Mental Health and the Church: Introduction

IMG_1235
image credit to psychologytoday.com

We live is a society plagued by mental health issues. Depression, anxiety, eating disorders, bipolar disorder, paranoia; the list of mental health issues that plague us, as a people, is nearly neverending. I suspect that in today’s western culture you would have to look far and wide to find a person whose life hasn’t been impacted in some way by mental illness.

Yet far too often, this is a topic ignored in our churches. Those of us who suffer are reluctant at times to even ask for prayer because of the undeniable stigma attached. This is unfortunate because the Church should be a place where those seeking relief and support for mental health disorders can find it.

Christ said that He came so that His sheep could have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10). I am convinced that a life-saving relationship with Christ should speak volumes into the existence of those who suffer from depression (or other disorders). Certainly, a life lived prisoner to a mental health disorder is far different than the abundant life Jesus spoke of.

In light of this I’ve decided to begin a series of postsĀ on this blog examining mental health from a Biblical perspective. What does the Bible say about mental health? Does it shed any light on the subject? How should the local church as well as the global Church respond? I believe there is a great need for the church to move this subject from the darkness of stigma into the light of Christ and that’s what I hope to do as I move forward with this series of posts.

This is a subject that is near and dear to me … my prayer is that anyone who reads this upcoming series and is impacted in some way by a mental health disorder will find comfort and relief in Christ.