Dealing with Depression

“So many of our patients have mental and emotional problems along with their physical problems.  I work with patients who have very difficult illnesses. Sometimes, I feel overwhelmed and in a black hole.  There are times when I find it hard to get out of bed and care for one more person. I wonder if I am letting the hardships of others and my own get the best of me.”  Working in a helping profession can sap nurses of life if we aren’t careful. We often push our needs to the side. This can be detrimental.

Hear the Word

Think of a time when you felt depressed.  As you read Elijah’s story, in what ways do you relate? Elijah, God’s prophet, had just been involved in a spiritual victory, yet he was worn out from it all.  Read his account and how God cared for him.  Read 1 Kings 19:1-18.


  • What were Elijah’s emotions?  What caused them?
  • What did the angel do for Elijah?  What was the significance of their actions in meeting his needs?
  • What may God have been trying to teach Elijah in verses 9-14?
  • What was the significance of God’s direction and reminder in verses 15-18?
  • What do you learn about the character of God in these passages?

Respond Actively

  • Internal:  How do you respond to God when you feel depressed?  Give examples of how God has cared for you during “down times.”  How can we resist God’s comfort when experiencing depression?
  • External:  Think about someone you know who is depressed (a friend, a patient or work colleague). How can you offer care in applying the principles learned from this passage?  In what ways can you encourage others who are depressed to reach out for help? 

We hope this study has offered encouragement as you continue to care well for others.  May you remember God’s love for you.

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