It is no secret that COVID brought a lot of stressors into our lives. Here is a summary about college students, the world over.
“Chegg.org asked about online learning, the cost of education, mental health, and more. This study deserves serious attention from anyone concerned with international education and the well-being of students. One significant finding: 56% of students surveyed said their mental health suffered during the period of Covid. 81% of students surveyed said their stress and anxiety have increased; 15% contemplated ending their life. Over 500 students surveyed, over 3%, attempted to kill themselves; the percentages were highest in Saudi Arabia, Brazil, USA, South Korea, Russia, Malaysia, Australia, India, Canada, and China” (Dr. Christopher Sneller).
It is no secret that people from all times and all walks of life have suffered from mental and emotional stresses due to difficulties they endured. I wondered about their lives; how did they handle things like depression, anxiety, loneliness, and anger? One of the most ancient and yet most relevant resources promises to give us a window into their lives. That resource is the Bible. People like Job, Paul, Elijah and various poets write about their anguish and resolutions.
Chai and Chat is a weekly meeting we (Bridges International) host for international students at Kansas State University. This fall, we tackled the topic of mental health by defining terms, listing resources, and reading and discussing what the Bible says about these topics. We ended each session with an art project using geometric shapes of three colors glued to a piece of paper. (We followed the method demonstrated and explained in Picture This, by Molly Bang.) Then we shared what we created. Some of the images reflected their own experience with things like anxiety and depression. Others retold the story or advice from the Bible. The discussion guides are now available from the tab at the top of this page. I hope you find them helpful.