Saturday, September 11, 2010

Courageous people needed

I realize that I need to write again. Have had the urge - feeling the pressure to express the many things that have been coming to mind lately.

One thing I'd like to comment on is an article with the title, Misconceptions, an excerpt from my book, A Firm Place to Stand, as published on the Hope and Healing website.

How angry and frustrated I felt as I wrote that! I haven't felt that way for quite a while. Guess working on changing things - being in the thick of responding to the injustice of stigma with the Living Room peer support ministry - has helped lessen my anger. Because I know we now have something to counteract it.

We now have a place where Christians can go and talk openly about their mental health problems and be helped spiritually at the same time - given full love and acceptance. Christians with mood disorders can talk freely here, secure in the knowledge that they won't be judged.

Now all we need to do is make Living Room available to more people. No small task. It's not easy to start a new group. Many things need to be in place. Each group needs two facilitators, spiritually mature people who have developed the skills to cope with their own mood disorder. Each group needs the support of their church and their pastors. They should also be able to form a partnership with a mental health organization that could help them with resources and - if possible - some training.

All this might seem overwhelming to many who would like to help. They need a passion, a deep desire to help others and a trust that God will help them - knowledge that they're not doing this on their own. These would-be facilitators need to be willing to step out in front of their congregations and openly share what they're struggling with. They need courage.

Ah, if you're reading this and have considered starting a group, please don't let all this discourage you. Remember that all good things - all the injustices that have been part of history - had to be fought hard for by courageous people courageous people who are willing to pray and step out in God's help and strength and power. This is how the world was gradually made a better place. It is how the Kingdom of God has to be built.

Are you willing to work for God's Kingdom here on earth? (Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven) Are you willing to improve the lives of Christians who live with mood disorders? Do you want to help encourage them by reminding them that they can rely on a God who loves them immeasurably? Would you like to fight for what is right, rather than be a victim of injustice?

Do you have that kind of courage?

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