Weather forecasts are often helpful, yet sometimes they miss the mark, right? Today I am watching forecasted snow create a winter wonderland in my backyard. Woohoo!
Lately, there has been a frenzy of predictions concerning the coronavirus, COVID-19. As experts are on the case, it seems a little like weather forecasting. We can see a distant storm but do not know if it will come our way.
Living with a mental health challenge is no exception. There are probably as many fears about what may happen as there are diagnoses. No one wants a repeat episode. Someone told me once, “You fear your chronic condition will take you out of the game. It is not the condition, but the fear.”
Jesus cares about our mental health. It was predicted over 700 years before Jesus came. A prophet named Isaiah knew that Jesus would speak these words:
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me
Because the Lord has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted… (Isaiah 61:1 KJV; bolding is mine).
Jesus then, 700 hundred years after Isaiah lived, went to the synagogue to speak to the crowd there. He read aloud the above words. Everyone in attendance waited. He began teaching and said, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” *
Maybe you do not see that as a prophecy-come-true considering all Jesus had to do was read it. Check out the following.
While scholars have listed over 300 prophecies of Jesus written over 400-4000 years before Christ, they have not found one that failed. Peter Stoner and Robert Newman, in their book Science Speaks, say the odds of only eight of the prophecies about Jesus coming true in one man is 10 to the 17th power or 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000. Picture this:
Suppose that we take [that number] of silver dollars and lay them on the face of Texas. They will cover all of the state two feet deep. Now mark one of these silver dollars and stir the whole mass thoroughly, all over the state. Blindfold a man and tell him that he can travel as far as he wishes, but he must pick up one silver dollar and say that this is the right one. What chance would he have of getting the right one? Just the same chance that the prophets would have had of writing these eight prophecies and having them all come true in any one man, from their day to the present time, providing they wrote using their own wisdom.**
For the fun of it, I collected eight that Jesus could not have manipulated.
- Messiah would be born in Bethlehem. (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1; Luke 2:4-6)
- Messiah would be called Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23)
- Massacre of children would happen at Messiah’s birth (Jeremiah 31:15; Matthew 2:16-18)
- A messenger would prepare the way for Messiah (Isaiah 40:3-5; Luke 3:3-6)
- The bribe to betray the Messiah would be used to buy a potter’s field.(Zechariah 11:12-13; Matthew 27:9-10)
- Messiah’s hands and feet would be pierced. (Psalm 22:16; Zechariah 12:10)
- Messiah would be mocked and ridiculed. (Psalm 22:7-8; Luke 23:35)
- Messiah would be buried with the rich. (Isaiah 53:9; Matthew 27:57-60)
How this answers our fears
All those prophecies and statistics prove that someone other than mere humans made these forecasts. Two of them are ongoing! People still call him Immanuel, which means God with us, and he is still mocked and ridiculed.
God’s promise to heal the brokenhearted is trustworthy too! He is not frightened by a diagnosis, an episode, or a mental illness. We do not have to live in fear of “forecasts” about our mental health. He holds our hands, lifts our heads, and day by day leads us down the best path if we turn to him.
Today’s Helpful Word
But let all who take refuge in you rejoice;
let them sing joyful praises forever.
Spread your protection over them,
that all who love your name may be filled with joy.
Always the Fight Ministries (ATFM) has been displaying compassion for those fighting mental illness, addiction, or abuse since 2012. Nancy is the founder and voice of ATFM and openly shares her emotional resurrection from despair.
*** COMMENTS ALWAYS WELCOME
NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional, and speak only from personal experiences and observations. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. or go to your nearest emergency room. In the EU call 112. (For other international emergency numbers, go here ). Hope and help are yours!
*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright (c) 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.., Carlo Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
** Stoner P., Newman R. Science Speaks Online Edition, chapter 3 para. 19; retrieved February 26, 2020, from http://sciencespeaks.dstoner.net/Christ_of_Prophecy.html#c9