We know this saying well: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35) But why? Isn’t that counter-intuitive? After all, when you give, you deplete your own resources—be it physical, monetary, or emotional.
I was about to turn in for the night; it was almost 11pm. As usual, I gave my phone a final check. My good friend, Linda, had just sent me a flurry of messages. What I was about to read was horrific and heart-breaking.
In English novelist Jane Austen’s classic, Pride and Prejudice, there is a particular discussion on the attributes of an “accomplished woman”.
I never thought that I would have depression. It seemed like something only strangers had. Even when a close friend of mine struggled with depression a few years ago, I couldn’t relate to what she was going through. I just thought of it as a really low period some people had and would eventually get out of, if only they tried hard enough.
I used to drink a lot. Once, I had one too many that I stumbled about the streets and passed out outside a shopping mall in the wee hours. Some kind strangers woke me up and asked if I needed to be sent to the hospital.
One evening in 2015, an unassuming young man walked into a church. The regular attendees of the church’s weekly Bible study warmly welcomed him and proceeded with the meeting for an hour. Suddenly, that young man stood up, took out a gun, and shot everyone in the room.
I remember a chat I had with a friend back in high school about what we wanted to be when we grew up. I don’t recall what I had said at the time, but it was probably a human rights lawyer or missionary.