To many church goers, the church can mistakenly seem like a place that is free of addiction and mental disorder. To believe this would be a mistake. The church is a place for any kind of broken person or sinner to come find sanctuary from whatever is haunting them, and to find relief by focusing on God through worship and sermon. But addicts and people with mental disorders are not cured from their illnesses by attending church. Leaving behind something that is ingrained into your psychology is a process that requires time, effort and faith. The process is different for every person. To think that an entire congregation is free from these hardships is a fallacy.
The reason that a person can attend church and still struggle with addictions and mental disorders is that, while the church does its best to arrange a meeting place between people and God, a person’s wholeness depends on their relationship with God, not with the church. Sometimes people talk about the church as if it fully and accurately represents God, but this is a mistake. We must never forget that God is perfect and divine, and the church is a flawed human effort to honor him. Church leaders and congregation members are susceptible to dishonesty, money mismanagement, pride, laziness and a number of other sinful behaviors. As important as it is to have a Christian church family to commune with, the church can never replace the role God is meant to have in your life. God’s love and forgiveness has the power to end your addiction or mental disorder, not the church.
The church’s role is to create community among believers and to provide a place to come together to worship God as one. The bible says that when God returns, it will be to bring the church to heaven. The church is referred to as the “bride” of Christ, meaning those who have been faithful to his name are to be with him for eternity. This does not mean that the church is made up of people who have no sin or brokenness in their lives. It simply means they have accepted Jesus as their personal savior, which means their sin is forgiven and they will be allowed to approach the throne of God in heaven.