Let's go for mental health
He was 19, a Theology student, a Church youth leader, a servant to other youth ministries, and his church leaders had high hopes for him. She was 18 smart, outgoing, had qualified in acting and performance, and had secured high paying jobs in banking, and things looked good for her future.
Something changed, something chemical, something situational.
Whatever it was, it quickly became known as clinical depression and deliberate self-injury for him, and clinical depression and generalised anxiety disorder for her.
In the months that followed, their hope was lost, and their self-worth decreased to the point where their decision making and behaviour only served to make them feel more alone and worthless. They did not know that years of their life would be tainted by mental ill-health.
He rejected and hated God, and she simply did not believe He existed.
So faced with a God that was unfair, uncaring, and harsh, and faced with a world where there is no one in control, and is ruled by survival of the fittest, they both became suicidal, and every day was a challenge to get through.
He managed to keep his jobs, sometimes by the skin of his teeth, she did not and endured years of unemployment, and the stigma that goes with that. They managed to keep their friends and family, but the joy was gone, and the peace was not there, everything they did was tainted, and they were never able to give people their best.
Only by the grace of God did they come through it.
He fell in and out with God throughout, each time coming back that little bit healthier, but He needed help, and one day he got it, in the form of anti-depressants and a psychologist.
She one day, just cried out to God, demanding that He show himself, and not long later, He did.
It was her new relationship with God, and His renewed relationship with God that made them well, He was the foundation on which all other help was built, He was the influence, power and strength that enabled them to make better decisions, and to live the life they wanted to as shown by Jesus Christ.
One day they found each other, and in the course of time, got married, and had two wonderful daughters. Their meeting accelerated their recovery no end, and it is they who write this article.
We are Stuart and Lynsey Gilmour, and we decided that we would use our years of health & wellbeing education & training experience, as well as our own experience of mental ill-health, to create a resource that any church can use.
It is ideal for
-- training leaders and pastors,
-- facilitating mutual support in small group bible studies, and,
-- reaching out to the local community with the practical mental health advice, and the Gospel, that underpins all hope.
Individual Christians helped us but it would have helped us more, had our Churches had a resource like this. That is why we created it. So, we call upon all Churches to join us in bringing hope and support to those struggling with mental ill-health in our churches and local communities.
Let’s Go Mental!
You can find out more about Stuart and Lynsey here www.snlgilmour.com
You can find out more about the resource here www.sltree.co.uk/resources