Depression: When Jesus Isn’t Enough


depression, Jesus


Those with more experience and education have written about depression, specifically depression and religious beliefs. However, I have experienced depression and believed praying to God was a sufficient way to deal with it, so I’ll add my voice to the masses.

There were months when I felt as though a dark cloud hovered over me every day, all day. A persistent sadness overwhelmed me and drained my energy. I functioned out of sheer necessity. I cried on a daily basis. I preferred to sleep and did so as often as possible. There were a couple of times I literally clawed myself in hopes of clawing my way out of the funk.

I’d always heard in church that Jesus is enough — including being enough to make the depression go away. So I thought I just needed to pray harder. I needed to “lay it down at the cross” . . . again. I needed to trust more.

So I did.

And you know what? It wasn’t enough. Jesus wasn’t enough to make the depression go away. My faith wasn’t enough. My prayers weren’t enough. But you know what was? Anti-depressants.

Now I don’t know the scientific correlation between depression and suicide, but I do know that more than once I wished I was dead. More than once, I imagined ways to make that happen, though I never acted on those thoughts. However, there have been some tragedies in the community where I live over the past several months in which people could no longer bear their burdens and did end their lives. And, sadly, we’re all familiar with famous people who took their own lives, as well.

Depression is scary — not only for those experiencing it, but for their loved ones, too.

Thankfully, I had the courage to open up to my doctor and tell him what I was dealing with, and he listened. He prescribed a little, white pill that I’ve been taking every morning for about a year. Once we got the dosage correct, I settled into a better frame of mind.

I have energy again. Tears aren’t a daily part of my life. I don’t sleep the days away (although I still love a good nap). I look forward to life again. The burden has been lifted.

Christian friends, hear me: Jesus wasn’t enough to make my depression go away, but the anti-depressant was. That may sound heretical (but I’ve been called a heretic before, so nothing new here), but it’s my truth. It’s thanks to the daily pill that I can actually pray again, that my faith in a loving God is slowly being restored.

Please, if you know someone who is struggling with depression, don’t tell them to trust more or to pray more or that Jesus is enough. Please, encourage them to see a doctor or a therapist. Your voice of concern might be the catalyst that restores their mind to wellbeing.


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