Praise & Worship: October 1st, 2011

Song List

1.  I’ll Always Love You-  Phil Wickham

2.  In The Beauty Of Holiness-  Robin Mark

3.  Your Name Is Holy-  Vineyard

4.  The Words I Would Say-  Sidewalk Prophets

5.  The Light Of That City-  Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir

6.  Fall On Me (Set Me Free)-  Vineyard

7.  Praise Is Rising-  Paul Baloche

8.  Let It Rain-  Michael W. Smith

9.  Laura Story-  Blessings

10.  Your Hands-  JJ Heller

11.  Light The Fire Again-  Brian Doerksen

Patty Duke Opens Up About Living With Bipolar Disorder

Taken from the  Democrat and Chronicle   which is located     HERE.

Last March, Patty Duke celebrated her 25th anniversary with her husband, Michael Pearce, but this spring will mark an even longer milestone: the 30th anniversary of when she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

The diagnosis was a turning point in her life — a second chance to build a life without wild mood swings, substance abuse or fractured relationships.

She’s still acting; her latest role is guest-starring on an upcoming episode of Hawaii Five-O. And she’s still speaking about living with mental illness and the importance of diagnosis and awareness, which she’ll discuss next Wednesday (Sept. 28) at the East House’s luncheon.

“Part of what I talk about is that the patient isn’t the only person who suffers,” says Duke, who will turn 65 in December. “So do their relatives. … Mental illness is an illness of the whole family.”

Her sons, Sean and MacKenzie Astin, didn’t know which way was up when they were young, she says. When she was in a depressive mode, she’d be in bed for days.

“Sean and Mac have stuck with me. For that, I’m extremely grateful,” says Duke, who also has a son, Kevin, from her current marriage.

Recovery is a journey, she says, and not unlike other chronic illnesses where medicine must be adjusted, lifestyle changes must be monitored and relationships must be rebuilt bit by bit.

“That takes a good deal of time and patience on everybody’s part,” she says.

Duke was a child star who broke boundaries. She was the youngest person ever to win an Oscar, at 16 for her role as Helen Keller in The Miracle Worker. She was the youngest person to have a show named after her; also at 16 as she played identical cousins in The Patty Duke Show.

As an adult, she continued to excel in firsts — first actor to win an Emmy for a TV movie, for My Sweet Charlie; first woman to be president of the Screen Actors Guild.

Yet through it all, she was suffering. Duke was raised by her managers, who changed her given name, Anna Marie, to Patty, causing identity issues. She says they encouraged alcohol and prescription drug use when she was a teen (fueling manic-depressive episodes). She was hospitalized at 20, tried to commit suicide by age 25. As her third marriage, to actor John Astin, was breaking up, she needed a cortisone shot to treat nodes on her vocal cords. The medicine brought on a manic episode, and she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

The diagnosis, she writes in her memoir Call Me Anna, brought about a sense of calm.

“At first, it’s miraculous almost that some medication and some continued talk therapy has you balanced,” she says.

And then the hard work begins. “It’s up to you to take control and gain some balance in your life,” she says.

It gets better. You get to a point, she says, when the illness is not the first thing that comes to mind when you wake up in the morning.

Yet the illness remains, so vigilance is vital. That means continually asking whether the medication is still working. “And to the best of your ability, are you allowing it to be effective, meaning you’re taking it properly,” she says.

Abby Brown, independent living program director for the East House, says it’s essential for those diagnosed with a serious and persistent mental illness to seek support and ongoing therapy.

“Everyone needs understanding, support, care and compassion, but when you’re dealing with a debilitating illness, it needs to be more structured,” Brown says.

East House works with individuals to come up with action plans, talking through what situations might come up, how they will stay connected with people, how they’ll deal with the effects of their illness in public situations like a job site.

There’s a lot to consider. If you have a dental emergency and get medicine for the pain, for example, that might affect the psychiatric medications.

“It’s being aware of your own signs and symptoms,” Brown says, and involving your support system — whether it’s East House or your family — in your progress.

Duke says her medication has been adjusted at different times, and while she hasn’t had any full-blown episodes since she started getting treatment, she has had anxiety and panic attacks that have sent her to the doctor.

Duke’s main support — her center — comes from her husband, who she met when he was a military consultant for her 1986 movie, A Time to Triumph. They now live in Idaho.

“Who you see is who he is,” she says. When she’s nervous or panicky, he talks it through with her. He has her back.

“I have to admit that I have wondered what it would have been like if I had met him before I got treatment,” she says. “I believe he would have stayed, … and I believe I might have gotten the treatment I needed sooner.”

As she gets older, closer to retirement, she is starting to formulate a plan.

“Some people get to retirement and are lost. They’re left saying, ‘It sounded like a good idea at the time,'” she says. “You have to plan to have a purpose. I’m not suggesting a 10-hour-a-day job, but something that matters to you, whether it’s working with a charity or taking care of grandchildren.”

This is especially true for those who have mental illness, because routine changes can trigger episodes.

For now, Duke will continue in her dual roles. Becoming an advocate wasn’t easy, she says, but modern society tends to focus on issues if a celebrity adopts them.

She continues because of the people she reaches. “It has opened the world to me,” she says. “The people I meet, they’re all so good and wonderful.”

Eating Disorders And The Executive Woman



Taken from  Forbes   which is located     HERE.

For a growing number of professional women, food issues take center stage mid-life.

When coworkers would pop into Alison’s office at lunchtime to ask if she wanted take-out, the petite advertising executive would look up from the piles of papers on her desk and say sure, and ask for a turkey on rye. But instead of being eaten, the sandwich would be slipped away in a desk drawer until quitting time, and eventually make its way into the hands of her husband. “It’s extra,” she’d tell him nonchalantly. As if no one suspected a thing.

In reality, Alisonwasn’t eating anything at all. The 49-year old married Chicagoan was in the thralls of an on-and-off lifelong battle with anorexia that she could trace back to middle school. And everyone around her knew she was self-destructing—everyone except herself.

Not Your Daughter’s Eating Disorder

Eating disorders including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and more recently orthorexia have long been associated with body-conscious teenage girls. In recent years, however, treatment centers have seen a significant uptick in the number of women seeking treatment later in life—from 30s to 60s. The Renfrew Center, the country’s first and largest residential treatment network has reported an increase of over 42% in the past five years.

Now three years out of treatment, Alison is among the growing cohort of middle-aged professional women who have struggled with the painful and life-threatening condition. Once a self-professed “huge perfectionist” over-achiever (“I was in the office until the lights were turned out”), Alison left her planned career path for the slower pace of non-profit work upon completing treatment in 2008, something experts say that’s not uncommon. For patients, treatment centers and psychiatrists are able to pinpoint significant stress triggers that serve as catalysts for the dangerous disease. Not surprisingly, career can be at the top of the list.

Holly Grishkat, Ph.D., is the director of The Renfrew Center in Radnor, Penn., where she specializes in mid-life eating disorders and has seen career anxiety as one of several stress triggers that plague older women. But like most issues for working women, it’s not just the job, but the “juggle” that causes untold amounts of stress.


The Quest For Control

“It can be a high pressure job situation with a divorce, an illness, a child leaving home,” says Grishkat, listing the litany of life change that strike mid-life. “It could be work and an aging parent. For this age group there’s a lot of anxiety to ‘keep it together.’ They’re grappling for something to hold onto. For many, the eating disorder is something they have complete control over in an otherwise out-of-control time.”

“To this day when I feel my stress levels go up, my first thought is how to restrict [my diet],” says Karen, a 40-year-old human resource professional in a Texas-based financial firm. Out of treatment just three months, Karen is struggling with her health in the wake of severe anorexia that left her with biting stomach ulcers and an inability to have children. In three months she has been admitted back into the hospital on six occasions for medical problems related to the disease. “I’m on the right path,” she says of her recovery, but the behavioral pattern is hard to fight. “The minute stress hits me my first focus is how can I restrict? How quickly can I binge and purge?”

Like Alison, Karen’s life was career focused. “I have always been the first to volunteer for extremely stressful projects,” she says, “even to the point of making up projects so that I could immerse myself in work.” Similarly, she had struggled with food as a teen but never been diagnosed with an eating disorder until her 40s; experts agree that it’s rare for these conditions to make their first appearance in middle age. “Maybe they had body image issues when they were young, but it’s exacerbated by a stress later in life says Melissa Pennington D.O., the medical director of eating disorders at Texas Presbyterian Hospital.

When Karen’s husband became ill in 2008, she says she began grasping at straws, and food was her first attempt at control. As her weight began to drop dramatically, she continued to restrict, even in front of coworkers. “If I’ve eaten 25 cashews a day” she remembers thinking, “I’ve eaten.” An obsession with drinking water (15 to 20 16-ounce bottles during a workday) landed her in the emergency room where she learned she had flushed her system of all nutrients.

She eventually lost close to 100 lbs and was so weakened by a bout with bacterial pneumonia that she lost consciousness and awoke days later, intubated and hospitalized, suffering from nutrition-related seizures. “A month later I was finally able to accept that I need help.” It wasn’t until several weeks into treatment that she had the realization that would save her life. “We did an exercise where you had to spend a whole day in your bathing suit,” she recalls. “You had to stand in a 360 degree mirror and then draw what you saw. I started to cry—what have I done to myself? What have I allowed to take control of me?” For the first time Karen accepted that in her quest for control—to control her diet—she had in fact relinquished control of her own life to a vicious disease that was hell-bent on killing her.

Admitting Defeat—And Asking for Help

Both Karen and Alison attest that asking for help was the most difficult thing they had ever done.  “Especially in the finance world, in an office full of Type-A men, I never wanted to come across as weak,” Alison says. Rehabilitation experts concede that for older patients, admitting defeat and asking for help can be a major roadblock—but it can ultimately be their saving grace.

Unlike young patients who are generally brought in by concerned parents, most adult patients come in of their own volition. Whether as the result of a health crisis or simply a conscious decision that they are risking their lives, there’s generally a motivation among the older set, says Dr. Ira Sacker, a leading authority in eating disorder treatment in the U.S. “There’s much less denial.”

“The most difficult thing for a woman my age to do is to ask for help,” says Alison, who admits that in addition to the control aspect of her eating disorder she also struggled with body image issues about aging. “Someone would tell me, ‘60 is the new 30.’ And what I would hear was ‘When you’re 60, you’d better look 30.’” In the advertising industry where she worked at the height of her disordered eating, the fast-pace of technology and turnaround of employees left her self-conscious of her capability and appearance compared with younger female colleagues. “It was a recipe for disaster for me,” she says of her decision to leave advertising for the non-profit world. “Much as it took everything in my soul to say I needed help, it was horrifically difficult to look at my career and say ‘I can’t do this anymore.’”

In the three months Alison spent in treatment at The Renfrew Center—crying through meals, spending three weeks in a wheelchair because she was too weak to walk–she says the biggest struggle was learning a new way to identify. “I realized the business cards, career, status—all those things are second to my life. I used to equate my job title with my value and my worth an in conjunction with my eating disorder it was killing me. Three years later when people ask me ‘What do you do?’ it takes everything I’ve got not to answer ‘I live my life.’” Alison’s new career revolves around mentoring and support for other women struggling with eating disorders and addiction—another affliction she has overcome.

Karen has years to go until she reaches Alison’s level of recovery. Just three months out of an inpatient program, she’s still weighing her employment options while battling through daily reminders of her lowest times—force ulcers recently ruptured, making her home look “like a crime scene” and the occasional fall has left her prone to concussions in her still-weakened state. But by sticking to her doctor-prescribed meal plan she sees light at the end of the tunnel for both herself, physically and mentally. “I’m not 20, I can’t just bounce back. But every day I’m stronger. I may weigh less than my German Shepherd,” she laughs, “But I’m getting there.”

Sexual Abuse: Abusers And True Repentance

Many who suffer with a mental illness arrived at that place in their lives due to some type of  past sexual abuse.  This article, written by Philip Monroe, who has a blog listed here, tackles a very delicate topic.  I chose to print this article with two things in mind.  1)  For the well being of the victim by not rushing in and offering forgiveness where the fruits of true repentance don’t exist.  2)  To remind us that the worst of sinners can be forgiven.

In no way is this article intended to be a means to cause any condemnation to victims of abuse.  Nor is it intended to create any pressure to make a huge decision you aren’t comfortable with.

I pray that God would use this article to work out His perfect will for those who have been victimized and also for the victimizer.  Allan


As a psychologist and seminary professor, I frequently entertain questions about the timeline for forgiveness and reconciliation in situations of domestic or familial sexual abuse. Most frequently, church leaders want to know when it is appropriate to encourage a victim of abuse to allow an offender back into the home or life.

These questions sometimes originate for quite different reasons. Some ask due to fear that once abuser and victim are separated, reconciliation is made much more unlikely. Others ask because it seems that the abuser is not being forgiven in a timely manner. Still others want to know how to discern whether the abusive person is genuinely repentant. It is this last question that I think merits the most attention. How do you know when an abusive person is adequately repentant, and therefore, capable of providing a safe environment for others to live in? The answer, of course, is found in the fruit they produce.

Honest admission.

When God’s people encounter his holiness, they often fall on their faces and admit the state of their soul (e.g., Moses, Isaiah, Paul). They make no pretense of being clean and they do not look to excuse their behavior or blame others (“I might be 60% responsible, but she’s responsible too.”). They do not attempt to manage their image as Saul did when confronted by Samuel (1 Samuel 15:14f). In appropriate settings they willingly reveal secret sins that had not been known. This honesty should be permanent rather than temporary. If another should bring up their sins decades later, they should be capable of admitting what is true without defensiveness or undue shame.

Does the abuser:

openly acknowledge abusive behavior and its impact on the victim?

accept full responsibility for actions without excuse?

accept the consequences of the abuse without demand for trust or forgiveness?

Sacrificial efforts to repair.

The story of  Zacchaeus provides a wonderful illustration of the fruit of repentance in the life of a man who profited by abusing others with his power. He does not shy away from the sniggering comments of others, but publicly promises to pay back all he has cheated plus four times more (probably twice as much as the Law required!). Not only that, but he willingly gives half of his wealth to feed the poor.

Jesus describes the kingdom of God as having so much worth that a true disciple joyfully gives all to acquire it (Matthew 13:44-46). The repentant abuser sees the value of restoration and joyfully gives all to obtain it. He no longer sees his rights as something to hold on to, but immediately thinks of how he can sacrificially put the interests of others before his own. Further, he does not demand acknowledgment of this sacrificial effort to undo the wrong done. Sadly, the opposite fruit seems more prevalent. The abuser strives to protect personal interests (e.g., an unwillingness to pay for counseling costs of the victim), attempts to compromise (I’ll pay for counseling if you won’t report the abuse to the authorities), or uses children to gain leverage (the children will be hurt if I am out of the home)

Does the abuser:

spontaneously seek to make restitution (not penance!) or to offer economic support without demand for things in return?

give physical and emotional space for the victim to receive help from others?

Accepts and flourishes under discipline.

When caught in abusive or addictive behavior, individuals commonly make immediate changes in their behavior. They stop certain problematic behaviors and start healthier ones (e.g., returns to church, reads the Bible, goes to counseling). We commend these behaviors. However, Jesus warns the disciples (Matthew 12-13; the story of the house swept clean and the parable of the soils) about the problem of reading initial reactions to the Gospel. Time and cultivation are required. The repentant abuser willingly submits to the loving discipline of the Church. When adequate ministry to him is not available, he pursues it until he finds it. He does not demand time limits or the entitlement to be forgiven. He accepts the intrusion of accountability partners and sees their work not as police work, but as discipleship.

Does the abuser:

accept the ministry of discipline, accountability, counseling, etc. with joy?

acknowledge that the fruit of change takes time to develop and so sees discipleship as a lifetime project?

show evidence of a growing life of prayer, reading of the Word and increasing measure of the fruits of the Spirit?

Be careful.

A word of caution to those whose job it is to assess the level of change in an abuser. There are two errors we must avoid. It is easy to classify abusers as subhuman and unable to ever change. If we fall into this error, we may be tempted to prejudge their ability to change, thereby encouraging greater defensiveness on their part. The power of the cross changes the worst of sinners (including ourselves). These men and women deserve God’s grace as much as any. The second error is that of being thrown off by external issues that may not have much to do with repentance. Those who are charming and well-spoken (especially those who use spiritual language) may tempt you to ignore fruit that is inconsistent with repentance. Also, when victims are less likable due to their own interpersonal demeanor, it is tempting to excuse abusive behavior.

It is wise to seek supervision during this process and to remember that you participate in the Lord’s work and that He will accomplish refinement in his children, including you!
Philip Monroe, PsyD., is Associate Professor of Counseling and Psychology and the Director of the MA in Counseling Program at Biblical Seminary in Hatfield, Pennsylvania. He is also a licensed psychologist and practicing counselor.

Bipolar Disorder: Keeping Up With Treatment In A Down Economy

Taken from bipolarhope  which is located   HERE.

For the millions of Americans affected by bipolar disorder, a consistent, comprehensive treatment plan is imperative in effectively managing the disease. Yet keeping up with treatment can be challenging in today’s tough economic times. Since 2009, states have cut $1.8 billion from non-Medicaid mental health services, greatly impacting the resources available to people with mental health conditions. This includes access to care, treatment options, and tools to help manage these conditions.

“Though bipolar disorder can be disabling, it is treatable,” said Dr John Zajecka, associate professor of psychiatry and director of the Depression Treatment Research Center at Rush University Medical Center. “The cost of treatment should not be the main factor in determining a treatment plan. Patients should work with their physician to find options that may be available to reduce costs. It is important for patients to work with their physician to develop an appropriate treatment plan and address any factors that may prevent sustainable treatment success over time.”

If left untreated, the debilitating symptoms of bipolar disorder can have a profound effect on an individual’s family, friends, and society. However, despite current nationwide budget restrictions, there are many ways for those suffering from this condition to access care and medications. Dr Zajecka recommends keeping the following in mind for patients with bipolar disorder who may be concerned with the rising cost of care.

  1. Patients should talk with their physician about developing an appropriate treatment plan
  2. Patients need to understand their health insurance plan and know what treatments and medications are covered
  3. Patients should determine if they are eligible for government programs that can lower the cost of care by accessing the and Web sites.  These sites outline federal, state, local, and private programs that help pay for prescription medicines

It’s important to remember that medication is just one part of managing bipolar disorder. There are a number of free resources available for people with bipolar disorder and their caregivers. For example,, sponsored by AstraZeneca, provides helpful information and resources, including a mood and goal tracking diary, a list of questions to ask your doctor, medication inventory list, health care team appointment schedules, and prescription refill lists.

Mental Illness Invisible In Many Churches

Taken from NAMI  which is located  HERE.

By Carole Wills, Chair, NAMI FaithNet Advisory Group

Many families and individuals affected by mental illness acknowledge faith as a key component in their recovery and experience. However, a recent study sponsored by Baylor University reveals that mental illness within a family frequently damages the family’s connection to its church.

Although the church congregation did not completely remove support from the families, the study found that families affected by mental illness ranked church as number two in their priority list of needs, while families without mental illness ranked it 42.

The study highlights that church communities do not fulfill the needs of congregants and often overlook families affected by mental illness, despite the needs the families have for support and assistance.

“The data give the impression that mental illness, while prevalent within a congregation, is also nearly invisible,” said Matthew Stanford, Ph.D., co-author of the study.

The study appears in the online journal Mental Health, Religion and Culture, and is the first study to look at how mental illness of a family member influences an individual’s relationship with their congregation.

In recent years, NAMI surveys of families and individuals living with both schizophrenia and depression reinforce the view that faith is an important component of people’s experience and recovery with mental illness.

Many NAMI members recognized the importance of a caring congregation for families and individuals and, in response, formed NAMI FaithNet for the purpose of encouraging more supportive faith communities for those with mental illness and their families. Pointing out the value of one’s spirituality in the recovery process as well as the need for spiritual strength for many caregivers, NAMI grassroots leaders have been working to educate clergy and faith communities about mental illness through outreach and education efforts in concert with NAMI Affiliates throughout the country.

Clearly, there remains a large need for this effort. While the low ranking of mental illness as a priority need for congregants not directly affected by mental illness may indicate that they simply are not aware of the unique needs of all families, this may also suggest that the help is not forthcoming when it is needed.

While the study may not highlight a fundamental problem with the church community itself, it may indicate a lack of understanding, or perhaps even shame, about mental illness.

The study surveyed 6,000 participants in 24 churches representing four Protestant denominations, so it is unclear whether or not the results would change with a more diverse demographic.

NAMI FaithNet respects all faith beliefs. It also recognizes the expression by the majority of those affected by mental illness of the importance of the role of their spirituality in their ability to cope with having one of these illnesses themselves or in caring for an ill friend or family member.

He Knows Us: Streams In The Desert, September 25th, 2011

“I know him, that he will command his children” Genesis 18:19
God wants people that He can depend upon. He could say of Abraham, “I know him, that he will command his children . . . that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken.” God can be depended upon; He wants us to be just as decided, as reliable, as stable. This is just what faith means.
God is looking for men on whom He can put the weight of all His love and power and faithful promises. God’s engines are strong enough to draw any weight we attach to them. Unfortunately the cable which we fasten to the engine is often too weak to hold the weight of our prayer; therefore God is drilling us, disciplining us to stability and certainty in the life of faith. Let us learn our lessons and stand fast.  –A. B. Simpson
God knows that you can stand that trial; He would not give it to you if you could not. It is His trust in you that explains the trials of life, however bitter they may be. God knows our strength, and He measures it to the last inch; and a trial was never given to any man that was greater than that man’s strength, through God, to bear it.