I once took significant time off from attending services after going through a series of difficult challenges at my local church. After a while, although I felt like I had rid myself of the people who were stressing me out, as time went by, I found myself also feeling more and more depressed, cynical, and distant from the things of God. Pretty soon, after much prayer and study of God’s word, I felt convicted and figured out that my poor attitude and messed up life perspective was linked to my lengthy sabbatical from the house of God. I needed to get back in my place and do it quickly.
Well, little did I know, at the time, that my personal revelation would be some day backed up by research. But according to the findings of a new study posted on CNN.com “those who attend services frequently were 56% more likely to have an optimistic life outlook than those who don’t and were 27% less likely to be depressed.”
Church attendance matters.
The Women’s Health Initiative observational study funded by by the National Heart, Blood, and Lung Institute, National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services surveyed “92,539 post-menopausal women over 50. The participants made up an ethnically, religiously, and socioeconomically diverse group.”
“The link between religious activity and health is most evident in women, specifically older women,” said Eliezer Schnall an associate professor of psychology at Yeshiva University in Manhattan, leader of this initiative.
So put on your Sunday Best and head on out to the house of the Lord to get your praise on.
After all, the joy of the Lord is our strength.
Source: Janet Washington, EEW Magazine