no longer grooming myself. I was a mess with matted hair, a dirty t-shirt
and sweats. I felt this heavy weight on me, like I couldn’t get out of bed. I knew something was
wrong, but I didn’t want to admit it, particularly because my mom had struggled with mental
illness. I had vowed, decreed and declared that I wouldn’t be next!

Yet, there I was, in that dark place. I didn’t even have to be triggered. Nothing at all had to be
wrong for me to sink into despair. I would feel numb sometimes, just a black hole of nothingness.
At other times, I would be overwhelmed and super emotional. It was crazy. I felt crazy.

I was terribly ashamed when I got counseling from my pastor and first lady. I now know I didn't
need to be, but at the time, I was afraid that they would judge me and see me differently. I didn't
want them to view me as weak and broken.

Ironically, that's precisely what I was at the moment.

Still, I couldn't help thinking,
how could I, a praise and worship leader, be depressed? Why
couldn’t I just snap out of it?

I know the joy of the Lord is our strength, but I had no joy, and consequently, no strength.

As I sat in my pastor’s regal office, surrounded by his mahogany bookcases, all filled with spiritual
books, Bibles and commentaries, I waited for the backlash. But it never came. He and his wife
embraced me and told me God cared about my situation. They recommended a Christian
therapist they knew who specialized in cases like mine. After I left, I felt better—for a moment.
Then depression crept up my back and weighed me down again. This cycle persisted until I
visited that therapist and she was amazing.

She helped me understand that, just like limbs and organs in the body can break down, so can
the mind. And we don't know why that mental breakdown happens to some and not others. But
when it happens, the brain needs to be cared for properly so it can heal.

I’ll admit, understanding my depression was very hard. Somehow, my therapist, who I know was
sent by God, was able to cut through all of the confusion and help me make sense of it.

Today I understand that depression is a mental disorder and it needs to be treated as such.
You see, when we break our leg, we don’t just shout scriptures at it. We go to the emergency
room, see a doctor, get a cast put on it, and then wait for it to heal. We have to do the same
thing with a broken mind.

I had to slow down and get treatment. I temporarily backed away from some of my church
obligations that were overwhelming me. It was a struggle to get myself together, but I used the
techniques my therapist gave me and slowly, I began seeing progress. I'm so thankful for her. By
the way, saints, we need to take the stigma off therapy. Some of us need it. I know I did.

One day my therapist, a fellow believer, grabbed both my hands and told me very calmly, “It’s
time to pray.” And pray she did! The Holy Spirit took over right at her practice, in her tiny,
cluttered office. She rebuked the strongholds on my mind and interceded for me.

When we got finished praying that day, I felt incredible. I also had an epiphany. I realized that I
was totally neglecting the spiritual side of my issue. I had stopped praying and seeking God once
the depression got to be overwhelming. That's where I went wrong.

To beat depression, you need three things: a Christian counselor or therapist that specializes
and is trained in treating emotional disorders; faith; prayer; and the word of God.

There are good days and bad days, but as I said earlier, now—and I know it was the grace of
God—I have the tools to shake myself loose from depression’s grip.

You can too. God is able to help you.

If you are suffering from depression, we encourage you to seek help and allow our intercessory
team to pray for you!
Click here to get prayer.
Copyright © 2017-2020 Empowering Everyday Women Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.
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