From Darkness to Light: Overcoming Depression and Low Self-Esteem through Prayer and Fasting

warrior women series Jan 25, 2024
African American Woman Praying

God's Warrior Woman ~ Rhonda "Live" Alston 

Life's journey often takes us through valleys of despair and self-doubt, but the stories of triumph over such darkness inspire us to persevere. If you've ever felt like the world's weight crushes your spirit, know you're not alone. I hope that my testimony will inspire you on your journey from the depths of depression and low self-esteem to a life filled with purpose and joy through the power of prayer and fasting, even in the darkest of times.

Depression and low self-esteem can make life seem like a never-ending battle. The constant comparison to others and the feeling that your uniqueness is insufficient can lead you to question your existence. Such was the case for me at my lowest point. I yearned for a filling, and I knew it had to be Divine because only God could heal the emotional pit and pain. I did look for that filling-in food validation from others to only end up overweight and disappointed. 

I yearned for a filling, and I knew it had to be Divine because only God could heal the emotional pit and pain.

I remember so vividly one day, overwhelmed by despair and desperate for relief. I had bills and did not have the resources to pay them all, more months than money. I had been let down by so many people, rejected by men and people in church. I didn't think I would ever get married; I didn't know I was pretty enough and believed the Lord had forgotten about me.

My mind was so consumed with the cares of this world that I was not thinking straight. I didn't have praise on my heart or lips and didn't know my purpose. There was no reason to live. I was walking to the bank to "cash a check" and was extremely depressed. I was at the point where I didn't feel like putting on clothes, washing, or doing my hair.

But did you read that last sentence? I was on my way to "cash a check"!  

Looking back on that day, that season, I had so many things to be grateful for, but I had allowed life to cloud my eyes and heart to the point that I wanted a car to swerve off the road and hit me. I wanted to die.

You see, without knowing, I had cultivated a life of ungratefulness by not appreciating what God had provided in my life. I wasn't thinking about things that were true, pure, lovely, and good reports. I focused on what I didn't have, who I didn't have, and why I was created. That day, after cashing the check, I walked back to my apartment, closed the door, immediately fell to my knees, and cried three words to the Lord, 'God Help ME.'

In that moment of vulnerability, something extraordinary happened. Almost immediately, a wellspring of scripture rose within me as if a dormant river of living water had been stirred in my belly. The word of God flowed forth, bringing with it a renewed sense of purpose and vitality. I cried and rejoiced all night because I knew I had been changed, and the Lord answered my prayer. I felt like a new person!

"He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings." - Psalm 40:2 (KJV)

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 (KJV)

Recognizing my transformational experience, I embarked on a journey of intentional prayer and fasting. I knew how to pray and fast... but this time, it was different. This wasn't about mere rituals but a heartfelt communion with the Holy Spirit, a deliberate effort to create an atmosphere of praise and worship through Psalms, songs, and scripture.

But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into mine own bosom." - Psalm 35:13 (KJV)

Through this process, I began to realize my inherent worth as the creation of a loving and purposeful Creator. The toxic habit of comparison faded as I embraced my unique qualities, understanding that my laughter and calling were precious gifts worthy of celebration.  

The toxic habit of comparison faded as I embraced my unique qualities, understanding that my laughter and calling were precious gifts worthy of celebration.  

"I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." - Psalm 139:14 (KJV)

 While the journey from the depths of depression to a place of self-acceptance and purpose was not without its challenges, I stand assured in my unwavering faith that the power of prayer and fasting has been and is my guiding light. Each day became an opportunity to reaffirm my commitment to a life filled with joy and gratitude.

Since then, I can say that I have been married now for seven years, started a non-profit and podcast, Finding Your Heart, helping women discover their purpose and navigate the world of dating in a Godly way, started a business, R and R Administration and Consulting, and recording my first musical CD.

Even as I write this testimony, I am facing a situation with a negative report from the doctor regarding my ability to have children. But the Lord has the final say, and He will give me the desires of my heart.

Please join me in prayer and fasting so that I stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. He has given me so many promises, and I believe His word. 

My story is not over yet, and if you find yourself in a similar place of darkness, remember that your story isn't over, either. Just as I found solace and strength in prayer, you, too, can discover the transformative power within you. 

 Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life." John 4:13-14

Your laughter, calling, and life are all part of a greater purpose. Embrace your uniqueness, seek the Lord, and let the living water within you flow, bringing forth a life that radiates hope and joy. Someone is waiting on us to be the warriors God has called us to be, and we have power! 

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)


Make sure you check back next week for another Warrior Woman!

You Are An Overcomer!

You are not alone; God created you in His image, which means you have power and authority.  He has equipped you with His strength and boldness. I would love to connect more and give you a FREE gift - The Warrior Woman Workbook: Overcoming Through the Power of Prayer and Fasting. 

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The Warrior Women Series will offer motivation and inspiration through heartfelt stories, illustrating that you can overcome challenges through the powerful combination of prayer and fasting.

Rhonda is a dynamic individual who embodies the essence of purpose-driven living. With an unwavering belief in the potential within each individual, Rhonda has dedicated her life to helping people uncover their true calling and harness it to achieve remarkable success.

A seasoned singer and a visionary business owner, Rhonda's passion lies in guiding others toward their path of fulfillment. Through her transformative coaching programs, she empowers people to shatter the barriers that hinder their dreams, enabling them to pursue their aspirations confidently.

Fueled by a passion for music and the Lord, Rhonda's journey takes an exciting turn as she readies to unveil her debut album in 2024. With every note and lyric carefully woven, she aspires to infuse her music with an irresistible blend of joy, solace, and motivation. Her melodies are poised to resonate deeply with listeners, striking chords of inspiration that echo long after the music fades, pointing them to Jesus.

Rhonda's infectious enthusiasm for life radiates through her various roles. As a speaker, her words ignite audiences with the fire of possibility. As a songwriter, her compositions touch hearts. As an author, her written words provide a roadmap for personal growth. And as a coach, she's a steadfast guide, accompanying others on their transformative journeys.

With her remarkable ability to harmonize her passions and talents, Rhonda is more than an artist; she is a beacon of hope and encouragement. Her website, www.rhondalive.com, is a hub of inspiration, connecting people to her music, coaching programs, and empowering messages.

Rhonda continues to evolve and touch lives; her story reminds us that with a committed life to Christ, dedication, authenticity, and unwavering belief, we can each compose a symphony of purpose, resilience, and achievement. 

You may connect with Rhonda on her website www.rhondalive.com, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

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