Joyce Meyer - When You're Hurting
Ginger Stache: Hey everyone! Welcome. This is Joyce Meyer's Talk it Out podcast, where Joyce teaches the Word of God, my friends and I talk through the real stuff of living it. And today, we have a very special edition for you. In fact, this world is going through a lot of really hard stuff. You may be going through a lot of really hard stuff. There's sadness, and depression, and anxiety, and we realize that we have had some very insightful and helpful conversations about depression that we want to share with you, today. Picking some of those best moments of the podcast to help get you through hard times. So, this is a little gift for you, today. And I think it will really make a difference for a lot of you. Joyce will be here with us, of course, my friends, Jai and Erin. We'll be talking with Dr. Henry Cloud, Lisa Harper, and so much to encourage you and share with you, today. You know, destiny's child, Michelle Williams, she had everything. She had fame and fortune, but that still did not keep her away from dealing with depression. It can strike anyone. Sadness, anxiety, those fit, those things are universal to so many people. So, we're gonna meet her and talk with her in just a minute. But first, here's Joyce to describe what that pit of depression is like.
Joyce Meyer: You know, we all have times in our life when we get disappointed and the answer to being disappointed is to get reappointed. We all have times when we're discouraged but the answer is to then find a way to be encouraged. Just like light always overcomes darkness, positive things always overcome negative things. Now, there's a little place that the devil wants us to live in called, "The pit". Anybody know about the pit? The pit of depression, the pit of discouragement, the pit of fear, anger, whatever it might be. Well, what is a pit? It's a sunken place, a low place, a dark and an unpleasant place. I believe self-pity is a pit. There's nothing worse than spending a whole day sitting around in a half-dark room feeling sorry for yourself. It's terrible. It's certainly not a place that God wants us to be in and it's certainly not a place that Jesus died for us to live in. Joseph's brothers threw him into a pit and he ended up in the palace so he must have found some way to get out of that pit. And you may be in a place like that right now. Maybe some of you watching by television, you think you accidentally turned this program on, just flipping through the channels and you're sitting in a pit of depression or fear or anger and it's no accident that you've joined us. God is gonna show you through his word how you can get out of that pit. Now we pray for God to get us out of places we don't wanna be in but, to be honest, it's not all about prayer. I've found out many times when we pray and ask God to do something for us, he shows us what we need to do. I'm gonna say that again, just to make sure you got it. A lot of times when we ask God to do something for us, instead of just magically doing it for us, he shows us what we need to do to change that thing in our life.
Michelle Williams: You know, when you are in a pit, the pit of depression, let's just go ahead, and just park there in the pit of depression, sometimes you do lay around. I know for me, my experience was laying around for weeks. No one called, the world didn't stop. "Michelle was depressed, stop everybody, stop. Stop".
Ginger Stache: Yeah you want that don't you?
Michelle Williams: You want that but, nope, it did not happen.
Ginger Stache: "It doesn't make sense that other people are still living and having fun when I'm hurting".
Michelle Williams: It did not happen and you're sitting there stinky, depression makes you stink. Now, just to be honest, because sometimes you're so weak, you don't know if, my experience, you know, you are laying in the bed. You were so weak that you're going, you're getting up to use the bathroom, and getting back in the bed. And so, what I started doing when I was in that place: "No, get up. Brush your teeth". Okay? Okay. You might even get back in the bed. Okay, but, get up, brush your teeth. "Okay, now take a shower". Okay. And then it's like, "Okay, what are you meditating on"? You know? Putting some praise and worship music on or music that uplifts you, because you do have to make the move for yourself. You are not gonna pray a prayer and then like Popeye, your muscles, you gonna eat some spinach and then all the sudden you're gonna feel strong, it is a process.
Ginger Stache: Tell me what that depression felt like for you because I know it's different for everyone but there are consistencies. There are things that someone else listening will hear Michelle and say, "Yeah, I get that". What'd it feel like for you?
Michelle Williams: Well, depression for me, it started around whatever age group the seventh grade is, that's how far back it went. So, it didn't happen, all of a sudden, when I got in destiny's child, the music industry didn't make me sad, okay? It's,so, I remember not wanting to be around people, isolation. My grades were failing. I didn't care. That's where it started for me. And so, then, I kind of went up, into my thirties not with a diagnosis, you know? I knew in my 20's something wasn't quite right. This is, you know, during success, touring, being around people, people dream to be around and I'm like, "I feel like I'm depressed". Something, I felt like I had a name to it then, but in the seventh grade, I didn't. I thought it was growing pains.
Ginger Stache: Did you think that, that success that you found, 'cause you hit, you hit it big, would take care of all of those feelings? Like, somehow, getting what we want should fix those problems.
Michelle Williams: I didn't think success would take it away, I thought success would just help me obtain, maybe, the things I couldn't obtain as a child. You know, we were fed, we had clean clothes, but I wanted that coach purse, you know, where you put it in your back pocket and the tassel would hang out? You know? I wanted that. I wanted Nike. I didn't get my first pair of Nike until I went to college. So, to me, success meant I can obtain certain material things, right? But then, you notice, okay, after I obtain material things, you know? After I'm able to sit back and watch my account build, its,that didn't take away that thing.
Erin Cluley: Yeah.
Jai Williams: That deep depression.
Michelle Williams: That depression. But like I said, it wasn't until my thirties that I actually got a diagnosis of depression, and I was like, "Wow".
Erin Cluley: Did you feel relieved, like when it had an official name?
Michelle Williams: I definitely felt relieved because you know, I had a name to it. And then, it's like, okay, now that I have a name to it, I don't want that to be my label.
Ginger Stache: That's a great point.
Michelle Williams: So, now, what am I doing to work it out, you know? But there had been some ups and downs in that journey since that diagnoses of depression. You know, you can go years sometimes without something happening, and then something happens where you're like, "Oh, I'm not healed from childhood stuff that even put me in depression in the seventh grade". So, getting to the root of, its,everything has a root, everything has a root.
Ginger Stache: Well, you even mentioned that success can be a type of trauma on its own.
Michelle Williams: Yes. Absolutely, success can be a trauma. Trauma just isn't blood and gore, trauma is your life changing, your privacy being taken away, and maybe somebody following you to your home. I've had the type of trauma where, when I, when we would check into the hotel room security would have to walk in to check the room to see if no one's hiding in the closet. And I'm like, "Wait a minute, I just wanna to go back to Wisconsin dells with my family and be normal". And we didn't have to worry about if someone's, you know, in the closet, lurking. You know, that's a little wonky.
Jai Williams: Yeah, you lose your sense of privacy.
Michelle Williams: You do lose your sense of privacy. And then, you're just taught, this is what comes with it, suck it up.
Ginger Stache: When you talk about finding that root, 'cause I think that is so important, if we don't pull the root out, it just keep sprouting back up. How did you find that root? Because I'm guessing, I don't know this for sure, but I'm guessing that part of finding that root also brought you to a place where the Word of God was able to help you pull that out, and to help you change whatever happened, that wound to begin with.
Michelle Williams: Prayer and therapy. They go together because that therapist is trained to help, to ask you questions. You don't know the process, or there are different therapy types or practices. I won't get into all of that, but they ask certain questions for a reason to get down to the root and before you know it you're talkin' about something that happened at the age of 3 or 7, right? Or there are certain emotional needs a child needs to have met, or if not, when they are an adult those symptoms begin to manifest. So, if you're wondering why you're 35 years old, 45 years old reacting like a child having a tantrum when you lose something or something happens, go back to your childhood and see at what moment, you know, this is just, why am I reacting as if somebody took my gummy bears away from me? Well, what happened to you around that age? Get in to the root of that. Whether there was bullying, verbal abuse, sexual abuse, witnessing domestic violence, all those things, they take root. Especially, when you grow up in a home where you don't talk about it. You know, I grew up in a home where we didn't talk about it. Shout out to my family, awesome family, successful family, a family full of ministers, doctors, great, great people, but I think my mom's generation did not talk about things. You saw things and you swept it under the rug. Now, I know when you lift this rug up, there are no dust bunnies, but if you lifted our rugs up.
Ginger Stache: I'm not so sure.
Michelle Williams: I'm just, I just wanna keep Joyce meyer, I just wanna keep the podcast in a good light.
Erin Cluley: No dust bunnies.
Michelle Williams: So, imagine you're just sweeping stuff under the rug. And maybe, because, my parents didn't know how to talk about things because they didn't talk about things in their household. "Are you alive? Did it kill you? Okay, there's nothing to talk about. Do you have a roof over your head? You have clothes on your back? Are you without food? There's nothing to talk about".
Jai Williams: Be grateful.
Michelle Williams: Be grateful. That's it.
Jai Williams: I think, I wanted to add this, like Michelle and I have a very similar upbringing as well, even all the way down to, like, you know, how I talk about being cogic, like a Pentecostal girl, like at the core, but one of the things in my upbringing was not, like, we didn't normalize therapy or counseling. It's a very,culture of, you know, what is it? "Don't bring a reproach on God, yourself, or the church". So like, don't talk about things to people. Like, this even, was not normal, like, having friends that you actually were honest with. And believe that what's helping with depression now, even when I struggled with it when I went through postpartum depression, which is different than, you know, like, clinical depression, but that is real. Like having a child and going through that real pit and hormonal shift. I didn't even, like I was still at a place 'cause I was what,22, 23? And I was still at a place where I'm like, I didn't know I could go and talk to somebody and so I think,
Erin Cluley: Just stuffing stuff down...
Jai Williams: I stuffed it. And I didn't know, I was just lying there and then everybody, "Aww girl, you goin' through postpartum". And that was it. And I was like, "Well, how do I get up"? "How do I get up? What do I do"?
Ginger Stache: "What do I do with it"?
Jai Williams: Yeah, "What do I do with this"? So, I think it's important for us to start normalizing talking to people, normalizing even therapy, like, normalizing dealing with it.
Ginger Stache: You know, I don't know what you're pit looks like, but like Jai said, we really do need to normalize talking about these things together. Not being afraid to be vulnerable, and to get the help that we need. So, whether it's anxiety or depression, or whatever, it may be in your life, talking with a counselor, a trusted friend, and certainly, taking it to God, is so important. It can make such a huge difference for you. Hear this, before we continue. We've got so much more, but listen to this. You are loved. You are valued. And you are so important in this world. There's so much that God has for you to do. So, don't give up. And we want to continue by a conversation that we had with Lisa Harper, that just talked about the difference it can make to let some of these things out in the open, not to hide some of the struggles that we're dealing with. And we'll continue to hear more from Joyce. But, right now, I want you to listen to this and take it to heart. I got a message from someone that really touched me. And she was talking about being in that place where they had tried to have children for a very long time and it didn't happen. And it still hasn't happened, and coming to where she was at a place of peace in that. Knowing that it didn't mean she was in complete. That there were things that God was doing in her life that we're good and teaching her through that. And I think that's important, that we look at all the different facets of womanhood.
Erin Cluley: My sister, I was talking to my sister yesterday. And she and I are four years apart. She's younger than I am, but she's married, and people ask her all the time, "When are you going to have a baby"? And they don't want kids. And that has been hard for her, not because she doesn't want them, they're comfortable with their decision, but that's not,like we're talking about earlier, "That's not acceptable". There's something wrong that, that's not,like, "Why don't you"? And they'll say, to my mom, "Oh, I'm so sorry. You can't have grandkids". And it makes me frustrated, for her, because she's not a second-rate woman. She is amazing. And God has put so much in her and she's so strong. And she has so many gifts, I can't wait to see how God uses them. Not because she's going to be a mother, but because of whatever her story is. So, when we were talking about this, I had this realization that our stories are so unique. My story is different than yours, and yours, and yours, and everybody's. And God loves us so much, infinitely, like you were saying, that his story is unique for you and me. And they are gonna look so different, but his heart for us is good. You and I were talking about it earlier, the goodness of who God is. He's so good, even amidst the pain of the woman waiting for years, or the woman who doesn't want kids, and feels like she's doing something wrong, or whatever situation you are. That's how good he is.
Ginger Stache: And the different types of healing he's done in each one of our lives. That hole, that healing, that we all need in one way or another, that he's there for every aspect of it.
Lisa Harper: I'm so glad that we're talking about this because I think, even y'all talking about it, will help dispel the myth for some people, who do think there's one way to do this Christian womanhood thing right, and everything else is a, you know, is kind of a pale imitation. "But if I do it right, I'm to be married by this age, and have two point three kids, and I'm gonna cross-stitch, my Bible verses, and I'm gonna," and there's still kind of a pretty narrow paradigm.
Ginger Stache: Well, you do have to do the cross-stitch thing. That one is in the Bible.
Lisa Harper: Oh, I'm going straight to the hot place. I'm about as domestic as wallpaper, I cannot cross-stitch. But even there, Ginger, when I did become a mom, because I made a conscious choice in my forties, probably mid-forties. I'd read,y'all have read it a million times. You may have cross-stitched it. You know the cs Lewis quote about if you want, if you don't want to get hurt, if you don't want to experience the pain, to not love anything. Don't even love a pet, don't wrap your, but at the end of this quote,it's one of the most powerful quotes on love. He says, at the end of it, "Your heart will be locked up tight in a coffin". And the real,"The real grief is that you won't be hurt, but your heart will be impenetrable". And I remember reading that for the umpteenth time, I have a Platonic crush on cs Lewis. And I thought, "I've got a choice. I may never get married or be a mother, but I have a choice to either protect my heart and keep it from getting hurt, and then my heart will get hard, or I can lead with God says to worship with my heart and my mind". So, I can press into the lives of my friends' kids. I can press into other people knowing, "Yeah, there's gonna be missteps along the way. Sometimes it'll be hard". But I just am not gonna kind of cocoon my heart because people hurt my feelings. When I was bringing Missy home, from Haiti,I've been in Christian counseling for years to kinda keep it between the lines. The answers are in God's word. If it's,I'm trying to apply it to a place where I was wounded, I can be such a, just such a dweeb. And so, helps me to have an older, wise counsel to go here's where you need to go, to walk right with the Lord. So, I did a lot of,a lot of counseling, pre becoming an older adoptive mom. And my counselor was talking to me, one time, about love, and she said, "Lisa," she said, "What will it look like for you to love Missy"? And I was like, "Well, I'll just,I'll love her". And she was like, "But love". And I said, "Yes, there's three Greek terms for love..." all my love knowledge. And she said, "But what will it look like"? And I was like, "Well, you know, I'm gonna affirm her verbally, if that's her love Langu," like, I'm, I was lost. You might as well have asked me,you know, I dated a physicist once, that was exciting. Yeah, I read a book "Physics for the rest of us," but that's what it felt like. I felt so foolish when she was saying, "What would that look like"? And she said, "You know how to do this. You just don't see the profound simplicity of it". She said, "Love for Missy, a child who lost her parent when she was a baby, who's been in an orphanage in Haiti, who's very sick. Love for her will be consistency and safety". And I went, "Oh". And then, I went, "But Lynn, I travel, I'm always in different cities". And she goes, "You are consistently in different cities. You are consistently..." and I was like, "That's how I love my kid". I'm consistent. I'm consistent with discipline. I'm consistent with my personality. I'm a verbal affirmer. I'm consistent with, and I thought, "Oh". It's like, it took all this pressure off. So, when you go, "I don't know if I'm even do it right". I'm like, "You're doing it beautifully, 'cuz you're being consistent". I've got this beautiful kid from Haiti. She doesn't look like my other friends, she's socially,there's some places where she's playing catch-up. And I'm just determined to have her be exactly who God made her, and it means, our lives look a little different. And I don't always get the, I just don't always fit in what a mom looks like in this season of life. But I think being, I mean, 60 is right around the corner for me. The one thing I have is, I look back at the consistency, the consistent faithfulness of God in my life, and go, "That's what he's teaching me to do, is just," I'm gonna to keep walking. Eugene Peterson says "Obedience is a long walk in the same direction".
Jai Williams: And I do think it's important to bring back what you said about the cs Lewis quote about the "Cocooning of the heart," because it's easy when you have those, you know, the whole, like the, "Hope deferred makes the heart sick". You know, like, if you allow yourself to, and this is why people say like, "How do you keep," I get a lot of messages like, "How to keep moving"? I don't, I just make a choice that, "God we gotta do this". Like, I will not allow my heart to cocoon. I will not allow myself to sit in a dark room, and be upset, or sad because this happened. 'Cause that can apply to not just to motherhood, but to divorce, or to any kind of disappointment. Anything that your heart has desired that you haven't gotten yet, like, you can allow yourself to get in that dark space, where you say, like, "I'm gonna have my heart hardened". But the key is to keep that heart pliable and keep it open, and run towards God as he's running towards you. Like, I think that's super, super important.
Ginger Stache: What a great conversation.
Joyce Meyer: Let's look at this again 'cause this is so good. "Moreover [let us be full of joy now!] let us exult and triumph in our troubles and rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that pressure and affliction and hardship produce patient and unswerving endurance. And endurance (fortitude) develops maturity of character (approved faith and tried integrity). And character [of this sort] produces," I love this! "[the habit of] joyful and confident hope of eternal salvation". It becomes a habit. Make your mind up today, that you're gonna enjoy life, on purpose. No matter how many troubles you came in with, find something today, that you can enjoy. Think about something that's gonna make you happy. Go be a blessing to somebody, but refuse to let your day just be 24 hours of sadness, and being gloomy, and thinkin' about every negative thing that you can come up with to think about. First way that you can increase your joy is by doing something about what goes on in your mind. What goes on in your inner life? What goes on in there, behind those closed doors? How do you talk to yourself? Those are thoughts. They're just inside thoughts. How do you talk to yourself? Especially, how do you talk to yourself, about yourself? Hey, I say good things about me, just in case nobody else does. I've already got it taken care of. Now, I didn't for a lot of years. I had all kinds of bad things to say to me, about me. But you are not ever gonna be happy if you don't learn how to enjoy yourself. You have to learn how to enjoy God, enjoy yourself, and when you do that then you start to enjoy other people. How do you talk to yourself, about yourself? How do you talk to yourself about your life, your future, your past, the situation that you're in? "This is never gonna change. I'm so sick and tired, and sick and tired, sick and tired, sick and tired, sick, sick, sick and tired". And then, you go to God and say, "I don't understand why I'm so sick and tired". Come on, let's get a slight revelation here, today. "I'm sick and tired of this. I hate my job. I hate my life. I don't know why I'm unhappy". What you say to you is more important than anything that anybody else says to you. Matter of fact, if you say enough good stuff to yourself, you can even be around somebody that just makes a lifetime out of trying to pull people down, and it don't have to bother you at all. Because it's what you know about yourself that matters, not what everybody else thinks.
Ginger Stache: What were some of the things that you saw at your darkest moments when God began lifting you out?
Michelle Williams: Some of the things that I saw at my darkest moments...
Ginger Stache: What'd you do? How did you change your thinking?
Michelle Williams: 'cause I didn't see a lot of good things in my darkest moments, if we talkin' about, we keepin' it real? I didn't see a lot of good things in my darkest moments, I was ready to end it, end it all. But,I'm tryin',what got me through deciding that day, the world did not stop for me. That's kinda sobering. Like why was I expecting, people care about you, they might,but when people pick up the phone and call you don't really tell them how you're doing 'cause you don't want to be a burden. So, definitely, 'cause I'm like well, because I have faith it was, it was good to, you know, pick up the word and get those songs back in my spirit because for a while I felt so ashamed of what happened, I stopped listening to praise and worship music. I felt shame.
Ginger Stache: How do you get past that? That shame.
Michelle Williams: Just know, like, shame to not listen to something that's gonna get me through, that got me to where I am? I think that's what the enemy wants. Is if he can take away certain things and now he has you to himself, that's the perfect place for him to take you out. The perfect spot. "But you will not win, today," and he did not win. You know, there's a song that I've been listening to called, "I'm alive because there's more," you know? And so, there is more. Every time we get up and take a breath, there is more, there is purpose. I will not, as much as I can, I will not let the enemy celebrate and put his little, you know, what's the party hats on and blow the, the thing? "You not goin' do that with me".
Erin Cluley: So, was it like a perspective change?
Michelle Williams: Definitely a perspective change. And then declaring: "No more depression". No more depression. I was tired of those pits. So, now, if I sense it, I'm not saying that I don't have things that come along my way that can make me upset, but I no longer sit. I go workout, I drink my nutritional shakes, I eat, 'cause for me, it affects my appetite, so when you don't eat, you're weak and you're no no, no, no, no, no staying, not staying busy, but doing something productive, to stay up and that is my responsibility. Oh, and end of 2019, coming into 2020, I said, "No more". No more. And in 2020, there was no more. Did I have hurts and triggers? Absolutely. But did I get in the bed? No. How do we help people? How,what are the, do you have people close to you? What do you do if somebody tells you, "Hey, I'm down and depressed"? If, you know, I don't know about your experience, well we know your experience with it, what are some of the things that maybe we can help people be like, "Okay, definitely don't say that"?
Michelle Williams: Or you know, what are some of the cool things that you know, we do?
Ginger Stache: I think that's a great question. And one of the first things is, I tell them, "Thank you". Like, "Thank you for telling me that".
Jai Williams: That's so good, acknowledging it, yeah.
Ginger Stache: Because I love them so much and I know how hard it is to admit that sometimes. And to just say, "Thank you for sharing your life with me like that, and I will be here, I'll pray for you, I'll talk through anything you want me to. We can do what you want, we can pray together, I can pray for you and keep it to myself. We can look at the word together". But I think being there for them is more important than anything else that I know of.
Erin Cluley: I was just talking to a friend last night, it's a friend of Mike and I's, and he struggles with depression. So, he was just sharing what that experience has been like and I was, I told him, "I'm so appreciative of you opening up about this. I know it's not easy to talk about". And he was saying how he and his wife have been together so long, she's learned like, when he's in that place and so she knows sometimes, he doesn't need to talk. And so, it's learning that, from what I took from him, learning that person and respecting what they might need. 'Cause he said, usually, he can be over it, like the next day might be better. And so, it's not pushing them, but sort of going at their pace. I found that was really interesting, just, that's what worked for them.
Michelle Williams: And that's a form of being there for that person. Verbally or non-verbal.
Erin Cluley: Different for each person, like, what do you need?
Ginger Stache: But sometimes being there for them also means some tough love. You don't let someone stay in that dark, dark place, you're there to help them, even if it's just incredible intercessory prayer. "I'm not going to give up on them, I'm going to keep telling them that God loves them and has a good plan for them, even if they don't want to hear it". Not to the point where it hurts our relationships, but I'm not going to give up on them.
Erin Cluley: That's why Jai calls me, "Nosey", 'cause that's what I've done with her.
Jai Williams: We've stopped calling you nosey, we call you, "Carin' Erin".
Erin Cluley: Not "Nosey Rosey".
Jai Williams: My initial name was, "Nosey Rosey," because, and then we were like, "Carin' Erin".
Erin Cluley: Because I care and I will not stop.
Jai Williams: Honey you will not, relentless. Okay, but the thing, here's one of the things I like to ex, just share with people that get people that come to them to say like, "Oh, I'm struggling with this". It could be depression or anything. We have so many resources now. Like, long gone are like the excuses of like, "Oh, I don't know what to do". It's called Google, you know, like? I mean, I'm not saying that Google knows everything, but there's so many helpful tips out there to say like, "How to deal with a friend that's struggling with depression. What are some things to say and what not to say"? You know, like it's so much out there now, that we have to, if we really care about the person taking, and that's with any topic, that's with anything that your friends are struggling with, like, taking that personal like, accountability to say, "I'm gonna Google to see this, I'm going to ask, I'll call other doctors". Because if you care, you have to be invested in doing it. But one of the things that I've told even friends because I've come out of depression before and because I've felt myself spiraling a little bit, you know? Is,it's one of the things you kinda said, it's like, the healing takes time, the decision can be instant. You know, once you realize that, the decision to say, "I'm not gonna lose to this. Like, this can't win over me". That can be in a moment. So, like if you're struggling with it right now, you can make,you can s, even if you feel very, very weak, you can make a decision and say, "God with your help"...
Michelle Williams: Amen.
Jai Williams: "...With your help, like, I don't have to deal with this anymore. I can be this done with this. I can be done with this, right now". But you have to understand that the healing takes time. That's the part that was the hardest for me, was 'cause I wanted it to be as instant as my words were and that wasn't the case, it's still not the case. I still struggle with certain parts of my life and what's going on.
Ginger Stache: And you're not a bad Christian because you still struggle with that stuff.
Jai Williams: Exactly, it's a process, but the healing part takes time. And only God can determine that time, but as long as you do the work, as long as you make those decisions, as long as you make the decision to say it. 'Cause I wasn't ashamed to not listen to worship music, I was disappointed. I didn't wanna hear anymore music, this music I sang to people. I didn't wanna hear it anymore, 'cause I sang it, and I'm like, "How could this happen to me"? I was not ashamed, I was just mad. And it's okay say, like, "I'm disappointed, I'm angry. I'm angry. I don't want to sing. I don't want to listen". But at some point you goin' have to understand that, that's the medicine you need to get yourself right. So, you have to make the decision like, "Ugh, I don't want to hear it. But you just listen. Have it playing in the background and eventually you'll start singing it. You know, just take it. Be gracious to yourself. But, understand that the healing takes time, but the decision can be right now.
Ginger Stache: So, that takes like, a little crack in that darkness for hope and light to seep in. You need just a little crack sometimes, to begin to make that statement that you said, you know, "This is where I'm going to fight back".
Michelle Williams: Yeah, and you say, "No more".
Ginger Stache: Exactly!
Michelle Williams: And I surrender and I raise my hands. There are moments where I'm walking around in my condo with the music on, my hands are raised, okay? Because worship does help with everything: it helps with worry, it helps with anxiety, it helps with depression, it helps dealing with any other unfortunate situation or diagnosis that you've had. Worship, at the end of the day, it does help. It's just not, just don't be like me or with what Jai is saying, just, you know, because the enemy wants to snatch your praise and your worship because his whole plan is to steal, kill, and destroy. And if when he gets you by yourself, he can do whatever he wants with you and then you come in agreement with that and you walk in that and before you know you it, you can be out of here permanently.
Jai Williams: Yeah and you, you have to then, you have to also then pivot from just listening to opening your mouth.
Michelle Williams: Amen, that's right.
Jai Williams: Wield your weapon like, cause a lot of times, we listen to music or we, we read the word silently and don't- and I realized in my pit, like my lowest pit, I remember just...
Michelle Williams: Yes, and you felt...
Jai Williams: It was, ugh, it's gripping like, sometimes just ca, it's crazy like, it's... So, I remember that and I know, like, how I even sometimes feel in this whole season of healing is like, you just... it's like, I want to, my heart wants to, but you just have to make a sound, you have to will yourself to wield your weapon. You go from listening to the music, listening to the sermon online, listening to it all that, listening to the podcast. Great, great, great, great, great, great, great, but at some point you goin' have to open your own mouth 'cause he wants to hear your worship and Satan needs to hear your specific voice to cast him out. You have to use your words.
Ginger Stache: That's so good. And let the Word of God seep into that one little crack of hope that you begin to see open up. I mean, there's so many amazing scriptures, of who God wants to be in our lives. He's the lover of our soul, he's the healer of our deepest, darkest hurts. He is that hope in the most hopeless situation. And just like, Jai said, write down those scriptures. And like you said, Michelle, don't be ashamed to reach out and get the help that you need, whether it's professionally, maybe it's medication, because, you know, this, this is not just something that is, "Because there's something wrong with me, I made a mistake, I did something that I deserve this," and that's how we feel sometimes when we're in that dark place. It's not that we deserve it, sometimes we need some physical help to get our body through this.
Ginger Stache: I want to encourage you, now, before we continue, to just let today be the start of a new beginning for you. Let this be the start of something new for you. Where you do what you need to do, to start to receive the healing that you need in your life. Don't allow a false sense of guilt, or shame, or failure, or unworthiness stop you any longer from getting exactly what you need. That is not how God sees you. We had such a great discussion recently, with clinical psychologist Dr. Henry Cloud. And he was talking about how important it is to look at getting help in a different way, and taking the step that you need.
Joyce Meyer: I think that I've made a good journey toward that. I'm very open and honest about my stuff, and usually, everybody else's, unless they tell me not to be. So, like, I had a specific question I wanted to ask you today because you're in this field, and you know. I had a woman write me, not too long ago. And she said, "You talk about everything, and you're so open and honest about everything". She said, "Would you please talk about people who have to take anxiety and, or depression medicine". She said, "I feel like there's so much judgement toward people who do that". And so, that's something I wanted to talk about today, because I feel like we're in a season where God is wanting to let people know, that if they really need it that, that's okay. Can you give us your perspective on that?
Dr. Henry Cloud: Oh, absolutely. And the biggest thing that people don't understand to begin with is that all medicines are not the same. You know, there,if, you know, there are tranquilizers that you can take, that'll immediately, make you feel fine. You haven't dealt with anything. You know, you're just, it's sort of like, you know, another margarita. But this whole world of, what are called, antidepressants, you can take one of those, it doesn't make you feel fine. What it does is, it restores brain chemistry levels to where your brain can return to functioning normally. And so, there are a lot of anxiety states that are created by certain kinds of brain activity, where you have kind of an overactive amygdala. It's like a car alarm. It's always going off like this when there, it's a false alarm. And then, people will feel this and then they start obsessing about it, like, "What's wrong? The planes gonna go down". "The car," you know, "My kid's gonna drown," or "Something bad is gonna happen," to make sense of how they feel. When really, it's a physiological thing that's happening because of brain chemistry. Same thing with people that are bipolar, same thing with a lot of psychoses. Now, here's the thing. This is all generated by an organ which is your brain, just like the rest of your organs in your body. We would never tell a diabetic, "Don't take your insulin, just trust in the Lord more".
Joyce Meyer: Yeah, "Have faith".
Dr. Henry Cloud: And their pancreas isn't working. Well, a lot of people, the brain chemistry is not working like it's supposed to. And so, the brain can't tell itself to have energy, and to be able to concentrate, and to be able to have an appetite, and to be able to not have a horrible mood, where you can't even get out of bed sometimes. And I have seen so many miracles, Joyce. I'm not kidding. Miracles, when people get on the right medicine.
Joyce Meyer: And you don't always have to stay on it all your life but sometimes you need it for a period of time. You were talking about those neurotransmitters and they get messed up from a lot of stress in our life, or abuse in your childhood. I mean, there's a lot of reasons...
Dr. Henry Cloud: And sometimes genetics.
Joyce Meyer: Yeah, and sometimes just genetics. Sometimes it's just, you know, something that runs in the family. So, I just wanted, as a doctor, for you to tell people, they don't have to feel guilty, if they really need, and I'm stressing really need, because I'm not, I've been hesitant to talk about this, because in my position, I don't want to give everybody permission to run to the pill bottle instead of dealing with their problems, and so.
Dr. Henry Cloud: Absolutely not. But there's the difference. The kind of medicine that we're talking about, doesn't make you run from your problems. It won't do that. What it does is, it equips your brain to be able to concentrate enough to deal with the problems. I've treated severely depressed people who, they go to church, "I'm supposed to be in the word, and I know that, I can't focus. I can't read. I don't have literally, the energy to". And then, they get on the right medicine and they go back to being able to function as the spiritually mature people they are.
Joyce Meyer: There's one person that the devil cannot defeat and that's somebody who refuses to give up. I said, that's somebody who refuses to give up. And no matter how many times he dumps a bad thought in your mind, you dump it out and go back in the wrong direction. Every time you find yourself in a pit, skip the guilt trip, climb out. I gotta keep saying "Skip the guilt trip" because if you make a mistake one time and you realize it and now you start feeling guilty, it's gonna weaken you and help you fall right back into the same trap again. Guilt does nothing good back for us at all. Repent, go on about your business. Paul said, "One thing I do. One thing I do". The great apostle Paul, "One thing I do. It is my one aspiration, letting go of the things that are behind and pressing toward the things that are ahead". And that is your privilege today whether you're in this building or watching by TV, no matter how many mistakes you've made, no matter what kind of pit you find yourself in right now, the answer from God is very simple. Talk to God about it. Repent, climb back out of the pit, make a good decision that's gonna override the bad decision, skip the guilt trip, and go on. If you fall in again, do it again. If you fall in again, do it again. If you fall in again, do it again. And no matter how many times it takes, you will wear the devil out if you don't give up.
Ginger Stache: Michelle, is there anything that you would say, because you're talking to our friends who may be in that place where you were a few years ago, what is the best advice that you would give them to hang on to that hope that's out there?
Michelle Williams: "Because he lives, I can face tomorrow. Because he lives, all fear is gone. And yes, I know who holds my future", this is the advice, "And your life is worth the living just because he lives".
Ginger Stache: Wow, Michelle had us all in tears. And it's such a wonderful, it's like putting on a warm blanket when you realize that because he lives that we can all face tomorrow, that he loves you, so very much, that he is there with you, right now, in the midst of your hurts, your depression, your anxiety, your questions. That because he lives, he's there with you, because he can't do anything else, it's who he is. He will never turn his back on you. And I wanna pray for you, as we end, today. I just want to pray in Jesus' name, Lord, please be with my friends who are listening, right now. Just overwhelm them with your love, and let your peace and your comfort wrap around them, Lord. We thank you so much, that in the midst of the hardest times, you're there loving us and you don't look away, and you don't turn your back. And father, I just ask for healing in Jesus' name, right now, for everyone. And we thank you, amen. We want you to know that when you reach out to help, God will never say, "No," he will always be there. And I just pray that you have the courage that you need to take the next step to get through this.