Overcoming Spiritual Depression
Summary: We can be so thankful that in His Word, the Lord does not only reveal Elijah on the mountain peak of life. I Kings 19 reveals a despondent prophet who wants to die. This chapter in Scripture is the primary focus of this book. As one who himself has suffered depression and struggled terribly with the spiritual aspect of it, Elshout knows his stuff and is very open and honest about the reality of despondency. He spends a good amount of time considering the difference between physical and mental exhaustion and how events are perceived very differently between the two. He tackles the touchy subject of God's graciousness towards the suicidal. Satan's devices, lies, temptations and assaults against the depressed are clearly revealed. Best of all, all of Elshout's examples are spot on--in fact painfully accurate. Read this book if you want to understand depression through the biblical account of Elijah. Read this book to gain encouragement if you yourself are depressed. God is faithful. A bruised reed He will not break.
Personal Thoughts: Some books can only receive a genuine review when it is the target audience that does the reviewing. I read this book during a season of physical and spiritual lethargy. There may be only 104 pages in this book, but it took me over 2 weeks to read it. Such is the nature of depression. The wording in this book is so simple and easy to understand--yet it's packed with practical wisdom conveyed in a tone that says, 'I understand, I've been there too.' And that is the strength of this book.
Quote: "The Lord was also near to a lonely Elijah traveling into the wilderness--an Elijah who was tossed with tempest. Had that not been true, Elijah would have perished in the wilderness. The faithful covenant-keeping Jehovah will not leave such souls to fend for themselves who in their 'better' days feared Him, called upon His Name, submitted to His rule, and looked to Him for help. The praying High Priest in heaven also prays for them during seasons when they are neither able nor dare to pray..." --pg. 30