“Your illness is not your identity, your chemistry is not your character” Pastor Rick Warren stated during his first public sermon since his son took his own life after a long battle with depression. The newscaster stated that Pastor Warren is now working to remove the negative stigma of mental illness and instructed his parish not to be ashamed of that over which they have no control.
Unfortunately mental illness is sometimes seen as a weakness and a character flaw or a figment of the imagination. Some who suffer are ashamed to seek counseling, or medical attention and have little to no support. In other situations help is sought; treatment prescribed, prayers are lifted, support is given and the battle is still lost.
Mental Illness is no different than cancer, drug addiction, heart disease, diabetes or any debilitating disease. Some cases are more serious than others, some are realized too late, some go untreated and some sufferers will succumb. Hopefully the loss of Matthew Warren’s precious life will be a catalyst for change.
In the meantime, continue to lift up the Warren family in prayer as they grieve and heal.