Christian with bipolar disorder - mental illness help for Christians


Finding meaning in a life with bipolar disorder

by Marja Bergen

Mental illness is not all bad. I have lived with bipolar disorder for over forty years and have found it has many benefits. I couldn’t imagine living without it and am not at all unhappy with my life. In many ways, I value what this illness has made possible for me.

With effective medication to keep symptoms under control, people with bipolar disorder can live a close-to-normal life. Yes, moods will fluctuate and cause occasional problems, and treatment will need adjustment. Suffering will always be part of my life. But I accept the way God, the Great Potter, made me. I am rich on many levels.

Like many people with this disorder, I am very creative. I receive a lot of pleasure from photography and using my imagination. The deep emotions I experience, although painful, are a source of richness; I feel completely human. My frequent hard times have helped me appreciate the good times and I make the most of them. Spiritually, I’m stronger for having had to deal with great trials. The fires I’ve passed through have refined me.

Most of all, I appreciate the compassion I am able to have for others who suffer from depression and other mental health issues. Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 1: 4 hold true for me. I praise God “who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received.” God has shown me his love, and I want to pass that love on to others.

Over the past few years, I’ve been fortunate to be part of a church community that has supported me and helped me grow spiritually. With the Christ-like love they have shown me, I have come to understand how great God’s love is. In turn, I now help others through a support group and one-on-one, in person and through my blog. I feel fulfilled. The language of suffering I’ve learned helps me connect with people in trouble. I am able to understand them in a way many others could not.

I feel a bit like Patch Adams in the Robyn Williams film. While Patch is a patient in a psychiatric hospital, he discovers his ability to connect with people. He learns to understand his severely disturbed roommate to see the person behind the illness and helps him through his problems. Not only does this delight Patch, it makes him a well man.

Patch eagerly tells his doctor he is well and needs to leave the hospital. I connected to another human being, he said. I want to do more of that. I want to learn about people. I want to help them with their troubles. I want to really listen to people. Connecting with other people gave Patch joy. It gives me joy, too. When God places you in this role a role he made for you joy happens. Walking with people through some of their toughest times is rewarding and a privilege.

Bipolar disorder will always be with me, and I suffer many high and low moods. But, I don’t feel I’m a victim of the disease. God has helped me find a way to make my illness work for me instead of against me.

‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ (Jeremiah 29:11) God has a plan for each of us. Though we might have a severe illness such as bipolar disorder, God has work for us to do. Eventually, we can use what God has given us even the bad and turn it into something good.

Marja Bergen is the author of Riding the Roller Coaster: Living with Mood Disorders (Northstone, 1999) and a new book for Christians about living successfully with bipolar disorder (to appear). She is the founder of Living Room, a faith-based Mood Disorders Association of BC support group. Her blog,, deals with mental health and faith issues. She can be reached at

This article is published on the website of

Marja’s blog:
Roller Coaster

This blog is about Marja’s living with bipolar disorder and about how her Christian faith has helped her cope and develop a life that is full and satisfying. It deals with some of the frustrations and anger she feels about the injustice and damaging effect of stigma.

Christian and mental illness

Mental illness such as Bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness) is a mood disorder with extreme mood swings. It is a medical condition that can be treated with medical and other helps.

It is possible for a Christian to be suffering from mental illness such as bipolar disorder and yet be in the will of God. Christians struggles with mental health challenges and mental illness as well. But it is possible to have a mental disorder yet be close to God and derive strong support from a growing relationship with Christ.

Christian communities should lovingly welcome the sufferers into congregations by understanding them better and supporting them in practical ways.

Read about Christian and Bipolar Disorder:

1) More Than Conquerors :
Nancie is a Christian with bipolar disorder and living in Singapore. She enjoys writing, photography and making bookmarks and homemade crafts and gifts. She shares on her blog about God's goodness and mercies to her and His sufficient grace through the ups and downs in her life in my struggle with bipolar disorder and other challenges. There are many useful Christian resources to cope with bipolar disorder on this bipolar blog.

2) Roller Coaster :

Read about Christian and Depression:

Words that will help you to find this page:
Christian and bipolar disorder, bipolar mood disorder and Christianity, managing bipolar disorder as a Christian, Christian bipolar disorder blog, what does the Bible say about bipolar disorder, is it a sin to have bipolar disorder, is bipolar disorder due to sin or lack of faith in God, bipolar life a life filled with God, real story of Christian with bipolar disorder, testimonies of Christians with bipolar disorder, Christians coping with bipolar disorder mood, Christian and mental illness

Books available at

Books available at

Words that will help you to find this website : Encouragements for Christian / Christian encouragements / Encouragements Quotes / Poem encouraging believers / Christian encouragement quotes / simple Christian sermons on encouragement / christian encouragements / biblical sermon on encouragement / Christian bookmark templates / Christian cards / Christian poems /2010 2011 Christian calendar template / Free printable Bible quotes / Free encouraging sermons / Biblical verse of encouragement for the believers and sermons / Free Christian encouraging images / Free christian encouraging pictures / Christian encouragements phrases


©2009 Believers Encouragements | Template Blue by TNB