Under-Attachment as a Key to Fighting Depression

One of the ways to fight depression is to battle against becoming over-attached to what you “hold dear” in your life.  All of us or prone to depression in one way or another–from occasional, short depressions to chronic, lasting depression–and Dr. Archibald Halt, using the apostle Paul’s wisdom, calls us to a life of under-attatchment to anything and anyone but Christ’s:

The depressive person is usually overattached to his reputation, his security, his ‘things,’ and those people who meet his deepest needs. But sooner or later, we have to say good-bye to all of them. What Paul is calling us to do is become ‘underattached’ to everything we hold dear. Not detached, but less attached. Christian maturity (which always leads us to greater mental as well as spiritualhealth) is a process of becoming less attached to everything that this world holds dear. It is a process of slowly letting go, of taking our fingers off one by one, until we free ourselves to be wholly Christ’s possessions. This isn’t a pipedream—it is the way of the cross that leads to the most fulfilling life you can possibly live.

Paul never claimed to have attained a state of total nonattachment to this world (Philippians 3:13), but he made this “prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” his life goal (verse14, KJV). So, too, must it be ours. It can help us from unnecessary depression.  (Unmasking Male Depression, 140)

One thought on “Under-Attachment as a Key to Fighting Depression

  1. I was talking to a friend the other day about a psychologist he has been going to for depression, and we ended up circling around “what we put our hope in.” I was thinking the afterward that is it so easy to find yourself anchored in things or activities apart from God. Reading this reminds me of a mountain climber anchoring into a rock face, I certainly would want to be “over-attached”, but if I was given the option of mooring to solid rock vs. Styrofoam or marshmallow creme, the decision would be certain. I guess the challenge is to grow in our knowledge of God and teach others to discern between the assurance of the holy solid nature of God and the shaky trappings of this world.

    I feel like God is reminding me again, and again… “Now this is eternal life, that men may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.”

    Thanks BJ… timely and awesome.

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