I saw something this morning and my heart was truly touched. It brought a joy and a blessing to my heart, to my life, which so very desperately needed this morning…
My life – and thus this blog, since this blog is a reflection of my life – as regular readers will know, includes my faith in Christ Jesus. I am a Christian and I am a Christian who experiences poor mental health. In truth I make no apologies for and have no hesitation in admitting either the fact that I am a Christian or the fact that I experience mental health issues. For to conceal either would be a lie.
And yet the admission of either my faith or indeed my poor mental health does sadly, without doubt, sometimes invoke mixed and often very unhelpful and indeed very unhealthy responses. But what is more tragic -in my opinion – is that sometimes it is the admission of both facts together which invokes the saddest and most unhelpful and unhealthy responses.
The fact that I have mental health issues and yet my behavior, lifestyle and/or communications do not seem to ‘fit’ some people’s preconceived and perceived molds, challenges those preconceptions and indeed their perceptions of mental health. Indeed it challenges some people’s very understanding of mental health.
Likewise, the fact that I am a Christian and yet suffer poor mental health, does the same thing. Especially for those Christians who believe (erroneously in my understanding of scripture) that all a believer has to do is to pray for healing and it will always be instantly given to and manifested in them.
And I have truly struggled with this lately. I have struggled with it so very deeply.
Not in defiance or in a sense of ‘I am right and they are wrong’. Not as a man strong in his faith – although I have always been blessed with a strong belief in God and faith in Christ Not in arrogance or complacency. But as a child.
Yes, as a child who so very much loves his Christ and his heavenly Father and who so very deeply desires to know and understand them more and more. And as a child who silently cries out every time he hears Christ and/or our heavenly Father represented in such a way that does not seem to fit with his heart’s understanding of the Father or of Christ.
I have grown so tired and demoralized as a result some fellow believer’s attitudes towards believers who suffer with poor mental health and who question the strength of our faith as a result of or who throw misunderstood or misplaced or out of context scriptures at you like they were some sort of cliche.
Now please don’t get me wrong here. I attend an absolutely wonderful and extremely loving church whose teachings on healing are (as far as I understand the scriptures) very sound. But you always – or so it appears – get some who don’t subscribe to, or agree with those teachings, and who are in fact part of the ‘name it and claim it’ brigade. And nothing steals my joy quicker than their comments and/or criticisms or their apparent need to share their beliefs on this subject with me.
So lately I have been spiritually tired. So very tired. So much so that I was not only questioning my own understandings but also questioning whether indeed there was any place for me within the modern church.
And then this morning I saw this. And like I said above it touched me and so blessed me. And it refreshed my very spirit. And because of that I so wanted to share it with you….<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/91615100″>Millie Hunt Baptism</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/perronfx”>Scott Perron</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>