From the Archive: Tools to Change

Week 3 of my Journey out of the Pit

I’ve shared in previous posts that 1) the rungs to help us climb out of the pit are the truths about ourselves; and 2) our feelings are not facts.

After the first two sessions, I was still integrating the new thought patterns into my life. One night, I was feeling down and negative about myself. I was in physical pain.

I looked back at my counseling notes and remembered:

One day at a time…THIS is the day that the Lord has made…

I remembered a pastor’s message to “make a joyful noise.”

I started to sing (I don’t remember what song). After a few wobbly notes, I was singing praise songs.

I spent time in my room, with Itunes playing on my laptop, and relaxed for half an hour. Physical pain subsided as I quieted my thoughts.

The next time I met with my counselor, she reminded me of these Bible verses:

James 4:7-8

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8(a) Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.

She encouraged me to resist the negative thoughts that had dragged me into depression and to turn and embrace God, who is powerful.

When we say, “Help me,” His Spirit comes in and rescues us.

The journey out of depression is like taking baby steps.

My counselor gave me some tools to help me in my battle with depression:

Get out in the sunlight.
Do something to move. Get my body in motion.
Deep breathing
Muscle relaxing
Picturing a quiet place (which for me was our friend’s cabin on the river)
Thinking of a hymn or song
Remembering helpful Scripture verses

Change is uncomfortable, but without it, we can’t grow. Change isn’t going to happen by accident, but by applying the tools I’ve learned and working on myself.

I thought of myself as damaged goods, but Jesus paid the price for my sins because to God I am worthwhile. I have value.

Therefore, I need to take care of myself.


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