Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2
The Bible places a lot of emphasis on hospitality. Indeed, believers are called to welcome strangers and be hospitable to all. Hospitality reflects our Christlike nature and is an expression of our love for others. However, there are some guests we must not allow to invade our space. Guests like depression and anxiety have invaded the hearts of so many people throughout the Covid pandemic that we now have a mental health crisis of catastrophic proportions.
While the Covid pandemic was forcing many people to be disconnected from one another, it made it easier for depression and anxiety to creep into the minds and hearts of too many people. Even those who have sought help from mental health professionals find it challenging to toss out those unwanted guests. If we do not kick out those guests out of our minds and hearts, they will also invite their friends despair, worry, frustration, hopelessness, hatred, and fear to stay as well.
The combination of those unwanted guests can lead to serious physical sickness like cancer. They can rob us of the joy of our salvation and undermine our efforts for spiritual growth and maturity. Such unwanted guests must be evicted from our minds and hearts as soon as they try to move in. They must be resisted and rejected forcefully by any means necessary.
When those unwanted guests try to intrude into my life, I run to the word of God in scripture to keep them out. Passages like Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus;” 1 Peter 5:7, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you;” and Psalm 34:17-18, When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit,” are great resources to help keep the unwanted guests of depression and anxiety out of our lives.
I also use the weapon of prayer to keep those unwanted guests out of my life. One of the many benefits of prayer is its therapeutic properties. When I pray, I invite the presence of God to invade my heart and soul so I can evict any unwanted spirits, emotions, desires, thoughts, and attitudes that are hindering my relationship with God.
One of the most effective ways to keep the unwanted guests of depression and anxiety out of our lives is by filling our minds with “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable. Therefore, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—we should think about such things” (Philippians 4:8).
It can be very difficult to force unwanted guests to leave once they have moved in. The best thing to do is to prevent them from intruding into our space in the first place. Depression and anxiety are destructive guests. They can tear our hearts, destroy relationships, ruin our finances, hurt our loved ones, and extinguish our spiritual fire. Whenever we sense those guests are about to break into our lives, we should seek help immediately.
Questions for Personal Reflection
How are you keeping the unwanted guests of depression and anxiety out of your life?
How can you help a friend or loved one who is struggling with depression and anxiety?
Prayer- Blessed Lord, please saturate my mind and heart with your Holy Spirit so I can resist and reject depression and anxiety from invading my heart and mind. Please help me to draw closer to you when I feel the onset of depression and anxiety. May I not allow those unwanted guests to tear my heart, destroy my relationships, ruin my finances, hurt my loved ones, and extinguish my spiritual fire.