“The Lord GOD is my help,
therefore I am not disgraced;
I have set my face like flint,
knowing that I shall not be put to shame.
He is near who upholds my right; if anyone wishes to oppose me, let us appear together.” -Isaiah 50.
The fundamental mindset of mental health survival might be summarized thus: PERSEVERE. You are not alone. BELIEVE. Never give up.
Easier said than done often times, that’s for sure.
What do we do when we feel the slow angst of uncertainty, sense approaching calamity, or suffer chronic misery?
I humbly offer: Faith helps. It fundamentally helps. This approach is the basic tenet I believe Jesus taught us; it’s the approach we can still hear spoken through his lessons from 2,000 years ago, to today.
You are not alone. Believe. Never give up. God is with you. Maybe it’s that last phrase that catches you up. “How do I know God is with me?! How can I be sure? I’m not even sure I believe in God”, you might think to yourself.
There are at least a couple of ways I invite you to think about it.
First, consider God in those people around you, those who love you. It can be a relative, a partner, a spouse, your child, a co-worker (true!), an old friend, a new friend, maybe even a stranger. When you experience a gesture or
expression of love, that is God with you.
Take solace in that experience. Allow it it energize you, fortify you, fill you up. Lean on those people that are closest to you. That’s what we are supposed to do. Be open, be honest, confide, and rely on that connection in the
moments you need it most.
Second, consider God in the quiet of your soul, in your inner-most self. Listen carefully, truly, and take your time. Deep within, you know when you are being honest with yourself, when you are being completely true, and experiencing
truth. I would suggest that prayer — or mediation, or reflection, call it as you wish — this process is the channel we should use to come to this place within ourselves.
Listen carefully, and you will know the truth. And that is where you will find God with you too.
You will realize that you are in fact not alone. That you have the will, and the fortitude, and the strength of spirit to press on, to never give up. PERSEVERE.