Tag Archive: depression

by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

After eating the last of a delicious store-bought watermelon, I decided to do what we always did as kids: throw the seeds into the backyard. However, instead of haphazardly tossing them, I placed the seeds in a crudely dug hole in the flower garden at the end of the patio. Then, expecting no fruit except by chance, I patted dirt on top with the bottom of my shoe to cover the seeds. While on one of my furloughs, after weeks and months of traveling, I looked out the French doors and saw, growing at the end of the patio, a pale green vine with tiny yellow flowers on it. It was a mystery to me! Delighted to see any resemblance of flowers in my neglected garden, I gave it little thought. To my surprise, on my next furlough, I saw emerging from now dense vines, a beautiful green watermelon sitting neatly on the patio. I had forgotten sowing watermelon seeds there. To my delight, I reaped a magnificently tasty watermelon.

Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. (Proverbs 18:21) 

Have you ever deliberately said something and forgot about it? Words, thoughts, and actions are like forgotten planted seeds. The only problem is that all seeds do not reap good tasting fruit. I heard the story of a man always saying with a laugh, for about twenty years, “I’ll see you tomorrow if I don’t get killed by a train before midnight.” It was his running joke. One night around 11:30pm he decided to go to the store. As he approached the railroad crossing, the streetlights were out. He didn’t see the train coming. Two minutes before midnight, his car was hit by a train. His words were ill-fated seeds that produced deadly fruit.

Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same. (Job 4:8)

man in blue long sleeve shirt talking

Photo by Anthony Shkraba on Pexels.com

As Issacs’s sight grew dim, at his mother’s urging, Jacob disguised himself as Esau, his brother, and received the blessing meant for the eldest son from his father. He tricked his dying dad and stole his brother’s blessings (Genesis 27:35). Then, he ran for his life because, naturally, Esau was not pleased. He eventually fled to stay with his mother’s brother, Laban. While there, he worked for seven years to marry Rachel whom he loved; but the seed his actions planted began to bear fruit. At the urging of Laban, his older daughter, Leah, disguised herself as Rachel and tricked Jacob into marrying her instead of the love of his life. Like Esau was hurt and dismayed when he discovered the deception, Jacob was also. He spent the next thirteen years reaping the harvest of the seed he planted (Genesis 31:41).

For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts… (Mark 7:21)

Job was a godly man who avoided iniquity. One day the devil went to the LORD and made a bargain. He believed that he could get Job to curse God if he took his stuff. He wanted to get Job to plant an ill-fated seed with his mouth. So, in one day, Job’s cattle, camels, servants, and children were gone. Job did not curse God but fell on the ground and worshipped (Job 1:20). Then, the LORD gave the devil permission to afflict his body but not allowed to kill him. Though his wife urged him to do so, Job did not curse God (Job 2:9). However, while cursing his own birth, Job revealed the seed he had planted; “What I feared has happened.” Job never said, “I fear…;” he thought it. He sowed a seed with his thoughts. (Job 3:25)

Whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap. (Galatians 6:7-8)

Sowing and reaping is a consequential law written into creation (Genesis 1:11) which we don’t pay enough attention to. We go around with a mouth full, handful, and mind full of seeds. Whether we reap good or bad fruits depends upon the seeds we plant. Problem is, we are opening our mouths, hands, and minds haphazardly tossing seeds all over the place. Throughout our lives we go about planting seeds and forget about it, until it bears fruit. And then it is a mystery why the fruit is there. If it’s good fruit, we attribute to the grace of God. When its bitter fruit, some attribute to God’s plan to teach a lesson, which is what ‘church folk’ too often erroneously (James 1:13) say. Some things we do, say and think are habits we get from TV, friends, family, teachers, cultural traditions, etc. It is a lifestyle, like breathing. For example, “My back is killing me” or “Scared to death” or “I barely have enough to get by,” or “They won’t hire me because…” These are seeds best never spoken. Notice that Job never blamed his misfortune on God. The mystery of the fruit is all about the seeds sowed without thought or belief that it will produce fruit except by chance. It is the LORD God that gives harvest according to seeds sowed.

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. (Galatians 6:8)

If we considered the law of the harvest, we would actively deliberately plant more seeds according to the fruit we want. When you get paid, like most people, you usually plant it into a Savings Account to collect interest. Nowadays the interest is exceedingly small. But look at what the LORD says about planting according to the Spirit; “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in Mine house, and prove Me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it (Malachi 3:10).” The LORD reveals that if you plant 10% of your money in Him, you will gain exceedingly great interest; more than you can hold.

Now, suppose that same principle is deliberately applied to words, thoughts, and deeds. What is it that is good and prosperous that you want? What benefits the kingdom and fulfills the will of God and brings Him glory? Say it and meditate on it. Sow positive righteous seeds in words, actions, and thoughts. Some plant good seeds without thought but imagine what a greater harvest could be had if seeds were deliberately sowed according to desired harvest.

A man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. (Proverbs 18:20)

In the gym, as athletes worked out, I’d hear the trainers saying, “You can do it!” and they do it; they meet their goal. If sowing to the flesh reaps good, how much more will sowing to the Spirit reap? Let the Holy Spirit be your trainer or coach and sow the words of the LORD, not words of the devil or the flesh. Instead of saying, “I can’t” which produce inability; sow the Word, “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me (Philippians 4:13)which will produce abundant ability and the benefits thereof.

Think before you say it. Self-pity words produce depression. Angry words produce a wicked brew. Frighten words reap fear. Witty words reap laughter. Kind words reap kindness. Encouraging words reaps encouragement. Positive words produce positive outcomes.

Certainly, some of us have already sowed bad seeds. After the LORD confronted him, Job confessed and immediately repented. Then, he sowed a different seed: he prayed for his friends. As a result, he reaped a doubly good harvest; “And the LORD restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed, the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before (Job 42:10).It is not too late to reap a good harvest. Repent, and change seeds (1John 1:9).

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth and said, “Let there be…” and it was, and it was all ‘good’ (Genesis 1:1-25). God made us in His image; so, when we say, “Let there be…” and it is, is it all good?

If not, could it be something we said?

That’s Today’s Single Focus



by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

Born Again, Holy Ghost filled, God called, purpose driven Christians, with passion and excitement, are encouragers and dispensers of grace and mercy to the body of Christ (believers in Christ).  This causes us to be misunderstood by church folks. You change your co-habitation habits, and your boyfriend thinks you’re cheating.  Give someone a holy embrace, and their spouse thinks that you are flirting.  I took a guest to a Bible Study where my best friend also attended.  After Bible Study, I went home and my best friend later called, accusing my guest of flirting with her boyfriend.  She then proceeded to accuse me of trying to do the same, even though when we talked, we hardly, if ever, talked about him, because she had other drama going on in her life.  This was a Bible Study, so why did her mind go in that direction?  What was she thinking?

Difficult times come in life.  Even true believers have bad days.  Yes, even true believers have times of depression and despondency.  Remember Elijah. He boldly went before the priests of Baal and saw the hand of God do a marvelous and miraculous work (1 Kings 18).  Then he hears that a wicked woman has put a contract out on his life. He runs and hides and remains in a funk for several days. He couldn’t eat, he couldn’t drink. He entertained thoughts of suicide. What was he thinking? Even so, God sent ravens to feed him and spoke to him comforting words telling him that he was not alone. Sometimes we get blindsided and we let emotions and fear get all caught up in our thoughts and mind even though God was in our mind and thoughts just the other day or even a second ago.

Unfortunately, though we have that same powerful God as Elijah on our side, sometimes we experience fear and despondency before we get started on the venture of pursuing the purpose or dream which God has called us to. Sometimes we do things all the wrong way or we do nothing, being paralyzed by our own depressing and fearful thoughts. Sometimes we pursue the purpose, the dream in the ways of the world, even though God told us to do it differently.

I’m not saying that days of discouragement, depression and despondency won’t ever come, but if we would spend some time thinking or focusing on what is “just, pure, lovely, of good report; virtuous and praise worthy (Philippians 4:8),” perhaps drama like this could be avoided.  If we spend time remembering the merciful and miraculous things that God has already done in our lives, we can encourage ourselves. If we think about all the marvelous blessings and all the doors that He has already opened; and if we think about how He has always given success accordingly as we trusted Him, our mind will be strengthened. Reminding ourselves of the powerful force the hand of God can be and has always been in the life of His children can embolden us to go forward and pursue our God-given dream with confidence.

When times get tough and distractions and drama comes, pray and concentrate your thoughts on the powerful, omnipresent, omniscient wise and faithful God. Think on His ability to do the impossible in seemingly impossible times.  Think about all the times He has done great things in your life and how He gives wisdom and understanding in our times of confusion.  Think about how He provided when you were in need. Think about His power, His goodness and His love, and how He has already demonstrated those things in your life. Think on these things!

Thinking on this can transform your mind, which allows the God of peace to be with you, comfort you and encourage you. Think on these things and you will begin to see mountains move and doors open. Think on these things and you will begin to see the drama have a triumphant outcome and His word performed. If God gave you the dream, it will be achieved, despite the drama and despite the distractions.   I am decidedly thinking as the Apostle Paul thought; “in all these things, we are more than conquerors (Romans 8:37).”  What are you thinking?

 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things [are] honest, whatsoever things [are] just, whatsoever things [are] pure, whatsoever things [are] lovely, whatsoever things [are] of good report; if [there be] any virtue, and if [there be] any praise, think on these things.”  Philippians 4:8

That’s Todays’ Single Focus…


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