Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Emotional health

"Helping people to feel loved and worthwhile has become the central mission of the church. We are learning not to worship God in self-denial and costly service, but to embrace our inner child, heal our memories, overcome addictions, lift our depressions, improve our self-images, establish self-preserving boundaries, substitute self-love for self-hatred, and replace shame with an affirming acceptance of who we are.

Recovery from pain is absorbing an increasing share of the church's energy. And that is alarming...

We have become committed to relieving the pain behind our problems rather than using our pain to wrestle more passionately with the character and purpose of God. Feeling better has become more important than finding God...

As a result, we happily camp on biblical ideas that help us feel loved and accepted, and we pass over Scripture that calls us to higher ground. We twist wonderful truths about God's acceptance, his redeeming love, and our new identity in Christ into a basis for honoring ourselves rather than seeing those truths for what they are: the stunning revelation of a God gracious enough to love people who hated him, a God worthy to be honored about everyone and everything else.

... We have rearranged things so that God is now worthy of honor because he has honored us. "worthy is the Lamb," we cry, not in response to his amazing grace, but because he has recovered what we value most: the ability to like ourselves. We now matter more than God."

Dr. Larry Crab, Finding God, as quoted in Lies Women Believe by Nancy DeMoss
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