A Bridge for Troubled Souls: Christian Principles to Alleviate Despair by D. Franklin Bradley

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https://www.amazon.com/Bridge-Troubled-Souls-Christian-Principles-ebook/dp/B097TP8K62

Christians are subject to suffering as much as non-Christians. A Bridge for Troubled Souls offers Biblical principles as a means for finding hope while introducing steps one can take to implement Biblical truths. Acting in accordance with the Bible’s teachings is proposed as the path to relief from the pain of stressors common to all humanity.

Overview: This book uses the act of building a spiritual bridge as an analogy for integrating structure into one’s life. The process is divided into three steps containing corresponding images and anecdotes of progress.

Step One offers foundational declarations from Jesus explaining why He came and what He intended to accomplish. Luke 4:18 presents five tasks Jesus proclaimed as the basis for His mission. These require the faith of belief on the Christian’s part and represent the foundations of the bridge: 1. To preach the Gospel, 2. To heal the brokenhearted, 3. To preach deliverance to captives, 4. To restore sight to the blind, and 5. To set at liberty the oppressed.

Step Twocontains the seven fundamental commands of Christ. Following these commands instills spiritual structure into the Christian’s beliefs and daily life, which, in turn, provide the supporting pillars of the bridge: 1. Repent, 2. Be baptized, 3. Take Communion, 4. Love God and others, 5. Pray, 6. Give, and 7. Teach.

Step Three describes the Fruits of the Spirit as nine evidences that one has implemented the commands/teachings of Jesus. These “Fruits” are examined individually: love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. They form the overarching span of the bridge upon which the Christian walks.

This is a simple proposition, and it is one the author has experienced while surviving suicidal depression. He continues to maintain the book’s principles as a daily means of managing PTSD, residual treatment-resistant depression, and chronic acute anxiety—all stemming from violence during childhood. He is 66 years old, has been a Christian since 1977, and can testify to the power of applying the Bible’s teachings, apart from any religious organization or rituals. He is not anti-religion and attends weekly worship services at his home church. He simply wants to reach those who feel shut out of formal religious exercises.

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