What can I say about "Obsessive Compulsive Disorder" (OCD)? Well, I have lived it for the last ten years or so, sometimes suffering minor symptoms and other times trapped in the deep vicious cycle and pit of its most escalated forms, bringing me close to the edge of insanity. I have grumbled in annoyance and I have cried out in anguish and torment. I have turned light switches on and off several times to make sure the light was really off. I have repeatedly unlocked and locked doors to be certain that they were locked. I have rewashed my hands after touching anything with potential germs. I have checked my wallet several times to make sure that I really put my credit card back in its place. I have arranged all of the magnets perfectly in order on the refrigerator. I have rehearsed numerous events in my mind, seeking to ensure that I did everything just right and if I erred in any way, I have sought to correct it. I have found it difficult to throw out a catalog because the company went to the expense of printing it and sending it to me. I have agonized over saying anything that might be untrue in any way, shape, or form, even to the point of not wanting to speak at all. I have questioned and interrogated myself for enjoying the smell of my baby's hair when I kissed her. I have thoroughly examined myself when I have found myself fascinated over the shaping of muscles in the human body. I have asked myself, "Am I a pervert? Am I gay? Am I lusting in some way here? Is there some form of wickedness in me of which I am unaware? Am I a racist? Do I take delight in the harm that comes upon others? Have I sinned in some way of which I am unaware? Am I truly a Christian?"
Yes, I have entered and lived in the world of OCD insanity! And it has been painful at times. Warring against a conscience that is like a raging tyrant; a conscience marred by sin that won't leave me alone and is looking for absolute assurance in all areas, has often left me drained and weary. What has perhaps begun with a few additional checks of the light switch has escalated into a demanding monster, leading me to examine every minutia of life that surrounds me and is in me. Yes, I have spent time conversing with the gatekeeper of the bridge that leads to insanity. But, by the grace of God, I have also found great hope right there on the edge of insanity. I have found victory in the grace of God that continually comes to me in Jesus Christ.
My goal in this book is certainly not to list all of the specific ways in which I have experienced the toilsome burdens and torments of OCD. I could probably write several volumes on that topic alone. However, I realize that there are some (perhaps even many) out there who likewise have these kinds of dreaded experiences, and I want to share with you the hope and victories that I have found in the battles as well. There are not many books out there that address OCD from a biblical standpoint, and there are even fewer (if any) that address it from a biblical and personal standpoint. Being able to relate directly to someone's experience is always beneficial when seeking helpful solutions. By the grace of God, my ongoing battles with OCD have enabled me to discover a lot more about the condition, along with many key helpful tools that can help aid the OCD sufferer in the battle.
Have I totally overcome my OCD? No. Will I ever totally overcome the condition on this side of heaven? Only God knows for sure. It may be that God will continue to use OCD as a means of humbling me, keeping me dependent upon Him while He transforms me more and more into the glorious image of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. That said, I have found victory and I have found much hope, even on the edge of insanity. I believe by the grace of God, it is here that I can offer help to all who suffer with this horrible condition. May God be pleased to use this book for the strengthening, encouraging, and even saving of some who suffer from OCD. n
OCD: Finding Hope on the Edge of Insanity by Marc J Grimaldi was published by Outskirts Press in June 2010 and is our 32095th best seller. The ISBN for OCD: Finding Hope on the Edge of Insanity is 9781432756147.