I'd like to invite our readers to join with me, along with Kelly Rosati, Amy Simpson and Kay Warren on Tuesday, May 8th at 2:00 PM Eastern time for a Twitter chat designed to encourage pastors, ministry leaders and key volunteers to consider how they can be involved in addressing the epidemic of mental illness in children and teens.
Empowering young people from special needs families toward a healthy process of self-discovery and a positive relationship with Jesus gives them a solid foundation for the transition to adulthood. It also creates future leaders who will bring extraordinary perspective and passion to the communities where they live and serve.
The most troubling aspect of the stories shared by Mary Ann and others is that their experiences reflect poorly upon the character of God as reflected through the words and actions of the church. We can and must do a lot better in sharing Christ's love and the message of the Gospel with our friends and neighbors with mental illness and welcoming them into the fellowship of the church.
The evangelicals I know care about the people and causes that Jesus cared about during his earthly ministry. They may not necessarily fit the narrative that many in the media would like to propagate about our community. I can’t help but think that evangelicals would have a very different image in our larger culture if more people had the opportunity to get to know some of the folks I was surrounded by during the last three days.