Enemies of Health - Depression
Cause #4: Low Self Esteem.

The leading cause of a heavy burdened failing spirit (commonly called depression) is low self esteem.

Low self esteem is defined as thinking of yourself as a loser. People who have low self esteem become depressed because they think they are living in a world where everyone else is a winner. The feeling is lonely. It is one of being at odds with everyone else.

Low self esteem often comes into our lives when we are children. People sometimes convince us that we have zero talents and zero worth by their words and actions. Even the most well meaning parents occasionally instill strong feelings of inferiority in their children. Telling them in 100's of ways that they are failures. Jerking something away with a sharp, "Let me do that, you are making a mess, you never do anything right," will cripple self esteem if repeated enough times. Most of us tend to be very generous with criticism and very stingy with praise, this is the exact opposite of what it should be. Children, like adults need to have their successes re-enforced. It is important for us to know that we are successful at being what we are.

There is a story told of Martha Taft, when she was in elementary school, that illustrates the sense of security that everyone ought to be blessed with. Martha was asked to introduce herself in class, she said, "My name is Martha Taft, My great-grandfather was President of the United States. My grandfather was a United States Senator. My father is ambassador to Ireland and I am a brownie."

Comparing one child to another in an unfavorable manner, will also wound the spirit. The phrase "Why can't you be more like your brother or sister?" should be deleted from the human language. Esteeming one child above the other, is something that no one should do. A reporter once said to President Truman's mother, "You must be very proud of your son." She replied, "Which one? I am proud of all of my children." A very wise and godly response, for everyone has their own special gift. One is not better than the other, just different.

Putting to much attention on the exterior, the body, can also cause low self esteem. Our culture used to place high regard on inner beauty, but lately there has been a great deal of emphasis placed upon physical appearance. Children are subjected to ridicule at school, if they do not look like the current idea of beauty. They do not need additional teasing at home. Family members don't intend to do harm, it's all meant to be fun. But children do not receive it as fun. A girl who grows up hearing that she has her great grandpa's nose which always announced his coming five minutes before he arrived, will become very sensitive and she may begin to think that no one could love her, because she's to ugly. Every individual has a right to know they have worth. To be raised in a climate which allows us to find and develop ourselves is a blessing that everyone should have.

Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, teachers, all must realize that they have the shaping of self esteem in their hands. Everyone should do unto others as they wish they had been done to as a child.

Adult onset of low self esteem usually starts with a failure of some kind. If one has been fired, divorced, jilted, rejected, widowed or has been looking for a job for a long time; it is possible that this person is feeling that he or she is not a desirable person. For both children and adults, a failure or a string of failures seems to bring on the feeling of "must be something wrong with me, nobody thinks I am worth while." Of course there is always the possibility that a little improvement wouldn't hurt and we need to consider that; but low self esteem is primarily a product of allowing someone else to make us feel inferior. The thing that we need to keep in mind is that no one can make us feel inferior without our consent.

Marilyn Hickey occasionally tells the story of her decision to go on television. When she approached the stations, a not so kind man looked her up and down and said, "Lady since you are successful on the radio, my advice to you is stick with it." He apparently didn't think that she was pretty enough to preach on television. He probably felt that being a beauty queen was more important than being anointed. Personally, I think Marilyn is radiant all over, because she is filled with light.

Jesus said, "If you are filled with light, then the outside will be radiant too." Luke 11:36. Beautiful are the feet of them (and the rest of them too) which bring good news. The thousands of people who support her television programs also think that she is beautiful. Marilyn did not allow that man's opinion to lower her self esteem.

Walt Disney was once fired by an editor who said that Walt did not have any good ideas. Walter disagreed. No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. What other folks may think or say is not important. WHAT WE THINK AND SAY, IS IMPORTANT.

There are two kinds of brilliant successful people. Those very rare ones, who are born with an ability to do something that no one else can do. Rare genius. The other is an ordinary person who develops what they have and refuses to give up. They persist no matter what other people think or say.

It is said that Abraham Lincoln was poorly fed, poorly clothed, poorly taught and not very handsome. Everybody but Abraham Lincoln knew that. Abraham knew he had something to contribute. So in spite of a long list of failures, he persisted, and won.

In 1948 The Governor of New York, Thomas Dewy, ran against President Harry Truman. The polls were heavily in favor of Dewy, big headlines predicted a landslide for Dewy. Newscasters said that Truman would be defeated by an overwhelming majority. In Washington, real estate agents were selling houses to people who expected to be on Dewey's cabinet. The morning of election day, the Chicago Tribune put a paper on the streets with 3 inch tall headlines that read, Dewy Defeats Truman. Dewey's campaign headquarters were very confident. But by 8 P.M. that evening, the Governor of New York was not quite so sure. At 8 a.m. the next morning Dewy found it necessary to compose and send a telegram to President Truman congratulating him on his victory. If Truman ever doubted, through all the months of being bombarded with predictions of failure, no one knew it. He had many opportunities to quit, in fact most of the world expected him to. But he persisted, Truman didn't allow public opinion to give him a case of low self esteem. He knew who he was and that he was not a quitter. We must not give up, the winning team always finishes the game. No one can make us feel inferior, without our consent. As a man or woman thinks in his or her heart, so is he or she.

Anyone who has been programmed to have low self esteem needs the cure. The cure is Jesus. That person needs to find out who they are in Him and how important they are to Him. He sees us as smart and capable of doing and having the best. He sees us as winners. Revelation knowledge of these truths will change our lives.

Winners have PMA (positive mental attitudes) and Philippians 4:8 is how you get PMA. "... whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, Think on and weigh and take account of these things... fix your minds on them.".

We must stop dwelling on past mistakes and start dwelling on what God's Word says we are.

The Word says we are victorious, over comers in this life. That we have the mind and wisdom of Christ. God declares us to be the best. We are the cream that rises to the top. He thinks that we are worthwhile, the Bible says so. He also thinks that we are very competent, if He didn't He wouldn't have entrusted us with the job of carrying Jesus to all the world.

Depression caused by low self esteem in the believer, (the grasshopper complex), is cured by re-affirming who we are in Christ. Let me share what the word says about us.

We are God's child for we are born again of the incorruptible seed of the Word of God which lives and abides forever. We are forgiven and all of our sins are washed away in the blood of Jesus.

Therefore, we are new creatures, the temple of the Holy Spirit, delivered from the power of darkness and translated into God's Kingdom. We are redeemed from the curse of the law, blessed, a saint, the head and not the tail, above only and not beneath. We are holy and without blame before Him in love, established to the end, made nigh by the blood of Christ and victorious.

We are set free, strong in the Lord, dead to sin, more than a conqueror, joint heirs with Christ, sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise and in Christ Jesus by His doing.

We are accepted in the Beloved, complete in Him, crucified with Christ, alive with Christ, free from condemnation, reconciled to God and qualified to share in His inheritance.

We are firmly rooted and built up, established in faith and overflowing with gratitude, fellow citizens with the saints and of the household of God. Built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Himself being the chief cornerstone. Born of God, His faithful follower, overtaken by blessing, as He is in heaven, so are we in this world.

We are the light of the world, the salt of the earth, the righteousness of God, a partaker of His divine nature, the first fruits among His creation, chosen and called.

We are ambassadors for Christ, God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works.

The apple of the Fathers eye, healed by the stripes of Jesus, Being changed into His image, raised with Him and seated in heavenly places, beloved of God, one in Christ......HALLELUJAH. In addition to that we have the mind of Christ, have obtained an inheritance, have access by one spirit to the Father, have overcome the world and have everlasting life. We will not be condemned, have the peace of God and have the power of the Holy Spirit.

Power to lay hands on the sick and see them recover, power to cast out demons, power over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt us. We live in and by the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus, we walk in Christ, in Him we live and move and have our being.

We can do all things in Christ Jesus, we shall do greater works than He did. The greater one lives in us, greater is He who is in us, than he who is in the world. We press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God, we always triumph in Christ, and we show forth His praise. What an incredible quality of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.

Low self esteem causes depression. Depression is an enemy of health. God wants us to have good health and be successful. Learning who we are in Christ Jesus will correct low self esteem. Once that is done, we must be aware that He has a purpose for each of us.

In the prologue of William Tyndales' first printed English New Testament, are these words.

"We have not received the gifts of God for ourselves only, or for to hide them; But for to bestow them unto the honoring of God and Christ; and to the edifying of the congregation, which is the body of Christ."

Acts 20:32 "And now, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified."