Christine Duncan

Precepts & Life Preservers

Define – Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday Prompt... Define!

Well, I finally got a chance to participate in this week’s Five Minute Friday prompt! Yay! The prompt today is *define*.
If you’d like to know more about #FiveMinuteFriday be sure to go HERE for more info! My five minutes of free writing starts… now.

{And… Go!}

A lot of people when they hear my testimony, ask me if getting my diagnosis of chronic depression has ever made it hard to define myself as anything else but depressed.

I always tell them it was the exact opposite.

I had lived with Dysthymic Disorder since the age of eleven but never knew it was a real thing,  and so all that time I had simply defined myself as a broken person.

I defined myself this way for almost 28 years.

“There must just be something wrong with me. I’m just one of those people with zero focus. Zero energy at the worst times. Can’t deal with life. No matter what I do, I always just feel wrong. The worst mother and wife. What’s wrong with me? Look at everybody LIVING while I fail…”

And to be honest, this mood disorder tried to define my whole family. “I must be the worst husband, she’s never happy.” “No matter what I do, my Mom doesn’t seem okay.”

It’s hard to diagnose something that looks like so many other things.

But when I finally got my diagnosis three years ago, the label of worst-person-ever dropped away, and freedom stepped in.

I wasn’t the worst and most broken person on the planet anymore.

I was a Daughter of the King who also happened to have chronic depression.

I was a wife who happened to have a low-grade mood disorder. A mom who simply needed some health care. A friend who needed to alter the daily in order to survive.

I was freed from what had tried to define me for years.

Not to mention my whole family. What they thought defined us as a whole finally had a name.

Now we could have a different kind of definition. A healthy one.

Now we could have a different kind of definition. Click To Tweet

What was underneath it all was properly defined, so we knew what it was we had to work around. And to not let it be what we were anymore.

And all our negative labels fell away, His gift to us through a doctor’s visit.

To this day I tell people, I know some hard things are yours to carry, but they don’t have to define you. It’s not the whole story. It’s not the whole picture.

He defines you by so much more.

{…. and Stop}

Five Minute Friday Post - DefineCome and join us over at today’s prompt and linkup with #FiveMinuteFriday and Kate Motaung!

And I’m also sharing over at Crystal Twaddell’s #FreshMarketFriday linkup!



  1. Praise God, your labels fell away. I love the hymn, “At the cross” and the words, “and the burdens of my heart rolled away”. You are the epitomi of that truth.

    • Christine Duncan

      March 31, 2017 at 2:20 PM

      Thank you so much, friend! Yes, transformation at the cross and we have our identity in Him alone! Amen. So glad you stopped in today, feeling blessed.

  2. Hello Christine, I totally agree with your words here: “some hard things are yours to carry, but they don’t have to define you. It’s not the whole story. It’s not the whole picture”, because when God comes into our story it shifts into His greater narrative, one with a wonderful ending and a great becoming.
    Thank you so much for stopping by my blog today! Blessed to meet and connect with you, friend and sister in suffering. May we continue to live defined more by what God says about us, rather than how the world (and all its problems) tries to contain us. Hope you have a lovely weekend! 🙂 x

    • Christine Duncan

      March 31, 2017 at 3:31 PM

      So glad we were able to connect today, Joy! He is our freedom, I’m so glad He calls us to more than our circumstances try to dictate! Blessings bigger than big for you, friend! xxoo

  3. I love this, Christine … God’s gift to you through a doctor’s visit. And there goes a significant part of the load you’ve been carrying. It might be replaced by a new load, but at least you know the name of the new one. Phew. Yes!

    Also, I’ve actually been thinking about you in relation to Five Minute Friday, because after never dreaming I would ever want to do something like this, it’s starting to sound like something I sort of NEED to do. I seem to recall that you just started doing FMF recently … is that right? I wondered what it’s been like for you. As for me, I set the timer and wrote for five minutes this morning! I don’t think I’m going to post this week because I want to write some kind of FMF intro and I don’t have time for that right now. But I was surprised at what I was able to get down in that short amount of time!

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend, my friend!

  4. Dianne Langdon

    March 31, 2017 at 4:01 PM

    DEFINE……… Soooo then……. I would never have defined you from the time I first met you until now as any thing other than a strong fantastic person!!!!! Not broken or unable to cope…..or someone with zero energy or doing the wrong things. I would have said then that you are a wonderful Godly daughter/girl/teen/wife/mother/friend. Always able to manage what comes your way!!!! Always happy and content!!!!!! This is how I describe you today as well. Isn’t it amazing how different others see you from how you see yourself or DEFINE yourself. DEFINE…….human…..God fearing……God loving….God serving….God loved….God Blessed. Love ya Christine.

  5. This is a beautiful testimony, Christine. You’ve perfectly expressed the definition that really matters.

    Great job, and thank you for bringing hope to all those who are privileged to read your words.

  6. I’m so glad you were able to find out what was wrong and that you found freedom through that. It must have been such a relief to have an explanation after all that time. It’s so important to remember that we are ultimately defined by God and our struggles are just one part of the story. Hope you have a lovely weekend!

  7. Christine, Thank you for writing about “define” through sharing your story. My family knows mood disorders all too well. I write about them and advocate for mental health. It is so tempting to use cultural standards as a measuring stick against which we compare ourselves. Yet, it’s deceiving. Satan wants nothing more than for us to see ourselves incapable of bearing God’s image. “To this day I tell people, I know some hard things are yours to carry, but they don’t have to define you. It’s not the whole story. It’s not the whole picture.” Yes! I’m at #64 slot.

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