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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Matt Hagee » Matt Hagee - Outgrowing Depression

Matt Hagee - Outgrowing Depression

Matt Hagee - Outgrowing Depression
Matt Hagee - Outgrowing Depression
TOPICS: Antidepressants, Depression

Today, I want you to see how you can outgrow depression. Just like an individual standing before you today, says, "Well, when I was a kid, I had asthma". Well, what happened? "I outgrew it". As a young and immature Christian, you may struggle with the anxiety of the word. But if you put your faith into action, as you mature, as you will grow, you will outgrow it. This is why Paul could be chained in prison just days from death, saying, "Rejoice in the Lord always". There wasn't any kind of worldly anxiety or concern that he had that he had not believed that God could help him to overcome. So how do you grow in faith, in love, and outgrow anxiety and depression? You have to, first, be planted by God's grace.

Jesus said this in John 15:5, "Apart from me you can do nothing". Now that's something that you need to remind yourself of on a daily basis. And the reason that you and I have to remind ourselves of this on a daily basis is because in every one of us is this very self-centered, selfish individual that is so immature and childish that we want to constantly tell God we can do it on our own. We forget quickly what acts 17 says. "In him we live, in him we move, and in him we have our being".

The point is this: if anything in your life is going to flourish, thrive, and grow, it's got to be planted in God. And the only way it can be planted in God is by his grace. If it's not planted in God, it'll burn you out, it'll bring you down. It will take your joy and it will give you sorrow. Whatever you want to grow has got to be planted in grace and it's got to grow in faith. How did your salvation come? By grace and by faith. Ephesians 2:8, "By grace you have been saved through faith". Grace is God's gift. Faith is how you open the gift. No matter what you're trying to achieve though, if you do not try to achieve it in God's grace and through pure faith, you're going to struggle with it. And that struggle is going to lead to depression.

So how do you outgrow depression? Instead of sowing from the flesh, you sow from the spirit. This is what Paul is talking about in Galatians 5 and 6. "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked. Whatever a man sows, that will he reap". If you're sowing joy, you're going to reap joy. If you're sowing frustration, you're going to reap frustration. He says there's two ways that you can sow. You can sow from the flesh, which brings corruption. The flesh never brings anything good. Why? Because it's constantly rotting. That's what corruption means. He said, "Or you can sow from the spirit, from which you reap everlasting life".

The fruit that God wants you to grow is planted in his grace, and it's produced by your faith, and it brings a harvest of love. That's why Jesus said in John 15:8, "By this, my father is glorified", what? "That you bear," say it with me, "Much fruit". And the fruit is love, which is why verse 12 says, "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you". Now this is where we need the Holy Spirit to open up the lock and help us understand this kind of love. Because we talk about love, but we don't understand love. Our kind of love in our kind of thinking is transactional. We love people because of what they do for us. And they love us because of what we do for them, even if you don't want to admit it.

But the kind of love that's being spoken about here in this verse, "This is my commandment that you love one another as I have loved you," is not transactional: it's sacrificial. This is the kind of love that does not expect anything in return from the person that you are loving. And that's a different kind of love. Think about it. I do not expect or require anything from you, but I still love you. Now in order to identify the roots of God's love, you need to go to 1 Corinthians 13:1 through 4. This is the description of how God and his son, Jesus Christ, loved you. And this is the way that he expects us to love others.

And in order to understand this kind of love, you've got to have the Holy Spirit help you hear it, because you won't get it in your own strength. For example, this issue of patient and kind, sounds nice. But the reality of it is, is patient is not really a good interpretation. As a matter of fact, in Galatians and in some translations of the Bible, it says, "Love is longsuffering". And the difference between patience and longsuffering is simply this: patience is your willingness to wait. Longsuffering is your ability to endure quietly without letting the other person know it's bothering you. That's different. You ever heard somebody say, "Don't try my patience"? What they're saying is, you're getting to the end of my ability to wait. But longsuffering says, "You're not even going to know it bothers me. I'm just going to set here and wait".

Think about Jesus' longsuffering with the disciples. He would teach them these marvelous lessons of truth, and they would look at him and go, "We don't get it". He didn't go, "Uh". He'd just keep right on walking, right on teaching, right on talking. He was suffering their ignorance, but they never knew it, because he loved them. "Love is kind". "Kindness" means a desire to help and not to hurt. And the thing about kindness is that you don't often have the ability to discern when someone is being kind in the moment. Why? Because the Bible says in Proverbs 27:6, "Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful".

Sometimes someone's kissing you, and you think, "Oh, that's kind". But the truth is that kiss is intended for your harm, not your help. And other times, somebody is saying something that confronts you, and you think, "Well, that was rude. That's not very kind". But the truth is if their confrontation is for your help, you should thank them. "Love does not envy". Love celebrates someone else's success. You're going to find out how much you love somebody the next time that they get a promotion or buy a bigger house or have something that you don't have. Because if you can truly celebrate it, then you're not envious of their success. "Love does not parade itself". Love doesn't think that you're a big deal. "Love is not puffed up".

Love not being puffed up means that it's not snobbish. It doesn't think that it's too good to be around other people. This is how love overcomes bias and racism, because it doesn't look at someone who's different and say, "Well, I can't love you because you're not like me. Love is not rude". It's not disruptive. "Love doesn't seek its own". It's always giving. It's never seeking to receive. "Love is not provoked". This is one of my favorite ones, because it's something that most people don't think about when it comes to love. "Love is not provoked". That means that love is not overly sensitive. It's got tough enough skin to endure an offense and keep loving you.

When you start loving other people like that, you're going to spend a lot less time offended. "Love does not rejoice in iniquity". Here's another one to think about. "Love does not rejoice in iniquity". That's what the Bible says. Here we call it "Thinks no evil and does not rejoice in sin. It celebrates truth". Don't say you love somebody, and then look for fault in that somebody. Don't say you love somebody, and then go try and dig up dirt on that somebody. That's your desire to find out things that are harmful about that person so that you can use them for your purposes later. That's not giving. That's taking. Here's the thing that's remarkable about it.

Jesus knows everything about every one of us. He doesn't need somebody to fill in the blanks. He knows them all. And the Bible says, he doesn't rejoice in any of it. All he thinks about is not what you are, but what you could be. If you plant your life in Christ, in God's grace, in faith, and these are your roots, then the Fruit of the Spirit is going to be what you produce. Jesus, in John 15, he said, "You didn't choose me. I chose you... That you should bear fruit and that your fruit should remain".

In Matthew 12:33, it says, "The tree is known by its", what? "Fruit". You can't claim that you've got the Fruit of the Spirit, and all that follows you is chaos, confusion, division, anxiety, and depression. You can't tell somebody, "I'm growing in Christ," and everything in your life is a crime scene. The lusts of the flesh, based on Paul's writings in Galatians 5, are a list that most of us think that we're not on. But if you take a second look, you'll find yourself in it.

The lusts of the flesh start with moral sins. Let's take a look at this tree and see how much fruit we can identify. These are the sins that you commit in your moral self. And it starts with immorality, "Adultery". Jesus said, "If anybody looks on a woman with lust in his heart, he's committed adultery". Immorality includes fornication, which is hidden. It's immoral things that you do that you don't want others to know about. Immorality in the Greek is actually translated "Pornia" from where we get the word "Pornography". How much is pornography had its grip on this generation?

There is hidden immorality, and then there's outward immorality. That's called "Uncleanliness". Uncleanliness is willing to say, "You know what? I don't care if people know or they don't know. I'm actually going to parade myself," which leads to lewdness and vulgarity, which is such a public and prominent demonstration of your immorality, that you're proud of it. You parade it down the street. You want other people to know that this is how immoral you are, and then you want to claim that you're a marginalized minority that deserves special treatment because of your foolish and unnatural decisions instead of your character. Then there's spiritual sins.

Don't think this is all that's growing in this tree. There's another side to the tree. Spiritual sins are the sins against God, idolatry. Anything that you love more than Jesus is an idol. Samuel told Saul, "The sin of stubbornness is as idolatry". When you put your will above God's will, your will is the idol. "Hatred, contention". "Contention" is the spirit of disagreement. "Well, I don't agree with you". Why? "Because I like it". And you've got people around you right now who are that way. The grass is green. "I don't think so. Jealousy". Jealousy is when you want what someone else has, and you're willing to take action to get it from them. "Wrath". You ever seen anybody use their temper to try and control somebody else? That's intimidation and manipulation, which is as witchcraft. "Selfish ambition".

Selfish ambition is making it look like you're serving others, but what you're really doing is trying to position yourself for recognition. You starting to see more people you know on this list? "Dissension and heresy," trying to create division in the body of Christ and utilize faults teaching to have it your way instead of God's way. If it's in the fruit, it's in the root. Then Paul says, "Well, we're not done yet. There's also social sins". Let's go look at those. Social sins are envy and murder and drunkenness. These are easy to identify. But then he says there's revelry, which "Revelry" is not a word that we use much these days, but it really means anything in your life that's out of control that you indulge in, that you like so much that when you start, you can't stop.

So drunkenness, it means you drank so much alcohol that you're not in control of yourself. But how many people want to say, "Well, that drunkenness is wrong. But if I eat a bucket of chicken, that's okay"? Maybe it's funding indulgence. You ever know somebody that has to spend so much that they feel good about it? They get high off of maxing out a credit card. You don't know why. But they do. They can't stop it. "Gossip". Some people are like a shop-vac in a dust bowl. They just need to know as much dirt as they can on everybody. These are revelries that Paul says if they're present in your life, you've got a fruit problem. And if you've got a fruit problem, you've got a root problem.

Jesus said in Matthew 7:16, "You will know them by their fruit". You can't hide it. It's evident. And if you're going to produce the kind of fruit that helps you outgrow depression, you can't do it on your own, because these are the kinds of fruits that your flesh will produce. You've got to be led by the spirit. And led by the spirit, you encounter God's love. Encountering God's love, it takes root in your life. It takes root in your life, and it produces fruit. Jesus said, "This fruit is how my father is glorified". But then he lists the fruits in Paul's writing in Galatians. He said, "The Fruit of the Spirit".

Let's take a look at this tree. It's grown in love, love that never fails. And it includes: "Love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control". Now if the roots are from Corinthians, how many of you recognize the fruit in Galatians found in the roots from Corinthians? If it's in the root, where can you find it? In the fruit. If you grow in God's love, you're going to grow love, which is an antidepressant: joy, which is an antidepressant: peace, which is an antidepressant: patience, which is a what? Antidepressant: kindness, which is a what? Antidepressant: goodness, which is a what? Antidepressant: faithfulness, which is what? Antidepressant: gentleness, which is what? Antidepressant: self-control, which is a... and you don't think that God's word can't cure what ails you? He didn't say you grow love, joy, peace, and a prescription.

He said, "Plant yourself in my word and my word abides in you, and my joy will be your joy, and your joy will be pull". How is it evidenced? "That you love", who? "One another". The fruit that the spirit produces in your life is for the picking, not preserving. Some people want love, joy, peace, and they want to can it all for themselves. But trees don't grow fruit for themselves. Apple trees don't grow apples for apples. Fruit is grown to be picked. And one of the problems that we have in the church today is that we put a "No trespassing" sign around our tree. "Don't touch me. Don't come near me. Don't bother me. Don't ask me. Don't involve me, just let me come to church, get fed, watered, and sent out. But don't pick anything off of me".

And that's not why you produce fruit. Galatians 6 is where Paul kind of summarizes this letter to the church in Galatia. And he's upset with them. They think that they can do God's thing their way. That's why he said in Galatians 3, "You foolish Galatians. Who deceived you"? And then he starts talking about this love that Christ had for them and how they have to walk in the spirit to produce the Fruit of the Spirit. And then he gets to Galatians 6 where he says, "God isn't mocked. If you sow in the flesh, you're going reap in the flesh. If you sow in the spirit, you're going to reap in the spirit".

And the kind of the love and the kind of fruit that he's talking about, he's saying, let as many people as want pick it, which is why in Galatians, he says, "Bear one another's burdens, in so doing, you fulfill the law of Christ," by loving one another. The joy in my life is not for me. The joy in my life is for you. When you are joy deficient, you say, "Pastor Matt, I need some joy". And I say, "Go ahead and take some. I got it". The peace in your life is not for you. The peace in your life is for me. When I say, "This concerns me," you say, "Don't worry about that, pastor. We got your back". You can borrow some of my peace. Now the problem is, if I come to you and you don't have any of the Fruit of the Spirit, all you've got is the lust of the flesh, what can I pick?! And if you come to me and I'm picked over, what can you take?

Now why did Paul tell the Galatians, "Do not grow weary while doing good"? Because some of the people in the church were saying, "You know what? I'm tired of getting picked on. All they do is pick, pick, pick, pick, pick, pick, pick". And in church, sometimes there's a lot of pickers and not a lot of providers. But the problem with that attitude is that you are looking to a man to replenish you. If I expect you to fill me up, I'm going to be severely disappointed. And if you expect me to fill you up, you will be severely disappointed. Because you are not my source, and I am not your source. There's only one source. This is called "The fruit of the", what? "Spirit".

It's not mine. If you pick joy out of my life, it wasn't my joy to begin with. It was his joy. If you pick love, it wasn't my love. It was his love. If you pick patience, it wasn't my patience. It was his patience. If you pick gentleness, it wasn't mine. It was his. If you pick kindness, it wasn't mine. It was his. And if he sees me let you pick it, he says, "Angels, refill that tree. Refill that guy". He's not growing weary while doing good. He's allowing people to pick the Fruit of the Spirit that's growing in him, which is why Paul said, "Do not grow weary in well doing, for in due season you will reap if you do not lose heart".

God is watching you. And God says, "When you let others take love, and you let others take joy, and you let others take peace, and you let others take kindness, and you let others take gentleness, and you let others take faithfulness, and you let others take goodness, I'll open up the windows of heaven and I'll pour in more joy that you can contain. And I'll give you more peace than surpasses understanding. And I'll give you more goodness, and I'll give you more kindness, and I'll be more faithful, because you are depending and growing on me and not on them". Child of God, it doesn't matter what the world does to you. If you're giving what God has given you, then you are going to overcome depression every time it shows up, because the joy of the Lord is your strength. Give the Lord a handclap of praise in this house today.

Would you stand in the presence of the Lord? You're in this place today, and you say, "Pastor, I'm not operating in his strength. I'm burdened, because I'm working in mine. And today, I want to be planted in grace. I want to start growing in faith, and I want to produce the kind of love and the kind of fruit that brings God glory in my life". I want everyone in this room to pray this prayer with me today.

Lord Jesus Christ, thank you for your word. Thank you that it does not return void. Today I plant my life in your truth. And I let go of doing things my way, that I may produce the fruit that your church needs, so that they can walk in the joy, in the peace, in the patience, in the kindness, in the goodness, in the gentleness, in the faithfulness, in the self-control that your word requires, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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