36 “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” 37 He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the greatest and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
-Matthew 22:36-40, NRSV
This week, it seems like the topic of mental health has been at the forefront of every conversation. Parents and teachers are talking about the mental health of students in the midst of hybrid and remote learning. Frontline workers are talking about the PTSD-like impact of a full year of fighting COVID. Even Oprah and Meghan Markle are talking about suicidal ideation and mental distress. We’re growing more and more aware of the importance of mental health.
So for my “call to prayer” today: I’m praying for the health of my nation — not only for our physical health in fighting off COVID, but also for our mental health. I’m praying for our culture — that we’ll finally shake off the unnecessary and damaging stigma that often seems to hover over the topic of mental health. I’m praying for those who are deeply struggling, those who are losing hope, those who feel alone in that struggle, those who are in need of help.
If you’re in a season in which you need some help with your mental health, I hope you’ll seek it out. I know it takes some courage to do that. I’ve been there. I’ve spent some time on a therapist’s couch. I’m so glad I did, church. The help helped. If you need someone to cheer you on or hold you up while you make a call to a therapist’s office or a mental health hotline, I’m here for you.
And while we’re on the subject — here are a few of the state and national helplines for times of mental health crisis. Even if you’re not in need of one of them right now… take a few minutes to program them in your phone or tape them to the fridge. You never know when someone you love will find themselves in crisis.
- PA Support & Referral Helpline: 1-855-284-2494 (TTY: 724-631-5600)
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
- Línea Nacional de Prevención del Suicidio: 1-888-628-9454
- Crisis Text Line: Text PA to 741741
- Veteran Crisis Line: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
- (Source: https://www.dhs.pa.gov/Services/Mental-Health-In-PA/Pages/default.aspx)
Today, I’m praying for all of those struggling in the midst of mental health. I hope you’ll join me in that. After all, in today’s scripture, Jesus calls us to love God with our whole heart and soul and mind. He says it’s the greatest commandment. Clearly, our minds — and the health and wholeness of our minds — matter to God.
What are you praying for today, church?
Share your prayer requests by:
- Emailing Pastor Candy: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emailing Pastor Debbie: email@example.com
- Filling out our digital prayer card: https://wesleychurch.com/prayer-request-test/
Together, our Wesley Church Prayer Team will pray for each of your requests. If you would prefer for your prayer request to remain confidential with the pastoral staff, please indicate that in your message.
Be people of prayer, friends… and remember:
Our God is bigger than coronavirus.
Our vision is bigger than coronavirus, too.
We are people blessing people.
We are Wesley Church.
Want to know more?
- Learn about our church and its ministries: https://wesleychurch.com/
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- View our recent messages: https://wesleychurch.com/sermon-message-on-video/
- View previous devotionals: https://wesleychurch.com/pastor-candys-devotionals-2/