Ten Scriptures for Mental Health Month
Words of comfort for difficult times
May is Mental Health Awareness Month. And in the midst of a global pandemic, many today are struggling with grief, anxiety, loneliness and depression.
The Bible has much to say about these topics. As you minister to your congregation and your community, here are 10 Scriptures you may want to share:
1. Psalm 34:18
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
God has great compassion for those who suffer. While it may not always be apparent in the midst of our difficulties, the Lord is near. We can look to Him for peace, healing and comfort.
2. Psalm 73:26
“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”
God is not only close to those who suffer, but He also gives them strength. We may not always be able to stand up under life’s pressures on our own, but God is able to strengthen and sustain us.
3. Luke 22:45
“When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow.”
Many today feel exhausted from sorrow. Scripture reveals they are in good company. Heroes of the faith wrestled with difficult emotions, too. Consider Naomi, David, Elijah, Jeremiah and Jesus’ disciples. Reading about God’s faithfulness to them through tough times gives us faith for today.
Even as the disciples walked through the pain of Jesus’ final hours before His death, God was planning a triumphant day of rejoicing.
4. Hebrews 12:2
“Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
No one understands our suffering more than Jesus, who endured the pain of the Cross. His resurrection victory offers hope for all who are hurting. As we fix our eyes on Him, He will give us the faith we need to make it through tough times.
5. 2 Corinthians 12:9
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
No one understands our suffering more than Jesus, who endured the pain of the Cross.
We often think of emotional struggles as flaws we need to keep hidden. But our moments of “weakness” can also be opportunities for God to reveal His grace and power on our behalf. Recognizing this truth frees us to seek the help we need, including professional counseling, while trusting that God will be glorified even in our trials.
6. Galatians 6:2
“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
Those in the Church who are having an easier time have a responsibility to help those who are suffering. It can be hard to know what to say or how to act. But Scripture is clear that we should love others and do what we can to ease their burdens.
7. Romans 9:2
“I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart.”
Even empathy and compassion can be emotionally draining at times. Paul’s concern for the lost people of Israel caused him intense anguish.
With so much suffering all around us, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the current crisis. But rather than sinking in despair, we can follow Paul’s example and take our cares to God in prayer: “My heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved” (Romans 10:1).
8. Philippians 4:6-7
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation … present your requests to God.”
The first thing we need to do with our worries is release them to God as we seek Him in prayer. If we truly believe He cares about the big and small details of our lives, we can trust Him with whatever is weighing us down today.
9. Philippians 4:8-9
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.”
Immediately following Paul’s call to prayer is his encouragement to bring our thoughts into alignment with our faith. We can’t always avoid negative thoughts, but we can remind ourselves of the truth in God’s Word.
10. Matthew 11:28-30
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Jesus promises rest for the weary. As we spend time in His presence, we will experience the peace He offers. The Lord wants to take our heavy burdens and replace them with the assurance of knowing He is with us always (Matthew 28:20).