“You can be a Christian and still struggle with Mental Health”. Experiencing Mental Health challenges does not mean you are lacking in faith or that you are not close to God. Mental Health is not a “punishment” for decisions a person makes with their life. The reality is that Mental Health does not discriminate and yes, strong, devout Christians struggle with Mental Health.
Christian counseling, combines your faith with the principles of psychology to improve your mental health and relationships. More specifically, this therapy approach uses scripture and biblical teachings to help you deal with life’s challenges.
In 2014, LifeWay Research prescreened 800,000 Protestant Christians and, based on the results, surveyed 1,000 pastors, 355 Protestant individuals with acute mental illness and 207 Protestant family members of those with acute mental illness. The findings from the survey revealed the substantial impact of mental health stigma. Their research showed that:
65% of family members believe local churches should talk more openly about mental illness to reduce stigma.
20% of individuals believe that their acute mental illness makes it difficult to understand salvation.
49% of pastors report that they rarely or never speak about acute mental illness to their church in sermons or large groups.
23% of pastors have personally struggled with mental illness.
Addressing stigma in the church will help Christians more effectively deal with depression, which could dramatically lower the number of Christians suffering from depression.