Recognize the Signs

Apr 30, 2024

Today, I want to talk about a tough topic: kids and depression. When we're raising kids, it's not always smooth sailing. Sometimes, it feels more like we're in the middle of a storm, especially when our kids are dealing with something as tough as depression. It's hard because it's not always easy to spot.

Spotting the Signs
There's a big difference between just being sad and being depressed. Sadness comes and goes, but depression sticks around and can really change how kids see themselves and the world. We've got to be able to tell the difference, and the sooner, the better. The Bible tells us that God's near to those with heavy hearts (Psalm 34:18), and that's a comfort, but it's also a reminder for us to look out for these signs and help our kids out.

What Can You Do?
Grab your sneakers and take the family out for a walk in nature. It's a great way to see God's handiwork and cheer up. Notice the little things, like the shapes of leaves or the vastness of the sky.

Listening Well
When it comes to listening to our kids, it's all about giving them our full attention. Don't just hear the words—listen with your heart. Don't jump straight into fixing things. Just being there and really getting what they're feeling is huge. It shows them they matter and that they're loved—just like God listens to us.

What Can You Do?
Start a 'Joy Jar' at home. Everyone can jot down something that made them happy each day. Once a week, go through the jar together. It's a simple way to remember the good stuff and be thankful.

Finding Joy with God
When depression hits, remembering God's promises can be a real source of hope. Encouraging our kids to find joy in God doesn't mean their pain disappears, but it offers solid hope and a reminder that good things are still out there, even in the tough times.

What Can You Do?
Put together a playlist of Christian music that lifts the spirits. Play it around the house and let it fill the space with positivity. It's a way to keep reminding us that God's love is always there, lighting up even the darkest days.

Dealing with childhood depression is hard, but we're not alone. Seek out professional help if you need to. Rely on God, be there for your kids, and guide them to brighter days ahead.