The Wanderer

As I walked through the wilderness of this world …

Review: “Christians Get Depressed Too”

with 2 comments

Christians Get Depressed Too

David P. Murray

Reformation Heritage Books, 2010, 126pp., paperback, $10 / £7.50

ISBN 978-1-60178-100-0

Born of deep pastoral concern, this deliberately slim volume sets out to provide, from a reformed Christian perspective, a Biblically balanced introduction to the issue of depression that will be helpful to sufferers and care providers alike. Its brevity, together with its methodical solidity and alliterative structures, may help those who cannot handle something weightier. Murray sets out the crisis regarding depression (its reality and effects) before moving on to its complexity (resisting unhelpfully simplistic and sweeping declarations about the nature of the beast, but taking into account various spiritual, physical and mental factors). The chapter on the condition itself takes in the sufferer’s circumstances, thoughts, feelings, physical symptoms and behaviour – the sections on thoughts and feelings are particularly helpful in terms of understanding more or less helpful tracks and tendencies in our attitudes (general spiritual health issues of which all saints should be aware). Again, in considering the cause Murray ranges over a number of potential contributors, as he does when looking at the cure. Finally, there is a chapter for the caregivers, offering some encouragements and counsels. In a book of such brief scope there is always a danger of over- or under-stating a case, or a lack of definition, but I was still impressed with the thoughtfulness and tenderness with which Murray writes, his careful use of Scripture to support and defend his assertions, and his awareness of the interplay of various factors in understanding and addressing depression. He interacts critically with a variety of literature. He does not gloss over sin in its relationship to depression (as cause, concomitant, or consequence) but neither does he simply default to sin (or anything else) as the catch-all explanation for all sorts and degrees of depression. It is very much an introductory piece, but will be sufficient for many in getting a healthy and accurate grip on the issue of depression among believers. If you need help on this issue, you would find a good start here.

Written by Jeremy Walker

Friday 5 August 2011 at 13:14

Posted in Reviews

Tagged with ,

2 Responses

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  1. I read and really appreciated this book, I agree that it is the place to start when you are personally struggling or working with someone who is dealing with depression. Soon after I read it I did A review of it in our Adult Sunday School class.

    Here is a link if anyone is interested in listening to it.

    Seth Getz

    Friday 5 August 2011 at 14:19

  2. […] Review: “Christians Get Depressed Too” ( […]

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