Hope Abounds: Why I teach about anger and depression

Written by Paul J. Bucknell on October, 25, 2021

Hope Abounds: Why I teach about anger and depression

Why I teach about anger and depression

I can understand why some people might question why I, without a doctorate, dare teach on overcoming some of society’s most challenging issues like anger and depression. (And no, I don’t advise people about medication.)

It will help make things clear by presenting three levels of problem-solving. The first two are superficial in the sense that they do not solve the problem. The third level, the root level, is where we learn how God extends grace to restore us.

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Level One—A Question

Most people who want to solve anger and depression problems ask the wrong question. They ask: “How can I get free of this anger or depression?” We understand how important this issue has become to them, their family, and others. They are desperate. However, the search is shortsighted, rarely finding a resolution. They are more interested in running away from the problem than in really solving it. Running away from a problem rarely helps.

Some of these individuals move on to a second question.

Level Two—A Cause

The next question focuses on the issue. “Why is it that I get angry or anxious?” They have begun to surmise that there is a cause to their bursts of anger or melancholy feelings. However, even this question, because of the way it is framed, does not significantly help because we cannot look at its deep underground roots. We pluck the leaves, but the stubborn root remains.

It’s too easy to blame others!

Most people fail to see the needed changes because of the tendency to blame others for their circumstances. Although their circumstances are highly relevant, it rarely points to the actual cause. They point fingers at a person or event instead of examining their hearts.

Level Three—A Solution

At the third level, we analyze why people become so vulnerable to anger or anxiety. People aren’t always angry, violent, depressed, nor discouraged, are they? No. What changes occur that allow such difficult straits to enter their lives?

The world has invested much effort and time studying these issues but is not successful in solving them. They base their analyses on wrong assumptions. In the end, they only, at the best, help people “manage” their difficulties.

We should not be satisfied with such ineffectiveness. God wasn’t and sent Jesus who said, “And the truth shall make you free!” (John 8:32)

A good technician identifies and solves properly understood problems. Would anyone tolerate a technician who though confidently stating he understood the problem but just told us to tolerate the broken object? I think not.

Although these issues relate to our physical and emotional beings, and our relationships, the underlying problems are spiritual and with the soul. And thankfully, God gives us answers right in His Word! The Lord, our Technician, provides the needed insights not to manage but to find genuine healing.

Consider that these problems are spiritual problems that Jesus can heal with His truth.

The Lord Jesus Christ

has made us free indeed!

Instead of wearing ourselves out running from the problem, we need to come to the Lord and find rest. “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Mat 11:28). In His rest, we can discover faith and joy. God fills the holes in our spiritual “roofs” so that with Christ-filled lives, we can bring glory to God and again serve others.

Conclusion

Overcoming our anger and depression is not our goal; their presence only exposes our deep-rooted soul issues. Our Lord knows how to help us find peace of heart and become free from our old selves. His Word not only shields us from those soul vulnerabilities but radically fills us with His amazing grace and faith.

Reaching Beyond Mediocrity shares God’s wonderful way of healing, not just “managing” our problems but leading us to live Christ-filled lives.

Three levels of responding to problems

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