Thanks for stopping by! Here are my latest posts links. Click a photo below and select the button to read more. You'll also find buttons to frequently visited pages, a teaching highlight video, and endorsements from colleagues and readers. I pray you find encouragement here!
Dancing with Disappointment
I was recently reminded how tempting it is to let dashed hopes dominate my countenance. But once the initial shockwaves settled, I turned to God in prayer and thanked him for leading me to a moment where my hopes and his providence collided. I recognized the opportunity for what it was: a chance to experience the bite of disappointment without my foundations being shaken. I already knew how to leap with joy through an opened door—now was the time to gratefully stare at a closed one.
Dear Pastor: Please Serve Me Jesus
I recently had the misfortune of hearing a Christ-less Sunday sermon and it grieved me so terribly, I penned some reflections. It was the first time in my Christian walk that I sat at the table in my Father’s house with a fork but no feast. Why is it important to preach Christ crucified each and every Sunday to believers and seekers alike? In this new article, I implore preachers to serve Christ up in every sermon, instead of making him a footnote of liturgy.
Hope + Help for Post-Abortion Trauma
In this episode of The Hope + Help Project, Christine Chappell interviews author/speaker/biblical counselor Camille Cates on the topic of post-abortion trauma, unpacking some of the difficult emotional and spiritual battles that manifest in abortion’s wake, and sharing how the gospel of Jesus Christ offers real hope and help for those who seek to heal. During our conversation, Camille shares her personal testimony of horrifying tragedy and loss, recounting the path that lead her to choose to abort her unborn baby. We talk about the lie of "self-forgiveness," why coping mechanisms ultimately fall short in alleviating the grief and guilt of post-abortion trauma, and the various impacts friends, family, and church community members can have in the healing process. Camille also addresses the frequently asked question, "Will I see my aborted baby in Heaven?" and suggests practical ways to lean into God's Word for meaningful healing and spiritual peace through forgiveness in Christ.
Hope + Help for the Broken-Hearted
In this episode of The Hope + Help Project, Christine Chappell interviews author/pastor Mark Vroegop on the topic of his new book, Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy, learning how the God-given language of lament offers the broken-hearted hope and help for life’s sorrowful seasons. During the conversation, Pastor Mark shares his family's personal story of tragic loss, and how lament provided them—and ultimately, his church community—an outlet for their pains to be voiced while placing their trust in God. We talk about the key components of lament, heart-attitude cautions (what lament isn't), and why today's culture has such a hard time walking alongside broken-hearted people. Pastor Mark also offers practical steps for traveling by faith through grief and sorrow, as well as encouragements on how to cling to biblical hope, even when we've lost all sense of it.
Examining the Dark: What to Do When Depression Lifts
It may sound bleak—or even depressing—to closely examine our dark seasons, but there are many redemptive benefits from endeavoring on such a journey. I want to offer you a few recommended reflections for such times as these, that you might condition your sea legs for future sorrowful swells. As Charles Spurgeon once preached, “Storms help to make the sailors sturdy, and trials help to make Christians strong in faith.”
Hope + Help for the Depressed Ministry Leader
In this episode of, I interview author/teacher Terry Powell on the subject of handling depression in ministry. Terry shares pieces of his life-long battle against depression with vulnerable humility, giving us a picture of God's sustaining grace for those involved in leadership positions. He offers thoughts about combatting negative self-talk, and answers the question, "Is depression a hinderance or a help to fruitful ministry?" The episode also explores the issue of suicide in pastoral ministry, and whether or not the concept of victorious Christian living can be reconciled with the believer's experience of depression.
Hope + Help for Anxiety Recovery
In this episode of The Hope + Help Project, I interview author/speaker Laura Fleetwood. Laura shares details about her personal struggle with anxiety, what recovery has looked like for her, as well as the various ways God has ministered to her as she has battled on-and-off seasons of disruptive anxiety in her life. She also explains how panic and anxiety manifests itself in her physical body, and gives listeners a practical acronym designed to help us turn more quickly to Christ and his body when panic strikes.
Afflicted Ones: The Church Needs You to Be Brave
Where are the afflicted ones who will take a risk and let their brothers and sisters know they are not alone in their struggles—that they too have walked a forlorn road? The church needs the afflicted to care for the afflicted so the comforts of God can be fully dispensed. When the afflicted are shamed or silenced or shunned, Christianity suffers and God’s name is profaned.
Hope + Help for the Weary Mom
In this episode of The Hope + Help Project, I interview author Christina Fox on the topic of weariness in motherhood and her new book Sufficient Hope: Gospel Meditations and Prayers for Moms. Christina shares about her reluctant struggle with postpartum depression, the importance of having proper expectations in motherhood and how to turn from helplessness to hope in Christ. She also addresses common heart issues that moms of all ages wrestle with, such as control idolatry, discontentment, and general discouragement with the motherhood experience.
Hope + Help for Self-Harm
In this episode, Pastor/author David Dunham shares how he got started working in addiction ministry, why helping a self-injurer requires attention to both the body and soul, reasons it's important to uncover the struggler's motivations for injuring, the necessity of having a robust theology of sin in order to treat strugglers with compassion and grace, the helpfulness of practicing repentance, and words of encouragement for the person who feels enslaved to their addictive habit.
The Time God Met Me in the Mental Hospital
It's by design we raise our ebenezer on the battlefields of life. Maybe for you, that place is a hospital bed. Maybe it's a courtroom. Maybe it's a jail cell. Maybe it's a clinic. Maybe it's a cemetery. Believe there is no place too taboo for our Jesus, no building or circumstance can keep him away from consoling your hurt and wiping your tears.
Hope + Help for Abusive Men
In this episode, Christine and Reverend Chris Moles unpack the heart of domestic abuse. Chris shares why he believes there has been some push-back from the Christian community about pursuing violent men with the hope of the gospel, the problem with treating domestic abuse as an anger issue, reasons why focusing on abuse as spiritual rebellion is so important, realistic ways of measuring intervention "success," and words of admonishment (as well as hope) for the man who senses he is abusing his power and wonders what true change will require.
Listener Q&A Submission Form for The Hope + Help Project
If you have a question about a particular counseling topic, psychiatric diagnosis, behavioral struggles, parenting challenges, or emotional/spiritual problems in general, I would love for you to submit your question for possible selection for the episode, which will air at the end of June. I'm no guru. But if you're looking for gospel-centered hope + help, I'm sure I can steer you in the right direction.
Being Needy Isn't a Fault—It's a Design
When someone is struggling or suffering, they can sometimes be hesitant to reach out for help. But what does the Bible have to say about our neediness? Is it a character flaw or sin? This article explores some of the ways we view neediness as annoying or inconvenient, and how God's design for his people and community go against the grain of trending cultural norms.
Mourning Dashed Hopes: Biblical Wisdom for Changing Seasons
Author/writer Shauna Letellier recently invited me to share a portion of my story of depression recovery in her "Stories of Hope" summer blog series. In the article, I explain how the failure to make adjustments for our seasons in life can compound our sorrows in dark and dangerous ways. Through the dashed hope of self-preservation, Christ taught me the true and better hope of trusting him fully with my ever-evolving times.
Hope + Help for the Grieving Widow
In this episode, I interview author/writer Lisa Appelo on the topic of learning to live with grief as a widow. Lisa talks about the day her husband suddenly passed away, how she addressed the grieving process with her seven children, some of the unexpected emotional struggles she faced, and how the body of Christ rallied around her and her family as they learned how to live without the husband and father they loved. She also shares some practical spiritual and physical care suggestions for those walking through seasons of grief.
Help! I'm a New Christian Living with a Psychiatric Diagnosis
In this new blog post, I answer a question I received from a reader who is a new Christian living with a psychiatric diagnosis. I share my top four suggestions for charting a path forward, including resources, recommended reading, and notes from a weary traveler who has passed that way before.
Encouragements for the Discouraged Mom: Real Victory Radio Interview
The recording from my guest appearance at Real Victory Radio with Amy Elaine Ministries is now available to stream on iTunes & Soundcloud. We chat about messy hearts in motherhood, learning to adapt to new seasons of life, walking through depression recovery, and encouragements for the discouraged mom.
Fighting Wisely Against Destructive Habits
In this episode of The Mental Hope Project, Christine Chappell guides a powerful conversation with Pastor/author Rush Witt on the topic of fighting against diehard sins and destructive daily habits. Rush shares about his personal experience with mental health recovery and biblical counseling, helps listeners unpack the undercurrents of our heart struggles, gives practical steps for attacking "acceptable" sins while avoiding the pitfall of morbid introspection, and ultimately offers courage and clarity for the Christian who is desperate for change but feels stuck in the struggle.
Good News for the Discouraged Mom on Mother's Day Weekend
Sometimes Mother's Day weekend looks like limps in our hearts and lumps in our throats. When we feel we don't measure up to what it means to be a "good mom," we don't feel much like celebrating life, let alone motherhood. But there's good news to be found for discouraged mothers. Here are gospel truths to remember as your weary heart heads into Mother's Day.
Biblical Wisdom for Eating Disorders
This new episode of The Mental Hope Project podcast discusses some of the heart issues associated with disordered eating, practical spiritual and physical steps for seeking help, and words of encouragement for the sufferer who feels hopeless or helpless to find progressive life change.
Walking Our Children Through Depression: Four Ways We Imitate God
When we look to the Scriptures and see God serving the sorrowing with individualized, calculated affection, we see a multifaceted approach to managing mental anguish — one that acknowledges the dichotomy of man (as body and soul) and the necessity of the body of Christ.
My Name is Beloved: Finding Identity in Mental Illness
Once a sinner receives Christ by grace through faith, God will not let his dear ones slip into eternal ruin. No temporary malfunction of the mind can reverse God’s call of his elect. No man’s judgment can nullify Christ’s claim on souls whom he purchased with his blood — including believers living with a mental illness
Encouragements for the Depressed Mom
Walking through depression can be a dark, deep, lonely season of life–especially for mothers. In this video feature at Thrive Moms, I share four huge Biblical truths that have helped comfort me as I’ve traversed the fog of depression.
What is Self-Harm & How Can We Help?
Do you know someone who struggles with self-harm? Do you feel upset, confused, and helpless to offer them meaningful support? In this new article, I answer frequently asked questions about the behavior, pointing caregivers to important gospel truths that illumine the road to recovery.
Overcoming Anger by Grace
Analyzing our anger can be a wonderfully fruitful exercise and catalyst for spiritual maturity in Christ. But it's hard, ugly work. Visit this page for a collection of helpful resources on the topic of anger, such as audio recordings, printable worksheets, a video recording by Christine, and Scripture references.
Approaching the Wounded with Compassion: Video
So what does your depressed loved one need most from you now? And how can you equip yourself to walk them through the darkness? Watch this recording from my "Walking Through the Darkness" video series to hear my suggestions.
Receive Weekly Mental Health & Biblical Counseling Resources
Every Wednesday, I email my subscribers a collection of Christ-centered mental health resources on rotating topics. If you'd like to be better equipped to face mental health recovery, or to support someone who is suffering, click the button to learn more and sign up.
Roaming Hell's Hollow: Trusting God in Spiritual Depression
If God’s temporary silence feels like the removal of spiritual training wheels, then clinging to gospel truths is the way we learn to balance on trust instead of perception (Psalm 77:19).
Into the Fire: Fear and Doubt in Mental Health Recovery
Set-backs in mental health tempt us to make predictions about the future of our well-being without any concrete evidence. So what's the problem with our "what if" questions? And what should we ask ourselves when we're overrun by fears and doubts?
God's Compassion for His Fearful Flock: 3 Minutes of Courage Devotion
We are constantly bombarded with the overwhelming and inexplainable and devastating circumstances of broken life. But God has a tender way of hushing us in our fear–not through rebuke–but through invitation.
Don't Hurt Yourself: Self-Condemnation in Mental Health Recovery /// 3 Minutes of Courage Devotional
When we experience a recovery setback, we're tempted to punish ourselves through a barrage of self-condemning harassments because we believe we should be doing better than we actually are. But is this the biblical way to handle our failures? What does the Bible say about the habit of self-condemnation?
Confronting Our Doubts with Divine Evidence: 3 Minutes of Courage Devotion
Are present perceptions influencing your predictions about the future? If so, you're not the only one. In 1 Samuel 27, David responded to distress in the same fashion. Read Charles Spurgeon's incredible insights on the problem of making predictions about well-being without evidence.
Should Christians Take Medication for Mental Health Issues?
How should biblical counselors respond to medical treatments for mental health issues? Here's what the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors has to say about it.
What to Say to Comfort Your Depressed Friend
Depression is too complex to be mended in a single encounter. What your friend needs most from you is compassionate faithfulness–a commitment to walk the length of the dreary road, hand-in-hand, side-by-side.
Pursuing Humility in Mental Health Recovery
Searching for relief at all cost–to the point where life is not worth living unless it comes quickly–is quite possibly the most life-threatening posture someone struggling with severe depression can take.
Let the Truth of Your Hope Outweigh the Feeling of It:
3 Minutes of Courage Devotion
It's not the strength of our hope that sustains us, but the object of it. Read more about enduring through seasons of hopelessness by reading this "3 Minutes of Courage" devotional.
Encouragements for the Woman Who Feels Sidelined
If you are a sister in Christ feeling depressed, anxious, bitter, or angry because you have been sidelined from ministry, here are some truths that I want you to remember as you take your turn to "sit out."