Last Saturday we had a Care and Aware Day at the hall, arranged by our Welfare Team. We met up for the afternoon to think about mental health, dealing with stress, self-compassion, and how to support each other better and become more aware of the difficulties others may be facing.
The overarching theme was that God knows all our worries, and always loves us – even when we feel low or worthless. As the psalmist writes in Psalm 42: “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God.”
I found it a very eye-opening afternoon. Our visiting speakers had personal experience of mental health issues, and gave us a really honest and helpful insight into this area. There was an interesting selection of leaflets and books to browse on topics such as depression and anxiety, and we were given ‘stress-busting’ packs to take away.
In particular, the afternoon was an important reminder of the need to get to know each other better and look out for people who may be struggling. We thought about ways we can support each other through hard times – whether through a friendly text, arranging to meet up, or just asking open questions and being prepared to listen. It’s given me a lot to think about, and hopefully will encourage all of us to build each other up and grow closer as a church family.