Victory Over Depression Blog

(Healing & Victory Through Jesus Christ)

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The Only Way For Mature Growth

One you know the convincing proof of  new identity in Christ – convinced that you are a child of God, you must grow in maturity toward the fullness of this identity.

II Peter 3:18 tell us “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

This growth is spiritual in nature and can only be done daily.  It involves the same choices that all Christians must make.  You either choose spiritual death or spiritual life in your daily walk decisions.

Death is the way of Satan and your flesh; life is the way of Christ and His Holy Spirit.  The way of Christ is Calvary, the narrow road.  Few go this way because of the deep pains along the way.

Jesus wants to (1) reveal, (2) remove, and (3) heal these pains and hurts.  His way of Calvary is so healing, loving, and gentle even though at times it may be very painful.  The pain will only be temporary as you consistently keep your heart open to His love.

However, you must go through His Calvary cross daily so you can die daily to your flesh.  Calvary is where your flesh is put to death.  Otherwise, your daily resurrection experiences of the love of Jesus within you will often be just beyond your grasp.

Is not Calvary a symbol of death?  Of course it is.  Fortunately, it is the necessary death of our flesh, not our spirit.  This is what Jesus refers to in Matthew 10:38-39 “And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.  He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for My sake shall find it.” 

It is only our daily opportunities to crucify our flesh so the life and love of God can be rooted in us more deeply.  He desensitizes us to our flesh desires more and more.  (Just remember not to carry your cross alone.  Jesus is with you and in you carrying it.  Let Him carry your burdens.  Just rest in His love.) 

This is how you grow daily in maturity and character.  You have the frequent opportunities to die daily to your already dead flesh.  Therefore, the life and love of Jesus in you will grow and flourish.  His love will flow from you naturally.

This is the love the fearful, hurting world so desperately needs to hear and experience.  God wants to share this love to the world through you.  But, first, you must grow in His love – to grow in maturity and character.  As you die more to your flesh, God trusts you more to share His love to the world.

Think About It:  For you to share the love of God to the world, God must first trust you to handle it properly, to not abuse it.

This is why you are given opportunities daily to die to your flesh desires.  After you die to them, you easily become increasingly more dependent on Christ in more areas of your life.  Therefore, God can trust you more to share His love to hurting and needing people.  Only His love will motivate you to.

As I look back 25-30 years ago when I was a young Christian, I persistently prayed for an increase of spiritual gifts.  I sure wanted them to help the body of Christ.  My desire and prayers were very sincere.  However, I was immature (not in a selfish way); I was not ripe to be used (to fly) in this area.  (One can be very sincere, but sincerely wrong.)  I did not know it then, but what I really needed was a deeper, intimate walk with Jesus.  After all, I was “masking” my severe depression during this time. 

Because I was covering up my depression (and all my flesh), God could not trust me to share His love to a hurting world.  Why would He?  I needed His love for myself first, to heal my own heart and hurts.  Otherwise, I definitely would have abused His love.

Basically, my prayer for spiritual gifts was very ego-driven.  My flesh would have been so puffed up; I would have bragged and shown off my spiritual gifts.  I would always be looking out the corner of my eye to see who noticed “how spiritual I was.”

What an abuse of the love and grace of God!  It is now so easy to understand why God never gave me more spiritual gifts.  He surely answered my prayer, but in His way.  I definitely needed a deeper, intimate love relationship with Him.  I am so grateful.  He quickly reminded me often of Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” 

It posibly may be the same for you.  How many of your prayers and motives are driven by your flesh?  How often do you peer out the corner of your eyes to see who notices “how very spiritual you are”?  Only you can answer that.

Be very honest with yourself.  Do you not desire the love of Jesus to root deeper into your heart and life?  Spend intimate, silent time with Jesus often, especially in His Word.  Keep your heart open to His love.  The Holy Spirit will reveal your true motives.  Do not run away when He reveals more of your flesh desires.  Acknowledge them and face them.  It is only Jesus permitting you opportunities to die to them.

God is looking for which of His children He can trust more to share His very intimate love with to a hurting world.  Do you agree?  Do you think you can easily abuse His love and grace?  Do you believe you need a deepening awareness of your intimate love with Jesus?  You do this as you die daily to your flesh desires for power and popularity in the Christian world, especially the world of spiritual gifts.  Only the Lord will show your own specific answers.

Then, I assure you – He will elevate Himself in you and through you because He can trust you more to share His love and grace to people.  People will most definitely see the love of God flowing from you very clearly and very easily.  You will be ready to fly only as God intends you to fly.

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All Things Are Possible Through CHRIST IN YOU

Matthew 19:26 “With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.” 

The impossibility is only possible because JESUS IS YOUR VICTORY.

In your weakness, Jesus becomes your strength.

Jesus takes over your entire new life (as much as you permit Him to.)

Your new life is to be hidden with Christ in God.  You need to begin seeing life through His eyes from above.

Colossians 3:1-4 “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.  For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.”

From these verses, Paul is showing you how to live as your new identity.

  1. You die to flesh and hide yourself in Christ.
  2. Christ, as your new identity, now takes over and lives through you.
  3. People will now see Christ in you when you “seek those things that are above.”
  4. You are now risen with Christ, risen from the grave with your flesh left behind buried.

The Christian life is not as complicated as many make it out to be.  The Christian life is only Jesus Christ.

Once you understand and focus more on your new identity, Jesus takes over through you and the rest falls in place under Him.  The Holy Spirit now teaches you how to live as God’s child.

 The Christian life is only JESUS CHRIST. 

 When you begin to see life from above, you easily flow into the intimate love and grace of God.

Jesus calls you daily to come into His heart of love and rest so He can take over.

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”  One must reflect daily on these verses.  Take them into your heart often so the Holy Spirit can truly make them real.

The Impossible is NOW Possible Through Christ In You.

True Freedom & Victory – The Key Way

True freedom & victory in Christ can only be achieved when you are able to face the deep depths & pain of your broken heart.
This permits you to bring Jesus into the midst of the brokenness & place His healing touch of love over it.
That’s why it’s called Calvary – the way of the cross – to death.

The victory process continues in then experiencing the joy of the resurrected life and love of Jesus in you.
The focus then becomes more consistently CHRIST IN YOU.
Christ in You becomes more and more your primary focus.

This can only be achieved through SILENCE within.  Silence within you is where Christ In You resides.  Too many Christians look for Jesus in signs & wonders.  God, though, will OFTEN & ONLY reveal Himself in the still, small voice within the heart of each person.

May the simple truths just shared penetrate the deepest depths of your heart.

The reality of Christ In You eagerly & expectantly waits to be experienced every day.  Don’t pass this magnificent joy by.

 

Too Hurt Or Too Christian? (Personal Experience)

The Holy Spirit was burdening my heart about this subject.  He is the author of what I am now writing.

I’ve experienced much in my 33 years as a born again Christian.  Jesus saved me on April 1, 1979.  It only seems like yesterday, but life has gone by so quickly.

Accepting Jesus Christ as my personal Lord & Savior is by far “the greatest decision I ever made.”

I’ve experienced the highs and the lows of being a Christian.  I’ve lived reality.  What I will now share is an accumulation of what I have learned from all this experience and how it relates to today.  Specifically I will be referring to the hypocrisy that many Christians live – whether intentionally or not.  The majority of this hypocrisy is called legalism.

One of the biggest challenges a Christian faces is using discernment and common sense when dealing with other Christians.  It’s challenging enough to do this with the world, but the hypocrisy Christians do to one another is nothing but a big disgrace and scandal in God’s eyes.  God’s heart is deeply grieved when He sees His children acting more like children of Satan, the devil.

A good portion of my life from childhood was lived with severe depression.  Unless you have been depressed, one has no idea of the depths of one’s pain.  It basically was a deeply, hurting, broken heart that I lived with for decades.  I wanted so much to be accepted and loved by anyone and everyone.  Without going into many details, the depression stigmatized my life that I couldn’t even function as a normal person.  I often would cry myself to sleep every night.  I would avoid stress or conflict at all costs.  My hands & body would shake whenever a stressful even occurred – which was often every day.

The depression actually led me to give my life to Christ.  What a joy it became as a Christian.  I never experienced such joy in my entire life.  It was like every joy and need in my life was filled.  Life became totally worth living.

I grew over the next few years as a Christian.  Reading the Word of God about my personal Savior Jesus just made me fall in love with Him more everyday.  I could not put the Word of God down.  His Word and Love were rooting deeper into me.  I was memorizing Scriptures and becoming more involved in ministry within my church.  I was believing that I had arrived at maturity as a Christian.  That was a bad thought. 

My life started to become self-righteous and egotistical.  I thought I was so much more mature than other people that I started proudly showing off how spiritual I was.  I looked to be pat on the back whenever I could.  I took credit for things that I had little or no part in.  My ego was definitely inflated big time.  I looked down on other Christians and enjoyed making mincemeat out of them – for they were so immature as a Christian.

My Christian life was only one of a hypocrite, a fool.  I could quote Scripture and be available at church whenever needed.  However, my tongue was one of evil, but, of course, I would not admit it.

Many Christian hypocrites live the same way.  They scoff and demean other Christians thinking they know it all.  Of course, they would never admit they are wrong.  For only the Holy Spirit can reveal the depths of a hypocrite’s heart.  Fortunately, they is what occurred to me.

After 12 years as a Christian, the depression symptoms I experienced earlier in life came back to haunt me more than ever.  What made it worse was being a Christian I was suppose to have all the answers.  It did not make one bit of sense.

What was I doing wrong?  Very simple: I was a hypocrite still living with depressed issues and a broken heart.

The symptoms overwhelmed me again.  The Holy Spirit showed me how evil I was living as a Christian.  Jesus was still living inside me, but I was letting my ego side of sin control me  – acting like a Christian.  I never stopped being born again for I knew Jesus lived in me despite all my hypocrisy.

Fortunately, with this revelation of how evil I was as a Christian, I admitted I was a very mean person to others.  I was not a very pleasant person to be around.  I was so grateful to the Holy Spirit for this revelation of evil within me.

This revelation actually was the big turnaround I needed.  The Holy Spirit was showing me the depths of my broken heart.  I cried again like never before.  Fortunately, the stage was set for my total healing and victory.  I was living a life as a Christian that only Christ can live through me.  No wonder I was a mean, arrogant, and egotistical failure.  That is a Christian hypocrite.

The healing and victory is CHRIST IN ME.  It is Jesus in me living His life through me.  I am simply to rest in His love and be sensitive to the Holy Spirit in me as to what actions to take or words to say.  That’s all.  So simple, but we Christians make it so difficult.

Jesus is the Christian life.  Only Jesus can live the Christian life through us.  No matter how evil and hypocritical we live as a Christian, Jesus in us will never leave.  We don’t become unborn again.

When your eyes are focused on Jesus, Jesus lives His life through you.

  • This means you will simply look at people with love – the way Jesus does.
  • You will not judge as condemnation the wrong motives of other.
  • You will not showoff your Christian knowledge.
  • You will not boast about your Christian intelligence.
  • You will not scoff or demean others.
  • You will simply let Jesus live through you and leave the results to Him.

I was hurt with depression and a broken heart.  Jesus saved me, but as time went by, I still had a broken heart.  I covered up the heart by becoming a legalistic hypocrite – too Christian.  Jesus delivered me from being a legalistic hypocrite but showing me to let Him live His life through me.  Life now is the most magnificent it has ever been.

My prayer for you is the following:

  • From my experience, may the Holy Spirit teach you whatever lesson you need to learn about understanding & being Too Hurt or Too Christian.

 

 

 

IDENTITY – The Christ In You

One of the biggest guarantees for a Christian’s daily victory is knowing his identity – who God says he is.

We are all born into this world with a human identity.  We are the child of our parents.  As we grow, the ways of the world & what we do define who we are.  Additional identities are added.  We become students, friends of others, know ourselves to be a cousin, grandchild, aunt, uncle, etc.  More identities are added years later – college student, occupation, husband/wife, alcoholic, depressed, etc.  We even learn we are born into this world as sinners, without the presence of God in us.

What is important to remember is that every identity the world gives you is only temporary.  One day you will become an “ex” identity.  For example, one day Lebron James will be an ex-NBA basketball professional.

Think about it: Who wants to have an identity as an “EX?”  Very unattractive it is.

Who or what we place our dependence and hope on defines who we are.

That’s why it’s important and invaluable to have an identity that will last forever.  That’s where God comes in.  God gives you an identity as His child.  You are a son/daughter of the King.

Do you think your identity as a child of God is temporary?  I hope not.

Your identity as a child of God is based on what Jesus did, neither how you feel nor what you do.  One can NEVER become an ex-child of God.

God guarantees your identity as eternal because of Who lives in you – CHRIST IN YOU.

When God the Father sees you, He ONLY sees Jesus in you.  Jesus dealt with all your sins and consequences on the cross.  He crucified them & left them buried in His tomb when He rose from the dead.  He then took up residence in you when you chose Him as Savior & Lord.  He made you a child of God.

Since you are now a child of God, God wants you to walk that way.  Ephesians 5:8 You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, so live your life as children of light.

If you are now a child of God, why do you want to walk in sin?  Makes no sense.  Should a butterfly go back to live like a worm caterpillar?  Makes no sense.  You can do it and enjoy the pleasures of your sin choice.  However, you know the pleasure is very temporary and a big void of guilt & emptiness comes over you.  That’s the Holy Spirit convicting you to repent and turn back to God – and continue walking again as a child of God.  That is what occurred to the Prodigal Son in Luke 15.

Total joy and satisfaction only comes from God.  To walk in an identity of sin makes no sense for a child of God.  When you have joy & satisfaction as a child of God, sin loses its appeal.  You begin to realize that sin is just stupid to be a part of.  You may relapse/backslide.  However, you are growing in your maturity in Christ.  Christ In You is becoming more real every day.  With Christ In You, your recovery comes quicker each time.

CHRIST IN YOU is your Key to Daily Victory.

Christ In you is one identity that will neither disappear nor cease.  Jesus lives in you and will never leave nor forsake you.  Jesus guarantees it.  I encourage you to consistently see Christ In You in everything you do.  Christ In You will take over your life one day at a time, one step at a time.

  • If you are a teacher, Christ In You is the teacher.
  • If you are a parent, Christ In You is the parent.
  • If you are an executive, Christ In You is the executive.
  • If you are a pastor, Christ In You is the pastor.
  • If you are a taxi driver, Christ In You is the taxi driver.
  • If you are a college student, Christ In You is the college student.
  • If you are an unemployed worker, Christ In You is the unemployed worker.
  • As a Christian, ONLY Christ In You is the Christian.

You can see the difference with life when you let Jesus live the Christian life through you.  Now one cannot be, for example, a Christian and an alcoholic.  That is two identities.  One is either an alcoholic trying to be a Christian or a Christian struggling with alcoholism.  One cannot be both.  That is inconsistent in God’s eyes.  If one is an alcoholic, go ahead and drink.  That is what the identity of an alcoholic does.  And don’t complain about the hangovers or the destruction of lives (especially of your family) that your drinking causes.  However if you are a child of God, drinking alcohol is inconsistent with who you now are.  That’s why it makes no sense and is not attractive.  It is a way the world try to identify you.

I pray the reality of CHRIST IN YOU is taking deeper roots.

Jesus In You is your permanent identity as a child of God. 

Remember also, Satan is petrified of Jesus In You and will do anything to distract your attention from tapping into the riches of this Wealth in you.  Satan will try to tempt you in many ways, especially trying to get you to see your old identity.

Keep walking as a child of the King, a child of light.  You were once something else.  Now you are a child of God.  Ephesians 5:8 You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, so live your life as children of light.

 

 

Getting Past Outward Expression For Genuine Healing (short video)

This is a must see video for those searching for VICTORY OVER DEPRESSION.  I speak mainly about CHRIST IN YOU healing the deep depths of the human heart.

Many see Victory Over Depression as mostly doing outward expressions of things.  They are necessary to do, but don’t get to the roots of the broken heart.  That is why this video is out.

Please share with others who may be blessed.

The Victorious Life: Applying Christ In You (Part 3 of 3)

Again, remember we grow in maturity to this level.  True growth comes only from intimacy with Him.  God only causes the growth.

The more a believer spends intimacy with Him, being still in the inner man, the more God shows intimate love.  Then God will trust the believer more to show His love to the world.

God will never share any space with flesh.  Unfortunately, many have learned this the hard way by burnout.

I assure you if you continue this approach God will elevate you very much and very quickly.   You know enough now that you can never trust yourself.  Unfortunately, many believers have never reached this level.

I would also recommend you spend as much time alone with the Lord as possible.  Let the Lord show you what doors in your life He wants to close.

What I mean is you probably have many Christian friends and some will be very jealous of your spiritual growth.  They will look down on you because you will receive insight that so many of them have been longing for many years.  They will look at you as an immature Christian who thinks you know so much.

Therefore, they will think you should not have the blessings God will give you.  They are wrong.  It does not matter how long one is a believer; it matters how real Christ is.

Jesus wants to become so real to you.  So guard His love very well.  Use common sense wisdom as the Lord’s leading regarding sharing and fellowship.

I lived alone with this treasure for three years.  I did not meet one believer who truly understood these riches of Christ in you.  Now the fruit is paying off.  I have friends whom truly walk this way.

Remember it is the RESURRECTED CHRIST living in you NOW.

The Victorious Life: Applying Christ In You (Part 2 of 3)

You have tapped into a treasure that has been living in your heart just waiting to explode with the love of God.  I confidently assure you Christ will truly set you free because you are getting it from His Word.  Your Christian walk will be the most enjoyable experience you will ever have – walking hand in hand with Christ.  The experience will be even better than your initial salvation.  I share this with you from first-hand experience.  This is reality.  Jesus is so very real.

Continue to remember that it is a growth process.  We mature step by step, day by day.  We are only to rest – rest in His love.  He is responsible for producing the fruit.  He only looks for our restful availability to share His love to a needy, hurting world.

Jesus as man did nothing without God.”  Jesus stresses this so often in the gospel of John.  He lived as man the way God created man to live.

This is normal Christian living.  When people saw Jesus the man, they saw God the Father in action.  Notice that the people always flocked to Jesus, instead of Him knocking/witnessing door to door.  They saw God the Father in action in Jesus the man.

We have the same opportunity.  Jesus as God in us desires our availability not ability.   People will flock to you because you will be giving them life – the true life of God clothed in your flesh and blood.

You will be providing what Jesus came to give – life.  You will be spiritually mature to give all the credit and glory to God.  God knows not to trust your flesh.

This is why it truly is exciting being a Christian – seeing God in action in man.   I refuse to let it go to my head.  I give it all to Jesus.  It is Jesus living through me.

The old Bob Bennett is dead.  The new Bob Bennett is a child of God, and Bob truly desires just to love His Father.

In whatever I do, it will be Jesus in me living His life through me.  This will occur consistently as I literally focus and visualize Him in you doing it.

God IS Faithful Personally To All Of Us (My Personal Experience)

God’s love & faithfulness leave me so amazed & awestruck.  It is remarkable how, despite never personally knowing me, He has always been right by my side from the moment I was conceived in my mother’s womb.

I look back at 55+ years of my life and remember vividly specific instances where God helped and protected me.  I now see God’s hands & grace over so many dark areas of my past.  I know He has my future in control.

God sure has a wonderful way of expressing His love.  Usually we don’t see it until well after the time has passed.

I’ve now lived well more than half of my life.  I can look back and look forward knowing that Jesus is always in love with me, regardless of any situation.  He desires my heart to love Him and to share His love with everyone.  I pray I can be as successful as possible doing this.  It is Christ in me living His love through me.

Seeing most of my life with severe, clinical depression & now seeing Victory through CHRIST IN ME (since 1996) is the most fulfilling & satisfying experience I could ever wish to have.

Knowing Jesus Christ so personally and intimately is the greatest gift I could ever experience.

Knowing also that Jesus lives in me 24/7 only makes me love Him more – to seek Him more intimately

Knowing that every step I take includes Jesus in me taking them with me.  What could be more fulfilling?  Nothing.

Jesus heals the deepest needs and hurts of the human heart.  Has He done this to you yet?  I pray so.  If not, I encourage you to seek Him intimately with an open heart.  Put aside any bad or negative experiences you have encountered with church or religion.  That is man’s error.  God instead touches the depths of the human heart.

That is my experience right now.  I am the happiest I have ever been in life and look forward so much, despite problems and trials, to grow in this love with Jesus deeper and deeper every day.

The Victorious Life: Applying Christ In You (Part 1 of 3)

I awake thinking of Jesus.  In my sleep, I think of Him.  Throughout the day, I literally visualize Jesus in me as my new nature, my new life.

I just love the Lord so much that it is automatically a joy to love Him.  I basically desire nothing else in life.  He certainly is my all in all.

Therefore, I appropriate by faith that for any decision I make it is Jesus doing it through me – with His love as the motivation.  The results are outstanding.  The rivers of living water flow out naturally.

One does not reach this level automatically, but through maturity.  The importance is INTIMACY WITH GOD.  One MUST be quiet with God often, absorbing His love.

The most effective way in this quietness is with the Word Of God.  Through the Word, God speaks to us the most.  However, we must quiet our inner self.  Otherwise, we can hardly ever hear Him.  God talks in a still small voice.

As you grow, you will hear His voice, you hear it on a more consistent basis.  That is friendship.  It has nothing to do with spiritual gifts.  Those come as God trusts the individual with them.

Just be alone with God and reflect that He lives in you right NOW.  He will do the rest as you grow.  Mostly don’t talk, even non-verbally.  (That is why He gave us two ears and one mouth.)   

However, one must never forget – we have a flesh, sin nature.  My personal life is currently turmoil on the outside.  However, I have a deep inner peace that the world will never take away.  That peace is Him in me.  I choose to look at Him instead of all my problems.

– Part 2 to follow

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