How do pastors feel about mental illness medication and therapy? | Ed Stetzer

I’ve been asked by numerous reporters why we evangelicals are particularly interested in this subject. When they ask, they also remind me of the fact that evangelicals have a higher percentage of belief that prayer and Scripture study alone can heal mental illness.
My answer on the subject is pretty direct, so here it goes: I believe in a God who’s sovereign, who can do whatever he wants whenever he wants, often in miraculous and wonderful ways. I believe in the sufficiency of the Scripture for soul care, biblical counseling, and life’s crises.
Yet, I’d also say that, by not acknowledging the reality of mental illness in some places, certain evangelicals are disproportionately stigmatizing mental illness in their communities to the detriment of their people. When we refuse to acknowledge realities and when we’re unwilling to partner with people inside and outside the church for help (in the medical community, for example), it is to the detriment of the people in our churches.
40% of pastors believe medications should be used any time they can ease symptoms of mental illness.
So I think we find ourselves at an important evangelical moment, and I’m glad we are here. I’m thankful for people who are willing to approach the issue head on, even at great personal cost. Wonderful people like Rick and Kay Warren have really helped to reshape this conversation in evangelicalism in a way that is helpful and necessary.
For the stigma of taboo to be broken, there must be direct, transparent speech, and they are engaging in it. And here I want to be direct, as well. There is simply not enough conversation in our congregations regarding mental illness, and it must change.


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