A Love Letter to Hannah

What does a mother say to her child who bravely left her family in the pandemic to get married thousand of miles away from home? How does a mom feel when she could not be with her in the journey ahead? Would she be lonely? What if she catch the virus? etc. I guess I chose not to dwell too much on the sad possibilities. Instead I thought of how to embolden and empower her for the journey ahead. God is good. He was with her all the way.

So here’s my love letter to my child – 3 days after she left home. She flew out of the nest on 6/12/20 – literally to be independent as it’s independence day of a country in lockdown! Today is 1/5/2023. I woke and it’s 4:15am. I looked in my files and found this letter which I need to read for myself. I need to apply the lessons for myself this time. As I share it, dear reader, I pray the Holy Spirit touch your heart to be brave and realize what matters most in life!

My dear Han,

You are my first born. You are God’s gift to enroll me in the school of motherhood. A new lesson for me today is letting go of my child and setting her free.

Today as you enter a new milestone in your life, I let go of your hand even as I hold you always in my heart. I pray that the Holy Spirit empower you to be a wife of noble character that God intended you to be. Just as God created Eve to be a helper to Adam, you are to be a helper to Jensen.

I ask that the Lord enable you to bring him good, not harm, all the days of your life. May our almighty God strengthen your arms and hands to work eagerly. May His loving kindness touch your heart to be generous to the poor and needy. May His presence embolden you to step out in faith amidst life’s challenges. May His Spirit grant you a heart of wisdom to make good choices in word and deed. May you laugh at the days to come as His peace covers you in strength and dignity.

Remember charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. May you yearn and work for the words of your master: “Well done, good and faithful servant… enter your master’s happiness.”

Remember to be humble always for
This is what the LORD says:
“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD. (Jer. 9:23-24)

Love as God loves you. Forgive as God forgives you. Be gracious as God is gracious to you. Take delight in the things that the Lord delights in. Boast that you know the Lord God who is kind, just and righteous.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Prov. 3:5-6)

Thank you, Lord for listening to the prayers of my heart. I let go and entrust my child into the palm of your loving and righteous right hand. In the precious name of Jesus, Amen.

Danny’s Flashlight

Light of the world, a lamp in the dark, a city set on a hill.. These words remind me of my friend, Danny. When? When he was fighting and dying of cancer… How? Let me share an excerpt of the eulogy I wrote for him some 10 months ago.

On 4/9, Danny said: I’m stable but in pain. feels like a dog w/ sharp teeth biting my right chest n wont let go. I’m surviving thru much prayers esp at night I cant lie down. God is good. He makes me sleep when I’m exhausted. I’m truly thankful for that.

From 5/25-27: Scan results out, no good. He said: God knows what’s next. Don’t worry. I’m totally at peace. Pray for less pain. I don’t want my family to be affected when I whine or cry in pain. Thanks. I cannot explain the peace that I feel now.
“it’s not as bad as it sounds. God is good no matter how this progresses. I’m totally at peace. No worries. Thank you for prayers.”
“Let’s hope the med works. God is good. I’m not a bit worried.”

8/25, “I’m not afraid to go. I just ask God for another chance to share w others how good He’s been to me.”

Danny’s words testified that in all things (good n bad) God is good. He loved God and was devoted to Him amidst hardship. He loved people. He was dying and still thinking of God and neighbor. He wanted to donate whatever useful organs he’s got left. He asked for more time even in great pain to tell his stories.

Danny taught me lessons on dying bravely and living brightly even in the deep dark pit of pain. God enabled him to be a light shining in the valley of the shadow of death.

God took him first even though he was the youngest in our barkada. He was strongest when he was weakest because God’s grace was sufficient. Danny shone brightest when it was darkest because God was his light. Today, his voice resonates loudly because God’s Word was the only voice he heard and held on to. His life mirrored his Savior and Lord Jesus.

Today, Danny still speaks to me. Yesterday, his wife told me Danny gave me permission to share his stories whenever possible so people will know his God of grace. I miss Danny often especially when I have questions about the Bible, about things to write, ideas to share. He was a deep thinker, great teacher and fine writer. He’s witty, funny, silly, naughty and many more. Most of all, he’s my friend who loved me and whom I loved dearly. Tears falling as I write these words.

Around 1am today, I woke and could not get back to sleep. I watched some video clips on FB and chanced upon the Red Table Talk of Jada Pinkett Smith with the parents of Ms. USA who committed suicide earlier this year. Near the end of the talk, Jada shared her grief story about losing a dear friend. My takeaway from her lesson: Memories of our loved ones who passed on may fade. One sure thing remains: love.

How true the words from the Bible:
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13

The If’s and When’s of Life

The If’s and when’s of life…

What if I get sick… what if I fail the exam… what if I don’t get the job… what to do when there’s not enough money to pay bills… where to turn when relationships break down… how to cope when death knocks at the door?

The Bible does not have a clear-cut answer for each ‘if’ and ‘when’ of life. One thing it tells us – Do not worry about all these things. (See Matthew 6). Instead pray. Oh, but many of us pray. When? When life is hard and problems come, we get on our knees, we ask for prayers.

King Solomon said a prayer for all the ‘ifs’ and ‘whens’ he could ever imagine in his time. Read 1 Kings 8 and see how he prayed for the ‘If’ and ‘When’: all the ‘bad and sad’ harsh realities in life: sin (v.31,46), wars, conflicts (v.33), natural calamities (v.35), sickness (v.37) etc. Was he not the richest, wisest, most glorious king in the history of Israel? The Bible says there was peace and great prosperity during his reign. (1 King 4, 5:4) Solomon prayed at the dedication of the temple he built for God. His prayer was not the typical ‘celebrative’ prayer.

Why ‘if’ and when ‘when’? ‘If’ means something ‘might’ or ‘might not’ happen. When is a matter of time – ‘when’ things happen. Regardless, Solomon prayed because he wanted God to be ‘present’ in his temple. He acknowledged that God is awesome, loving and kind; too big to be in the house he built (v.23,28). Solomon knew the realities of life and living life… of man’s sinful nature. He understood how nature works: drought, famine, sickness are part of life. Solomon realized man can only live and overcome these challenges by the hand of God. He grasped the importance of having God ‘hear from heaven‘ (vv.30,32,34,36,39,43,45), ‘forgive‘ (vv.30,34,36,39,50) and ‘maintain the cause‘ (v.45,49) of the ‘pray-er’.

Today, we can pray like Solomon. We pray for the ‘ifs’ and ‘whens’ – for the not so good even in the midst of prosperity and blessings. It is not being pessimistic or fatalistic. We pray because we want God to be with us whatever we’re going thru. We pray because we need his forgiveness if and when we sin, when we make him sad, when we offend our neighbors. We pray because God alone can maintain our cause. He alone makes the impossible, possible.

We pray each of us knowing the affliction (sin) of our hearts:
God, hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive and act and render to each according to all our ways, whose heart You know, for You alone know the hearts of all the sons of men, that we may fear You all the days of our life. (vv.39-40)

Lord, hear in heaven, make me Your dwelling place in order that all the peoples of the earth may know Your name. (v.43)

Defeated? Not Really…

Joshua, successor of Moses, led the Israelites into the Promise Land with a successful conquest of Jericho. It was their first battle won with the Lord in command. They brought down the walls of the city not with canyon but trumpets; not with soldiers but priests. Read about it in Joshua 6.

Ai was their next target. It was a small city with few people. So they thought they could win with just a small army. But they were defeated. The reason was because Achan, disobeyed God’s command to destroy everything in Jericho. He coveted n kept some plunder from the battle. Joshua did not know of Achan’s actions. Hence, this is the context/background of Joshua’s actions and prayer:

Joshua 7:6-9
Then Joshua tore his clothes and fell facedown to the ground before the ark of the Lord, remaining there till evening. The elders of Israel did the same, and sprinkled dust on their heads.

Joshua and the leaders mourned their defeat. They could not understand how they lost the battle of Ai after winning Jericho.

And Joshua said, “Alas, Sovereign Lord, why did you ever bring this people across the Jordan to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us? If only we had been content to stay on the other side of the Jordan!

Joshua did not ask to go back to Egypt. He wished they had just stayed on the other side of Jordan – pre-war days where everything safe and peaceful. He forgot their victory in Jericho and focused on the present defeat.

Pardon your servant, Lord. What can I say, now that Israel has been routed by its enemies? The Canaanites and the other people of the country will hear about this and they will surround us and wipe out our name from the earth. What then will you do for your own great name?”

Yet, Joshua’s heart was for the great name of the Lord. He was more concerned of what people, those who in Canaan and nearby places might say about God… that He had allowed His people to be wiped out by their enemies. He asked ‘What then will you do for your great name?’ It is the Lord who will be doing – not him. It is for the Lord’s great name – not his.

Bottom line: It’s all about God and not about me. Whatever that is happening to me, am I thinking about God’s great name? How do I respond to crisis? Do I blame God? Do I remember His goodness in the past and treasure His presence at present?

Do I trust Him to do whatever it takes for His great name? Will I obey Him for the sake of His great name?

Dear Lord, thank you that you are able to accomplish everything for your great name. Empower me to trust and obey you always. Amen.

Looking through the eyes of…

The word crisis in Chinese is 危機. The first word means danger 危險. The 2nd word is opportunity 機會. Question, when there is a crisis, how do you respond? Do you focus on the problem, how bad the situation could get? Or do you see it as an opportunity for growth – to learn something new? To grow stronger as a person?

In the Old testament, there was a story about the crisis of the wandering Israelites as they were about to end their journey from slavery and enter into prosperity.

Numbers 13:17-33
Moses sent spies to explore Canaan to check out the people whether strong or weak, few or many, whether towns are unwalled or fortified, soil fertile or not. He also asked them to take sample of fruits.

The 12 spies returned and reported to the whole Israelite community showing them the fruit of the land. It’s really a land flowing with milk and honey! BUT the people there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. (vv. 27-28)

They said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are. The land we explored devours those living in it. (How did they know that? Did they see?) All the people we saw there are of great size… We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” (vv. 31-33)

God promised to give them a land flowing with milk n honey. And they found that it was just that: a good fertile land with large clusters of grapes – so big they had to be carried on a pole by 2 men. Instead, they chose to focus on the big giants and forgot they had a great mighty God who could take care of the giants.

How often does fear of people, what they might do, takes our eyes off God? We look at ourselves like tiny grasshoppers ready to be stepped on and die. And we think people look at us the same. We fret and dare not go into unchartered territories because we forget God’s promise never fails.

We also choose to look at all probabilities how we could fail and not on the possibilities how God would work. We look at the giants and forget the grapes.

To Work or To Pray

Question, have you ever felt too busy to pray? too tired or sleepy? too noisy or distracted? worried or perhaps too self-sufficient to pray? Me too.. all of the above!

In Mark 1:35-39, we read why, how, when and where Jesus prayed.
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Simon and his companions went to look for him, and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” So he traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons.

Mark started the gospel with Jesus’ baptism and temptation, then his teachings in the temple, and his calling of Simon and Andrew. He cast out demons, healed the sick including Simon’s mother-in-law. From morning till night (v. 32), Jesus did a lot of work. He’s tired and went to bed. Then ‘very early in the morning, while still dark‘ Jesus got up and went to a solitary place: somewhere quiet to pray. He left the house, and everyone to be alone with God. He did not want any distraction. Simon and company went looking for Jesus. Why? Because everybody was looking for Him! They wanted more miracles – more work for Jesus.

What did Jesus say to that? “Let us go somewhere else.” Why not stay in the place where you’re popular? Why leave? SO I can preach there ALSO. That is WHY I COME.

Jesus prayed to sustain His work. He knew His mission: why He came to this world. He did not stay in one place to enjoy the ‘fans.’ Jesus moved on.

The more successful the ministries, the more fruitful the work for God, the more there is the need to pray. Prayer is talking to God one on one – in the place of solitude and priority. Do I go from place to place, from task to task, from one person to another, that I miss lingering in the presence of God? The crowd, the likes, the worries, the issues and challenges of life keep me from praying. People’s praises, my busy-ness and self-sufficiency distract me from experiencing God in prayer.

Be like Jesus, seek God even as the people seek after you. Work then pray. Pray then work.

The Call

The Calling…

Have you ever been called to answer a difficult question in class? What happens when a teacher asked ‘Where and when was the treaty of NATO signed? Who signed them?’ Would you raise your hand or bow your head and pray the teacher calls someone else?

In the Old Testament, Jeremiah had a call. God called him to do a difficult task.
God called him verbally in a challenging place and time to be a prophet to the nations.

Jeremiah 1
4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying,

5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
before you were born I set you apart;
I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

(Jeremiah’s appointment was planned long before he was conceived (v.5). How does it feel to know that God’s plan for me is so well in advance – long long time even before I came to be? It is well-thought of. It means I am of great importance to him. It means he has an important job for me to do. To be set apart means to be called for something special – a unique purpose.)

6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”

(To be a prophet is to be God’s messenger to the people – to speak on God’s behalf. Jeremiah’s excuse was ‘I am too young, inexperienced. I am not eloquent.’ Sounds like the excuse of Moses (Exo. 4:10) or perhaps yours?)

7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.

(God’s assurance: No excuse and no fear – for I am with you and I will help you.)

9 Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, “I have put my words in your mouth. 10 See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.”
10 See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.”

(God’s action: God enables those he calls. He assures Jeremiah He will give him the words to say. God speaks very specifically what Jeremiah will do.)

11 The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you see, Jeremiah?”

(God’s accommodation: God asked: What do you see, Jeremiah? God starts with what I see. God knows what I am seeing and what I will see. He knows the answer before he asks. He asks because he wants me to tell him.)

“I see the branch of an almond tree,” I replied.

12 The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”

(God’s assurance: God said you are correct. I am watching with you. You are seeing what I see. And I will see to it that all I say, I will do.)

13 The word of the Lord came to me again: “What do you see?”

“I see a pot that is boiling,” I answered. “It is tilting toward us from the north.”

(God assures again and again: He wants us to practice seeing and telling him what we see.)

14 The Lord said to me, “From the north disaster will be poured out on all who live in the land. 15 I am about to summon all the peoples of the northern kingdoms,” declares the Lord.

(God explains further. He tells Jeremiah exactly what is going to happen.)

17 “Get yourself ready! Stand up and say to them whatever I command you. Do not be terrified by them, or I will terrify you before them. 18 Today I have made you a fortified city, an iron pillar and a bronze wall to stand against the whole land—against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests and the people of the land. 19 They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.

(God’s armor: God himself confirms and affirms the calling. He enables and equips. God calls Jeremiah to get ready to accept the challenge, to stand up and speak out bravely – not to be afraid of the enemies. God himself will make Jeremiah strong to stand up against people of power. God assures him that he will win in spite of resistance because God himself will be with Jeremiah. God will rescue him from all that is against him.)

When I was in high school, the most popular topic or question among my peers was How do I know God’s will for me? It is like asking What is God calling me to do? How can I be sure it is the right thing to do? What if I hear it wrong? What if I cannot do it well enough? What if I am not good enough?

When God calls:
1) He speaks clearly: through his words in the Bible, through fellow Christians around me, through the Holy Spirit when I pray and listen attentively.
My calling to write a book came through friends over a long period of time. I procrastinate with excuses – I do not know how to write a book. I need an editor. I do not know an editor.

2) He assures strongly: Do not be afraid. I will be with you. I will help you.
When God provided an editor, I was overwhelmed with anxiety how to start the journey. God continued to encourage me with his Word. He gives me the words to write. He answered my prayer when I was feeling helpless and wordless. When I was feeling lost, he showed me the way.

3) He affirms these promises through circumstances. Pathways open one step at a time. Even when a door is closed, windows open. Even when my book proposal was turned down, the process became a stepping stone for the journey. I wrote a testimony in compliance to the proposal requirement of the publishing company. This testimony became the cornerstone of my book – 4 standing stones on which to build the structure of my book. Because the initial proposal did not become a book, God showed me a better one. He sent me an editor to give discerning guidance – turning my words into a better channel for his glory.

Indeed, his thoughts are not my thoughts. His ways higher than mine. When God calls, he accompanies all the way! Praise His name.

God’s Presence through Suffering

Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us… And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:17–18, 28

In 2009, when I was forty-seven, I was diagnosed with Stage O, ductal carcinoma in situ. My journey with cancer is a testament of God’s presence in suffering. My treatment included a lumpectomy to remove a portion of my left breast, as well as thirty-four sessions of radiation therapy, and cancer maintenance medications that I continued to take (with all their side-effects and possible consequences) for seven years.

When I began going through radiation treatment, God’s Word nourished and sustained me. As I read God’s word each day, I experienced his presence and power strengthening me, and I rejoiced in his amazing grace. My prayer was, Lord, if you think my life has achieved the purpose you planned for me, then I am at peace with that. But if my mission is not yet complete, then show the way that I will continue to live according to your purpose. In the meantime, I want to make my life useful for your glory—to help my neighbors go through their challenges and any people you bring to me.”

All through my journey with cancer, I felt God’s warm embrace around me—a comfort beyond words and an immovable standing stone. As I got to know God more deeply by talking to him, listening to him, and discovering his character through the Bible, I experienced his peace beyond understanding and felt his assurance that I could live each day in joy and gratitude.

Psalm 1 says Blessed is the man whose delight is in the law of the Lord and who meditates on his law day and night. And the promise is that he will be like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he will prosper.

Bearing fruit in season does not mean that my life will always be smooth and rosy, but that I can persevere and stand firm in God’s promises that all things—the good and the bad—will work for my good, because he loves me and is calling me according to his purpose.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your word and promise that in all things—even in suffering—you are calling me for your purpose. Help me to delight in your word and meditate on it so that I will bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit, growing in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Amen.

Praying with Power

2 Chronicles 20
5 Then Jehoshaphat stood up in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem at the temple of the Lord in the front of the new courtyard 6 and said:

“Lord, the God of our ancestors, are you not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you. 7 Our God, did you not drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham your friend? 8 They have lived in it and have built in it a sanctuary for your Name, saying, 9 ‘If calamity comes upon us, whether the sword of judgment, or plague or famine, we will stand in your presence before this temple that bears your Name and will cry out to you in our distress, and you will hear us and save us.’

10 “But now here are men from Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, whose territory you would not allow Israel to invade when they came from Egypt; so they turned away from them and did not destroy them. 11 See how they are repaying us by coming to drive us out of the possession you gave us as an inheritance. 12 Our God, will you not judge them? For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”

If only the leaders of the world would know how to pray like King Jehoshaphat: “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you,” how would people all around the world in the midst of this pandemic respond?

King Jehoshaphat called on the Lord, the God in heaven who rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. He is the God who has power and might in his hand. No one can withstand God. v. 6

The king recalled the good and great things his God did for them in the past. v. 7

The king called upon God’s promise to hear and save if only his people know how to pray. v. 9

The king cried to the Lord to present the crisis at hand. They were to be invaded by strong enemies. vv 10-11

The king acknowledged their dependence and helplessness – We have no power to face this vast army. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.

Perhaps at this critical stage of the pandemic, many leaders are in the same shoes as King J. It might seem we are powerless to face or fight Covid19, we do not know what to do. But one choice we can make, we can keep our eyes on the God in heaven, who created and holds the world with power and might in his hand. No one not even COVID19 can withstand GOD!

Lord, when we do not know what to do, when we feel powerless to face the vast challenge, empower us to focus our eyes on you. Amen.

The Way of Hope

In an episode from the TV series Amsterdam, there was a story of the depressed American Chinese youth, Amy who stepped off the subway platform onto an oncoming train. It tells us that depression is a silent killer. A pastor once preached that it is the 2nd most deadly disease – next to cancer.

A friend once asked if I have ever thought to take my own life. Honestly, I have never considered suicide as an option to escape from depression, or to stop the pain, grief or sadness. I have thought about disappearing though. What if I don’t come home.. what if I suddenly died – hit by a truck, or killed by someone, or struck by a serious deadly disease? But most of all, I have asked and longed for Jesus to return soon. Not a very noble longing… but hopeful longing so the suffering will end…

For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 NASB

This is the Bible verse for today. This is often my means of not ‘escaping’ depression but my way of ‘facing’ depression. In a word, it’s called Hope. That is also the word that Dr. Goodman (from the TV series Amsterdam) replied his colleague-oncologist regarding sickness.

Hope is a big word – not as emphasised as love or faith. But it is one of the three that remains. (1 Cor. 13:13) Hope is the sandwich filling… faith, hope and love.

My faith in the Word of God gives me hope and enables me to love. My hope that suffering will end soon allows me to continue and persevere in my suffering. My hope that one day, Jesus will return and I will be caught up in the clouds to meet Him in the air, this hope sustains me to persist in choosing joy.

Faith and hope seem synonymous. Faith supports hope as hope is the evidence of faith. Because I believe, I have hope. Because I trust God’s promises are true, I rejoice in hope to doing better today, to becoming a better person tomorrow.

Because I believe that hubby loves me, I have hope that he is striving to be a better husband and father. This hope enables me to persist in love.

When our high school batch, Builders ’79 from Hope Christian High School celebrated our 40th anniversary, a classmate proposed that we use faith, hope and love in our theme. So we agreed on: Giving hope by faith in love… We decided that we would raise money to help people with educational and health care needs. We would give hope because we believe that God has been good to us. We want to pay it forward. We trust that God will enable us to reach our goal. We pray that as we hope and trust, we are covered in love – God’s love, our love for God and for our neighbours. Love motivates us to give hope. Faith enables us to give hope. Hope is a good thing.

Now faith is the assurance of things HOPED for, the conviction of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

How are you, my friend? Are you living hopefully? What are you hoping for? There is a Filipino saying: Habang may buhay, may pag-asa. As long as there is life, there is hope.

Where is your hope? On what do you place your hope? On people? On circumstances? On your own capabilities? All these things do not last. Only God’s Word is eternal. His promises are true and trustworthy. Read the Bible and know God – He alone is the source of faith, hope and love. These three remain.

Hope is the means to face depression. Hope in God. God is the sure source of our hope. He is faithful to His Word. His promises never fail. His purpose will never be thwarted.

Isaiah 55

1 “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters;
and you who have no money, come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.
2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.
3 Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David.
4 See, I have made him a witness to the peoples, a ruler and commander of the peoples.
5 Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations you do not know will come running to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor.”

6 Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.