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Depression & the Bible

Posted by Meagan Jackson on

Meagan Jackson is a member of First Church who is a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern and a Nationally Certified Counselor. She offers counseling and play therapy on our campus. You can contact Meagan at or 817.504.1121.

According to the American Counseling Association, 1 in 10 Americans are depressed and 53% personally know someone who is struggling with depression, yet depression is still misunderstood. What does the Bible say about depression? Actually a lot! One story that always speaks to me is the story of Elijah (1 Kings 18-19). Elijah, a prophet of God, challenges the prophets of Baal to see whose god is real. God shows His power and might as Elijah and all of the prophets and king look on in amazement. Then after seeing God send fire down from Heaven, Elijah fears for his life at the hand of Queen Jezebel. Running away he lies under a 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!’”(1 King 19:4).

Elijah knew what depression was; he knew that uncontrollable sadness and weight that depression lays down.  He lies under the tree and falls asleep only to be awakened by an angel who offers bread and water. God sends Elijah on a journey, 40 days and 40 nights, to a mountain where God asks Elijah to wait for him. There a great wind comes, an earthquake, and a fire, but God is not found in those powerful events. Then, there is a still small voice; that is where God is found. In the midst of Elijah’s depression, God is there. God sends angels to help feed Elijah, then God meets with Elijah.

Many times we hear or read this story of Elijah in the midst of our own depression or that of a loved one and ask “Where is God?” In the midst of the weight and cloudiness of depression, it may be difficult to see or identify His presence, but He is always there, maybe with a still small voice, maybe by sending you an angel to provide something that you need. In the midst of depression, fear, and hopelessness, Elijah asked for help from God and he accepted help from others.

If you or a loved one is suffering from more than just some bad days and feel that you are suffering from depression, please seek help, from God, a professional, or a friend. You are not alone and do not have to suffer alone. 

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