What do you do with nasty hurt in your heart that feels like physical pain? Deny it? Medicate it? Or, acknowledge it and explore meaningful conclusions?
Janet Parshall issued a powerful call to the church to minister more effectively to persons with mental illness in this keynote presentation from Inclusion Fusion Live 2019, a national disability ministry conference hosted by Key Ministry. She identifies key biblical figures who experienced symptoms of mental illness, challenges church leaders to end their stigmatization of persons with mental health issues and pastors to begin addressing the topic in the course of their preaching.
Many Christians build their families through adoption out of loving concern for orphans and to live the faith James describes. I hope churches continue to bring the orphan crisis to light. And, as they do, I pray we—as the Church—can come alongside the families whose children’s past trauma continues to cause the “distress” James 1:27 mentions.
There are many reasons why children adopted from orphanages and children in foster care frequently exhibit severe problems with conduct and emotional self-regulation. Effects of trauma and neglect upon brain development combined with genetic and environmental influences appear to be responsible in most instances…as opposed to a primary attachment disorder.