Creflo Dollar - Mastering Your Emotions Over Depression
Let's go to 1 Peter chapter 5 and verse 7. Now, we've been talking about mastering your emotions. We've been talking about taking authority over your emotions and tonight I'm gonna begin to start dealing with specific emotional issues, and the most prevalent one is the area of depression. And so, we wanna talk about overcoming this area of depression, but you have to understand it. You know, the world looks at depression, and they're just so convinced that the only way you can deal with it is medically or going through a psychiatrist. And I don't take anything away from that, but I'm gonna tell you what I know. This thing is a whole lot deeper, a whole lot deeper, and if you can understand what I'm gonna share with you in these two sessions then you will be able to conquer depression in your life.
And you may not suffer chronic depression, you may not suffer an ongoing type of depression, but every now and then people will meet certain symptoms where depression is concerned. I'm telling you it's not the will of God, and I am telling you that God knew depression was gonna exist, and he provided a way out, amen? So, we're gonna provide a way out, and you're gonna choose which way, I believe, according to God's Word, to stay out of this thing. Not only I'm not talking about tolerating it. I'm not talking about coming to a place where, you know, you can manage your depression. That's just not God. I'm talking about freedom and deliverance from depression, amen?
How many of you want some freedom? I mean be finished with it. I don't wanna be coming back every two years, every other month, every other day, but you have to understand and understand the source of where it comes from, so let's start off like this. I wanna take my time tonight and I wanna make sure you understand what it is. Let's define depression. I wanna attack it from three different perspectives. The first perspective is this: it is the result of something external. It's external pressures that get on the inside of your heart and begin to weigh it down. External pressures, whatever it may be, that enter on the inside, and it begins to weigh you down. It's pressures from the outside getting inside of your heart and weighing you down, so that's one way to look at it. External pressures or pressures from the outside getting on the inside and weighing you down.
Let's look at a second perspective of this word "depression". Depression is stress and it's pressure that's been internalized. It's stress and it's pressure that's been internalized. Now, it's still external, it's still coming from the outside, but now it's in your heart. Now it's in you. It's weighing your heart down. You're now internalizing it, and it is weighing you down. Okay, we kinda get a picture, then, of what it is. Now, based on what you've been hearing over the last several weeks on emotions, let's deal with it from that perspective, and I think this perspective will now give you some insight on how to handle it. Depression is the feelings that come from thinking thoughts that wear you down. Depression, feelings that come, it's a way you feel that comes from thinking thoughts that wear you down.
Now, from this perspective we can attack it, because now you know if it is feelings that come from the thoughts that wear you down, then you now see that if you can change your thinking you can change how you feel, amen? So, feelings that are produced from the thoughts that weigh you down, so we start off again today or tonight about what you're thinking about. So now, that ultimately where it's coming from, it's coming from those thoughts that you're having, so you gotta change the way you think if you wanna change the way you feel. Turn to your neighbor and say, "You gotta change the way you think if you're gonna change the way you feel". It's simple like that. It's simple like that, but most people your feelings have dominated you so, and you've internalized it to a certain degree where it's painful.
Depression can hurt if it's deeply internalized, but they can never figure out what's the first step in dealing with it, and I'm telling you the first step in dealing with it is to identify the thoughts that are weighing you down. Change what you're thinking, you change what you feel. Change what you're thinking, change what you feel. Now, you can come into an office, and you can have a therapist, and y'all can just kinda get it out, get it out, get it out, and that will give you some relief. But if you don't deal with the way of thinking that got it in, got it in, got it in, then there'll be a circumstance similar to the last one that triggered that way of thinking before and now you're revisiting it over and over again, because you don't know how to deal with the same circumstances that may cease for a moment, but then they will come again, because that's what life is. It's full of stuff.
It's gonna show up again and please understand the devil is after, watch this, not necessarily you, but your destiny. How can I stop you from reaching your destiny? So, I've got to produce circumstances and situations that will cause you to think a certain way and then I can cause you to feel a certain way and then I can ride on those feelings and keep you away from the will of God for your life". Now, let's look at some Scriptures. What does the Bible have to say about this? Let's look at 1 Peter chapter 5 and verse 7 in both the King James and the Amplified. You begin to see these instructions and now lets you understand that depression is a tool that Satan uses to stop you from achieving the call and the will of God for your life.
What's the advice that God has already given us? And then we've got to go back and evaluate whether or not we've been following it. Well, here is what it says here. Verse 7 says, "Casting all your care upon him," why? Cast your care upon him because he cares for you. Very interesting. That he says, let's look at the Amplified and the let me make a statement here. Cast all your care, and you know your care is your anxiety, your worry, your concerns. The Amplified says, "Casting the whole of your care," not some of it, "but all of your anxieties, all of your worries, all of your concerns, once and for all". That means we're not taking it back every five minutes. "Once and for all on him," why? "For he cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully".
Man, that's awesome, so here is the deal. Somebody says, "Well, what that gonna do"? And, see, you won't know. You know why? 'Cause you won't do it. You won't do it. Somehow in your mind, that's just too simple and most of the time I'm not concerned about the sophisticated things that enter your brain. I'm more concerned about things being so simple that you won't do it, and it requires a relationship with Jesus Christ to do this. I don't know how people who are not born again really deal with depression, and so how deep does it go? You go to the therapist. You maintain him, your psychiatrist. The next thing you know you're taking antidepressants. You're doing all of these things. What are you trying to do? Cover, but God says, "I'm not gonna cover. Give it to me. I'm gonna take care of it because I care for you affectionately and watchfully," and we don't see that.
We don't see that God's already gotten a way to deal with depression and the first thing he says is, "Take the things you're concerned about, you're worried about, you're anxious about, turn them over to me because I care for you". In other words, he says, "I don't want you walking around with this, because I know the destruction that it can cause". Cast it over on the Lord. Somebody says, "That sounds so easy and religious," but that's why we're teaching this, 'cause we need to know what does it mean. What are the action points that take place in casting the thing on the Lord?
Well, we know you got to change what you're thinking in order to change how you feel, so if you're gonna cast something over on the Lord, you're gonna have to cast or cast down those thoughts that are causing the depression, and you're gonna have to replace those thoughts with what the Word said. And you take the Word, and you put that up there, and you start thinking on that more than you're thinking on the thing that caused the care, and the new way of thinking is delivering you from the old way of feeling. And now through thinking God's Word or meditating in God's Word, it is making you prosperous and having good success in your life, and so the Word of God becomes the tool that God uses to put in your mind to replace that old thought that's bringing pressure on your life so you can change the way you feel, but we won't get in the Word. Excuse me for hollering. It's, like, all of the answers we need are in that Bible, and we just keep going around looking, excuse my English, everywhere else, looking for something to substitute God, constantly looking for substitutes for God. "I'll deal with it in any way except God".
There is an anointing that is genuine that will remove burdens and destroy yokes, but then in the world there is an anti-anointing. There is an anointing that tries to duplicate and imitate the real. There is an anointing to heal. What's the duplication of it? Medicine. You follow what I'm saying? Most people try to change their feeling by coming intoxicated. I hate to bring up weed again, but that's become... look at all of the things we're choosing to try to replace God. Now, you know what the Bible calls it when you try to use something or someone else to replace God and knock him out of first place and put that other thing else in the first place? You know what that's called? Idolatry. Idolatry.
So, you read the Bible. You say, "Well, that ain't in the Bible". Well, it is and there is a prophetic Word about an idolatrous degeneration, where God's no longer first place, and God's no longer the one depended on. We replaced him. Now, you ask yourself who and what have you replaced God with? He used to be first place. He's not there anymore. You've replaced him, and I am telling you he is your best to being free from depression, and this sanctified Bible-study group said, "Amen". All right, so let's look at another Scripture here. Look at Hebrews. I believe it's chapter 13, verse 5. Hebrews chapter 13 and verse 5. Let's look at it in the King James and the Amplified, as well.
So, you know, someone says, "I'm depressed". And you know that's a feeling, that's an emotion, and you say to them, "Well, change the way you think". And you say, "What do you mean change the way you think"? Well, the way you're thinking is causing the way you feel. And then they say, "Well, I don't know why I'm thinking this way". Well, let's look at what you're exposing yourself to. You see how that anatomy of life helps you to kinda diagnose and know what to do? Just don't find yourself stuck as a Christian. So, what are you exposing yourself to? Because whatever you're around, whatever you've been hearing, whatever you've been watching, you know, sometimes, you know, I like what my wife says.
She says, "I'm fasting from the news". I said, "Taffi, what you talking about"? She said, "I'm fasting from the news". She says, "It's fake news". I say, "Hold on. Are you trying to be funny"? She says, "No. Here is the fake thing about it. If you watch that stuff long enough, you'll think it's happening everywhere, on every street, all over the place, and the only thing you come out with is fear. It's not happening everywhere, it's not happening all over the place and that's fake, and I'm not gonna sit up there and let it deceive me into thinking that I can't walk out my door because of what I just saw". And it's kinda like the weather report. "The snow coming in. The ice coming in. Oh, stay at home. Go by the grocery store," and that's way up in north Georgia somewhere. It ain't gonna come near you.
Listen to what I'm saying, ladies and gentlemen. Depression is a tool that Satan is not only using on people who are not born again to try to keep them from coming to the light, but it's being used on Christian people who, and I'll tell you for the most part, who don't understand the grace of God and who are still trying to live their life under the law. That is depressing, to live a life where you're condemned and shamed, and you think God don't love you, and you think that you can't do enough, you can't pray enough, you can't fast enough, you can't be good enough. That was depressing to me. That was my, I'm like, "How much is enough? How much is enough for me to get to heaven? How much is enough for me to be anointed? How much is enough for God to bless me? How much is enough for me to experience some of the blessings that I see other people experiencing"?
And then no matter what you do, you don't know what's enough. That's depressing, because you know what you're thinking about? You know the thought that will enter in, internalize, and weigh your heart down? The thought is, "I don't know if I'm ever gonna be enough," so what does grace do? It comes up, and it tells you, "It's not about you being enough. Jesus is enough, and he is enough, and you can believe that," and all of a sudden there is a liberty and a freedom that you've never experienced before because you no longer struggle with trying to figure out what's enough.
And that's what 90% of the churches are doing. Under the law it's never enough. Under the law Satan accuses you of not being enough. Under the law you can't be enough and under the law you come to church and the preachers tell you you're not enough and that you're gonna go to hell and, "Oh, you did that and now God's gonna get you because you did that". And under the law your performance has got to do it and then you don't know if you performed well enough and then you find yourself trying to perform again.
And then when you fall, then you get up, and you try to perform better than you performed the last time, and it creates a sin cycle. That can cause a depression in the church. That we hide behind phoniness that we've perfected in the church and hide behind Scripture, and what really is going on is that we are so depressed and behind that depression there is a lot of sin that's going on because constantly you're hearing, "You're not enough. It's not enough. What you're doing is not enough. Come to church. It's not enough". But what happens is what you're exposed to that creates the way you think, and the way you think is gonna create how you feel.
This is depression and what we have, ladies and gentlemen, is the Word of God. We have something that can help the whole world, if they only believe, but we gotta start with the church. I gotta get you to believe. I gotta get you to know how to deal with heavy thoughts that are trying to be internalized and weigh you down on the inside. I am not saying that as a Christian you won't experience this. In this world you will have tribulation. Don't be surprised and shocked when it comes your way. I just wanna equip you, for when the evil day show up you know what to do, and you know this thing is not gonna have victory over you because you've been taught, you've been trained, you know what to do, and you know, "I don't feel good. Let me see what I'm thinking. I don't know what I'm thinking. Let me see what I'm exposed to".
And you know how to diagnose your situation to defeat the devil every time he shows up. What did you do? You just decided to come to a little Bible study on a Wednesday night and be committed to it and say, "I am here to learn, praise God, and I'm getting that Word on the inside of me, instead of that bad thought on the inside of me". And guess what happens? When I internalize the Word of God it doesn't produce depression. It produces a joy that becomes explosive and my faith and what I believe for becomes explosive, and I see things in my life because I understand that my exposure time will affect my thinking time, my thinking time will affect how I feel. And if you're feeling depressed, you've got to find that how you're thinking. Hallelujah. Thank you, Jesus.
All right, now look at this. Look at this, here he says, "Let your conversations," or your lifestyle, "be without covetousness". That's interesting 'cause, believe it or not, covetousness, money, mammon. Covetousness is mammon-based. Oh, I got a book on that. Get the book on it. It's mammon-based. It's mammon tries to say, "Don't trust God. You don't need God. Replace it with money. Replace your trust for God with money," okay? So, it says don't let your lifestyle or conversations be let it be without covetous. "And be content with such things as you have: for he has said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee".
I'd love to show you this in the Amplified. Look at what he says here. This is awesome, but before I explain what we read let's look at this. He says, "Let your character or your moral disposition be free from the love of money". Oh, anybody just see it? Don't be trapped by mammon. What is the love of money? The love of money is when you trust money more than you trust God. That's the love of money. The love of money is you're now going to try to replace God. Idolatry. You're gonna try to replace God with money, so when you feel depressed you're gonna go out and go shopping to see if you can feel better.
Well, that's materialism based in mammoth. It's, "Well, you know, I don't need to pray and believe God to heal me. I got money. I can go buy medicine," but the medicine ain't working on you. See, you're trying to replace God. "You know, I'm gonna go get me a big house and a big car," and dah-dah-dah-dah-dah-dah, but it's still ain't gon' be a home. And if you get a car, ain't nobody gonna say you look sharp in the car. And if you buy a $10,000 shoe, don't nobody like you enough to say, "You're sharp". You're still trying, and this is what mammon's objective is: commit idolatry. Move God out of first place. Don't trust him. Don't need him. Trust money. Need money. Pursue it.