As a Christian growing up, people never spoke about mental health and the effects it can have on you physically, emotionally and spiritually. Now being someone who has been through, and is still going through this struggle, I wanted to share what God has been teaching me.
In our last blog post we highlighted and shattered some myths Christians believe about mental health. As we continue on with this theme I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at what truths we find in the Bible that relate to our mental health.
What does the Bible say about Mental Health?
Regardless of how we feel and what we’ve done God unconditionally loves us
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.” Jeremiah 31:3
The biggest truth you need to know is that God loves you unconditionally. There is nothing you can do, there is nowhere you can go, there’s no place you can hide from God’s love. It will always reach you. (Romans 8:38-39)
God sent His One and only Son Jesus, to come into the world and die for our sins. He died for the messy, broken, ungrateful, sinners that we are. He did it because He loves us.
One thing I notice when my mental health is suffering, the devil tries to convince me that i’m not loved, known, seen, heard or cared about. It’s not true. God loves me. God loves you. That is a fact. It will never change. Don’t let anyone or anything convince you otherwise.
Our minds need to be renewed and refreshed daily
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:2
We are constantly surrounded by doubt, fear, uncertainty, pain, worry, anxiety, despair, death, loneliness. Each of these negative emotions and experiences chip away at our happiness. In the last blog post I spoke about joy and how joy has to be a conscious choice in our lives because we won’t always be happy. One of the ways we can choose joy is by renewing our minds.
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8
Instead of focusing on the negative, God wants us to fix our minds on the positive. Easier said than done and another reason why i’m an advocate for counseilling. Often our brains need rewiring, we need to change the way we think in order to change the way we live.
I recently read a book “Craig Groeschel: Winning the War on Your Mind”. It has some excellent practical tips on rewiring your thoughts and retraining your brain. Check it out.
God knows about your anxiety but what you do about it makes all the difference
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. - 1 Peter 5:7
Jesus tells us plainly in Matthew 6:25-34 that worrying does not help anyone. There are numerous verses in the Bible that speak about anxiety because God knows by default, as humans, we tend to panic about things we can’t control. Pro tip: Worrying about something doesn’t give you control, nor does it fix your problem.
The advice we are given is to cast those anxieties to God. Why? Because God does have control. God sees what you can’t. He’s got your back, front and both sides. If you seek Him instead of focusing on all your problems and fears you’ll experience the joy He wants you to have.
God hears, sees, understands and is always right there
“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.” Psalms 34:17-18
When your mind is clouded with negativity it often seems like God isn’t listening, but in His Word we find promises like this one, reminding us of His presence and care. When you cry out, God hears. When you are in trouble, God can deliver you. When your heart is broken, God is near. When your spirit is crushed, God can save you. Write these words on your wall, in your phone and more importantly on your heart and in your mind. The Bible is the Sword of the Spirit. It is the weapon you can use to fight the negativity and experience God’s victory.
Joy can be restored
“For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” Psalms 30:5
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
The last truth I want to leave you with is that your joy can be restored. Depression may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning. Anxiety may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s something God wants to give us. When we abide in Him these fruits are seen in our lives. Be encouraged in the fact that if right now you feel all hope and joy are gone, there is a morning, it’s on it’s way. Hold on. Let God show you.
The Bible is a rich source of wisdom, comfort, and guidance for every facet of our lives, including our mental health. We can find reassurance in these truths and promises as we navigate the complexity of our mind and emotions. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14) and God wants you to experience His goodness mentally as well as physically and spiritually.
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