Why Does God Make It So Hard?

This post is from last year this time. A Beyond Blue reader wrote to me the other day and asked, “How do you know that you are on the right path, and that God approves? Because if He did, why would he make the path so hard?” I responded with these three words: I don’t […]

12 Ways to Keep Going

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A Beyond Blue reader recently asked me to forward this piece to her. I needed to read it again, too … to try to find the dogged determination within me to stay focused on hope, not hopelessness. Sorry for the layout problems. I haven’t yet figured out how to operate the new platform. A woman […]

Love Them Anyway

The Paradoxical Commandments were written by Kent M. Keith in 1968 as part of a booklet for student leaders. For more than thirty years, they have circled the globe, been graced on refrigerators, featured in speeches, and even put up on the wall of a children’s home in Calcutta, India by Mother Teresa herself. I […]

Why Is Religion Important to Mental Health? An Interview with Jay Mahler and Rev. Laura Mancuso

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As a member of NAMI FaithNet, which “supports faith communities in mental illness outreach, education, and advocacy,” I receive their newsletters. A recent issue featured an interview by Gale Bataille and Bill Berkowitz with Jay Mahler, activist and founder of a grassroots movement which became The California Mental Health and Spirituality Initiative, and Rev. Laura […]

Be You Very Well

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St. Francis de Sales had four words of advice for pursuing spiritual excellence: “Be you very well.” I used to think if you survived junior high without too many scars, you could live comfortably in your own skin for the rest of your days. But the last six months at a large consulting firm made […]

Quotes on Perseverance

I needs LOTS of coaching on perseverance because this essential virtue depends on another one called patience, which God ran out of the day He made me. Here are some beautiful quotes on perseverance: “Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done.” –Louis D. Brandeis, Supreme […]

Consider the Flowers of the Field

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I’m big into leading with faith these days. I guess it’s because I have no other option. When you have two adults in a household whose jobs are majorly affected by the economy, you either panic or pray. I’ve panicked for plenty long already. Now it’s time to pray.   Instead of rushing from one […]

God’s Love Is Enough

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Most of the time I’m perfectly happy to be as transparent as I am online and in print. I have great days like the one last week when the mayor recognized me at a coffee shop and told me his wife loved my book and I returned home only to read an unexpected kind and […]

Life Is Like a Game of Candy Land

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“Mama always said life is like a box of chocolates,” said Forrest Gump in the 1994 film. Yeah, well I think it’s more like a game of Candy Land. We’ve been averaging about three games a day in our house ever since the kids got the board game for Christmas. And every game the rules […]

Struggle With, Not Victory Over

This piece is reprinted from awhile back. It’s tempting for anyone who writes about depression and anxiety to preach from hindsight, after he has “recovered” from his mood disorder: “This is what I did to free myself from addiction” … “Here are five steps to instant weight loss” … “These are eight techniques to cure […]

The Samaritan Woman and Loneliness

On the combox of my post, “Struggle With, Not Victory Over,” Beyond Blue reader Ann asked me to reprint my blog about the Samaritan woman I wrote last March. Since the topic deals with loneliness and toxic relationships, I figured it was worth reposting. The Samaritan woman in John’s Gospel is what we could safely […]

7 Favorite Prayers

I’m publishing my seven favorite prayers today because, as I mentioned on Monday’s post, I’ve been more depressed lately than I have been in a long while. I guess that’s good for the blog, ultimately, because I can speak better to where many of you are. So I thought you might like these prayers too. […]

You Can’t Unlearn It

I’ve been repeating to myself lately something my therapist said in our session last month: “You can’t unlearn your progress.” Meaning, I can take a few steps backwards in my recovery from depression and anxiety, but that doesn’t erase all the lessons, skills, and wisdom acquired in my past. Those words are consoling to me […]

The Third Step Prayer

God, I offer myself to Thee– to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy […]