Prozac® is one of the world’s top-selling anti-depressants. The theory behind the creation of the medication is to regulate the serotonin levels in the brain so that the observed fluctuations in mood swings among those with depression, PTSD, abuse etc. would stabilize. For those having those conditions, a medication like Prozac® is as necessary as is insulin for some diabetics.
In the book of Psalms, there are a wide variety of emotions expressed by the various authors and King David. Since he is the author of most of the Psalms this blog post uses his name as a matter of convenience representing all the authors. So let us look at a few of the verses
Who among us has not felt bullied and cast down? It matters how you were abused by parents peers, a spouse, “friends” on Facebook or an imperious, egotistical boss, the result is the same—depression over and frustration due to a no win situation from which there seems to be no escape, living a life of quiet desperation, feeling helpless
Psalm 43:1 Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people, from the deceitful and unjust man deliver me!
2 For you are the God in whom I take refuge; why have you rejected me? Why do I go about mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
Can you not feel the helplessness of his situation? He calls his tormentors “deceitful” “ungodly” and “unjust”. His viewpoint is that of an active, present oppression by an organized cabal of evil directed against him in a personal manner.
If the Psalmist told this to a modern physician, he would get a sample and a prescription for Prozac®
But instead, he went to the altar of God, and two verses later, he writes this:
Psalm 43:3 why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.
In other words, David went to the Great Physician instead of an ordinary physician. No this is not a dig at the medical community, but it is a practical demonstration of the importance pf getting a different perspective, from the viewpoint the sovereign God of all creation before doing anything else.
The principle of that is akin to checking our speed with our GPS instead of our speedometer. Because the device on the dashboard constantly gets it’s bearing from a “stationary” satellite some 22,500 miles above the Earth it is far more accurate than the speedometer in your vehicle, or the radar of the police.
Here is another way that King David expressed the same sentiment in a prayer of blessing to those feeling downtrodden:
Psalm 20:1 May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob protect you!
2 May he send you help from the sanctuary and give you support from Zion!
During that prayer God was clearly speaking to him because he writes very strongly in this section
Psalm 20:6 Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven
with the saving might of his right hand.
7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
8 They collapse and fall, but we rise and stand upright.
Take heart, you brothers and sisters in Christ who feel downtrodden, the Lord is with you, always. That is because He got to wherever you are now before you did, and He is simply waiting for you to call on Him, the Great Physician.
Another reason for the question of Prozac® is the issue of learning the lessons that come from godly pain. I do not like to make absolute statements about hypotheticals, but in my estimation had David (or anyone else) have access to Prozac® both the despair and the exultation of a God-given answer could have been diminished. Usually, when we are at our ultimate bottom, it is God Who divinely intervenes. So we must ask the question about all those frequent Psalms mentioning depression and despair. Why are they there? It is because too often, we feel the same as the Psalmists. Feeling rotten is not a matter of being sinful; instead, it is part of the condition of living in a sin-saturated society, and God wants us to remember this “secret” which is made clear in the entire Bible:
Philippians 1:27 To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory
All Scripture from ESV
That is the reason why you are so different, Christian. You alone, not the cults have Christ in you, and this fact takes us from despair to the heights of exultant joy in what Jesus has done for you