There was a time when I prayed every night before going to bed that I wouldn’t wake up the next day. At that point in my life, it seemed to be the only prayer that I could pray. I couldn’t contend with the pain that I was feeling, my emotions were drained and the thought of facing the next day was just too much to bear. It felt like an ongoing cycle with no end.
Throughout my life, I’ve been through different periods of depression. It got so bad to the point where I’d be walking, my knees would get weak and couldn’t hold me up. I couldn’t really understand what was going on inside my body and that made me feel worse. When suicidal thoughts came to my mind, that’s where I recognize that I needed help and I reached out for it.
Stress and depression are tools consistently used to keep us in bondage. You see, the thing about the enemy is that when you’re at your lowest, he doesn’t decide to leave you alone he adds pressure to your situation and most times causes it to feel worse than it is. He doesn’t want you to be able to think clearly, he doesn’t want you to be aware that Jesus is with you. He wants you to feel like you’re all alone and no one understands you or what you’re going through.
When one is physically ill if their mind is at peace then their entire body is at peace. When one is experiencing stress or depression, its effect is felt throughout the body.
If you find that you no longer enjoy the things you used to. You prefer being alone even though you were once sociable and when you’re alone worries, and fears seem to take over. You feel this deep-rooted sadness that seems to hold you captive, it’s time for a change. Do not allow this feeling to completely consume you.
Get up and fight
Don’t listen to the lies, get up and fight, talk to someone, and write down the feelings that you find hard to express. ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter chapter 5 verse 8). I can attest that releasing your innermost emotions can somewhat calm you at times. That’s how I started writing poems which later became a book. Get a new hobby or socialize don’t sit around all day thinking it will only make things worse.
God has given us everything we need; the enemy tries to keep us in the dark because he wants us to forget the power we possess through Jesus Christ. At times we must encourage ourselves like David, “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God” (Psalm chapter 43 verse 5).
Whether, you are stressed, overwhelmed or just low in spirit, praising God have a way of releasing stress and freeing us from bondage. Praising can help us to take our eyes off our situation and placing our attention on the God of our situation. Let us also pray continuously, tell God how we feel and allow Him to help you through your situations, he is able to.
As people of God let us be more accountable towards each other, check on your ‘strong’ friends, the ones that are always “okay”. You never know what some of them are struggling with especially during this pandemic.
Latanya Fraser Cato is an elementary school teacher who enjoys reading and writing poetry. She is currently a Sunday school teacher at her church in Japan and has served on various youth-related ministries both in church and school in her home country Jamaica. She has a passion for counseling and helping others. She has published a book of poems entitled Soul’s Inspiration which she hopes will assist individuals facing various challenges..