2023- Feb 8 | Mental Health is Health
SMALL GROUP MATERIAL
Small Group Questions:
- What things have you heard people say that demonstrate a stigma around mental health?
- How can you help fight against the stigma around mental health?
- Have you ever struggled with your mental health? How did it affect you?
- What do you think Jesus feels when He sees us struggle in this way? What does He want from us?
- If you or anyone you know is struggling, call 780-482-HELP (4357) to reach the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Distress Line
THE MAIN POINT
Just as we work to maintain our physical and spiritual health, we must care for our mental health as well.
Matthew 11:28-30, Isaiah 41:10
As the saying goes: “Mental health is health” and should be understood as such.
Mental health and mental illness have often been stigmatized in society, including in the church, but we believe that Jesus cares about all aspects of our health: physical, spiritual, and mental. Jesus wants us to experience vitality and healing from any illness or disruption of health we may suffer from. Here are a few explanations that can help distinguish between mental illness and mental health (what this series is about).
When we talk about mental health, we’re talking about our mental well-being: our emotions, our thoughts, and feelings, our ability to solve problems and overcome difficulties, our social connections, and our understanding of the world around us. Everyone has mental health, just like everyone has physical health.
A mental illness is a condition that affects the way people think, feel, behave, or interact with others. There are many different mental illnesses, and they have different symptoms that impact peoples’ lives differently. Those with these illnesses can be supported with various therapies and/or medications. The Lord’s desire is that they would be healed of their suffering entirely. This may happen in this lifetime or the day they meet Jesus and are given a new body.
In the course of a lifetime, not all people will experience a mental illness, but everyone will struggle or have a challenge with their mental well-being. We do not need to be ashamed of our mental health struggles, as they are a regular part of living. You are not alone in your suffering; what you feel is real and understandable.
Jesus wants you to come to Him and experience healing from your afflictions. He says to you:
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30 CSB)
As you prepare the core of the message using personal stories and questions keep in mind these points:
- Just as we work to maintain our physical and spiritual health, we must care for our mental health as well.
- Not all people will experience a mental illness in their lifetime, but everyone will struggle or have a challenge with their mental well-being.
- Jesus cares about all aspects of our health: physical, spiritual, and mental, and wants us to experience healing from any illness or disruption of health we may suffer from.
As you prepare the application, challenge and/or encouragement, keep in mind these points:
- Ask the students to reflect on the steps they are taking to care for their mental health.
- Speak to those who may be suffering. Encourage them to reach out, tell them they are not alone, and that Jesus wants to heal them.
- If you or anyone you know is struggling, call 780-482-HELP (4357) to reach the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Distress Line.