I suppose this blog could be part three since it seems to be a continuation of the last two blogs. Emotional healing from trauma is complicated. There are many ups and downs and curves in the road. At the beginning of the summer I believed that God was leading me to stop taking an anti depressant. I was wrong! (Or I will find out when I get to heaven why it was necessary to take a break.) I am a committed believer in Jesus who needs to take an anti depressant. This has become very clear to me over the past several weeks. The inner work I have done with counselor’s have been important and extremely helpful but it did not change the chemicals in my brain. My faith in Jesus and learning my identity in Him has been life saving and life changing but it did not change the chemicals in my brain.
Twenty Five years ago God introduced me to a community who taught me well what Romans 6, 7 & 8 mean and how it applies to my life. Understanding Galatians 2:20 was a vital part of my journey. The old Rebekah has been crucified with Jesus, buried with Jesus and raised a new creation. This was some of the best news I had ever heard and it made a huge difference in my life! However, our brains have not been redeemed so a chemical imbalance does not merely go away. That will happen when we get a new body with a new brain as we enter heaven one day.
Chemical imbalances run in my family. I have suffered most of my life from depression. I white knuckled it through out my life until I finally tried an anti depressant ten years ago. I remember the first month being amazed at how different I felt. I told my husband that it was like night and day in my mind. I regretted not taking medication when my children were young. I believe I would have enjoyed my family and they would have enjoyed me so much more if my brain chemicals were balanced.
Over the past several years I have experienced a lot of emotional healing and I am grateful. I have experienced a deeper walk with God and with others. But again, this did not change the chemicals in my brain. Did those things improve my quality of life? Absolutely! But there were still some struggles that remained.
Years ago it was quite unpopular for a christian leader to admit they struggled. But today it is a beautiful thing to see christians in leadership admit that they are human and that they are not exempt from struggles. Recently we have heard experiences of deep depression in the history of Louie Giglio, Sandy Patty and Sheila Walsh. The list could go on and on. There is no shame for believers in Jesus or anyone for that matter to need help from doctors and/or medication. We live in a fallen world! Our bodies are not wired for ongoing pain, trauma, abuse or unhealthy choices that bring exhaustion. What is really cool is to see how these great leaders are being transparent and even writing books about these dark seasons in their lives.
I love the fact that I can tell a client who is on medication that I am also on medication. There’s nothing like knowing you are understood, accepted and not judged. Scripture tells us to comfort others with the comfort we have received. God has chosen to use His word, His spirit, counseling and medication to bring comfort to this heart. And I am thankful! And my prayer is that this blog will encourage others who may be struggling with this issue.
If you are wrestling with the need to be on medication you are not alone. You are not a second class citizen. Needing an anti depressant is no different than a diabetic needing insulin. God gifted men and women with the knowledge to develop these drugs for people that need them. Some may need meds for a a few months to get through a difficult season. Other’s may need meds for a lifetime. Embrace your unique journey and know that there is no shame and no condemnation. (Romans 8:1) And God’s word is still true that I will quote here from Psalm 139. God created your inmost being; and He knit you together in your mother’s womb. Praise Him for you are fearfully and wonderfully made. His works are wonderful!