Depression is a very common mental health issue that affect nearly 25% of all adults to some degree. It's a problem that can greatly impact the quality of our Christian meditation. The mood, or the feeling of sadness, or just feeling down reflects how our brain chemistry is functioning.
Fluids called neurotransmitters like adrenalin and dopamine control our mood and can make us feel great. A neurotransmitter often related to depression is serotonin. Serotonin is a slow-acting brain chemical generally associated to sleep, energy, appetite, alertness, and mood. Doctors theorize that long-term periods of high stress situations the brain burns serotonin at a higher rate.
If your brain burns more serotonin than it can replace your neurochemical level of serotonin can drop significantly causing depression. Low levels of serotonin make virtual impossible to meditate. And it doesn't top there. Once the invader penetrates the mind individuals can experience poor sleep, decreased concentration or attention, loss of energy, loss of appetite, overwhelming worry, and other bothersome manifestations.
Here's the good news, both the Bible and science agree that there's a way to stop depression before it happens.
In 2011 (Parrish et al., 2011) scientists discovered that how a person reacts to problems can be a predictor of our mental health later. In other words, it was observed that individuals who had control over there mind during stressful times had a greater chance of living a life free from depression.
In a more involved study published by Psychological Science (Charles et al. 2013) monitored people’s reactions to daily stressors then compared the results a decade later.
In the study participants were asked rate their daily stressors and how it affected them. Usual stressors like traffic, arguments, being late for an appointment, and work related issues, were reported.
Ten years later scientists revisited participants and asked if they had been treated for anxiety, depression or any other emotional problems during the past year. Surprisingly, results showed there was a high correlation between how people reacted to the little stressors of daily life and the development of mental health issues ten years later.
So minimizing the chance of debilitating brain chemistry in the future can be a matter of how we think and react to life today. If we don't take steps to improve our control over the mind we become susceptible to mental illnesses like depression or anxiety.
Think of the mind as a fortress and healthy thought as the power that supports its walls. If you let your mind wander without control it will loose the power maintain the walls, then you will be vulnerable to invaders like depression and anxiety. When your fortress has been invaded it will be very difficult to peace, even meditation will be difficult.
Here's what the Bible has to say about the issue:
"He that has no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls." Proverbs 25:28
The word spirit in this verse represents the mind, inner being, or who we are in spirit. So science has once again agrees with the Bible. If we do not control our mind we become susceptible. Of course the lesson is here is the same lesson discovered by scientist in 2013. We need to have control over our mind to be healthy.
Here's how Jesus described it:
"But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person" Matthew 15:18
In this verse Jesus literally states that whatever is inside a person can a predictor of a person's health, a message reflected by scientists.
So if you want a great mental health later follow God's word. Since it's been scientifically proven that controlling your mind with positive nurturing thoughts about the world around it's best to start right away and start reaping the rewards.
Here's a three tips to get you started:
1. Meditate now while you have a good attitude toward life. This help you to stay calm during stressful times.
2. Read, or study, God's word. If you read the Bible in a quiet undisturbed environment for 20 minutes or more your brain will enter into a state of Alpha - hello meditation.
3. Keep God's word. Keeping God's word will help you throughout the day. If you cultivate God's word within your fortress will be indestructible.
Need more help controlling your mind? Consider the power of Bible affirmations here's the Top 27 Bible Affirmations for Self Control, try them and watch how your mind change. If you truly have a hard time controlling your thoughts and want to benefit from Christian meditation here's a collection of articles addressing how to control the mind.
If you're ready to start a voyage with Christian meditation here's our Free 7 Day Class. God bless you. We love you, and we're praying for you. See you in the kingdom.