Depression. RCCG Sunday School Teachers.

Depression: a man with his hand on his head

LESSON INTRODUCTION

 Depression is a word from the Latin verb “deprimere,” meaning to press down. It is an emotional response triggered by circumstances beyond one’s mental stability.

 

It is a mental health illness or mood disorder where one experiences unusual persistent sadness. As the saying goes, there is no health without mental health. This shows that other aspects of health such as physical, financial, spiritual, and social can also take a downward spiral due to a depressive illness. Hence, it is important to educate ourselves on the causes, symptoms, and the way out of depression.

LESSON AIM: To study instances, causes, and prevention of depression.

TEACHING OBJECTIVES:

Through this lesson, students should be able to:
a. Discover some instances and causes of depression in the Bible.
b. Understand how to prevent depression.
To attain the above-stated objectives, the teacher should:
a. Allow the students to take the opening prayer, read the Bible passage, recite the memory verse, and do the class activities and the assignment.
b. Allow the Assistant Teacher to review the previous week’s lesson, introduce the lesson, conduct the class, and mark the attendance and the assignment.
c. The teacher should explain the two lesson outline, administer the class activities, summarize, evaluate the lesson and give the assignment.

TEXT REVIEW: 1 Kings 19:1-4.

From the passage above, the teacher should identify four (4) reasons why Elijah was depressed.
i. ………………………………
ii. ………………………………
iii. …………………………….
iv. ……………………………

LESSON OUTLINES:

  1. BIBLICAL INSTANCES AND CAUSES
  2. PREVENTION OF DEPRESSION

1. BIBLICAL INSTANCES AND CAUSES

A. BIBLICAL INSTANCES
Depression is often viewed as a persistent feeling of sadness (Romans 8:20-22). There are many biblical examples of men of God who struggled with sadness, even to the point of depression. David, a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22), did not gloss over his sadness; he expressed it to God (Psalm 56:8). Both Moses (Numbers 11:15) and Elijah (1 Kings 19:3-5), two heroes of the faith, confessed to God that they preferred to die than live in their current reality.

B. CAUSES
Depression can be triggered by negative events such as
i. The loss of a loved one.
ii. Loss of a job.
iii. Loss of a relationship.
iv. Loss of a pet.
v. Economic crises.
vi. Financial instability.
vii. Unpleasant circumstances, etc. (1 Samuel 1:6-7; Nehemiah 2:2).

 

 

Biologically, depression manifests when some chemical changes occur in the human brain due to persistent uncontrollable sad feelings. This causes changes in the levels of some hormones in the brain which include cortisol, adrenaline, and dopamine. These changes affect multiple organs in the body including the brain leading to a gross reduction in human productivity and health.

C. SYMPTOMS
Consequently, symptoms of depression include a depressed mood or feeling of sadness, constant tiredness, reduced or lost interest in previously enjoyable activities, forgetfulness, hopelessness, helplessness, worthlessness, thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts, and being overly suspicious of people or events. Excessive complaints of body pains, loss of appetite, loss of interest in sex, loss of sleep, and poor attention can also signal a depressive illness.

CLASS ACTIVITY 1: Can a true Christian suffer depression?

2. PREVENTION OF DEPRESSION

Question 1: What are some inadequate coping mechanisms some people use for this mood disorder?
Answers:
i. Abuse of alcohol.
ii. Smoking.
iii. Absenteeism.
iv. Spouse battery
v. Over spirituality.
vi. Over-socialization. Etc.

Question 2: Can this coping mechanism cure depression?
Answer: These maladaptive coping mechanisms give short-term relief but only worsen the symptoms and eventually lead to a severe mental illness.

Question 3: In addition to seeking medical or professional interventions. What can believers do to prevent depression?
Answers:

  1. Be filled with joy (Romans 15:13). Joy is something the Holy Spirit produces in the life of a follower of Jesus Christ (Galatians 5:22; 1 Thessalonians 1:6).
  2. Christians should know that God will never leave His own (Deuteronomy 31:8).
  3. He will strengthen and uphold His children regardless of the situation (Isaiah 41:10).
  4. God hears our cry (Psalm 40:1-3).
  5. God is near to the broken-hearted (Psalm 34:18-19; Matthew 11:28-30).
  6. Develop positive attitudes.
  7. Understand our mental limits.
  8. Build problem-solving skills, resilience skills, and good communication skills.

CLASS ACTIVITY 2: Can a Christian seek medical assistance to depression? Discuss.

CONCLUSION: Depression contributes to poor personal, family, community, and economic growth. It can be difficult to recognise but once any of the symptoms are noticed, it is important to seek care immediately.

QUESTIONS

  1. Mention five causes of depression.
  2. Identify four things believers must do to prevent depression.

EVALUATION: What are some causes and preventions to depression?

CLOSING PRAYER: O God, please fill our hearts with joy in the name of Jesus.

ASSIGNMENT: Write five misconceptions people have about depression (2×5= 10 marks).

 

RCCG Sunday School HYMN

  1. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    O how I love Thee well,
    I am happy, it makes me glad
    To rejoice at Thy birth.
  2. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    Thy friendship suits me well,
    Both young and old will sing Thy song,
    We long for Sunday School.
  3. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    Christ was Thy first teacher,
    The Holy Spirit, great teacher,
    Does manifest in thee.
  4. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    This testimony is sure,
    That God, the Father Almighty,
    Poured His blessing on Thee.
  5. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    Though the sun be so bright,
    Or if the clouds black with rain,
    I’ll be in Sunday School.
  6. O Sunday School, on the Lord’s day,
    I rejoice to see Thee,
    Will thou pass over me today?
    Without my being blest?

Action Point
PS: If you would like to have an online course on any of the courses that you found on this blog, I will be glad to do that on an individual and corporate level, I will be very glad to do that I have trained several individuals and groups and they are doing well in their various fields of endeavour. Some of those that I have trained includes staffs of Dangote Refinery, FCMB, Zenith Bank, New Horizons Nigeria among others. Please come on Whatsapp and let’s talk about your trainingYou can reach me on Whatsapp HERE. Please note that I will be using Microsoft Team to facilitate the training.

I know you might agree with some of the points that I have raised in this article. You might not agree with some of the issues raised. Let me know your views about the topic discussed. We will appreciate it if you can drop your comment. Thanks in anticipation.

 

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