Monday 16 October 2017

The 5 Mile Journey Through Sage’s Mind | 1st Mile: Depression

It’s been a while guys, just realised that it’s been almost a month since my last post. Don’t worry, I didn’t miss any of you. Mysses Lafunky has been so busy with her new life that she doesn’t have our time anymore but fear not, God has our time. Wa wa alright! So, for the last few days so many things have happened, that I barely had time to seek God’s face on what to write about. Then one day I was driving and the first rays of inspiration dropped on me. Took some extra days for the full expression of the inspiration. I was so excited that I jumped out of the bathroom to message Lafunky. So here we are by God’s special grace, a bond servant of His, sharing what I believe He has laid in my heart, a 5 Mile journey through the mind of Sage, starting with DEPRESSSION!

Have you ever felt depressed before? Like your life had no meaning or purpose to it? Ever heard the phrase: "Tears of a clown?" When taken literally, it means that even clowns are sad but hide their sadness behind the mask of a clown. Depression is a serious mental issue that unfortunately, a lot of people don’t take seriously and tell those going through it to pull themselves together. But it’s more serious than that and has ended up in the death of so many people around the world, celebrities and regular guys alike. One thing we must all know is that your status in life doesn’t exclude you from depression. The most dangerous part of it is that a lot of people don’t know that a family member or spouse of theirs is currently dealing or has dealt with depression. It’s at this point that I’ll get personal.

First of all, sorry Mama, you had to find out about this at the same time as the rest of the world. Just this year, it occurred to me that almost two decades ago, as a young boy, at different points in my young life, I contemplated the thought of suicide because I felt depressed. I even went as far as going into the kitchen, getting a knife to stab myself but somehow, I was never able to follow through it and neither did I ever tell a single person until almost two decades later when the memory sprang into my mind from nowhere. It was such a painful memory that I had subconsciously buried it in my mind and comfortably forgotten about it.
Even in the last two years, I contemplated suicide for various reasons as a result of my failure in different things that I held so dear to my heart.

There I was, a born again Christian thinking of different ways to kill myself, all because I felt depressed at something that I’d failed at. Therein lies the danger of depression. It isolates you and even when you are surrounded by people, you still feel like nobody gets you and that your life has no purpose. 

While thinking of this article, I kept searching for an example of someone in the bible that at some point would have felt depressed and one person came to mind. If I tell you, you won’t believe it. His name was Elijah. Yup! That Elijah! Mighty prophet Elijah! That had just won a great victory for God and then got threatened by a woman (truly, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned). Baba picked up his bags and baggage and ran like hell (I Kings 19:2-3). But wait, Elijah, didn’t you just win a great victory for God? (I Kings 18:22-40). Read it as your homework 😁. Immediately after that chapter, in the next chapter, this same man that had just won a great victory for God was asking God to kill him:

"But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he prayed that he might die, and said, 'It is enough! Now, LORD, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!'" I Kings‬ 19:4‬ NKJV‬‬‬‬

If you go back to Chapter 18 of the same book and also in Chapter 19, he kept saying the same thing, I’m the only one left! Sound familiar? Despite the fact that the nation had just given their lives to God. That is what happens when people experience depression, it paints the belief that you are the only one left; the only one that understands what’s going on and no one can help you. Then you begin to contemplate death as a solution, just like Elijah did. Just like I did. But we thank God that just like Elijah, I was rescued and countless others have been rescued (celebrities and regular people alike). 

How Do you Spot Depression?

  1. Things that used to matter, no longer matter. 
  2. Continuous state of sadness. 
  3. Continually feeling alone in the world. 
  4. Hopelessness. 
  5. Believing that no one can help you get out of the situation, even God! 
  6. Death is seen as the only rescue from the state of things. 

How To Overcome Depression 

  1. Refuse to allow yourself wallow in sadness and self-pity. 
  2. Reach out to a trusted loved one or counsellor. 
  3. Be optimistic regardless of the circumstance. 
  4. Surround yourself with love and care and allow them to penetrate your heart. Join a group or seek counselling from the right places e.g psychiatrists, Christian counselling groups etc. 
  5. Have a lifestyle change in order to put an end to activities such as drugs and alcohol that promote the feeling of depression. Be active and open your heart to the beauty of the world and the people. 
  6. Find a purpose in everything you do or set your mind to. 
  7. Accept Jesus as your Lord and Saviour and continue to remind yourself that God loves you exactly the way you are (Rom. 5:8, John 3:16). If you’re already a born again Christian, continually remind yourself that God loves you. 
  8. Wake up everyday and remind yourself that you are a member of the chosen generation, a holy people (I Pet. 2:9) and that before you were formed, your almighty Father knew you (Jer. 1:5). 

As we go into this week, the charge is to wake up everyday thanking God for the gift of life and go out with a mission to accomplish, no matter how small or irrelevant you may feel it is in the grand scheme of things. R.I.P Robin Williams (your movies made people all over the world laugh till their ribs cracked) and Chester Bennington (your songs helped a lot of us during our times of depression, yet we couldn’t help you overcome yours). 

See you next week as we journey ahead to the 2nd Mile, Disappointments. 


P.S. You can add or remove from the list. This is based on my experience and as such may not be as exhaustive as you would like. 

P.P.S. Nigeria recently celebrated 57 year’s of independence and also qualified for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. 

P.P.P.S I may not send this post to my mum. She go dey alright lol 😄 

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