Invisible Illness and Church – “Build a Bridge” Interview Series

Church connections are not always easy

Are there members of your church community who live with ongoing personal struggles? They might be suffering from an invisible illness, i.e. a life-changing health condition that is not obvious at first glance.

Their invisible illness could be:

Physical — affecting the way their body functions on the inside, which often results in things like pain, dizziness, extreme fatigue, nausea, and/or difficulties with concentration.

Mental — affecting the way they think about themselves, other people and the world around them, which sometimes makes it hard for them to control their moods and their actions.

Developmental — affecting the way their brain is wired, which impacts the ways they relate to people and, sometimes, their ability to learn.

Build a Bridge

Sometimes you try to help but get it wrong. Sometimes you keep your distance, afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing. The interviews below might help you to better understand:

  1. How church feels for a person living with an invisible health condition and for their family members.
  2. What sorts of conversation topics might be unhelpful for them when you chat at church.
  3. How you can reach out in sensitive, appropriate and meaningful ways.
build a bridge and get over it, funny meme from someecards.com.Kimpossible2
Source: someecards.com, by Kimpossible2

The expression build a bridge is a way of “encouraging” someone to move on from their problems. Well, we’re not using the expression in its usual sense; Fruitful Today’s Build a Bridge project is about walking over the bridge with a grieving person, rather than standing back while they try to get over it alone.

I hope you enjoy these glimpses inside the minds of your chronically ill brothers and sisters in Christ!

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Interviews about church and invisible illness

My prayer is that your church relationships will be strengthened through this series, whether you’re living with an invisible illness, or seeking to better support those in your church family who live with ongoing health conditions. Readers with invisible illness, I’ve prepared a special pep talk just for you. 🙂

Link to Kristy's interview about invisible illness and church
Kristy has a neuroimmune condition called ME/CFS

 

Link to Ally's interview about invisible illness and church
Ally has POTS and Joint Hypermobility Syndrome

 

Link to Hosea's interview about invisible illness and church
Hosea is in remission from a cancer called Multiple Myeloma

 

Link to Carole's interview about invisible illness and church
Carole has Dystonia, Sjogren’s and Post-Polio Syndrome

If you find the interviews helpful, please share them among your church networks. Join me in raising awareness about Invisible Illness within our Christian communities.

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