Hiding the truth
We moved to another state in the upper northeast, and I preached there for about a year and a half or two years. I was afraid that if the church officials knew I had bipolar disorder, they wouldn't hire me, so I told them I suffered from depression. But I still had mood swings because my medication wasn't quite right. I was at the point where the doctors were trying to figure out which medicine I should take and how much.
No one will hire me
I'm now in a ministry team at our church. The church here embraces me, but it would never hire me as a full-time minister. There are others in the congregation who have bipolar disorder as well as seasonal affective disorder and anxiety disorders. One of the church leaders has a daughter who is bipolar. They're very supportive of me, even through various hospitalizations. This is the best congregation I've ever been part of.
Educating the church
I have a forgiving heart, and I understand that the church leaders were trying to protect their congregations. I think God has gifted me now to reach out to Christians with mental illness and help them understand that they can still be Christians.