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Thursday, July 26, 2012

God of Hope - This Bipolar's Right Hand

My Christian faith edifies my soul in ways that help me keep my bipolar symptoms in check and under control. This is being demonstrated to me now. I am in a much better place than when I wrote about faith last March.

I am in a place of increasing bipolar depression following my recent twin peaks manic episode. It's a fight against what seems inevitable. After every manic episode I have had there has been a follow-on deep depression.

These post-mania depressive episodes are not simply periods of sadness, remorse, guilt, or low self esteem that pass after a short time. They are long (years) periods of all consuming depression that rock my core.

Previous posts here and here give some insight into my depression experiences. These were written toward the end of my last depression episode (September 2010 through May 2012). They do not provide much insight into the darkest times since they were written towards the end of the episode. Unfortunately, I find it very difficult to capture and articulate the really dark times as I become catatonic and anhedonic.

God of Hope

The message delivered by my pastor last Sunday was powerful and timely. It was about what he called the God of Hope. To be clear he spoke of the all powerful God of the Bible, not some other deity or idol who has power only in one area (e.g., Ares, the Greek god of war).

Hope is the basis of what I expect in the future as revealed in the Bible. It is a foundation of my faith. When my hope is shaken I find myself in dire straights.  And according to my Pastor, hope is deposited in us based on what we know God has promised us per the Bible. It is God inspired and delivered to us through the Holy Spirit.

Right Hand

Yes, the Most High uses His right hand with me. He delivers me from trouble, protects me from enemies, and guides me along my path to be like Christ.

Oh yea, my sweet Lord. Hallelujah! All glory to Him that never changes His Word and Spirit and who was, is, and will be forever. I await your return Jesus! Praise you Jesus! Amen.

Necessity of Hope

Hope is the anchor of faith. Faith is built on and revolves around the understanding of hope. Hope gets believers through each day.

As believers we need hope like a fish needs water. Now, if I had perfect faith and  understanding of what God has purposed for me there would be no need for hope. I would be complete and full of faith such that hope wouldn't be needed. I would have full, clear understanding of Christ, the Father, and Holy Spirit.

However, being human I do not have perfect faith and need hope. I have been praying to God for more hope since that day in church and it is helping! I should be falling deeper and deeper into depression by now according to my prior three manic episodes in 1997, 2002, and 2010. Yet so far this is not occurring!

Parting Scripture

And again, Isaiah says: 'There shall be a root of Jesse [king David's father]; And He [Jesus Christ] who shall who shall rise to reign over the Gentiles, in Him the Gentiles shall hope.' Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. - Romans 15:12-13 NKJV.


  1. I am glad your faith is helping you.

    1. Thank-you. Interestingly, my Mom would use the term flabbergasted. I know she was flabbergasted over me more than a few times;)

  2. prayer really does work. I am living proof as well. best wishes and many blessings. Wil

    1. Thanks for the encouragement and your testimony about prayer! Your words are helpful as I develop doubt from time to time when in the deepest of pains. I know it's powerful and do so each day. It seems He's not there during the really bad times, but He is. I believe my trials and his testing of me are for good overall. And deep down I know he is always right beside me. God Bless, Jeff

    2. Hello, I am hoping for an update on the Scopolamine Patch. Did you ever try it again? I know they are doing a research project at NAMI now. I was wondering if you know how to find out what happens if a person has a successful trial? What do they give them then? Do they just go back to suffering? The one success story on NPR, "I want to live..." the patient had a very successful remission on Ketamine and then someone ? put him on Riluzole, he has been in remission for one year now. Do you know how to follow these studies through and get information about what is currently happening to the people on these studies? Where do they go for help next? How can I find out more about Riluzole?
      With much appreciation...

    3. Hello Anonymous - You ask some very good questions, which I hope this reply addresses sufficiently.

      Yes, I will be posting about my recent use of Scopolamine during a cruise I took. It kept me from motion sickness but its effect on my recalcitrant depression was very little. I had to take it off after my fourth patch because of a headache that would not go away. I consider the headache to be a side effect of Scopolamine use. I was on it for 13 days total.

      I recommend you read this article ( by a Dr. Sanacora for the latest Ketamine and Riluzole information. The author provides a lot of information on the status of these two and some other novel drugs for bipolar depression treatment. Unfortunately there is no discussion on Scopolamine.

      I certainly do not have a complete understanding of all the research, trials, and results for these new drugs, but a detailed read of the article I refer to above should get you up to speed on the state of development of them.

      I did not delve into the sources and details in the article, but I think it would be worthy of a good study. The author covers quite a few drugs emerging from research efforts.

      Please let me know at (or leave a comment if you like) if you find some useful facts that I can write about on this blog. It's an exciting area of depression research and there's a lot more going on than I thought prior to reading Dr. Sanacora's article.

      Thanks for your questions and comments.

      - Jeff

  3. Happy to read wonderful and informative post.

    1. BD - My desire is for it to help a believer sow their faith, even if that faith is like a mustard seed. - Jeff