“Life is a maelstrom of decisions. And if the decisions don’t get to you, the pressure will…Although life before a sovereign God assures us that God is in control, accomplishing his good plans even through our poor choices, it is easy to lose sight of this reality. When we do, we can feel as if an unwise decision has forever doomed us to a path that is second best.” Edward Welch, Chapter 12, Depression: Looking Up from the Stubborn Darkness
When I read this next chapter of Depression: Looking Up from the Stubborn Darkness, I immediately knew the author had hit a nerve with me. Over the past few years, I have wondered why simple decision making was so very difficult for me. Part of it, I’ve come to learn, is anxiety coupled with depression. But, part of it is just the impact of depression on my brain and mind.
Decision Making While Depressed Can Be Crippling
Making so many decisions in short amounts of time brings me down, I grow very weary. And these aren’t big decisions I’m talking about, I mean, my kids asking me, “can I have a bowl of ice cream” wear me down. And that sounds so crazy to me!! But, a quick glimpse into my brain of late…so, my child asks for ice cream, immediately I try to remember what other sweets they have had that day, I start thinking of how I’m ruining their diet because I give in to their requests for sweets too often, then I think what a bad example I am to be eating ice cream late at night as a treat, then I wonder how the next day is going to fair if we’ve all had too much sugar today. I mean the thoughts.don’t.stop. The racing thoughts? That is anxiety.
For me, the anxiety comes with the depression. I’m not sure which came first, the chicken or the egg, but I know they generally come together for me. Decision making is a HUGE part of the evidence of this in my life.
Worry over wrong decisions cripples me. To be honest, worry over SIMPLE decisions can cripple me. So, needless to say, this summer, with our decision to send our kids to school, I’ve had waves of panic and questioning myself and WHAT AM I THINKING!?!? 🙂 Does anyone else know what this feels like? Oh, please tell me you do!
But, I have to say that the grace of God has STEPPED IN big time. He is teaching me to say, “I trust You” every.single.time those fears and worries creep in. And, honestly, I’m getting better at it! It does take PRACTICE and you are creating a HABIT. But try it, say it and pray it all day long, “I trust You, God. I trust You. I trust You.”
For me, it’s a lesson in trust. Learning to let go. Giving up the false idea that I had control. Surrender.
It’s also a lesson in training my mind to fix my eyes on Jesus. To gaze on His beauty. To remind myself of His love for me that is unconditional. To think on things that are lovely, noble, right, pure. I have such a long way to go, but I’m so thankful for the opportunities to grow in this area of my life, especially with this difficult summer we’ve had.
What about you? Do decisions and/or fear cripple you? Have you found “a cure?”
More posts from this book
- from Chapter 4 ~ Nothing Happens Apart From His Will
- from Chapter 4 ~ Suffering Has a Purpose
- from Chapter 6 ~ The Words He Gives Us
- from Chapter 6 ~ Hope Takes Practice
- from Chapter 10 ~ Perseverance through Struggles
- from Chapter 10 ~ Perseverance Isn’t Flashy
3 Years Off of Anti-Depressants
I would love for you to read an update now that I have been off all of my anti-depressants for 3 years and am thriving. God has been so good to me. My mindset has changed. My health has changed. We are never truly hopeless if we have Christ. We have the power of the Holy Spirit living within us giving us the power to make the steps necessary to BE TRANSFORMED.