On Mental Health Concerns and the Heart of God

I post the following in wake of the Washington Navy shooting, the many men and women in uniform who continue to struggle with mental health issues, due to PTSD and combat stress, and our retired combat vets who continue to struggle with the same. Mental health issues should never be treated lightly and therefore deserve our urgent attention and care.

We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves” (Romans 15:1 ESV)

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The following Resolution was adopted by the SBC, Houston, Texas, June 12, 2013:

WHEREAS, God made all things perfectly good in design for His glory and the good of humanity (Genesis 1–2); and

WHEREAS, Adam and Eve rebelled against Him, choosing their own way and the way of the Evil One, and consequently ushered sin and disorder into our world and the whole human race (Genesis 3; Romans 5:12–21; 8:22); and

WHEREAS, As a consequence of this Fall, humanity is subjected to many kinds of mental health problems including autism spectrum disorders; intellectual disability; mental health conditions like schizophrenia, clinical depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorders, and eating disorders; and diseases of the aged such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease; and

WHEREAS, God did not abandon fallen humanity but loved the world (John 3:16–17) and launched a plan of redemption—a restoration that is incomplete in this age but will be perfected in heaven (1 Peter 1:3–9); and

WHEREAS, Those with mental health concerns, like all people, are crowned with honor and dignity, being made in the image and likeness of God (Psalm 8:4–6; James 3:9); and

WHEREAS, Those with mental health concerns are disproportionately represented among the homeless and in our correctional systems, indicating a tragic neglect of these persons who are made in God’s image; and

WHEREAS, Those who are struggling with mental health concerns often feel isolated, stigmatized, and rejected, sometimes resorting to self-destructive behaviors, including suicide; and

WHEREAS, Suicide is a tragedy, leaving heartache, pain, and unanswered questions in its wake; and

WHEREAS, Recent events in our nation and among God’s people have underscored the tragedy of mental health concerns and their devastating toll within our families, our churches, and our culture; and

WHEREAS, Jesus Christ spent time with and healed some of the most marginalized members of the culture of His day; and

WHEREAS, God has appointed His people to be the main representatives of His heart and values to the world; and

WHEREAS, God has called us to share the Gospel of Christ with all people, including those suffering various mental health concerns; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Houston, Texas, June 11–12, 2013, affirm that those with mental health concerns are of immeasurable value to God; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the mission Jesus described as His own in Luke 4:18-19 should also be the mission of His church, namely to proclaim liberty to those who are oppressed by means of godly biblical counsel; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we commit to affirm, support, and share God’s love and redemption with those with mental health concerns; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we oppose all stigmatization and prejudice against those who are suffering from mental health concerns; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we support the wise use of medical intervention for mental health concerns when appropriate; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we support research and treatment of mental health concerns when undertaken in a manner consistent with a biblical worldview; and be it further

RESOLVED, That families who have lost a member to suicide deserve great care, concern, and compassion from Christians and their churches, including the assurance that those in Christ cannot be separated from the eternal love of God that is in Christ Jesus; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we call on all Southern Baptists and our churches to look for and create opportunities to love and minister to, and develop methods and resources to care for, those who struggle with mental health concerns and their families.  source

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4 Responses to On Mental Health Concerns and the Heart of God

  1. Lon says:

    Marvelous. Will share.

  2. Simon says:

    That’s a big step in the right direction TC. Well done to the SBC.

    TC, just going on a tangent here on another issue. I notice that in the SBC’s above statement, they use the term “biblical worldview”. This term is puzzling. I’m not sure what this term would mean. I more correct term, I think, would be “Christian worldview”. Afterall, the Bible is a holy book that is only meaningful when read in the community of believers – i.e. Christians themselves. Outside that community, it can mean anything. Anyways, off topic so I won’t continue the thought. But I do find it interesting that such terms have come into the vocabulary of certain Christians.

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