“I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.”
1 Kings 19:4b
People are still reluctant to talk about their struggles with depression or those of their loved ones, primarily because our Karen culture and beliefs still stigmatize those who live with depression. How many families in your church have a loved one who struggles with depression? They are our brothers, sisters, the people in our Karen community, and the person next to you in the pew. Someone is probably hurting, and they are afraid to tell you. 1 Kings 19:1-16a is an example that we see how God’s chosen servant, Elijah, went through some depression. Elijah was experiencing many of the symptoms of depression, which are still prevalent today, such as lack of sleep, physical exhaustion, feeling rejected and worthless, isolation, and irrational negative thoughts about his death. An angel of the Lord ministered to Elijah until he was ready to return to his community. Jesus set up an excellent example for us to reach out to those with a mental health illness. Jesus reached out to marginalized people, those who were ostracized, and those who were the outcasts in the eyes of society.
Gracious God, please help us to be sources of hope and support to those who say “I have had enough.” In Jesus’ Name, I pray. Amen.