Red Vine Spirituality

Taylor K. Arthur balances Bipolar 1 Disorder, marriage, and motherhood with a nitty-gritty faith inspiring a twisted, blissful life.

Welcome to the Red Vine table, friend.

Welcome to Red Vine Spirituality, a home for those of us who are just a little too gritty for the trite, clean lines religion wants to draw down the middle of our faulty hearts. Together, one bleeding, joyful day at a time, let’s find a way to live a full life, a free life, a hopeful life . . . abundantly more than just a perfect life. Allow me to tell you the story of how a straight-A good girl morphs into a mental patient who can’t shave her legs without a chaperone, and how a broken-hearted mama finds redemption in loving a broken-hearted child.

I have been swallowing lithium every morning and night for thirteen years in an attempt to find stable, learning achingly slowly that a diagnosis does not diminish my capacity to serve this world for good. Grace comes to me through spilt blood alone, from a Jesus I professed to follow but never understood until I split rock bottom, splintered clean out, needing more than a new banner and a perfect score card to fix me. Jesus speaks to me and to you in John 15: I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. And I know I am grafted to Him through his own doing and nothing of my own. Through this spectacular connection, I am given daughter rights.  I rise up with a new banner stained in His salvific blood and cry, If He can do this for me, what will he do for you?

What will He do for you, friend? Let’s discover it here together. Let’s write in between the lines of our humanity and sweat out our fears; let’s lay it down deep in our shadow valleys and endless wastelands. Let’s believe that our lives and souls are meant for more than clean lines. Let’s live out our nitty-gritties and find His twisted bliss. ‘Cause it’s all twisted back and forwards again, but I live one fantastic, brag-worthy tale of grace right here on Red Vine. This daughter’s got a nitty-gritty resurrection story to tell. And I’d love to hear yours.

Welcome to the table.


Welcome to the Red Vine table, friend


  1. Taylor,
    My daughter took her life at the age of 22 and we both have bipolar. I’m sure the Lord is carrying me through this. Somedays I feel like I won’t make it, I don’t know if I’m strong enough. I’m not strong enough except through the love of the Lord. I’m pretty good at not blaming myself and then it hits again, was I a good enough mom? How could I have been, I’m pretty messed up. Had undiagnosed bipolar 2 and I’m sure I yelled too much. I love her with all of my heart and I miss her so much it hurts to just do anything. Doesn’t help that I found her and that she asked me questions before she died that make me feel guilty. I love her with all my heart and always will. She’s the best gift of my lif and now she’s not in my life. I know she’s in a better place,mI just must learn how to live without her when every part of me cannot fathom such a horror.

    So how do I do this with Bipolar, I know through Christ we are given strength and courage. Therapy doesn’t really help, meds are just okay sometimes. What does it take for a bipolar mind to process such a loss and go on.

    • Oh, I am so sorry to hear about your daughter. There is no loss like the loss of a child. I don’t know if you follow Rick and Kay Warren, pastors of Saddleback church in California, but they lost their son by suicide as well. They have been very open about their journey grieving their loss. The little advice I can give you is to find people you can share this with, who have been through it themselves. Finding a support group will help, more than anything else right now. And please consider going back to therapy. Talk therapy has such positive results for those of us with bipolar. I know therapy has helped me in my grief, and it takes pressure off the other relationships in my life by giving me an outlet. This kind of grief can be overwhelming, not just for the bereaved but also to their friends and family. Below are some links to help you get connected to group of people who share your experiences. Finally, if you haven’t read 1,000 Gifts by Ann Voskamp, please do. Counting gifts, on many days, is my saving grace.

      Prayers and blessings and peace to you,

      The Compassionate Friends
      SAVE: suicide bereavement support

  2. Hi there:-) I also struggle with bipolar disorder. Your faith is fantastic and admirable. Can you pray with me for strength to handle my emotions I am dealing with? Prayer is powerful. Xoxo Kathryn God is good.

    • Lord, I pray with Kathryn today. I pray you will fill her with peace and prove to her that You are a God who sees her and loves her and will not let her go. Please help her to find the right help to get control of her emotions and to forgive herself when she falls short. Bless her heart, Lord, and her willingness to please you. Amen!
      Kathryn, please email me and tell me more of your story!
      Love, your bipolar sister, Taylor

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