Here is my hypothesis: Depression is a progressive loss of faith, hope and love. First, something goes wrong in our life and we lose our faith in God and His goodness toward us. Next, we lose our hope for a good future, because we believe the lie that God no longer is for us, and may even be against us. Then we then lose our ability to love God, others and ourself.
I also believe that our healing lies in dealing directly with those three issues. If we believe that God does not like or love us, we will not trust Him with our life (place our faith in Him in a practical, everyday way). Instead, we will move away from Him.
How do you feel about being around someone who doesn’t like you? You most likely avoid them. So you MUST be able to believe God is good and truly loves you just as you are, and that His good promises are true for you as well, before you can re-enter into a healthy relationship with Him.
I think this is really the hardest part of regaining your communion with God. You have to make a choice to mentally believe this point, regardless of what your eyes see and emotions feel. It helps to think back to a time when you experienced God’s goodness (rarely is there a person who has never experienced His goodness in their life) to remind yourself that you believed it before, and can believe it again. God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He never changes, regardless of the situation.
Once you believe He really is good, and has a good plan for you, you will be able to hope in Him again. Hope is the substance upon which faith is built. Hope means you are eagerly and earnestly expecting something which you cannot see with your eyes, but that you have been told is coming.
So where do we find out what is coming? The Word of God.
2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
Heb 2:1 says
1 Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.
7 Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, 8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
14 For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;
19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.
If we don’t earnestly remember and act upon the Words we hear, they will slip away from us and lose their power in our life. Use it or lose it when it comes to the Word of God.
Finally, when you feel safe in God’s care for you, and are eagerly expecting Him to meet your needs, you then become free to return God’s love for you. Filled with His love, you are able to give that love away to others. You are also able to start seeing yourself through God’s eyes and the truth of His Word. You start to love yourself and treat yourself better.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
So if you feel far from God, lost and alone, I challenge you to see if your faith, hope and love are where they need to be. If they are not, do something today to regain your faith, hope and love today.