|Posted by [email protected] on June 1, 2016 at 3:40 PM|
Mental Health Conditions: Is this a Spiritual Attack on God's People?
Since 1949, Mental Health America and its affiliates have celebrated Mental Health Month in May. In 2016, the theme for Mental Health Month is – “Life with a Mental Illness”. Therefore, Mental Health America is calling on individuals to share their stories about what life with a mental illness feels like, for them. So, our ministry is also taking action to share this message and to provide you with a platform to share your mental health stories. So, here are a few ideas to get us started. Of course, feel free to share your stories and continue this discussion.
According to the Nedley Health Foundation (2016), about 26% of Americans have some serious mental health condition. If those with anxiety and other minor mental health illnesses are added to these data, Dr. Nedley estimated that about 50% of all Americans have some mental illness. What this means is that every second person in this country has some form of mental health. Let’s stop to consider these statistics, this way, if two of us are having a conversation, one of us, have a mental health illness, this is staggering to say the least. By the way, I am not certain of another condition that impacts 50% of Americans. Do you, if you do, please let me know what that might be.
The Nedley Health Foundation also reported that depression is the most common mood disorder worldwide, and is the number one reason people miss work or school. Upon hearing this, I stopped to pray and ponder on why this could be so. Given that mental health impacts someone’s hope, ability to pray, forgive, and even function, it is necessary to assess by the mind of many Americans could be under attack. Yes, I believe that the mental health that we are experiencing in our name is a spiritual attack on God’s people. But what can we do about it?
I believe that since this is a spiritual issue that God’s word holds the keys to finding workable solutions. So, after going to the Bible, I have a few ideas for your consideration. I believe we can address mental health by doing the following:
1. Read and meditate daily on God’s word. In Isaiah 26:3, God clearly promises to keep us in perfect peace if our mind is stayed on him. In Romans 12:12, we are also reminded not to conform to this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our mind, that we might prove what is the good and acceptable perfect will of God. God also promises to help our minds in several other passages of the Bible, including, Ephesian 4:17-18, Philippians 4:6-7, and 2 Corithians10:4-5. Regardless of what where in the Bible we read, it is clear that God wants our minds to be clear, uncluttered, and focused on him. In fact, from personal experience, when I disobey these words, that when I find that my mind comes under the attack of the enemy. So, God word helps to de-clutter, clean, and renew the mind and ultimately affects our mood, behavior, and our mental health.
2. Confess your errors to others and have them pray for you and your mind. In James 5:16, we are admonished to confess our trespasses and pray for one another so that we may be healed. I honestly believe that all healing starts in the mind. Once the mind is convinced and faith rises up in a believer, if it is God’s will, then the effective, fervent prayers of other believer’s leads to divine healing. So, how does someone practice this step? They can find someone to confide in, share their struggles by been vulnerable, and then partner in prayers, so that together they can win over the enemy.
3. Eat a healthy diet- In, 1 Corinthians 10:31, we are reminded that whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. In 1 Corinthians 6: 19- 20, we are reminded that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. There are over 68 verses that I could find in the Bible that addresses food, which have all led me to believe that we must put the best we have into our “temples”. It is also clear that our food affects our mood and I have seen numerous patients who have eaten themselves sick, trying to cover some hidden pain. Once they overcome their fear and bring this hidden issue into the open, with God’s help and with much prayer (back to item # 2), they have overcome. So healthy eating God’s way is critical to maintaining good mental health.
4. Be physically active- Yes, go out and get some exercise. Again, God made the body to release certain hormones during exercise and just by taking those steps, or going for a swim, one’s mind and body can be refreshed and renewed. Again, in the Bible, several verses address exercise from both the spiritual and physical perspectives. For instance, in 1 Corinthians 9: 24-27, we are asked, do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. So, just move and God will do the rest. The healing process is started when we dare to go out in the fresh air and sun and move our bodies.
In summary, while mental health conditions are plaguing Americans, if we meditate on God’s word, confess our sins and pray for one another, eat well, and exercise, we can renew our minds and be healthy in body, mind, soul, and spirit.
We hope that all our readers had a wonderful mental health month. Please give us a call at 404-500-9204 to set up an appointment to see one of our counselors.