Can God heal you from mental illness? Yes! Of course He can!
That’s the short answer. But the real-life answer is often much more complicated, more painful, more excruciating.
When Rick and Kay Warren (Saddleback Church, Lake Forest, CA) lost their son to suicide last year after a long battle with mental illness, it brought a new light to what some in the Christian church would rather not think about. Christians struggle with mental illness just like those who are not Christians.
That reality is nothing new. Those who know God have always had their share of emotional troubles. Job wished that he might never have been born. (Job 3:11) Charles Spurgeon, the great 19th century London preacher, struggled with depression. Abraham Lincoln would today have likely been diagnosed with depression also.
So if emotional or mental illness is your burden, you are in good company.
Too many Christians believe prayer and Bible study alone can overcome serious mental illness. But if that’s the case, would anyone seriously contend that Charles Spurgeon was spiritually deficient?
Psychologists, preachers, psychiatrists, medical doctors, and those struggling with mental illness themselves all have their own ideas about causes and cures, about how much the one suffering is responsible for his or her own illness, and what roll God plays, if any, in recovery.