but when you are in the middle of Depression, the end is almost impossible to see." -Aaron Chidester, President, Executive Director- Unite4Life
We had the opportunity to see a presentation for Unite4Life this week and I am so glad we did. We knew that depression was something that could effect the teens in our life, but we had no idea how frequently or how severe it can be. Look at the stats:
1 in 4 teens will struggle with a bout of depression this year.
1 in 7 will seriously consider suicide.
1 in 12 well attempt to commit suicide this year.
In the last 10 years, approximately 50,000 teens have taken their own life.
If that doesn't wake us up, I don't know what will.
Take some time and go to the link so you can educate yourself on the signs of depression and how to handle it. I think the speaker's biggest point was we all HAVE to go out of our way "to show we care".
He did a great job sharing stories and making the talk relevant to the teens in the room, and I am praying he can get into the schools and share truth on that level. Our kids need to hear that they are NORMAL when depression happens, and it WILL pass. That is the hardest thing to see in the midst of it.
Chidester also spent time explaining what types of depression teens can struggle with and the role drugs and alcohol play on their systems. We have to fight for the next generation, friends. Don't let them walk around feeling alone and in despair. Doesn't matter if you are too busy, too awkward, or too old- find a teen and let them know you care. This is a matter of life and death.
I have been so ticked at the Enemy of our life, for the way he deceives and steals hope. Then I was reminded of Nehemiah. In the beginning of this book, Nehemiah was moved to rebuild Jerusalem, as big as the task might be. As things start to pan out and the gaps in the wall are being repaired, Sanballat, a Samaritan leader, gets angry that the Jews should prosper and get their city back. In the midst of the heat of the day, with sweat and exhaustion as their constant friend, the people find out that Sanballat and the Samaritan army plan to come and attack them and destroy their work, if not take their lives! Listen to what Nehemiah says to his friends, “Don’t be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!” Nehemiah 4:14b
That is our charge, dear ones! This chapter also says "During this time, none of us—not I, nor my relatives, nor my servants, nor the guards who were with me—ever took off our clothes. We carried our weapons with us at all times, even when we went for water." 4:23 Are we willing to be that prepared? That tired? Are we willing to do whatever it takes to makes sure the teenagers in our lives know how special they are and that the "Great and Glorious Lord" loves them and died to save them? Oh, how I pray it will be so! That our community would wake up and "fight" for them!
God bless you and keep you. Above all else,
"I remain CONFIDENT of this:
I will see the GOODNESS of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart and WAIT for the LORD." Psalm 27:13-14