"What Would You Say If Your Wife Was Ripped Away?

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Dear friends and readers,

Thanks for stopping by.

It's been 4.5 months since my beloved mother was called Home to be with the Lord due to Metastatic Colon Cancer. I do missed her a lot and am thankful to God for given me a very loving and caring mother. I am comforted that she is with the Lord Jesus Christ and no more experiencing any pain or suffering.

Someone directed me to this very uplifting Eulogy from a man who spoke at his wife’s funeral after she died tragically on February 10 as a result of injuries sustained in a head-on car crash. Rather than be bitter or get angry that his wife Ingrid left this world far too soon, the former NBA player quoted Romans 8:28 and chose instead to speak about forgiveness.

I am reminded that I didn't lose mybeloved mother just as he said he didn't lose his beloved wife. She "is where we all need to be"....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OEzHvImTu0o

"What Would You Say If Your Wife Was Ripped Away?

Almost a year ago, Monty Williams was fired as the head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans two weeks after his team was eliminated from the NBA playoffs. Many thought he had done enough to keep the job, having just led his team to the playoffs for the first time in four years.

Reporters asked Williams about the somewhat surprising firing. He responded by thanking the organization and the fans, and then gave a reason for the surprising hope that was in him:

God has always been in control of my life. . . . Romans 8:28 is in my heart. All things work out for people who are called by Jesus Christ. . . . God’s brought me through too much to complain and be bitter.

Nine short months later, now an assistant coach with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Monty Williams found out last week that his 44-year-old wife had been killed in a head-on car accident. The other driver was driving 92 mph (in a 40-miles-per-hour zone) when she crossed the center line and careened head-on into Ingrid Williams’s SUV. Three of their children were in the car with her; each survived with serious injuries.

A week later, Monty Williams stood over the body of his wife of twenty years and mother of their five children — Lael, Faith, Janna, Elijah, and Micah — and delivered a powerful seven-minute eulogy.

Having only been a husband for ten months now, I watched with heartache and admiration. He seems to embody the promise of Isaiah 41:10: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” In the end, I took away three lessons from Williams’s faith-filled words and example.

1. In every situation and circumstance, even the most serious and tragic, the most important things we can know or say are about God and his gospel.

Williams says,

What we’ve gone through is pretty tough, and it’s hard, and we want an answer, and we don’t always get that answer when we want it, but we can’t lose sight of the fact that God loves us, and that’s what my wife [lived to], and that’s what I try to, however badly, exhibit on a daily basis. . . . He loved me so much that he sent his Son to die for my sins.

Do you have news good enough to hold you when tragedy strikes? Will you have a tear-filled song of victory to sing when a wave of sorrow crashes into your life? Have you known a Love stronger than the worst grief this world might bring?

Williams went on to say,

The Bible says Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy. America teaches us to numb that, and [says] that it’s not true. But it is true. This will work out. That doesn’t mean it’s not hard or painful. What we need is the Lord.

This man appears to have walked with God such that when his wife was suddenly ripped away, he had the resources not only to suffer well, but to summon the world to his Savior. His grief doesn’t resound with self-pity or bitterness, but with strong and resilient hope and selfless compassion.

As he clings to his God and to the gospel, his loss declares and displays the power and the beauty of the cross.

2. Those who have been forgiven by God are free to forgive in full.

Williams says,

Everybody’s praying for me and my family, but let us not forget there were two people in this situation. And that family needs prayer as well. And we have no ill will toward that family. In my house, we have a sign that says, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” We cannot serve the Lord if we don’t have a heart of forgiveness.
Williams is living out the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matthew 18:21–35). The servant owed the king ten thousand talents (the equivalent of 200,000 years of work), and since he couldn’t pay, the king intended to sell him and his family into slavery. The servant pled with the king, and the king showed him mercy and forgave all his debt. Then the servant turned and refused to show mercy to someone who owed him just a hundred denarii (the equivalent of 200 days of work). The king heard of this and threw him in jail for his lack of mercy. Jesus says, “So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart” (Matthew 18:35).
Monty Williams had been forgiven too much to hold even his wife’s death against anyone. How much could someone possibly steal from you today? In Christ, God has forgiven us a million times more. Therefore, having been showered with his undeserved love and mercy, we have been freed to dumfound the world and forgive any debt in full.
3. God miraculously works in our worst suffering to tell the world about himself and his love.

Williams ends by saying,

Let’s not lose sight of what’s important. God will work this out. My wife is in heaven. God is love. And when we walk away from this place today, let’s celebrate, because my wife is where we all need to be, and I’m envious of that. . . .

We didn’t lose [my wife]. When you lose something, you can’t find it. I know exactly where my wife is. . . . I’m going to miss her. Let’s not lose sight of what’s important. God is important. What Christ did on the cross is important.

In the midst of the most terrible tragedy and immersed in one of the greatest potential distractions from God in human history — professional sports — the gospel has suddenly and brilliantly emerged. The loss silenced the media’s obsession with scores, trades, and championships long enough for us all to hear that Jesus alone is Lord, Savior, and Treasure. A God worthy of trust and worship in the death of a wife is a God worth hearing about.

It’s another reminder that God relentlessly turns our tragedies of suffering into triumphs of his glory.

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At the 3:22 mark in this video, John Piper says,

Not only is all your affliction momentary, not only is all your affliction light in comparison to eternity and the glory there. But all of it is totally meaningful. Every millisecond of your pain, from the fallen nature or fallen man, every millisecond of your misery in the path of obedience is producing a peculiar glory you will get because of that.

I don’t care if it was cancer or criticism. I don’t care if it was slander or sickness. It wasn’t meaningless. It’s doing something! It’s not meaningless. Of course you can’t see what it’s doing. Don’t look to what is seen.

When your mom dies, when your kid dies, when you’ve got cancer at 40, when a car careens into the sidewalk and takes her out, don’t say, “That’s meaningless!” It’s not. It’s working for you an eternal weight of glory.

Therefore, therefore, do not lose heart. But take these truths and day by day focus on them. Preach them to yourself every morning. Get alone with God and preach his word into your mind until your heart sings with confidence that you are new and cared for.
Ingrid Williams’s death is not meaningless. We cannot now see all that God is doing, but I pray that he will sustain Monty’s faith in the difficult days ahead, reminding this bereaved husband and father again and again that he is infinitely loved and cared for by his Heavenly Father. May God protect Lael, Faith, Janna, Elijah, and Micah from the evil one as they mourn and miss their mom for years to come. And may God spread the beautiful testimony of this family’s faith throughout the NBA and throughout the world, bringing many to everlasting life through the tragedy and victory of this wife and mother’s death." 



Hope everyone have a blessed week ahead!

Warm Regards,
Nancie
23 February 2016

Out of the Depths - The cloud of depression lifting

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Dear friends and readers,

Thanks for stopping by.

To be able to wake up this morning and humming Psalm 130 with simple joy in my heart is such a mercy of God!

The cloud of depression has been hanging over my heads for the last 3 weeks that it seems as if it will never go away. Depression is a very frightening illness as it has a strange way of pulling a black screen over my eyes whenever I go through a relapse, and robbed away all hope and joy in the Lord. I lost interest in the things that I used to do. I will be so exhausted every day that I don’t feel I have the energy to wake up and get through the day. Even simple thing like brushing my teeth seems like a chore! I dread to face each day and often wished I don't need to wake up.

Oh. How I hate this illness! It paralyses me and brought me through great pain and agonies. Yet I know in our Lord’s gracious and loving providence, He is using this bipolar disorder with depressive episodes for my sanctification. Every time the cloud is lifted, I feel like a new person, born again! The sting of sins and darkness so touched my heart and life, that nothing but only the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit that I could be delivered!

How I long to be free from these sins and remaining corruptions. I hate the sins I see in myself – my self-righteousness, pride, unbelief, self-centredness, materialism, etc etc.

The Lord has shown Himself mighty in my life once again through using His Words and various people to extend His presence to me. I pray for grace to live for Him, in Him and through Him, by His grace. I can do nothing without the Lord. How I feel this so sensibly!

Oh for grace to fix my eyes upon Jesus, from whence cometh my help and in Whom’s joy is my strength.


(or see https://youtu.be/vKFRcd4PntA)

Hope everyone have a blessed week ahead!

Warm Regards,
Nancie
10 January 2016

About Me

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Hello! Thank you for visiting this blog, dear Reader. Let me share with you a little about myself and God's mercies to me.

My name is Nancie. I am a Chinese Christian living in Singapore. The Lord Jesus Christ saved me in 1990 and my life was wonderfully changed when I became a Christian. I went through many challenges just like everyone else, and have been wonderfully upheld by the Lord Jesus Christ through all the ups and downs.

In Dec 2006, I had a severe relapse of clinical depression. At first I was thought to suffer from major depression. But I was diagnosed in late March 2007 to be prone to Bipolar Disorder also known as manic-depressive illness, a brain disorder that causes extreme mood swings from very happy or high moods together with lots of energy (and I am prone to over-strain myself during such times) to very low and depressed moods with low level of energy and constant tiredness (at times with severe feelings of hopeless and worthlessness to the point of having suicidal thoughts and tendency).

I think I have experienced these extreme mood swings for over 20 years or so. But I can only remember more clearly of the 10 or so relapses over the last 18 years prior to my recent diagnosis. These are relapses that occurred just before I became a Christian and then the years after. I could remember them more clearly now because my life was changed significantly after I became a Christian. I have very little memory now of my younger days without Christ. It was through an episode of severe depression that I questioned the purpose of life and whether there is really a God, and if there is whether He cares for me as I was suffering intensely. By God's mercies, I was led to go to church with 2 of my colleagues to seek an answer and God changed my life ever since. I found comfort in God through all the ups and downs in life.

These episodes of depression in the last 18 years usually lasted for a few months before my moods returned to normal. Different from the normal ups and downs we all experience every now and then, Bipolar Disorder's symptoms are very severe. It is a long term medical condition just like diabetes and hypertension that needs to be carefully managed throughout a person's life.

Through this severe relapse in end 2006, I was led to seek medical and counselling help for the first time, besides praying and reading God's Words plus some other helps. I thank God that after so many years of roller coaster rides with extreme mood swings, I have finally understood the reason behind them. To know that I suffer from this medical condition, that it has a name for it, is helping me to learn to manage it better so that I can live for the glory of God and be able to serve Him more effectively.

The medication, by God's grace, is helping to stabilise my mood and enable me be more functional, so that I can continue to seek and serve God. I thank God for my doctor's valuable helps in treating my illness and helping me to learn to cope so that I can live for the glory of God and serve Him. Currently my condition has improved a lot.

In January 2007, I have received professional help from a group of counsellors who are trained to manage brain disorders such as bipolar, clinical depression, OCD, etc etc and my Pastor also counselled me on spiritual matters. The professional counsellors are trained to use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) which is a form of counselling with a focus on understanding how our thoughts affect our behaviours. Bipolar alternates between 2 extreme mood swings ie. mania and depression, and our thoughts and behaviours are shaped by these mania and depression episodes which can at times be very confusing. CBT helps to make sense some of these confusions, and help to pick up skills to manage these mood swings so that one can be more functional.

I am thankful to God for providing me with a team of very compassionate, kind, understanding and encouraging Christian counsellors at Counselling and Care Centre, Singapore from Jan to Apr 2007. My sessions with my counsellor were most fruitful and encouraging. Through her counselling sessions, I embarked on a new journey of self-discovery, of knowing God, myself and others better. The benefits I derived from my sessions with her continues to help me as I journey on. Now I am helped by my Pastor's prayers and counsels, and that of some of my elders and brethren in my church, besides doing my own reading and researching on the internet to understand this condition and how best to manage it. I am deeply indebted to the above persons for their valuable prayers, counsels, encouragements and kindness during my most difficult times.

I am now learning to look to God and learning to use a combinations of available means which our Lord has graciously provided to cope with this brain condition. You can read more about these coping means/strategies from the category "My Coping Strategies" on my blog.

With God's help, I am hoping to share my journey of understanding this brain condition and God's mercies to me with you, dear Reader. If you know of anyone suffering the symptoms similar to that of my condition, please do pray for him/her and let him/her know that it is a medical condition that can be treated. Do advise him/her, if possible, to seek professional and medical help, counselling help, some natural remedies and other helps. Do not hesitate to tell him/her about this blog.

Just click on the links in the "Label" box on the right to read my postings.

I thank God also for my family and friends - for all their prayers, encouragements, support and kindness. In particular, I am indebted to my dear Pastor, my brethren in my church and other Christian friends in other parts of the world, for their love, prayers, supports, concerns and kind love gifts which enable me to recuperate away from work and also to providentially work on this blog. I realized these are tokens of God's love, mercies and faithfulness to me in this difficult trial. These give me the courage to press on, to look to God daily, and to seek and serve our Lord as He enables me. I am thankful to God for His mercies and lovingkindness to me despite my many sins, failures and weaknesses.

I found it helpful and therapeutic to verbalise my thoughts and feelings and share it with others who can benefit from it. It is my prayers that, God willing, this blog with all its information will be used by our Lord to help others, particularly those who are afflicted in like manner and for their loved ones and friends, just as God has used many information available on the internet for my benefit and comfort as I seek to understand my illness and manage it so that I can live for Him and serve Him.

May the testimonies of God's love and faithfulness, through all the changing scenes of life, will continue to bring glory to Him and some comfort and encouragement to His people.

To God be the glory!

"My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever." Psalm 73:26

Warm regards,
Nancie
First published on February 2008

My bipolar disorder blog featured in a newspaper in Singapore, The Straits Times (The Sunday Times)

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 I took this picture at Changi Beach, Singapore


I took this picture at Changi Beach, Singapore

Fear not... When thou passest through the waters,
I will be with thee
Isaiah 43:1,2

My grace is sufficient for thee:
for my strength is made perfect in weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9

Dear Friends,

Thanks for stopping by! Thank God for seeing us through almost a month in this new year.

Several months ago a reporter from a local newspaper here in Singapore, the Straits Times,  approached me for an interview regarding this blog on Bipolar Disorder - More Than Conquerors: (http://www.mylifewithbipolardisorder.com/). She was writing on how blogging help people cope with chronic illnesses and asked if I could share my story so that it can help others.

This interview was published a few days ago in The Sunday Times, 23 January 2011, Lifestyle section, page 9, and thank God for several readers in Singapore who wrote to let me know they appreciate my sharing of my own experiences plus the resources available. They themselves or their loved ones too suffer from bipolar disorder.


Click at the picture to see a larger version

♥  I thank God that I can testified of His goodness and mercies to me through this blog. He is the One Who sustains me daily and enable me to cope and live a useful life for Him. Thank God that He is with us through all the changing scenes in life and He is working all things for His glory and our good. He promised that His grace is sufficient for us. He is my greatest comfort, peace and strength daily.

♥  I thank God for my family, my Church brethren and friends who love and accept me, pray for me and support me in my time of need. I am thankful to God for the joy and privilege of being acquainted with several people who are also suffering from bipolar, depression and other chronic illnesses and to be able to pray, support, encourage and learn from one another. I thank God for everyone of you, my dear blogging friends, and for your prayers and encouragements. They mean a lot to me. You have made a great difference in my life and used by God to encourage me and show me His love by your friendship and encouraging notes. You are in my thoughts and prayers too.

I thank God that I am in a community of people who love God and love me, who accepts me in my illness and weaknesses, and continue to extend their love and friendship to me. To the Lord and to all of you I owe a debt I cannot repay.

Thank you once again for all your prayers as I seek to walk with our Lord and serve Him within these limitations. Through your support, prayers and encouragements, God makes blogging therapeutic to me. It not only allows me to share my thoughts and feelings, and journal them as a form of reminder of God's goodness, it also encourages me through your friendships, prayers and encouragements. I am encouraged whenever I remember that there are people who care and are praying for me, and I am not alone.

♥  I am thankful to God that besides my personal sanctification and leading me to know more of His love, grace and mercies daily, He has opened a door of usefulness for me even through this condition and this blog. Since this blog was started in 2008, several readers from different parts of the world have also written to me to share their experiences and to let me know how the resources shared on my blog have helped them.

♥  May God be glorified through this blog. May He continue to use it to help others and their loved ones who are suffering in these ways and in need. Hope our Lord will lead some to come to find peace and comfort in the Lord too.

To God be the glory. Take care.

In His blessed care,
Nancie
Jan 2011

 

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