Having a mental illness is bad enough without someone you trust telling you its all your fault. How would you feel if you went to your pastor for help dealing with severe depression and he told you that you are not right with God and that’s why you are depressed. Unfortunately that’s what so many pastors are telling their church these days. Yes, it seems that the stigma has arrived in church. While not a single church has been willing to meet with me to discuss my concerns facing those with mental illness, a few churches have told me that they believe that “those who are depressed or mentally ill are under demonic influence” or depression is “devilish”.
I was as shocked as you probably are to uncover this. Many churches even go as far as to feel that psychology is an evil practice. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. This comes from a pastor that I spoke with. Although this pastor would not go on record they did advise me of an unspoken rule among many churches today. I was informed about how most churches do not welcome those who have mental illness and that mental illness is looked at as sin and a sign of an unfaithful life. Unfortunately this is not the information I was hoping to uncover.
In the video above I discuss how when depressed you can reach a certain point where God is no longer your focus but the pain and darkness consumes you. At this point I do believe that the enemy is attacking and manipulating your thoughts. This is where the church needs to intervene and help you. In fact the church should never let someone get to this point to begin with. The Bible teaches us that a Shepard would leave his entire flock to go search for one missing sheep and I believe the church should follow this teaching.
It seems that every week churches become more and more like “big business” and no longer a ministry. They are there every week to collect hard earned money from poverty stricken members but offer no real help in return. Shame. I hope to find a true ministry soon and find out what a real pastor does to help his flock. In any case I believe that Jesus taught love and tolerance not labeling and hatred.
National Suicide Prevention Line 1-800-273-8255