Marja Bergen

author, mental health advocate, follower of Christ

Category: Being equals (page 1 of 3)

Accepted and valued

  On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:12,13   I guess I’ve been angry far too long about how people […]

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Christian support for mental wellness

ALL OF US TOGETHER Much has been done to increase awareness about mental health in the church. But there’s room for better understanding. A lot more needs to happen than simple acceptance alone. People with mental health issues are no different in wanting to be regarded as having equal worth with others. It’s common for […]

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Give us a voice of our own

Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice. Proverbs 31:8-9 NLT “Speaking for the poor and helpless.” Is this what God really means? I think we need to be careful and think about that […]

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In our shoes

  Christian support for people with mental health challenges May 2017   Most followers of Christ feel called to help sick people and many have started supporting those living with mental illness. They try to be God’s hands for them and show them his love. Such support has been invaluable to people like me, especially […]

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The right to speak

When I raised mental health awareness in the church from 2006 on, I spoke as a person living with mental health issues. It made a difference. People heard me. But today, people with such issues have no voice – are not given opportunities to be heard. Why not? Do they really think we don’t know […]

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With more than acceptance alone

  Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,  then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition […]

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Today’s outcasts

We who live with mental health issues are also looked down on, shunned, disrespected, excluded, not considered to have credibility. Is this situation so different from the treatment given to those who Gandhi and Mandela fought for? Isn’t it time we got angry about the unjust attitudes towards people with mental illness? Who can help […]

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Never Worthy Enough

I know it’s hard for those who don’t have mental illness to understand. I, and many of us, feel small next to our supporters. I don’t think they consciously set themselves above us, yet we feel lower. We feel inferior. For me it was like my supporters were father and mother, me the child. I […]

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Equal under God

As a person with mental health challenges, I claim the right to be considered equal. I may be different, but I am equal. Equal under God, the same as everyone else. Many have accepted people with problems like mine, making us part of their church and community. But this doesn’t mean we’re necessarily counted as […]

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Brothers and sisters all

The blacks of South Africa were considered inferior. Nelson Mandela brought in a more equal social order. He made a difference. Women were—and still are—considered inferior to men. Ruth Bader Ginsburg and others made a difference. Rosa Parks, considered an inferior black, refused to let a white passenger take her seat on the bus. She […]

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