Summary: A case study in clinical depression and what God did to bring healing to Elijah.
OPEN: Psychiatry students were in their college class one day when their professor began a discussion to prove a point. "What we’re going to talk about today," the professor said, "are the emotional extremes that many mentally disturbed people go through… for example
“What’s the opposite of joy?" he asked one student.
"Sadness" the student answered.
"The opposite of depression?" he asked a young lady.
"Elation," she replied.
Turning to a young man from Texas he asked "the opposite of woe?"
"Well, now," the Texan replied "I suppose the opposite of woe, would be giddy up."
According to Psychiatrists Frank Minrith & Paul Meier, the majority of Americans suffer from a serious, clinical depression at some point in their lives. Most of these people never get help....they just fight this battle on their own.
ILLUS: When I was reading out Reader’s Digest this last month, I ran across an advertisement for Paxil, an anti-depressant (Reader’s.Digest, 2/03). It began with these words…
Loss of Interest
Then it concluded with these words: "Life is too precious to let another day go by feeling not quite ’yourself.’ If you’ve experienced some of these symptoms nearly every day, for at least two weeks, a chemical imbalance could be to blame. And life can feel difficult ALL DAY."
APPLY: To read this advertisement you would believe that most (if not all) of those suffering from depression are victims of a chemical imbalance. And indeed, the Holy Grail of psychiatrists is to find that magic pill, that powerful potion that will correct that imbalance and give people everywhere relief from the dark moments of sadness and hopelessness.
Depression is very real part of life for many people
ILLUS: A couple of years ago, the South East Christian Church offered a time during their Wednesday Evening Service (attendance of at least 600) for people to come forward and have the Elders lay hands on them and pray for healing. The speaker pointed out that there was "a lot of hurt in this room" - sickness, broken relationships, grief. He said that at the invitation, the elders would be available for prayers of healing.
The response began as a trickle. Soon, others began making their way down from the balcony; walking along individually or in pairs, or rolling forward in wheelchairs. Before long, the trickle became a torrent.
Elder Bob Carpenter said he was not prepared for the response to the invitation. "I was totally surprised by the magnitude of it."
Elder Bill Beauchamp did not expect the vast response either… nor did he anticipate the type of prayer needs revealed. "At least 2 out of 3 asked for prayer for depression," he said.
"I thought it would be more for physical needs. But so many said, ’I’m depressed. I feel unworthy. I see no future." I was amazed at how many felt unworthy."
ILLUS: At the famous Minrith-Meier Clinics - in an average week, 50,000 people will visit the for therapy. Seventy-five percent of these clients, says Dr. Meier, will have either