The Five Most Common Lies of Mental Health
Christians don’t struggle with mental health.
Mental health is exclusive to non-believers and if you are a believer you will never struggle with mental health. This is setting people up for failure and an abandonment of their faith. If you believe this lie then what happens when you do struggle, you will view your struggle as an indictment on your faith and it’s just not, period.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
This Bible verse does not say IF, it says WHEN so let’s acknowledge that on this side of heaven you WILL have trouble.
2. You can pray your way to healing.
Prayer is one of the most powerful tools at our disposal. Christ died on the cross and paid for our sins and sent us the Holy Spirit so that we could have a relationship with God. Christ is our high priest who intervens for us before the Lord and therefore enables this direct relationship. Because we have a direct relationship we can bring anything before God. All this said, it isn’t the sole solution to the problem. It’s a tool in our toolbelt that goes unused and is seen as inferior. Throughout the Bible people prayed to God in order to set their heart and to discern God’s will, but prayer was always followed by action. God is a God of action. God worked, and He expects the same from us. Jesus didn’t sit in the temple and pray everyday. He fed people, He healed people, He served people and relayed God’s truth. Jesus worked hard and so should you.
He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” Matthew 26:39
3. Medicine will fix all your problems.
We’ve encountered a culture where a pill is the solution for everything. You can’t sleep, take a pill, your back hurts, take a pill, your nauseous take a pill, you have anxiety, take a pill. Medicine in of itself is not a solution, just like prayer medicine is part of the solution. Medicine isn’t for everyone either and there should be no judgment for those who seek alternative ways of dealing with depression/anxiety, especially those who struggle with addiction. On the flipside there should be no judgment for those who take medicine. Sometimes medicine is the push you need to get out of the pit and start taking the right steps, for others it is a life long supplement needed to correct something your brain is lacking. So if you take medicine, ALWAYS and I mean ALWAYS pair it with therapy.
4. You have mental health issues because you have a weak faith.
This one unfortunately has been perpuated by the church, and not all churchs, but the “church” as a whole. I have always appreciated my pastors candor and honesty about the realities of mental health issues. They can happen to anyone and they are not the result of a weak faith, but the realities of living in a fallen world. Our world isn’t perfect so we all will encounter troubles whether our faith is new or decades old. We all go through seasons and some seasons our faith is stronger than others. King David, who was called a “man after god’s own heart,” struggled with depression. Depression isn’t a litmus test of our faith.
“Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” Psalm 42:11
5. Mental health is punishment from God for the choices you’ve made.
God doesn’t hand out punishments for the choices we’ve made. It just doesn’t work that way. He’s not sitting in heaven sending lightning bolts from the sky to strike us down whenever He sees fit. If that were the case we’d all be dead, and this would negate all that Christ did for us on the cross.
He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. Psalm 103:10.
So all this to say, the next time someone, something, some ideology states that any of the lies above are truth, remember God’s Word, and don’t believe the lies. The scariest thing about a lie is that it sounds like the truth. It’s the truth twisted, twisted to the point that we can deceive ourselves into believing it is God’s truth.
He (the devil) was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44