| Christians and mental illness...|
I have been wondering about this recently.
How does one counsel a Christian who is literally torn to pieces by a mental illness. They are not able to be "joyful always" etc...
I have been wondering that we accept that there are of course Christians who have physical illnesses and pray and do not get healed, but what of those who suffer anger problems from a mental illness or suicidal thoughts that are beyond their control...
I have a counsin who is bipolar and is a very severe case. She highs and lows can all happen in a 24 hour day...
Does anyone have any experience with how to deal with this spiritually?
Where does the line get drawn between sinful behaviour caused by a mental illness/instability versus it being something that they can actually control.
Through Him only
| 2011/8/3 21:54||Profile|
| Re: Christians and mental illness...|
Sis, do you truly believe that mental "illness" is a physiological problem - as in, a brain chemistry or other physical type of disorder?
I've posted antipsychiatry.org elsewhere, with their many links at the bottom of their page. It's a secular site but that's what we need to disprove the secular theory of what causes one to behave abnormally/irrationally.
I believe the help for her - if she's truly a Christian - is no different than what you and your husband are already quite acquainted with.
You'll recognize these links and I felt to post them before the entourage of replies come and opens that door again.
Once that topic is re-opened - there are few that care to involve themselves to untangle the web that can cause the young or vulnerable in Christ to get tangled up in - ie. 'deceived and debilitated by'.
The second link is from a link off of the first link -
I understand that you believe in pre-trib, but nonetheless - we're living in very dangerous times that will only get worse spiritually and we surely don't need to feed the vulnerable any more of the nonsense that we've seen within this year here.
As things get worse in the world and lies are perpetuated as fast as technology can move - Unless a person is solidly grounded in The Word and where they stand in Christ - the future will be very dismal for them. Deceptions could over-take, victories lost through fears and lies being fed into their minds by the enemy of their souls, etc.
As long as one believes either lie - 1- that Christians can be demon indwelt and 2- the myth of mental "illness", the future indeed will not find them in a victorious state because both beliefs are from the father-of-lies to begin with. To believe a lie is to sink - as you well know.
To believe a lie is to be accountable before GOD for lessening the work that Christ did upon the cross. Once a person has lessened His Word on our behalf, they are wide open to attacks of lies from the enemy or the secularists of this world. Fear sets in and they have problems being delivered after a while. The whole of our warfare is not believing any lies against His Word. The "imagination" itself is a mighty powerful force, once a person believes any of these lies.
"Behavioral" problems are no different than what people go through in these false revivals. The way to deliverance from these behavioral problems is no different than what you are familiar with, as far as how to be set free from that deception.
If the person who has behavioral problems is told that it is because there is something physically wrong with their mind and they need meds to stop their irrational behavior - they'll 'buy that lie' rather than get GODLY counsel, as those who have come out of the false-revival movement have received.
Once a person buys the mental-illness lie that was cooked up by secularists and worse - they have 'believed a lie' and are now subject to not having to truly deal with their behavior and the lies that they are now increasingly buying on a daily basis with this 'label'/diagnosis is setting them up for the ultimate fall eventually or soon enough.
Error breeds more error, and you know the rest.
Unless the person has been exposed to some bacterial, viral or fungal infection of the brain that causes a form of encephalopathy or a brain injury, the causes are not physical. The line between sanity and insanity is in how a person 'chooses' to "cope" with what life throws at us.
If the person is a Christian, they need counseling to un-believe the lie of mental "illness" first. If it's a case of PTSD, the healing comes about the same way, by renewing the mind by The Word, prayer and working through faith, with obedience. The rest is dealing directly with the irrational, un-Biblically based thoughts that precede the unscriptural behavior or 'acting out'.
The thoughts need to be renewed by The Word of GOD and prayer and a desire toward 'willing to do the will of the Father' -- so free-will is the issue in this, very much so. Many times we find that the root of such problems is unforgiveness, self-pity, the desire for attention, or hatred or resentment toward someone in their lives.
Rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and that word in the Greek that's translated as witchcraft is "pharmakeia" - where we get our word "pharmaceuticals and pharmacy" from.
There is no condemnation for those who have believed a lie and forgiveness is full and free to those who have given into to unscriptural behavior, of course. They need to begin to un-believe the lie and take responsibility for all of their actions and will to do the will of GOD - being transformed by the renewing of their minds by The Word, prayer and obedience. Taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. The same process that those who believe any lie would have to go through, except for the fact that their body now needs to be weaned from the pharmakeia. All of this can be called a process of 'healing', as a person sets their face as a flint toward Him - He is faithful to move on their behalf, once the lie is renounced and responsibility for ones behavior is received back by the person.
Loving the them, fasting and praying for them and taking them down the road of responsibility for their own actions, according to His Word and by the Word, is the path to freedom. Irrational or sinful behavior will always be something that we are and will be accountable for, before GOD. Even the unsaved. I know that sounds 'hard', but I see nothing less than that in The Word. Only those who teach that we have no free will would say otherwise.
Even those who were abused as infants can be healed by the same means - as unbelievable as that might sound. Our GOD is a mighty powerful Creator and knows exactly how to heal those that He's known from before the foundation of the world. There are many potential super Saints / Overcomers out there, just needing to un-believe a lie or two.
I understand that what I've written goes against the tide of what we've heard since Freud, etc - but being sola-scriptura will always be against the tide.
His Love & Grace to you & yours.
| 2011/8/4 0:51|
| Re: Christians and mental illness...|
One of my Pastor's went through quite an ordeal where his wife went mentally insane for many years. He had an incredibly rough life dealing with this. He wrote a powerful book about his experience. I look to him as an example of a Godly man. The book he wrote is called "Hard Faith." By Daniel M. Berg. This book is in every way, a modern day Job story. He was rejected by believers, and left to die on his ash heap, but God has shown himself so incredibly faithful through this man.
His wife has been completely healed and she is like a grandmother to our children, as a matter of fact she gave our son a birthday present this evening at church.
Any purchase of the book new goes 100% to support missions. (Or so it was last I heard.) Dan makes no money whatsoever from the sales.
| 2011/8/4 1:56||Profile|
Lake Charles, LA
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Thank you Jesus-Is-God, I copied and pasted this in an email for my mother.
| 2011/8/4 2:06||Profile|
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THANK YOU Jesus-is-GOD,
"If the person is a Christian, they need counseling to un-believe the lie of mental "illness" first. If it's a case of PTSD, the healing comes about the same way, by renewing the mind by The Word, prayer and working through faith, with obedience. The rest is dealing directly with the irrational, un-Biblically based thoughts that precede the unscriptural behavior or 'acting out'. "
We really appreciate your thoughts, prayers & insights. Thank you brother.
| 2011/8/4 2:16||Profile|
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Wow, I was quite amazed to read your statement. I must admit that I have thought a lot about this, especially because my wife is a medical doctor. (My wife mentioned how the psychiatric ward in particular is very tense spiritually. Not by coincidence, many of those patients seem to curse God all the time.)
In fact, I have long wondered where to draw the line between mental/psychological issues, and spiritual issues. What struck me particularly was the fact that what we today consider to be an "epileptic seizure", was considered in the Bible as "demon possession".
I heard a missionary (Otto Koning) mention that when he was in New Guinea, a boy was demon-possessed. The demon would throw him in the water, or in the fire. He was quite ignorant about demonization at that time, which is why he thought the boy was epileptic. Thus, it took him some time to figure it out. Afterwards, he called another missionary station in the country and asked, "Do you have any demon possessed people in your tribe?" And they said, "No, we don't know of any." "Do you have any epileptics?" "Oh yes; we have lots of them around."
Now, I recognize that some of our problems are related to the chemicals in our body. However, often, there is more to it than just chemicals. For instance, we all have the same passions and urges of the flesh, but we have the power in Christ through the Spirit to overcome our natural tendencies. I don't see why it should be any different for psychiatric issues.
Over a year ago, a virus attacked my heart and nearly killed me. Afterwards, I had trouble with my mind; I couldn't think straight. I tried reading the Bible and memorizing, but I couldn't do it. So, I prayed, saying, "Lord, you've helped me to memorize Your word before; I don't see why this should be any different. Lord, heal my mind so that I can memorize Your word."
That very same day, I was able to memorize His word. He had healed my mind. Praise the Lord!
So, it seems that there is more to it than it seems at the surface, with the natural eye. However, I feel that I am still quite ignorant of the whole matter.
In Christ Jesus,
| 2011/8/4 10:27||Profile|
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I wondering what is your wife's opinion about the use of drugs for mental distubances as classified in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Do they really help, is it a sin to use them.
| 2011/8/4 11:12||Profile|
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I have to admit that we still have not come to the bottom of that issue. I am not sure what to think (neither is my wife). We still talk about it every once in a while. For that reason, I would NOT be comfortable just telling people to "get off" any medication.
I have heard people who were on antidepressants get healed by Jesus. I have heard people who were addicts be set free by Jesus. However, is it "sin" to take any of those medicinal drugs? I can't say that. However, if someone feels differently, please do share your opinion, since I am still trying to piece it all together.
| 2011/8/4 11:24||Profile|
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The Lord just brought back to mind an incident that happened when I was in Montreal.
We were (my wife and I) walking the streets of Montreal, when we saw a man who seemed quite insane and unstable. I noticed that he was VERY angry and arguing with invisible people. Something told me he might be demonized.
So, when we passed by him, I told him, "If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed". He flipped out! He was angry at God and now he was angry at me for mentioning Jesus. He told me (yelling and threatening) that God couldn't do anything about it. I told him that he was wrong and that he should not believe these lies, and repeated that if the Son sets him free, he would be free indeed.
He came up to me, REAL CLOSE (our noses were touching)... but God gave me a sense of security that he could not do anything against me because the Lord was protecting me.
When we finally left, we decided to skip our lunch and pray for that man, using Isaiah 58:6. Later on, we went back through the street and saw the same man, in his right mind, just standing still (as though he was pondering something really important). But, we didn't stop to talk to him because we had an important appointment.
Wow, I had forgotten about that incident! I don't know if that means anything to you, but the Lord just brought it back to mind and I thought I should share.
| 2011/8/4 11:39||Profile|
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You've brought up some really good points Renouncer.
Those in the other camp of psychiatry found in 'their' testing of individuals that the "thoughts and behavior" started first and 'then' the brain chemistry was affected.
Made Biblical sense to me. We read about the affects of anger and hatred and bitterness and unforgiveness and there's no doubt in my mind that those sinful feelings, if left unchecked for lengths of time would have affects on the body's chemistry. We know that 'stress' is a killer - just for one and these same negative feelings listed above is also a form of 'stress'.
Short term medicating is alright. But there's so much to all of this, that some is medical wisdom and we being Christians depend so much on the Holy Spirit to discern what is going on with a person. Like I've said before on another thread - I studied and was going into psychology/psychiatry until I got saved and also began to study William Glasser's work. His one book "Reality Therapy" was an eye opener in that he doesn't go over and over people's pasts and childhoods, he just makes them take charge of the here and now behaviors. It's much more complex than that - but a long story short - what he came up with back in the 60's until present, turns out to be Scriptural, though he titled his other book "Choice Theory" as it turns out - that lines up with His Word and with the research done by others found on that Antipsychiatry.org site.
As I said, I use the secular psychiatrists that debunk the slip-shod practices of today, where a patient is paying a psychiatrist the same amount for what would be a talk session and all they get now is the prescription pad and refills or higher doses or another added.
If I could remember the name of the forum that I used to visit and talk with these poor people, they were all saying the same thing. No more talking with their shrink - just the same or changed or added prescriptions.
I loved your testimony. Demon possession is definitely on the rise with the unsaved. These people need Christians that are truly not fearful and Know where they stand protected in Christ, to help them.
Amen, Bless GOD he gave you the Word to give this man and the leading to pray. Bless The LORD. May we all grow in Him and in the knowledge of His leading and where 'we' stand with Him in order to help set the captive free.
| 2011/8/4 20:33|