How would you feel if a loving God took a personal interest in you?
Pretty darn good, according to a growing body of research revealing the mental health benefits of having a close personal relationship with a caring divinity.
In one of the latest national studies, the more participants reported feeling God’s love, presence and guidance, the more likely they were to agree they are a person of worth.
Frequency of prayer, or even being “born again,” were not of themselves significantly related to higher self-esteem.
But worship attendance, prayer and the specific act of committing their lives to Christ all were related to higher self-esteem when individuals reported a close relationship with a divine being who cared about them.
Having what some sociologists have called “the ultimate friend” on their side appears to make a big difference when it comes to self-respect and self-worth, study authors indicated.
“First and foremost, we demonstrate that a sense of divine support is a robust predictor of self-esteem,” researchers from the University of Toronto, the University of Calgary and the University of Texas, San Antonio, reported in the latest issue of the Review of Religious Research.health ] [ mental ] [ self-esteem ]