Submitted by Charles C. Walker

From the age of 11 to 18, I suffered from severe, personality changing, intense depression. Deliverance didn’t come from the world, antidepressants, or counseling, which I never received, it came from the power of God.

The depression seemed to rear its ugly head at a young age. It seemed I was always surrounded by chaos, either the arguments between my divorced parents or the fights between me and my brothers. Things elevated to a point of no return when I ran away from home a couple of times the last time after a big fight with my older brother where I regrettably cut his arm with a knife.

That night I was taken downtown to the local rescue mission and became a ward of the state. Thank God my uncle and aunt took me in and I lived with them for a year. From there and I moved from house to house until I graduated high school.  On top of the depression I had others issues such as fear, rejection, and low self-esteem that made things more difficult.

One day I remember asking myself,  “when was the last time I was happy” and I couldn’t remember. I felt alone. Family started pointing out that I was acting different.  People would always ask “What’s wrong” and I would tell them, but it brought no relief to my sorrows. I just wanted to be alone. I wanted some sort of peace and quiet.  I have heard of people who say they drank, did drugs, partied or used other vices to cope with their problems but I never did. I rarely left the house except for school but I did take refuge in sleep. I felt at peace when I was sleep until I was no longer able to control my sleeping habits. Years later I was diagnosed as having narcolepsy.

Things got better when I went to church and the year I wrestled competitively in the tenth grade. But true deliverance did not happen until I went to the altar and repented of my sins, was baptized with the Holy Ghost and learned to worship and praise God.

I found such peace at church as I sang praises to God and heard his word.  God would minister to my hurt. He would lift my burdens and as I sent praises up, he would send blessings down. Once and for all I had found joy, unspeakable joy; Joy that was not given to me by worldly pleasure or people but by the Power of God. It took me some time to learn to deal with some of the issues of my past and how to learn to fight the depression when it tried to come back but I did. Now I am set free, loving God, loving life and grateful for all he has done for me.