Mental Illness • Posts, Books &  More

Stigma, isolation, loneliness, and shame often follow a diagnosis of mental illness, but not here. Chronic Joy offers resources  health steeped in love and grounded in faith. Mental illness is a brave journey.

Bend Your ear to me and listen to my words … hear the deep cry of my heart. Listen to my call for help, my King, my True God; to You alone I pray. (Psalm 5:1-2)

Blog Posts

 

God knows us intimately, and He understands our struggles completely. There is not a single hair on a single head that He hasn’t counted, or the briefest shadow that He’s missed, or the smallest mutation of DNA He doesn’t know. He is with us every moment of every day, without fail, even when we cannot see Him or hear Him or feel Him and our stories matter.

A Stable Place on the Emotional Roller Coaster

I used to think the phrase “chronic pain” pertained primarily to physical symptoms — aching joints, relentless fatigue, involuntary movements, difficulty with everyday tasks, and more. Yet in the three years since my pain journey began, I’ve found myself riding an emotional roller coaster I didn’t see coming.

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"The emotional roller coaster of chronic pain can derail our sense of well-being. God promises to carry us through, no matter our ups and downs." Lee Ann Zanon

Making Space for Love to Grow Afresh

Depression stunts curiosity and robs us of the continued growth that stokes the embers back into flame. Stepping away from the ordinary moments of my life allowed me to miss them, to miss my husband. When I returned home, I saw him with new eyes –and I was able to love him better.

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"And may the Lord cause you to increase and overflow with love for one another." 1 Thessalonians 3:12a

MENTAL ILLNESS BOOKS

Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

This Beautiful Truth: How God’s Goodness Breaks into Our Darkness

Sarah Clarkson

Amid the daily realities of sickness and isolation, disappointment and pain, it can be profoundly difficult to grasp the real goodness of God. But this is where God breaks into our darkness with beauty. In the wonder of creation, in art or film, story or song, in the kindness of his people and the good they create, God breaks into our pain in a tangible way, teaching us to trust his kindness and hope for his healing.

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

Broken Brain, Fortified Faith: Lessons of Hope Through a Child’s Mental Illness

The terms mental illness and mental health are often used casually, but many don’t believe mental illness is relevant to their lives.

This is the story of one family’s journey through schizophrenia, navigating the uncharted waters of mental illness to find help for their daughter and support for their family. This memoir is an honest look at the stress, anger, education, and finally, hope experienced through the eyes of a mother.

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

Grace for the Afflicted: A Clinical and Biblical Perspective on Mental Illness

Matthew S. Stanford

Why has the church struggled in ministering to those with mental illnesses? Each day men and women diagnosed with mental disorders are told they need to pray more and turn from their sin. Mental illness is equated with demonic possession, weak faith, and generational sin. Learn about mental illness from both biblical and scientific perspectives.  

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

The Hidden Smile of God: The Fruit of Affliction in the Lives of John Bunyan, William Cowper, and David Brainerd

John Piper

John Piper invites you into the lives of John Bunyan, William Cowper, and David Brainerd to discover how God takes the privilege of faith and strengthens it with trials so that we experience a greater hunger for him. The perseverance of these godly servants exemplifies the essential fruit that affliction can produce in your own life.

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

A Sacred Sorrow: Reaching Out to God In the Lost Language of Lament

Michael Card

Have you ever thought of lament that sacred sorrow as a form of worship? God desires for us to pour out our hearts to Him, whether in joy or pain. From the example of men and women in the Bible, learn how to recover this lost language and deepen your worship of God.

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

The Soul of Shame: Retelling the Stories We Believe About Ourselves

Curt Thompson

We're all infected with a spiritual disease. Its name is shame. Whether we realize it or not, shame affects every aspect of our personal lives and vocational endeavors. It seeks to destroy our identity in Christ, replacing it with a damaged version of ourselves that results in unhealed pain and brokenness — but God is telling a different story for your life.

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

Troubled Minds: Mental Illness and the Church’s Mission

Amy Simpson

Mental illness is the sort of thing we don't like to talk about. It doesn't reduce nicely to simple solutions and happy outcomes. So instead, too often we reduce people who are mentally ill to caricatures and ghosts, simply pretending they don't exist. They do exist...

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Discovering Hope • Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

Unglued: Making Wise Choices in the Midst of Raw Emotions

Lysa TerKeurst

Do you ever feel like your emotions are working against you? We may sometimes find ourselves stuffing down our emotions, exploding with emotions, or reacting in unhealthy ways, but it’s possible to make our emotions work for us. The good news is that God gave us emotions to experience life, not destroy it. Learn to use our emotions for good.

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Chronic Joy® Anxiety

Anxiety

Seeking prayer, peace, and presence for this moment. 

When we are afraid, anxious, or overwhelmed, the most significant thing we can do is lean into the One who knows us completely and loves us best – the God of all comfort.

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Depression • Longing for light in the darkness.

Depression

Longing for light in the darkness. 

Depression isn’t a surprise to God and doesn’t disqualify us from making an impact for the Kingdom. Hold onto hope. God is here.

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