Marja Bergen

author, mental health activist, follower of Christ

The Living Room Story: Pioneering Mental Health Awareness in the Church

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: January 18, 2021
Publisher: Blurb, 146 pages, ISBN: 978-1-03-412620-1

This is the story about the experiences of one individual as she pioneered raising mental health awareness in the church. It’s not often that a person with serious mental health problems gets the chance to make something big happen—like the Living Room faith-based support groups she started in 2006. This was a time when churches were uninformed to a degree few today would believe. It was common for people with mental health symptoms to be blamed for their own emotional pain. They were made to feel ashamed. Living Room groups provided a spiritual home where it was safe to talk freely about mental health challenges.

A Battle Against Stigma

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: September 1, 2020
Publisher: Blurb, 230 pages, ISBN: 9781715429966

Revised edition of I Will Not Hide

Marja shares the highs and lows of her life with bipolar disorder. She tells how she spent many years trying to reduce the stigma of mental illness, but ended up stigmatized herself. The story is told in an open and vulnerable way to help readers see inside the suffering that people can experience.

Are You Hungry? Our Bread of Life

$7.50 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: July 19, 2020
Publisher: Blurb, 24 pages, ISBN: 978-1-03-412620-1

Nine reflections to help the reader learn to know Jesus.

Those who believe in Jesus and are strong in their faith, are helped to survive the trials of life that befall them. They might suffer like everyone else, but they trust that God will uphold them.

Highs and Lows in God’s World

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: June 6, 2017

Publisher: Blurb,  53 pages
Paperback, ISBN: 978-1-36-413330-6

In this richly illustrated book author Marja Bergen shares her response to the living world and to the God who created it. Her hope is that the reader will be as inspired as she is by nature’s beauty and wonder. Marja has been writing meditations for over four years, mostly considering the needs of those dealing with mood disorders. She has been a serious photographer for forty-eight years.

Hope for Our Highs and Lows

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: March 21, 2017

Publisher: Blurb, 53 pages
Paperback, ISBN: 978-1366229946

What is it that makes Jesus appealing to so many? Marja, a person living with mental health challenges, decided to find out by trying to put herself into the world in which Jesus lived—to make Him come alive. How might He affect her life? Using devotional writings she tried to show who Jesus was as the man who walked the earth 2000 years ago—human but divine. You will read about what He did, what He said, and the changes He made in the lives He touched. This richly illustrated book focuses mostly on Jesus, His life and ministry. You will have the opportunity to see how it might have been for yourself had you met Jesus face to face. You will learn how, even today, Jesus is there for you.

Highs and Lows for Our Inner Child

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: March 21, 2017

Publisher: Blurb, 53 pages
Paperback, ISBN: 978-1366231550

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be a child again? Couldn’t we be? Just a little bit? But I stopped being a child long ago, you might say. But did you? Did you really? Did your childhood completely leave you when you became an adult? Can you still touch base with the child you once were? This book explores some of the many facets of childhood, many of which we as adults still have within us. What does it mean to be the child of God our Bibles talk about? How can the trusting and humble nature of a child help us stay open to what God can offer us? Although helpful to everyone, this richly illustrated book is primarily written to help readers experiencing emotional problems and mental health issues.

Reflections For Our Highs and Lows

$30.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: October 15, 2014
Publisher: Word Alive, 72 pages, ISBN: 978-1-4866-0231-5

A gift book for people living with the ups and downs of life. Although begun as writings for people living with mental health issues, the devotionals express truths for everyone, no matter what they experience in life. The 28 devotionals are richly illustrated with colour photographs. Marja Bergen writes with the compassion and understanding that has come from living with bipolar disorder for almost fifty years.

“In this devotional, Marja provides us with wisdom: the wisdom that can only come from journeying in and out of the depths. If you or someone you know is living with a mental health issue, then I commend to you these reflections. The photographs and words provide Christ-breathed tenderness for the fragile moments in life. Thanks be to God.”

– Sharon Smith (PhD Rehabilitation Sciences; MCS Biblical Studies)
Co-founder and Executive Director, Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries

A Firm Place To Stand

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Release Date: July 19, 2008
Trade Paperback, 220 pages, ISBN: 978-1-897373-45-3

For too long, society, including the church, has misunderstood and feared individuals who live with mental health problems. This book dispels the lingering stigma and encourages people to lovingly welcome the sufferers into congregations by understanding them better and supporting them in practical ways.

A Firm Place to Stand is a significant contribution to building understanding about mental illness in the Christian community. Marja Bergen speaks candidly from over forty years of experience. Her story helps Christians learn to empathize and to give support to those who suffer from mood disorders.

Harold G. Koenig, M.D.
Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Associate Professor of Medicine
Duke University Medical Center

Riding the Roller Coaster

$25.00 CAD (Free shipping)

Wood Lake Books, 1999

Trade Paperback, 154 pages, ISBN: 978-1-897373-45-3

In this, one of the earlier books written by a person with bipolar disorder about life with the disease, Marja Bergen shares practical tips on such things as escaping the blues before they grab you, what to do when you don’t feel like doing anything, and keeping life stable. She gives a very human perspective drawn from her experiences. Her path to recovery is exciting and positive.

This book needs to be read by sufferers of depression and mania, as well as by their family and friends. I also wish that psychiatrists who treat people who suffer from depression or bipolar disorder would hand out a copy of this book along with their prescriptions. If they did, they would be surprised to find out how much more effective the medications would become.

– Peter Griffiths, Rural Roots

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