Tuesday, April 30, 2013

God who is your Father will help you today.

Image result for monarch butterfly

 I have had some pretty ugly things happen to me since I was converted, like being so depressed,  so much that I felt like my brain was filled with hornets stinging it over and over again, or seeing my daughter killed by  a car, whose driver, was drugged up man who never even had a driver's license.  Lindsay was pregnant and her baby died also. .

 But I can say that God has made everything beautiful  in His time.
The hymn writer put it so well and recently I have been blessed to have read the hymn and sung it in my office with the help of you tube. I know that some of the words are not used today. But  here is the poem

Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment ,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He, whose heart is kind beyond all measure,

Gives unto each day what He deems best, 
                         Lovingly its part of pain and pleasure,
                       Mingling toil with peace and rest.

  Every day the Lord Himself is near me, 
With a special mercy for each hour;   
All my cares He fain would bear and cheer me
He whose name is Counselor and Power.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,“
This the pledge to me He made.

Help me then, in every tribulation,
So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation,
Offered me within Thy holy Word.
Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,
E’er to take, as from a father’s hand,
One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,
Till with Christ the Lord I stand.
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNVCcph6cnI The Antrim Mennonite Choir

Please click on the link below so that you can read about our book.

Please read our book Broken Minds, Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It. It is our story of God helping us through  times of depression and demoralization.


Friday, April 26, 2013

Suicide; Let's bring it out in the open!

This is a continuation of a series on suicide, especially in light of the recent death of Matthew Warren, son of Pastor Rick Warren.

Suicide. It had never before entered my mind. Suicide claimed weak people, surely far weaker than I.  People who came to their wits' end and gave in to a sudden, fatal, impulse. How could a Christian ever entertain the thought, let alone be seriously tempted?  Perhaps the temptation might over take someone in an impossible home situation or someone whose business had gone sour.  Maybe a weak Christian might do it to avoid going through divorce, terminal illness, poverty, or an intensely bitter disappointment. But Christians who had  thoughts of suicide were among the weak minded, and stunted spiritually.  Suddenly the temptation to end my life and its pain assaulted my theology---driven abhorrence against murder of a being created by God in His image.
We must not be ignorant of "ignorant of Satan's devices" (2 Corinthians 2:11, KJV). One of Satan most cunning whispers was the thoughts that all the pain could be put behind me in a moment.
I Can Fix This Now 
There was a fix for all that was broken. I could have it right now. It was rest from the unrelenting pain. It was immediate. It was permanent. No more torture.

Suicide was a viable option to escape the horrible psychic pain. To live on indefinitely in this agony was the unbearable thought. Prayer did not seem to help. Christian counseling had done nothing. I had tried to "encourage myself in the Lord, my God, as David did when his army spoke of stoning him after all all their sons and daughter's and their wives were kidnapped.
My impregnable theology was bombarded by my own fears. I had no answers.  I could not be the leader I wanted to be. I was helpless. God seemed far from me. I was asked by a psychiatrist: Do you have a plan?  I thought, how could he know that I had a plan in place to kill myself? I promised him that I would call him if I were starting to act on my plan.

Are You at Risk for Suicide?
What about you who are reading this blog? Are you at risk for suicide?  If you are depressed, don't glibly dismiss the question or slide into the prevailing talking points that Christians are supposed to have on the subject. Your life and the well being of those close to you, whether you have family or not, depend on avoiding this allure of Satan.  Suicide sends a shock wave of damage much farther than you can imagine.
If you are having suicidal thoughts, and definitely if you have a plan of action, do not assume that you alone can beat this temptation. Yes, the Holy Spirit can give you  strength, but sometimes we speak of living in God's strength, when we we are relying in pride on our own. God has provided trust worthy counselors, pastors and health professionals in whom we confide.  This is not the time for how strong your faith is. You need help----- right away.
Bloem, Robyn and Steve. (2005). Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It  (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, excerpts from chapter four).

If you are suicidal and need help, you can call me at 616-427. 0775. You can also email me at camimovement@yahoo.com  Because I am on medications that have sedative side effects, I cannot take after hours calls. But you can call a Christian Suicide Hot line--We Care About You! Call 888-667-5947 or email us-- contact@christiansuicideprevention.com

Heartfelt Counseling Ministries has started a CAMI (Christians Afflicted with Mental Illness) support group. We have written support group material for those who have mental illness; we also have groups in various churches and recently we have started an exciting online group. All you need is a lap-top computer, which has a camera  and you can attend a group online. . Our Rush Creek Bible Church On Line Support Group is full at this time. However, we are starting a new group and gathering information from those who want to attend. Information that is especially important is what times and days are best for you. We operate on Eastern Standard Time, United States. It may be tricky but we can possibly do groups internationally but it would take some thingking on how to do it during day and night time hours. You can call us at 616.427.0775 or you can email us at camimovement@yahoo.com  There is no charge for the groups but the material sells $ 6.00. A Leader Guide which has all the answers to the questions is $12.00.

The above material on suicide  is from the book Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It.  Robyn and I wrote this book and share our story of God's grace to us, because there is help, you are not alone. You can get it on Kindle, E-Book, the Nook and of course on paperback.  It is a story of God's grace and Kregel Publications has put it on academic status.
For a limited time, I will sell you this paperback book at cost  which is $7.00, plus shipping. The shipping in the U.S. is usually at book rate for about $2.50.

If you are from another country, I will attempt to calculate the cost for you.  If the shipping is too much I will refer you to another source of getting the book.
Rev. Steve Bloem
Director of Heartfelt (Counseling) Ministries
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida,

Monday, April 22, 2013

Have you learned the secret of contentment?


Copyright All rights reserved, April 2013 
This was an imaginary conversation I had with the Lord after a very difficult trial of my faith. It was as if the Lord and I were sitting knee to knee looking deeply into each other’s eyes, holding hands and He said,
 “Robyn, I have something I want to ask you.”
“Oh, sure, LORD, anything!”
“No, this is serious and I want you to think about it before you answer.”
“Lord, You know me; I’ll do anything!”
“It is going to be very difficult for you.”
Well…Okay...But if I go through this--where will You be?
“I’ll be right there with you.”
“You’ll help me, right? Like you always have?”
“Yes. I love you and I will help you through it.”
“If I get afraid, can I come and talk to you?”
“Of course!”
“If I don’t understand something or if I need help, can I come find you and get advice from you?”
“You know you can always come to Me.”
“Well, what if I change my mind? Can I undo the thing I am agreeing to?”
“No, you won’t be able to do that.”
“But You will always be there, right? You will never leave me or forsake me. You said that in your Word.”
“Well then, LORD, I will do it. I trust you.”
And He did. He took our precious daughter and granddaughter on Sept 11. 2001.
I wrote this and read it at their funeral on Sept. 17, 2001
“If tomorrow is my only hope, then my hope is in the wrong place. We need to learn God’s secret of life; joy in the wilderness, joy in the desert and joy in prison.” (Pastor Truman Herring in last night’s sermon.) There seemed to be a connection to me in my own life and experience with Christ.
Thank you, Pastor, for your excellent preaching and teaching and your ministry to my heart! This blog is by  Robyn Bloem Co-founder of Heartfelt Counseling Ministries

We have written a book that is dedicated to Lindsay and Emily Hope.  It is a personal, biblical and technical account of our story of major depression.  Robyn and I co wrote it.
It is called Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It. Kregel Publcations, Grand Rapids, MI
Please pray for us as we are writing another book about the life and death of Lindsay and Emily.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

- Science News- Breaking Research -Depression and deep brain stimulation

The medial forebrain bundle is highlighted in green.
(Credit: Volker Arnd Coenen/Uni Freiburg)

Apr. 9, 2013 — Researchers from the Bonn University Hospital implanted pacemaker electrodes into the medial forebrain bundle in the brains of patients suffering from major depression with amazing results: In six out of seven patients, symptoms improved both considerably and rapidly. The method of Deep Brain Stimulation had already been tested on various structures within the brain, but with clearly lesser effect. The results of this new study have now been published in the international journal Biological Psychiatry.
After months of deep sadness, a first smile appears on a patient's face. For many years, she had suffered from major depression and tried to end her life several times. She had spent the past years mostly in a passive state on her couch; even watching TV was too much effort for her. Now this young woman has found her joie de vivre again, enjoys laughing and travelling. She and an additional six patients with treatment resistant depression participated in a study involving a novel method for addressing major depression at the Bonn University Hospital.
For more please follow this link.
For information on Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It, which has been endorsed by secular and Christian psychiatrists, pastors, seminaries, caregivers of the mentally ill and many of the  people who have some type of mental illness, themselves, please go to the link below.

If you need counseling which is Biblical and Clinical please email me at camimovement@yahoo.com  or use the contact us form on our web site http://www.heartfeltmin.org/#!contact/cito

We do both international and national counseling and use Google + for video and sound or by telephone. No case is too hard for us to tackle. We work with primary doctors and psychiatrists to get you the best help available. Our counseling is both biblical and clinical in nature.
Rev. Steve Bloem B.A. M.M. CTPC
Co-Founder, Heartfelt Counseling Ministries.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Suicide, Silence in the Church..

Matthew Warren

Copy right all rights reserved, 2013 This includes ideas as well as material.

In the United States on average, a suicide occurs every 17 minutes.
Most of them go unmentioned. Most obituaries because of stigma do not mention the word suicide.    It seems to me the most common label used in obituaries is "died unexpectedly".
You probably have heard -- Rick Warren, son, Matthew, (Rick pastors the Saddle back Church, one of the largest churches in the country), committed suicide.  Because of Pastor Warren's fame, which came about after  came after he wrote, A Purpose Driven Life), a window has been opened that creates an opportunity for a national discussion about suicide.  Suicide, is responsible for  49.1 of the world's violent deaths.  This is much more than both homicides and war related deaths.  It is a global problem. Another man of God, Dr. Frank Page, lost his daugther to suicide.  He has written a book aboutt it called Melissa: A Father's Lessons from a Daughter's -Daughters-Suicide   
You can read about it at
Hi this is a re post from 2010.

Statistics on suicide tell the story. Fifteen percent of persons with a depressive disorder will successfully commit suicide. It is hard to understand how a person can ‘out of the blue’ begin to have intense thoughts of taking his/her own life. However, if you have been seriously depressed you can empathize with those who are stepping near the threshold of eternity.

“Just saying no” will not work when you are dealing with suicide.
The nature of the disease and the devil himself, prove formidable obstacles to cause a person with severe depression  to keep living.  Suicides are complex because they involve biological chemical imbalances, strong and clever Satanic attacks and some other things we cannot mention because of space.  In our book Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It, the largest chapter is on Suicide and Suicide prevention. Please see the link below.

Suicide, the elephant in the room
Suicide is the subject and the death that very few talk about. It happens all the time. If you don’t believe that, just look at the statistics for this last decade. It is not getting any better; in fact, it is getting worse.  Some think it to violent to discuss it.  It is violent just as murder is violent. Do we address murder? It is happening to our sons and daughter, to our children and our parents.  We need to talk about it and then talk about it some more.

Pastors should be trained in suicide assessment
Yes, we know that The battle belongs to the LORD. However, this does not mean that churches should just “let go and let God”, when its members come up against suicide.   In your church, you should have a Suicide Hot Line. The pastors should be trained in suicide awareness and stop gap interventions. The devil is a very intelligent being. He knows more Scripture than we do. He takes advantage of the hopelessness and the  horrible psychic pain of depression and he is merciless.

  Suicide leaves in its wake, children who will practice it like the parents who model it. Most people don’t commit suicide the first time they try it. Each time a person attempts suicide, it weakens his/her resolve to live.
If you are pastor, we have a seminar by which we can train your staff and other groups in your church. Our book Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing  is a  true story of depression and God's grace helping Robyn and me to persevere in the faith while suffering horribly. Broken Minds  has an academic standing with Kregel.Publications of Grand Rapids, Michigan.  If you would like to see the table of contents and some material in the book; Please go to this link http://books.google.com/books/about/Broken_Minds.html?id=HQAzGHfmdJUC
Please order our book,  It is available by paperback, E-book and Kindle.
For more reviews please go to http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Minds-Healing-Youre-Losing/dp/0825421187

Our website is http://www.heartfeltmin.org


Friday, April 12, 2013

Remember the Persecuted Church and William Carey

From the Preface from The Life of William Carey, Shoemaker and Missionary by
Smith, George (1833-1919)

On the death of William Carey in 1834 Dr. Joshua Marshman promised to write the Life of his great colleague, with whom he had held almost daily converse since the beginning of the century, but he survived too short a time to begin the work. In 1836 the Rev. Eustace Carey anticipated him by issuing what is little better than a selection of mutilated letters and journals made at the request of the Committee of the Baptist Missionary Society. It contains one passage of value, however. Dr. Carey once said to his nephew, whose design he seems to have suspected, “Eustace, if after my removal any one should think it worth his while to write my Life, I will give you a criterion by which you may judge of its correctness. If he give me credit for being a plodder he will describe me justly. Anything beyond this will be too much. I can plod. I can persevere in any definite pursuit. To this I owe everything.”
If you would like to read further about the father of modern  missions, please to the
link below.

VOM-USA Prayer Update for April 12, 2013
On Thu. Apr 11 2013 at 03:29 PM Moderator wrote:
Syria--Blessings amid Ever-Worsening Situation
Source: VOM Contacts
VOM partners in Syria were forced to abbreviate and cancel
Easter celebrations due to fighting in the region. "We canceled           
the Good Friday service because of the fight," wrote one partner,
"and we did the whole service of Easter ... in 40 minutes." A mortar
exploded on Good Friday in front of the building where this
contact lives, killing one woman. Another exploded the following
Monday, killing two others. Our partner had two hours of electricity
 on Wednesday after five days without. The fighting also cost
this group around $10,000 in literature and rent when their apartment
housing a small bookstore was destroyed by a bomb. "Any
blessed news? Yes!" the partner wrote. "We are still here, thankful for
the protection of our Lord. We had the blessed chance to distribute
food packages to 60 families." This contact also still has three active
Bible classes in the region.

Nigeria--Militants Kill 10 Family Members
Source: VOM Contacts

Islamists killed 10 members of one family on Feb. 21 in an evening

 attack near Jos. Five of those killed were children, ranging in age
 from 9 months to 5 years old. At about 8 p.m., around 40 armed
militants entered the home of the Musa family near the entrance of
Kogom Village. They broke down the doors of a home shared by
four adult siblings and their families, then brutally killed everyone
 they encountered with machetes and automatic rifles. Two family
members in their 20s, Habila Musa, and Regina, the wife of Jacob
Musa, were the only survivors of the attack. Regina is deeply
traumatized; the militants killed not only her husband but also her
three children, ages 9 months old, 3 years old and 5 years old.

Azerbaijan--More Fines for Two Baptist Ministers
Source: Forum 18 News Service

The leaders of two small Baptist churches in Azerbaijan have been

fined for holding worship services and threatened with tougher
penalties if they don’t stop. At a hearing on Good Friday, judges
fined pastors Zaur Balayev and Hamid Shabanov 1,500 AZN
($1,900) each, according to contacts. The fines amount to more
than a year’s salary for a laborer. Zaur Balayev spent nearly
a year in prison for his Christian work in 2007-2008, and he is
currently caring for his wife, who is ill with cancer. The fine for
amid Shabanov was issued to his wife, Hinayat, in his place,
since Hamid was out of the country. Hamid has also spent time in prison.

Indonesia--VOM Project

Pray for 110 orphans whose parents were killed by Muslim
during the 1999-2002 jihad attacks. VOM provides school fees for the children.
Voice of Martyrs http://www.persecution.com/

Our web site http://www.heartfeltmin.org

 Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It  

 For many reviews and prices, please put in a  Google Search;
Bloem, Broken Minds


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The sorrow of suicide, let's talk about it.

Because of stigma, most obituaries do not mention the word suicide. It seems to me the most common label used in obituaries is "died unexpectedly," or “died suddenly" A very sad report came out of the Saddleback Church this past weekend. Rick Warren is the well-known pastor of this mega church in California. His son, Matthew, committed suicide Friday.
Because of Pastor Warren's fame (much of it has come after he wrote (A Purpose Driven Life), a window has been opened that creates an opportunity for a national discussion about suicide.
Suicide is responsible for 49.1% of violent deaths worldwide. This is much more than both homicides and war related deaths. It is a global problem.
I have written a number of blogs on the subject of suicide. My own sister, Cyndi, committed suicide in 2006. She was a mother of three children who were sixteen, fourteen and twelve years of age at the time. I will be discussing the very important topic suicide in blogs during the next week.
Robyn and I are co-authors of a book called, Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It.  The biggest chapter is on suicide.  It is available both in Kindle and paper back.
It is published by Kregel Publications of Grand Rapids, MI, USA. For reviews and to purchase, please go to http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Minds-Healing-Youre-Losing/dp/0825421187

We have a guest blogger this time. His name is Randy Isaac. Please read his perspective.
We thank him for his contribution and we continue to pray for the Warrens and this epidemic of suicide.
Dr. Randy Isaac
Bimodal impact
Bible verses may not always have the impact we intend. Seed that falls on one type of soil will get a different response than seed on another type of soil. We must be careful how we apply verses.
I’ve learned the hard way that a Bible verse that means one thing to me will have an entirely different impact on someone with bipolar disorder. For an example, consider the different connotations that one particular verse might have. I Corinthians 10:13 is frequently quoted by many Christians. The NIV renders it this way: “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” The Greek word for “temptation” or “tempted” can also mean “tested” but often informal use just substitutes “given” as in “you will not be given anything beyond what you can bear,” implicitly broadening the meaning far beyond either temptation or testing.
While this verse serves as encouragement to most people who are comforted by the thought that God limits the extent of suffering to something short of being intolerable, others may not see it that way. Don’t be surprised if someone with depression or other mental illness responds in one or more of these ways.
That shows I’m a failure.” I’m already beyond the point of enduring the mental anguish. It just shows that I’m such a failure I can’t even endure what the Bible says I can.
God is against me.” Instead of providing a safety net to keep me from getting more than I can bear, He is pushing me to see if I really can endure it. I’m alone in this fight against God.
“I don’t need to take my meds or get therapy.” If God won’t let my problems get worse than I can bear, why bother getting treatment? It won’t become intolerable no matter what I do or don’t do.
I’ll die anyway.” Being able to “endure it” doesn’t mean I won’t die. Almost all the apostles were martyrs and surely this verse applied to them. This is no guarantee I’ll survive.
Praise God and die.” If failing to endure means to follow Job’s wife’s advice and “Curse God and die,” why don’t I just “Praise God and die” to relieve all this anguish, make it easier on my friends and family, and see my Maker sooner to find out what this anguish was all about.
I am all alone.” Everyone else seems to endure their temptation with ease and walk around with a smile on their face. I alone am singled out to be stretched to the limit.
This doesn’t apply to me.” Who says that “temptation” or “testing” relates to mental illness? Aren’t depression and other mental illnesses due to genetic and biochemical imbalances? Would you quote this verse to someone struggling with terminal cancer?

Seeing the world through the black-tinted glasses of someone tormented with mental illness, a verse that is comforting to so many people may come across as harsh and taunting. Well-trained counselors are familiar with this response and know how to gauge a person’s reaction. Poorly-trained counselors and well-meaning friends and family often toss out biblical quotes such as these and are puzzled by the reaction. What someone afflicted with mental illness needs most of all is not a litany of Bible verses but professional help and empathetic, unconditional love from family, friends, and the church.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Depression and Other Illnesses



Depression Coexists with other diseases and disorders
Depression often co-exists with other mental or physical illnesses. Substance abuse, anxiety disorders and eating disorders are particularly common conditions that may be worsened by depression.
Research is showing, more and more, that mood disorders (depression and bipolar disorder, also called manic depression) and other physical illnesses affect one another. Treating mood disorders can help people manage other illnesses and improve their general health.

Treating Depression may lessen the severity of other diseases.
In Time Magazine, Michael D. Lemonick concluded that, "The idea that treating depression might lessen the severity of other diseases… makes basic biochemical sense. Everyday experience makes it clear that brain chemistry governs more than just the emotions."
Depression and bipolar disorder can worsen other illnesses or other illnesses can trigger episodes of mania or depression. Treating both illnesses is important and informing your health care professionals about all your illnesses is equally important.

Talk to health professionals
Talk about your physical health with your psychiatrist or therapist and talk with your primary care doctor about your mental health. When asked how you are doing, let your doctor know the facts beyond "Fine." Discuss the possibility of one illness worsening the other, and ask your doctor what steps you can take to prevent this.

People with depression may have a higher risk of heart disease.
Data from a recent DBSA Consensus Conference supported the finding that people with depression have a higher risk of developing heart disease. One reason for this may be that a lack of serotonin in the bloodstream may cause blood platelets to stick together more frequently and cause more blockages in the arteries. Depression is also prevalent among people with HIV who have a two-fold greater risk of developing a mood disorder than the general population. Ten to fifteen percent of people with diabetes experience one or more major depressive episodes and the risk of developing some cancers is 10-25% higher in people with depression than in people without a mood disorder. Depression also substantially increases the risk of developing conditions such as osteoporosis, obesity or chronic pain.

Be sure the medications you are taking do not:
You can find out more about your medication and its interactions online at:


To learn more about Steve and Robyn's book Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It, please go to