“We know one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is self control. If we cannot control ourselves can we say we have The Holy Spirit in us? I have been diagnosed from that mental illness. Sometimes I feel that I am condemned. Can you please help me understand better?”
This is a very difficult question to answer due to the fact that everyone has different faith and beliefs. I don’t think that anyone’s beliefs are better than another person’s, but to answer the question, I will relate my own faith as it is what I know. Please know however that everyone is entitled to their own belief system and I don’t look down on anyone for believing something other than I do! (Ask my sister, she’ll tell ya!)
With that said …
Depending on what mental illness you have, I would think that unless you are delusional, 95% of the time you do have control over your action. I am not however saying that it makes it easy to make the right choices, especially when your head is BEGGING to something not so good. But in the end … YOU still have the control and YOU still get to make the choices.
I say this because it’s something I’ve been struggling with myself lately. I’m sorta trying to not have anything to blame on bipolar. That does not mean I don’t get the urges to go drain our bank accounts buying out thrift stores and it doesn’t mean I have a very difficult time resisting an entire bottle of Ativan after a wretched day. I feel all these things, but I do my best to suppress them.
Now about where my faith comes in … I’m Catholic, so I’m sure not everything I say will pertain to you, but this is just from my own experiences and things I’ve learned. I truly believe that God does not condemn anyone just because they have a mental illness. The people who find themselves facing condemnation are the one who have done horrifying acts and feel no sense of remorse for having done them and could care less if they are forgiven.
So have I done something that I think put me in the condemnable pot of bad choices? Oh I’ve pretty much brought that pot to a nice rolling boil. But I always make it out in time … maybe not in time to avoid getting burned, but with just enough time to survive. And I don’t know if its the Catholic in me or just part of who I am, but I live in a world of perpetual guilt. It’s horrible.
Best part is, I know God’s got my back. I know I’m trying my damned hardest to be a good person and a good Christian and he sees every ounce of effort I show. I do NOT feel damned or condemned because I do some not so great things from time to time, I think I am blessed with a forgiving Father who is always willing to let me back into his house as long as I apologize AND mean it.
In all reality it is my faith that keeps me going. I know that no matter how bad my mood swings get, they are never permanent. They always come and go. I keep up communication with Jesus and let him know when I’m at the end of my tiny little rope of patience. He may not give me what I want, but he somehow always gives me that little extra push that says, “I can get through this!”
Perhaps you should look how your faith is going to restore hope and assurance that you too have a place in heaven instead of looking at how your faith is failing you because you have no hopes for the future. Let your faith be your guide. God made you with a mental illness for a reason. There is something about JUST YOU that can make a huge impact on your own life … or hell, even the world. He gave a mental illness to you because he KNOWS you can handle it and you can make the best of it and if you can come to believe that statement, it will forever change your outlook on life.
God never gives us more than we can handle … we just usually give up before actually getting through it because giving up is so much easier than suffering pain. I can tell you one thing though, all the pain I’ve endured from my mental illness has been 100% worth who I am and what I do with my life.
Can you think of any ways that perhaps God blessed you with this disability instead of giving it to someone else? I bet there’s a reason out there. Just keep looking.