I found out about you because someone forwarded to me the news about your “unnatural death”. The time the police were called was listed as 6.50am on Monday, June 8.

I wondered about that. I mean, shouldn’t you have been on your way to school?

You were only 18 – an age that could have, should have been idyllic. When I would have liked to imagine you talking and laughing with your friends, even if behind a mask, from a social distance of 1m away.

On second thought, I guess not, since they found you at the foot of that block.

Was it academic pressure? A love relationship gone wrong? Family? What drove you to take such a flight of no return?

The despair must have been tearing you apart. Still… I wish you hadn’t.


At some point in my life I was in a similar place as you.

It’s not that I had no one to turn to. There were people around me who cared. They were listening but weren’t. They were there but not. They didn’t understand but never said. And I thought: Is it just me?

Did you think that too?

Your story’s different from mine, but you and I were never more alone in that place.

I’m sorry you had to be the first to recognise that a part of you was dying. It must have felt so desolate.

Some people said, “everything is going to be okay.” It was not. Those were callous words.

Others shrugged it off. “Life’s like that”, they said. As if thick skin were all it would take, and you just had to grow more of it. 

And you thought: It is me. It’s my fault. Again.


I wish I could have had the chance to say this darkness seems like a black hole, but it’s not. You can journey out of it.

I did.

The road was mine alone to walk, yes, and that was hard. The steps were excruciatingly slow. There was unending uncertainty. But Someone was with me. His life held me steady.

Never once did He not say, “come, come to me” (Matthew 11:28). Those words were a lamp for my feet (Psalm 119:105).

One day when the crying did end, He took out a bottle and showed me that He’d collected every one of my tears and kept them (Psalm 56:8).

He knew.

He knew just how frightening it’d been, to get one foot in front of the other to keep walking in the dark.

His promise that he would never leave you or forsake me (Hebrews 13:5) was the straitjacket of love that saved me from myself.


It didn’t matter where I’d been or what I’d done. He didn’t ask. He just kept His arms underneath me (Deuteronomy 33:27), knowing I’d need them there when I fell.

I never got all the answers I wanted, but I got the God who was the answer. He endured the cross of Calvary and died and rose again to live eternally – for me (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).

For all of humanity, actually… anyone who would believe (Romans 10:13).

If you’re reading this and can identify with what I’ve said, it’s no coincidence you’ve come to this page.

Maybe you’re a wreck that the O-Levels or A-Levels begin this week, or you’re feeling overwhelmed by your mid-terms or big essays that are due. You don’t feel in the least bit prepared.

It’s stressing you out that it’s been such a nothing half year spent mostly at home struggling through HBL when you should’ve been in a physical school setting finishing up the syllabus and revving up the revision.

And there’s so little time left.

That’s true. Nothing is going to change all that. But you can choose to trust that because God is with you, you have what it takes to make the best of it.

I can’t walk your road for you, but I can hope you will walk on. I pray you will take that one step with Jesus and find that there’s hope yet for you.

His hand is always outstretched to lead you to the Father who has said this about Himself (Isaiah 43:2-5 ESV).

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you…

“For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour…

“You are precious in My eyes, and honoured, and I love you…

“Fear not, for I am with you.” 

God alone is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end (Revelation 22:13).

Let Him take you by the hand. It’s the only good end there is.

For all of you are taking your O-Levels or A-Levels this year, I want to say a prayer for you. 

Father in heaven, You alone are God. All things were made by You and for You. There is nothing You do not see and do not know; You are both near and far. How wonderful is the certainty of that knowledge!

As my friends enter into a season of major exams, let your eyes rest kindly on them. For they were formed in Your thoughts before they were even fashioned by your hand, each a workmanship of beauty, burnished like gold and blessed with the breath of life from God.

Open their hearts to receive your grace and to revel in it. May they be able to call themselves beloved.

Enlarge their capacity to endure the long road of studying through the next several months. Bring about insight and understanding as they work through what is required of them, and give them much wisdom and sober-mindedness in the application of this knowledge.

Guide them through the ins and outs of each exam paper and establish the work of their hands.

Still their hearts with your peace. Say to them that nothing separates them from your love – not fear, not anxiety, not grades. Remind them whose they are, who they came from and whom they can run to. May they be secure in the strong tower of your Name.

Draw them near to You and protect them from the evil one. Let your Spirit enfold them. Daily refresh them by your presence. Grant strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow.

In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen

I also want to share this song with you.

Finally, there’s also help available, so don’t hesitate to reach out.

Samaritans of Singapore (SOS) 24-hour Hotline: 1800 221 4444 or [email protected].

Institute of Mental Health’s 24-hour Hotline: 6389 2222

Care Corner Counselling Centre (Mandarin): 1800 353 5800

Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800 283 7019

  1. What overwhelms you?
  2. What promises from His Word can you hold on to?
  3. What can you do to help yourself?