HAPPINESS IN THE SECULAR SENSE IS NOT VERY LONG In reading the book "
Happiness Is A Choice"
Barry Kaufman 7 steps to overcome depression. (Its a start) (I received this from a friend earlier today) Commit your life daily to the purpose of glorifying Jesus Christ. Spend some time each day meditating on God's Word and applying it to your life. Get rid of grudges daily. Spend a little time nearly every day getting more intimate with your mate and children. Parents, brothers, sisters, and other close relatives should also have a high priority. Do all you can to resolve family conflicts. Spend some time each week having fellowship and fun with at least one or two committed Christian friends of the same sex. If you are married, have fun with other married couples. In this way husband and wife can together benefit from intimacy with others. Be involved in a daily routine (including work, play, housework, projects) that brings personal satisfaction to you. Be convinced that this routine is God's will and purpose for your life-your way of glorifying Him. Do something nice for on special person each week. This kind deed can be physical(helping with a chore, for example), emotional (buying a book or giving counsel) or spiritual( having devotions together. For anyone who personally knows Jesus Christ as his Savior, and lives by these biblical principles happiness is a choice. Then I read on a blogger this from a mom. I don’t like the intimations of happiness being a choice. Call me jaded if you want but I just don’t like the idea of someone telling a depressed mom that she made the “choice” to be depressed. Yeah, right. I CHOSE to have horrific thoughts about harming my children. I CHOSE to slide so far down my pole that I landed in a psych ward. Yeap, that’s me. Choosing to be horrifically clinically depressed with OCD thrown in just for kicks. Why? Cuz I like it there. I like it in the dark, all alone, milling over thoughts of how to hurt my kids, thinking that everyone is out to get me.C’MON. And that does make sense doesn't it. Many do find themselves in a state of unhappiness, and before they know it, they have many of the symptoms of "
I fully undertstand that, don't you. There are few who want to get into a state where they are "
crushed under the load that sometimes life in general throws at them. I don't know anyone who doesn't have situtations in their lives that if allowed would totally crush them into a state of worry, fear, and anxiety. While it is true we do personally get our selves in to situtations that will result in a lot of unhappen results. But most of the stuff in our lives come via someone other means. While we create a lot of things in our lives that will cause of grief, worry, anxiety, there are a lot of events in our lives that are not of our causing and will result in the same problems. Life isn’t about what it hands you. It’s about how you handle life. Looking at life through that lens would make it seem that happiness is a choice and to a certain extent it is a choice. But sometimes life throws a curveball you just can’t avoid. So what are you to do? You have two choices. You can either let it knock you flat on your butt and stay there for awhile…..Or you can pick yourself up, dust off the dirt and mend the wounds, and go on your way. But the longer you stay on your butt, the harder you are going to find the strength to get up. So the scripture tells us to "
examine ourselves daily to see where we are in living life."
(2 Cor 7:1) We are to be like David in Psa. 51 we are to ask the Lord to "
cleanse our heart daily."
Psa 51:10. Psa 51:12 "
Restore to me the joy of your salvation."
And sustain me with a willing spirit."
I am happy once are twice a day. If Tiger Woods win I am happy. I am happy if I get to talk to my children. I am unhappy if I hear what my children are telling me about there life. I am happy if Charity is happy. If I have $100 in the checking account I am happy. I really don't focus so much on happiness. But there are ways to stay happy longer. I read this earlier today: Every day, it seems, we're flooded with pop-psych advice about happiness. The relentless message is that there's something we're supposed to do to be happy -- make the right choices, or have the right set of beliefs about ourselves. Our Founding Fathers even wrote the pursuit of happiness into the Declaration of Independence. Coupled with this is the notion that happiness is a permanent condition. If we're not joyful all the time, we conclude there's a problem.Yet what most people experience is not a permanent state of happiness. It is something more ordinary, a mixture of what essayist Hugh Prather once called "
unsolved problems, ambiguous victories and vague defeats -- with few moments of clear peace."
J. Scott McKay So I have learned happeness is a state of mind, and I am going to be happen sometimes, I am not going to to happen very long at a time. Happy could be described as the following ways feeling or showing pleasure, contentment, or joy causing or characterized by pleasure, contentment, or joy feeling satisfied that something is right or has been done right resulting unexpectedly in something pleasant or welcome slightly drunk used in formulae to express a hope that somebody will enjoy a special day or holiday inclined to use a particular thing too readily or be too enthusiastic about a particular thing Some one will say, "
How are you doing?"
I will say, "
They might say, "
Just good, not great."
What do they mean by that? You can't force a person to be good, or great, or to be in high spirits. If I am drunk, I could be really great in my mind, high in spirit. But it doesn't mean I am happy. (Of course I have never had a drink of Cool Light either.) No wonder I am never very happy. So where we are, not happy about this post. Or can we be pleased with what we have said, because someone might be happy to read it? Exercise your citizenship. Remember you belong to the Kingdom of Heaven. Do not regard yourself as belonging to this world, do not be ruled by its outlook, do not be governed by its tastes and interests. SHOULD CHRISTIAS BELIEVERS GET CLINICAL DEPRESSION SHOULD CHRISTIAN BELIEVERS GET CLINICAL DEPRESSION Christians Struggle With Life. How Should Christians Deal with Life’s Events? How to respond to emotions of Fear, Worry and Anxiety Sunday Evening I spoke from Philippians 1 again (as a matter of fact I have taught in this book now since I have pastored Rivers of Joy Baptist Church.) THE INTEGRITY OF WEARING THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST PERSONALLY An exhortation to steadfastness, unity, fearlessness. 27 Only let your conversation be as it becomes the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel; 28 And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God. 29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake; 30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. Phil 1:27-30. Now that does not sound like we as Christians should get into the condition that is called clinical depression. We hear the term so much "
most of us will use the term to describe us when we have the “symptoms” quote of depression. According to the DSM-IV, major depressive disorder (or "
) is diagnosed when five or more of the following symptoms of depression are present for most of the day, nearly every day for at least 2 weeks. At least one of the symptoms must be either persistent sad or "
feelings or loss of interest in activities. Constant sadness Irritability Hopelessness Trouble sleeping Low energy or fatigue Feeling worthless or guilty for no reason Significant weight change Difficulty concentrating Loss of interest in favorite activities As I am doing research on this subject, I note there are a number of definitions of terms we use to describe ourselves. Sadness, empty feelings, loss of interest, feelings of lack of fulfillment, downturn in mood or frame of mind, a feeling or display of gloom or anger or irritability over something perhaps trivial. So would you say any of the above or below symptoms are to characterize a Christian? And I WOULD say all people could describe themselves in these terms at times Our “emotional state of mind,” our “mood today is”, our “feeling today could be described as”, So I am taking a look at terms that are used in our description of ourselves. The process of giving an account or explanation of events in our lives. * Depression (mood), a common term for a sad or low mood or emotional state, or the loss of pleasure. An emotion is a "
complex reaction pattern, involving experiential, behavioral, and physiological elements, by which the individual attempts to deal with a personally significant matter or event."
It arises without conscious effort and is either positive or negative in its valence. Other closely related terms are: affect, a synonym for emotion affect display, external display of emotion disposition, referring to a durable differentiating characteristic of a person, a tendency to react to situations with a certain emotion feeling, which usually refers to the subjective, phenomenological aspect of emotion mood, which refers to an emotional state of duration intermediate between an emotion and a disposition http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com/emotional+state Of course we know people who are, have been, will be. I OFTEN GIVE AN ACCOUNT OF MY PAST EXPERIENCES. Charity and I often hear accounts of people’s experiences in life. This process of giving an account of our experiences sometimes are pleasant, sometimes they are heart wrenching, your emotions are forcibly moved to one level to another level of feelings, some good and some bad. So to get an idea of what we are dealing in terms we use, I am trying to understand what is meant by the terms we use.
“Emotion is generally regarded by Western civilization as the antithesis of reason. This distinction stems from Western philosophy specifically Cartesian dualism and modern interpretations of Stoicism, and is reflected in common phrases like appeal to emotion or your emotions have taken over.”
“Depression is a serious biologic disease that affects millions of people each year. The encouraging news is that it may be successfully treated. Learn how you can manage your depression by reaching out to others such as a health care professional or family and friends.”
Psychology and mood: * Depression (mood), a common term for a sad or low mood or emotional state, or the loss of pleasure. * Clinical depression, or major depressive disorder, a clinical term for a state of intense sadness, melancholia or despair that has advanced to the point of being disruptive to an individual's social functioning and/or activities of daily living. Subtypes of clinical depression: ::* Melancholic depression, characterized by the inability to find pleasure in positive things combined with physical agitation, insomnia, or decreased appetite. ::* Atypical depression, a common long term cyclical form of depression in which the individual can feel enjoyment, eat, and sleep, but there is significant lethargy, a 'leaden' feeling, and a strong response to rejection-related issues. ::* Psychotic depression, in which clinical depression co-exists with psychotic or delusional perceptions. * Postpartum depression, depression following childbirth, sometimes known as 'postpartum blues'. Now do Christians get into these kinds of “depressions”? And if so how do they deal with them. I often hear that Charles Spurgeon had “depression”? And I ask myself how is that possible? So I found this article about Charles Spurgeon:
“Few men in God’s army have been as faithful and productive as Charles Spurgeon. His work output, as it is recounted, seems almost superhuman: The church had many institutions which needed constant input from Spurgeon, such as the Pastor’s College, the Almshouses, the Orphanage, the Colportage Association and many evangelistic and compassionate societies, the latter usually being chaired by the elders. There were 66 of these by the time Spurgeon had been pastor for 25 years. The Pastor’s College generated a great deal of work, not only in the regular interviewing, lecturing and oversight, but also in the endeavors and cares of the churches founded by former students . . . Spurgeon’s literary work was immense. He compiled more than 140 books, maintained the monthly The Sword and the Trowel magazine (from 1865), and edited the weekly sermon (The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit) . . . [and] he responded to an average of 500 letters each week (p. 11). What is even more amazing is that he accomplished all this while having regular bouts with serious illness throughout the last 24 years of his life. These letters, many of which were written from France while on leaves of absence due to illness, are addressed to his congregation. Many of them speak of his pain and his trials, many of them speak of his great passion for the salvation of the lost, but all of them reflect the love and concern of a true pastor. The letters are divided into three time periods, Part 1: 1876-83; Part 2: 1884-90; Part 3: 1891-92. At the end of the book appear several short articles and sermons written by Spurgeon. This attractive volume includes pictures, illustrations, annotations regarding the circumstances referred to in the letters, and pictures of some of the original letters.”
Then I have read D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones Spiritual Depression (the book is not about depression) which is used to say that Christians can have depression.
“Very well, that is what I regard as perhaps the most important rule of all, that we must not concentrate overmuch upon our feelings. Do not spend too much time feeling your own pulse taking your own spiritual temperature, do not spend too much time analyzing your feelings. That is the high road to morbidity (p. 115);”
“If you want to be truly happy and blessed, if you would like to know true joy as a Christian, here is the prescription: ‘Blessed (truly happy) are they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness’ not after happiness.”
This book is not so much about depression (a word that has taken on official, clinical connotations), as it is about a lack of joy in the Christian life. End of this post, maybe. Thanks dear, deer, doe, Charity. Your buck Charles. Charles E. Whisnant, firstname.lastname@example.org