Stories to Cultivate Hope for Those Battling Mental Illness
But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you. (Psalm 39:7)
This book is about mental health ministry. It’s not a “how-to” book.
I can not tell you what will work in your ministry setting. Instead of answering the question, “How do we do mental health ministry?” I want to challenge you, “What difference can we make for those impacted by mental illness?”
To do this, I will tell stories of my own life and ministry. Statistics are essential, but unless they are enfleshed with stories, they won’t lead to change. Evidence-based programs may produce proposals for getting grants, but if faith communities are going to carry out our God-given mission, we need to get to know persons with mental illness and invite and involve them in kingdom work.
When people asked Jesus what they must do to be saved, he told stories.
The kingdom of God is like… a banquet for beggars… a woman finding a lost coin… an outsider lifting a wounded man out of the ditch and providing for his care. Rabbi Jesus, how shall we do mental health ministry? Ah, let me tell you a story.
About the Author
Tony Roberts is a man with a troubled mind who delights in the One who delights in him. After graduating from Louisville Presbyterian Seminary, he labored in pastoral ministry for two decades.
He is the author of Delight in Disorder: Ministry, Madness, Mission and is the founder and Chief Shepherd of Delight in Disorder Ministries. These ministries include A Way With Words publishing, Revealing Voices podcast, and Faithful Friends mental health support group.
Tony is available to virtually consult ministry leaders on issues of faith and mental illness. You may reach out to him on the contact page or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
In a voice that represents so many other untold stories, Tony Roberts bravely and beautifully tells of losing and finding and discovering that for all mental illness will take from us, it cannot conquer the God who gives us life and fills it with purpose.
Author of Troubled Minds: Mental Illness and the Church's Mission.
Tony Roberts' agonizing and painful story will be a great help to many, both inside and outside the church. He offers practical ways of responding to the age-old phenomenon of mental illness so that people find healing with others and with God.
John M. Mulder,
Former president of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Editor of Finding God: A Treasury of Conversion Stories.
In When Despair Meets Delight, Tony models a relational style that reflects the love of Christ and points to the faith that sustained him through his struggles. His book is a wonderful resource for church leaders called to come alongside broken and hurting people and to Christ-followers led to pursue a personal mental health ministry.
Stephen Grcevich, MD
President and Founder, Key Ministry
Author of Mental Health and the Church
Tony Roberts understands the despair of mental illness. Because of his unique lived experience, he writes When Despair Meets Delight and shines a light on how the church perceives those with mental illness. With Tony's dual perspective of clergy and clinical patient, we're also given a view of how those with mental illness see the church, and thus we all are challenged to do better.
Katie R. Dale
Author of But Deliver Me from Crazy: A Memoir
Preorder the book to receive special bonuses
Those who pre-order When Despair Meets Delight are eligible for a 45-minute Meet the Author Zoom session with Tony to discuss the topics of faith & mental illness, writing & self-publishing, or other relevant subjects.
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