Depression, anxiety, and chronic stress are issues that affect us all and the general community of
believers is starting to deal with them a lot better than they have in the past. But sometimes, it can feel
like faith doesn’t offer the answer you need when your emotional health is in the lowest point. Here, we
need to remind ourselves that turning to faith is always the answer.
Realize it’s not a sin
A Christian should always strive to check the sins of the mind, not just of the body. But taken out of
context, a lot of people put too much pressure on themselves to “get over” their depression or anxiety
because it causes conflicting thoughts. Christ healed the sick, not just of the body, but of the mind, in
spreading His word. Accept mental illness for what it is, not a sin, not something under your own
control, but a sickness that you have to approach with the intentions of healing. There is no easy
“cure”, but there is a process of healing it.
Believe out loud
Being a Christian today is a radically different experience to forty, even fifty years ago. While we are
still the majority in most western societies, we often find ourselves challenged by a world that’s
growing more secular. To “fit in”, we can be tempted to “keep our faith to ourselves” so it doesn’t
make social situations awkward or offend the people around us. But this isn’t an emotionally healthy,
nor a spiritually sound thing to do. If you don’t let Christ in every part of your life, the guilt you can feel
over betraying your faith and your most deeply held convictions can gnaw at your self-worth.
Find those that understand
As mentioned above, mental illness, whether it’s depression, anxiety, chronic stress, or anything else,
is a medical condition. Medical wisdom and methods of dealing with our emotions can truly help us to
better understand them and build the mental toolset to deal with them. But it’s important to seek the
help of those who understand our relationship with God and our practice of our faith is a huge part of
our lives, and Christian counseling can be a great way to find that. Having someone who can relate to
your faith helping you encourages not just mental health, but spiritual health, too.
The power of prayer
There is a lot of scientific proof, beyond our own lived experiences, that prayer can be a great source
of healing when it comes to emotional health. Beyond helping us strengthen our bond with God,
it helps us express our concerns and our stresses beyond ourselves. By sharing a problem, by
asking for help and guidance, we get it out of our own head and get a little perspective on it.
The urge to rebel against your faith, to spite your relationship with God, can be strong when you’re
dealing with dark emotions. It’s important to remind yourself that there are those that can help, and
that faith is a bulwark if you’re only willing to lean against it.