Then Elijah went on alone into the wilderness, traveling all day. He sat down under a solitary broom tree and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life, for I am no better than my ancestors who have already died.”
1 Kings 19:4
“Depression” – There is no age limit. There is no immunity. Single or married. Children or no children. Male or female. Senior Pastor or lay leader in the church. I’m here to remind you depression is no respecter of persons. It happened to Elijah (God’s prophet) and it can happen to you as well.
There are four characters in this story…
- A weak king, Ahab
- A strong willed woman, Jezebel.
- A Prophet, Elijah
Elijah was mentally wore out. He was exhausted. He was frustrated. He was scared. He had enough of doing this “ministry” thing. He was terrified because Jezebel, the wife of king Ahab, had threatened his very life and was out on the hunt to kill him, and he was in fact obeying what God had called him to do. Ever felt that way?
So he fled to the wilderness, found a solitary broom tree, laid down under it and asked God to take his life. Elijah was depressed!!!
That, my friends, is a lonely place to be and a very dangerous place to be. Isolation is not where you want to plant yourself and it is exactly where our enemy, Satan, wants us to be so he can lie to us and say to us how worthless we are. Avoid isolation!
I must stop and remind you right now, this very moment: If you are doing ministry, at any level, in your church or in your community…don’t become a “Dead Leader Running.”
Don’t quit and get out of the game! Surround yourself with godly people who will encourage you. Who will go with you. Who will speak life into you. Who will be there for you. Who will hold you accountable and who will love you as you walk [through] a season of depression. If you keep reading chapter 19, God was there for Elijah – and He will be there for you, as well.
Have a blessed day!
Be Worth Being,
Kevin Burrell has worked in professional baseball as both a player and MLB scout for the past 38 years, and currently serves on staff with the Chicago White Sox as an area scouting supervisor. Kevin was drafted in the 1st round of the 1981 free agent amateur draft (25th selection overall) by the Boston Red Sox, and played ten years of professional baseball with four different organizations. He and his wife, Valerie, live in Sharpsburg, Ga. with their two children.
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