For years this topic has been hushed over in our homes, in our churches. Mostly because we’ve been ignorant to the matter, haven’t known how to properly handle it and haven’t seen an outbreak on it as much as we are seeing now.
The topic of mental health is one that needs to be discussed.
In homes across our communities mental health illnesses are viewed as a sign of weakness, a disgrace. It’s as if we have feared people that deal with their mental health and have insinuated that it is something to be embarrassed/ashamed about. The language that has been used with people that are struggling has been ultimately negative. “Stop being dramatic”, “This means you’re disconnected from God”, “Stop acting crazy before they have you see a therapist”, “you aren’t praying enough”.
I believe in prayer. Prayer works, Prayer is powerful! But we cannot ignore what is already there, prayer needs to be followed by works sometimes. While God can definitely heal us completely, there are times where we have to do our part. If you are diagnosed with an illness, although you do and/or should pray, you still have to accompany that prayer with the health instructions given by your doctor.
There were many times in the Bible where God chose to heal someone but gave them certain directions first (like when Elisha told Naaman to go wash himself 7 times in the Jordan in order to get healed from leprosy). Sometimes aside from prayer, we must follow the directions given by a doctor. For example if you are diabetic, after prayer, you should still have a good, balanced diet and stay away from sugar.
Our mental health should be as important to us as our physical health is.
So, how do we bring the attention and importance that it deserves? How do we better serve our communities?
By getting informed, by talking about it, by asking the questions that need to be asked, by genuinely being concerned for whoever is struggling, by loving ALL the people around us well.
We need to have more unfiltered conversations.
I don’t have all the answers
I don’t think any of us do but we lean on the one who does. We must get informed and open up the doors to this conversation
To you dealing with Mental Health Issues:
-You are not what you go through.
-Whatever mental health issue you are struggling with does not define your relationship with God. Your relationship with God defines your relationship with God.
-Talking about your mental health is NOT “attention seeking”
-Seek and you shall find. He holds the answer but has given us solutions. Seek medical attention if necessary… it’s okay to not be okay.
Lastly, I am truly sorry for this battle with your brain. It will get better, we will get better and YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Here to talk/pray if y’all need me.