Continuing to trace the rainbow – Why I’m talking about mental health and why it matters

This morning I got the opportunity to talk to a group of about 60 who are here in Birmingham to take part in the Commonwealth Games outreach. The team are from Firestarters UK and consist mainly of teens from Scotland and Wales. It’s been great to see these young people taking steps to share their… Continue reading Continuing to trace the rainbow – Why I’m talking about mental health and why it matters

Depression, sin and trust issues

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I just wanted to pick up on something I’ve seen suggested a few times namely that depression is intrinsically sinful because it involves a lack or loss of trust in the Lord.   I’ve seen this suggested in the context of medication -that you should be depending on God to heal you but I’ve also seen… Continue reading Depression, sin and trust issues

Pastors and PTSD

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From time to time I write specifically about the impact of mental health issues on pastors and church leaders. I’ve recently returned to the subject again writing about depression here and here.  I wanted to follow up these articles by writing a little about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD is described on the MIND… Continue reading Pastors and PTSD

Why do we struggle to talk about pastors and depression?

A few years back I was asked to cover a couple of sessions for a ministry training course. One of the sessions was on “failure.” The request came with a couple of those expected awkward jokes along the lines of “we aren’t picking you for any specific reason.” Indeed, at the time, arguably I’d not… Continue reading Why do we struggle to talk about pastors and depression?

Towards a theology of depression

 Last year I contributed to a short book called “The Pastor with a thorn in his side.” It’s a book which tells the stories of 7 pastors who have faced depression during their ministry. Steve Kneale edited the book and as well as telling his own story provides an introduction and a conclusion. In those… Continue reading Towards a theology of depression

A magnifying glass on my sin

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Back in 2019 I was becoming increasingly irritable and snappy.  I found that my patience was in short supply and that I struggled to find joy and delight in things.  Perhaps it was no surprise then when towards the end of the year I found myself diagnosed with Mixed Anxiety and Depressive Disorder. Things had… Continue reading A magnifying glass on my sin

How Scripture can help with cases of depression and mental distress

I’m continuing a series of articles picking up on Mark Pickett’s call following the publication of The Pastor with a thorn in his side for further reflection and analysis concerning pastors and Christians experiencing depression. In this article I want to talk a bit more about how Scripture can be helpful to those suffering from… Continue reading How Scripture can help with cases of depression and mental distress

Sleep and mental health

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One factor affecting mental health is rest and sleep. There are two aspects to this. First of all, when we are struggling with anxiety and/or depression this can affect sleep patterns but also disrupted sleep is likely to affect our overall sense of mental well-being.  So, it is possible to get into a vicious cycle. … Continue reading Sleep and mental health