Things are speeding up as I progress toward the publication of When Despair Meets Delight. This week I have:
- Messaged prospective buyers about advance orders.
- Conducted an interview with a local reporter for an feature article.
- Met with a librarian about an upcoming virtual book launch.
- Spoke with a Christian radio station about appearing on one of their programs.
- Scheduled appearances on two Facebook live podcasts.
All this while attending to my dying father and coordinating his funeral service.
Am I manic? Perhaps. Should I slow down? Maybe. What happens if/when I crash? I don’t know.
One thing I’m sure of is I’m not manufacturing my mania. I am getting plenty of sleep. I’m taking my prescribed medication on time. I have a relatively good rhythm of work and rest. There are certainly improvements I could make in such areas as diet and exercise, but I’m doing my best. I’m simply getting a lot done and it’s great. I make no apologies for feeling good.
How can I enjoy the opportunities I’ve been given without overdoing it. How do I fly without getting too close to the sun? How can I delight in the Lord such that my desires become God’s desires and are met?
These crucial questions frame who I am as a person of faith and what I can do as one with a bipolar disorder. As a child 0f God, I don’t have to do anything to earn God’s love. God’s favor is freely offered in the person of Jesus Christ who became one of us so we might become one with God. When I accept Christ’s love in my heart, the urgency to perform is transformed into a grateful desire to serve. And not service out of a sense of drudging obligation, but delightful duty.
In times like these, it is easy to fly on spiritual wings. The day before he died, I sat at my father’s bedside and asked him if he had any unfinished business before he passed. He emphatically affirmed that no, he was quite ready. I held his hand a felt his firm grasp I had known so well. I prayed that he be relieved from pain and released to enter into the promised new life in Christ. He said Amen with a smile on his face, thanked me, and said he was going to take a little nap. I told him to rest, that I would see him again.
I miss my father very much. He was the one I turned to when I was in trouble or just needed to figure something out. I have called him everyday for over a dozen years. There is a big void in my heart, but my spirit soars knowing he is closer to Christ and one day I will join him there.
It is sometimes hard to distinguish a soaring spirit from a delusional soul. Since my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer, I have been driven to write and now publish When Despair Meets Delight. The despair I felt when we received the diagnosis has turned to delight that he his soul has been released. In many respects, my own story is complete. At least this one. Now my mission is to share it with as many as I can, to give glory to the God who is with us in life, death, and beyond.
So, how are we to delight in the Lord just as we are, in all we do? One sure way to miss the mark is by hiding our pain, running from our sorrow, denying our despair. Delight best shines in the darkness. As Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote: “The darker the night, the brighter the stars,
The deeper the grief, the closer is God!”
I have found that when despair meets delight, there is much hope to share. This hope gives strength to battle such debilitating conditions as mental illness, brain disorders, diseases of the mind. My aim in what I write is not so much to hand someone with a troubled mind an atlas, as to walk alongside them on their journey, offering assurance each step of the way that they are not alone.I have been so affirmed in the process of producing my book. I’ve been reminded time and again that I am not alone. By loved ones who encouraged me that I had something to say that needed to be said. To readers who gave me a reason to say it. To editors who helped me say it better. To graphic artists, social media consultants, and others who put what I say in a beautiful package. And mostly with the Holy Spirit who speaks the Word through my words such that I can speak the truth in love.
Order by August 15 and receive:
1) An autographed copy;
2) Free shipping;
3) Early delivery, and;
4) An invite to an interactive book launch.