Jeremy Sams Art Blog

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Time For Violence...Battling Depression and Anxiety

The Christian life is a violent life. We are told to "fight the good fight of faith"...We're also told that if we "through the Spirit, do mortify the deeds of the body, we shall live." Mortify doesn't exactly mean to be embarrassed here...It means to KILL. These violent metaphors of war-waging run all through-out Scripture.

However, we must ask ourselves, to whom or what is this violence directed? Does this mean we're to be violent to others? God forbid. Violent to our enemies? Yes...but, our enemies are not defined as being our neighbors, or people of other religions, or even people who've done us wrong. Our enemies can be found in two places: The first place is the spiritual realm where Satan and his evil minions dwell. He's a very real threat and many have been wounded and killed by this roaring lion. However, one of our biggest and most troublesome enemies can be found within us.

The Christian life, contrary to what the prosperity preachers tell you, is not "Your Best Life Now"...Sorry Joel, if you're living your best life now, then that means your life to come is going to be a hot one (cough-hell-cough). With that being said, our lives are filled with a roller-coaster of emotional highs and heart crushing lows. Let me be real honest here...losing two of my babies within 8 months HURTS. Holding their limp cold bodies HURTS. Watching dirt fill their graves HURTS. I can assure you, this has, by far, been one of the worst years of my life.

After experiencing these heart crushing lows, that stinking flesh in me wants to plunge my whole being into depression. My flesh is at constant war with my spirit and its battlefield is my mind. This holds true for my wife, Crystal as well. Her enemy is anxiety...anxious about death, possible diseases, sicknesses, abnormalities, will we ever have another live baby, etc... And from what she's been through, it's very understandable to have these feelings. It's like a cruel cycle of trauma-grief-anxiety-depression-anxiety-depression, etc...which seems impossible to break free from. She hates it...I hate seeing her suffer.

We're tired of playing defense in this fight for joy. So, we've decided to get violent. Tonight we started our first phase of attack. Our plan, so far, is to fight these enemies with a two-pronged attack:
  1. Fight with the Sword of the Spirit...the Word of God. We started tonight memorizing Matthew 6:25-34. After we get this passage, we'll move on to other anxiety/depression-crushing verses. Our goal is to renew our minds with the truth of God's Word so that when these feelings of anxiety or depression come along, we'll have some ammunition to hurl at the enemy. What we have to understand is that feelings come and go and you certainly can't trust them...they lie...However, Jesus is the TRUTH...He's the reality and His word is truth and in them is life. Scripture memory will be key in this renewal process. 
  2. Ministering to others. By taking the focus off ourselves and looking to the needs of others will be another great way to "fight for joy". This could be accomplished in several ways like giving the gospel, encouraging someone else, helping those less fortunate, etc...
This is going to be an interesting journey and we know God has placed us on this path for a reason. The last thing I want to do is waste my trial. So, I pray: God, help me to learn, teach me thoroughly, but please be gentle with us and give us the grace we need to persevere. We thank You in advance for the good that You're bringing us to.

 Would you like to go with us on this journey? Let's begin with memorizing Matthew 6:25-34 and look for ways to minister. Keep a sharp eye out...I bet God will be quick to place someone in your path. Be sure to check out another post I wrote earlier dealing with the subject of joy in Farming for Joy. Be sure to give any biblical suggestions you might have in this battle for peace of mind and joy.

Soli Deo Gloria


  1. Thanks Jeremy. I needed that. Even though I have never been through anything as heartbreaking as this, I battle with anxiety daily. That is a great passage. It's so wonderful to know that one day we will not have these ol' imperfect bodies and minds, and will never have to fight this war again. A couple years ago, I was going through a horrible stage of anxiety. I was having multiple attacks every day for no reason at all. During that time, I played "I Claim the Blood" in my bedroom on repeat for about a month straight. Sometimes I would turn it up until the speakers roared, and other times I had it so low you couldn't hear it, but I knew it was on. I felt that as long as that song was on, it my "shield." Also, at times that I was having a really bad attack, I would go somewhere quiet and start praying and thanking God for all of his blessings and I would name them one-by-one. It was hard for the devil to get through my mind while I was praising God! Those are a couple of things that always helped me. Praying for you guys. Love you!!!

  2. Great advice, Leah. Christ honoring music can really soothe the soul and naming our blessings will be a great way to take our focus off of the circumstance and place it where it belongs...on Christ. Solus Christus!

  3. No one knows ( except God) what you all are going thru...But we can pray that he will hear our prayers and help heal your broken heart soon...We are praying for you each day..remember God knows and understands all things..and he has a plan for you you and nanny