Release of Hope Book!

Special Events

I’m so excited to announce Hope (My Theme in Glory Book 1), a collection of short stories and poems crafted by authors from The King’s Daughters’ Writing Camp! It’s now available to purchase on multiple platforms! Praise the Lord! (Psst, a poem of mine is in it.)

About the Collection

Hope Collection Book Cover


Hope,” I thought. “What a small word for such a big thing.”

The broken world groans. Oh, for a beacon of light! Where is something to live for—to kindle the spark of excitement, to calm the heart, to impart love, joy, and peace—and perhaps to shine the light of God’s glory on earth as in heaven?

Hope.

In these twenty-two sweet stories and poems, experience the dawning of sure, unfailing hope. Join a plethora of relatable characters young and old in their journey through the heights and depths of suffering—a cancer diagnosis, a shocking accident, the loss of a dear family member. Wrestle with the agony of a missing loved one, an unavoidable mortgage, or a tough move. Experience the ache of rejection and loneliness, misunderstanding and oppression, and illnesses both physical and mental. Yet in the midst of each heartache winds a strong, undying cord of hope—that light in the darkness, that beacon, that anchor of the soul. As you smile, cry, and sigh through each heartfelt piece, perhaps you too will grasp ahold of your own hope again.

For our Saviour Jesus Christ is our glorious Hope.

Where To Find It

Clarissa Choo is a vessel used for Christ’s glory. Although she has lived in four countries, heaven is her only home. She desires to love Jesus and sow His seeds. Besides writing, she would be washing dishes, chopping ingredients into smithereens, and recording music. Read more posts from her or contact her.




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Rainbow in rain

Updated: Giving Thanks In Everything

General Articles

Dear Friend,

Like the weather, life has different seasons. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 describes the seasons of life in detail, and to categorize them in human terms, we have good and bad seasons. We tend to define good seasons when good situations happen and bad situations for bad seasons. Regardless of the weather, we still need to give thanks in everything.


“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

1 Thessalonians 5:18 KJV (Emphasis added)



How do we give thanks in everything? Everything covers both good and bad, big and little. Yes, it can be easy for us to give thanks for good things, but it can be difficult to naturally always give thanks for them, let alone the bad things. Humans generally tend to murmur, which is the opposite of giving thanks. Complaining is being ungrateful. Ungrateful to Who? To God. And I’m guilty of this. Because my sinful nature is prone to be ungrateful, God commanded that I must give thanks in everything.


“… for this is the will of God …”



It’s His will that I should be grateful. Do you know what’s hard in giving thanks? Giving thanks from my heart. That is true It’s His will that I should be grateful. Do you know what’s hard in giving thanks? Giving thanks from my heart. That is true thanksgiving.

To truly give thanks to Christ means –

  1. I’m trusting Him wholly,
  2. I believe that God is Who He is,
  3. I’m surrendered to Him,
  4. And I’m submitted to His will.

Whereas complaining shows that –

  1. I’m doubting Him,
  2. I don’t believe that God is Who He is,
  3. I’m not surrendered to Him,
  4. And I’m not submitted to His will.

Ouch. I feel bad from reading the last points. Choosing between giving thanks and murmuring is choosing between acknowledging God and letting unbelief rule my life. However, it is impossible for me to consistently choose the former because it’s against my sinful nature. But


“… in Christ Jesus …”




it is possible because He has freed me from sin. And because I am free, I can give thanks for His salvation, His faithfulness, His words, His grace, His mercies, His punishments, His blessings, my sorrows, my pain, my difficulties, and so on. It is possible because of Who He is instead of who I am and what my situations are. Dear friend, my prayer is that in all of your rain, sunshine, sweet moments, and broken messes, you will look to Jesus and give thanks.

Resulting in the fullness of joy and peace in Him no matter what circumstance I’m in. Then I’ll have two more things to be thankful for.


“To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee forever.”

Psalm 30:12 KJV



Very Sincerely Yours,
Clarissa Choo

P.S. If you have a paper and pen near you, write down each good and bad thing for this day and give thanks to Jesus regarding them. If you want to take a step further, write ten of His characteristics that you’re thankful for.

This article was also published in the private email magazine ministry, The Father’s Kingdom, and was originally published in this site.

P.P.S. Stay tuned for the next post I have exciting news to share with you!

Clarissa Choo is a vessel used for Christ’s glory. Although she has lived in four countries, heaven is her only home. She desires to love Jesus and sow His seeds. Besides writing, she would be washing dishes, chopping ingredients into smithereens, and recording music. Read more posts from her or contact her.




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The Passenger is Taking a Break

Journal

Dear Friend,

I’m taking a semi-hiatus from writing, but my memoir letters will continue. Although I don’t know how long this break will last, I’ll definitely return!

Čau!


Very Sincerely Yours,
Clarissa Choo-Choo Train



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Clarissa Choo is a vessel used for Christ’s glory. Although she has lived in four countries, Jesus is her only Home. She desires to love Him and sow His seeds. Besides writing, she would be washing dishes, chopping ingredients into smithereens, and recording music. Read more posts from her.

7 Days of Hope Tour: Day One

Special Events

Hope.

What is the meaning of the word hope? If you look in your dictionary, it most likely stated that hope is an expectation for an object or event to occur. And if you look in your Bible, Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (KJV, Emphasis added).

We can place our hope in many things such as our career stability, possessions, family, friends, and ourselves. This hope, however, is fruitless because all of what is on earth is temporary and fallible. But as saved people, we have Someone whom we have hope in:

Jesus Christ.

We have hope in Him even though we can’t see Him. He is our true hope. The whole world will perish but not Him. People will fail us but not Him because He is infallible.

And as we live in the world, we have tribulations, illnesses, and death because of sin. However, for those who love God, He turns difficulties into something good (Roman 8:28). And as we Christians trudge through our valleys, we find that darkness shrouds our paths and threatens to extinguish our hope.

Famous godly men and women from the past are susceptible to that too. One example is Charles H. Spurgeon. He had multiple depression periods throughout his life due to a traumatic event and other circumstances. Because of his sufferings, having hope in Jesus was precious to him. He said,


When the night gets darker, the light shines brighter. When our trials worsened, our hope in Jesus glows much more.

But what if the valley never seems to end? And what if our path seemed to be getting smoother only for it to drop into a pit? That is when our Shepherd wants us to wait. Waiting is hard. I understand how difficult it can be because I’ve been going through it. Waiting means that we have to persevere, continue to stay close by His side, and accept the situation and outcome we’re in.

From the book Found Faithful, Elizabeth Skoglund knew a lady who suffered with depression for years yet she still kept her hope in God even though He hasn’t healed her yet. He told her wait. Thus, she waits and continues to be close to Him. And, quoting from the book, “[f]ar from sinning, she has chosen to find meaning in her depression and to allow it to draw her closer to God.”


During our periods of waiting, the Bible will spur us on. When it seems that nobody can encourage us with their words, His Word will be the one that lifts us.

Furthermore, waiting is the best time to keep praising our Shepherd from our hearts. A Czech friend once told me that the best place to be when we’re down is to worship Him. I admit, it is an unnatural action for us to do when we’re going through hard times. But when we worship our Shepherd, we’re fulfilling our purpose on earth – to glorify Him. Because despite our circumstances, He is still God.

I know another Czech friend, who sings special presentations at my church in the Czech Republic. God had brought her through breast cancer before. She appeared to be out of the danger zone until a health check-up revealed that cancer was in her brain. Treatment got rid of that particular tumour; however, another check-up showed that she had more tumours inside.

And do you know what she did? She continued to sing specials at church until she physically could not. Her hope in Jesus did not die, God was glorified through her, and people around her could see Jesus in her.


Months after the aforementioned Czech friend passed on to heaven, I listened to her songs occasionally. Initially, they sounded sad because I was sad, then … over time, I realised that they were overflowing with hope.

Thinking back, I wonder how she could still sing when she was suffering so much physically? The answer lies in her Shepherd. He is her God of hope, just as how He is my God of hope and your God of hope.

If we continue to stay by our Shepherd’s side, we’ll have blessings in our valleys. For examples, being moulded and refined, growing closer to Him, and claiming His promises. Most importantly, the greatest blessing of all is having Him as our God.

He is our Shepherd who’ll never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). He had prepared a place for us to be forever with Him (John 14:3), a place of everlasting joy (Isaiah 41:11), a place where “… God shall wipe away all tears from [our] eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” (Revelation 21:4, KJV). How comforting that is!

My mentioning of the Shepherd and valleys probably reminds you of Psalm 23. I know that it’s a passage that most of us have memorised but go to your Bible and read it now. After you finished reading it, return to this post.

Welcome back! Did you find that the passage emanated hope? Now read it again, and listen to this song while you do so:


Friend, no matter how steep the path in front of you gets and how dark the valley can be, please don’t give up your hope in Jesus Christ. Because in Him, you can live victoriously through your challenges and claim His promises and blessings. And in Him, you will one day live without valleys for eternity.

May His grace, mercy, strength, joy, and hope be with you.

Amen.


Reference

Skoglund, Elizabeth R., Found Faithful: The Timeless Stories of Charles Spurgeon, Amy Carmichael, C. S. Lewis, Ruth Bell Graham and Others, 2004, Discovery House Publishers.

Hold on, the Seven Days of Hope Tour is not over yet!

The blog tour has two giveaways!
You can find out more here.

The tour continues in other blogs:


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Clarissa Choo is a vessel used for Christ’s glory. Although she has lived in four countries, Heaven is her only home. She desires to sow His seeds and to serve third culture kids, teens, and writers. Besides writing, she loves to wash dishes, chop ingredients into smithereens, and record hymns on her piano. Peek into her Christian TCK Email Ministry or read more posts.

When We Compare

Writer's Articles

Dear Friend,

Comparing myself to others is so easy. It’s a struggle I’ve faced many times. I know I shouldn’t do that when the Bible clearly says, “For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (2 Corinthians 10:12, KJV). What the Bible tells me to be wary of, is for my good.

So, why is it not wise to compare myself with others? Well, when I see that the other person’s path or what they have is “better” than mine, I want to have what they have or want to be on the path they’re on. And that shows I’m discontented and ungrateful.

On the other hand, when I see that what I have and/or what I’ve accomplished is “better” than what others have, I will elevate myself, thinking I’m “better” than them. And that shows I’m prideful.

Does the above sound familiar?

All of us have fallen into these traps one way or another. In both, we focused on ourselves and what others are doing.


How do we get out of it?   

Shift our focus to Jesus. We must be thankful, content, and praise God for where He has placed us and the blessings He has given us.


“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.”

1 Timothy 6:6-7, KJV



And quoting from Anneliese Louise, “When God blesses another, do not internalize it as though it were an attack on you. Rather, thank Him out loud for being such an overwhelmingly generous God.” Did a friend achieve something good? Praise God that He brought them there.  

As for pride, we need to humble ourselves. Acknowledge that all that we accomplished and have is because of Him. He is the One who blessed us and He is the One who brought us to where we are.


“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”

Romans 12:3, KJV



It’s Not A Competition

The truth is, our paths are different, just like my journey in God’s will is different from yours in His. “It’s a personal race, not a competition,” a close friend once told me.

About a year ago, I told my mom I’m reaching my mid-twenties and started writing seriously not too long before that and additionally, I’m an unemployed graduate who needs a salary, how could I catch up? She said, “So? Your dad started “late” in his career and look where God brought Him now … Anyone can learn a skill no matter where they are in life.” What’s important is where God places me right now, no matter “where” I am in life as compared to other writers.

Currently, I’m 24. I am not published and am still looking for a job amid the pandemic. When I compare myself with others, it feels like I’m lagging. However, in God’s eyes, if I follow according to his plans and timing, I’m not falling behind. And being where God wants me to be, close by His side, is more than good enough. After all, He is the one writing my story. Who am I to say that I know it best? 

Thus, every time, I compare myself with other people, I try to remind myself this: 

Focus on Jesus, not on others nor myself. 


“Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore.”

Psalm 105:4, KJV



Very Sincerely Yours,
Clarissa Choo-Choo Train

P.S. I’ll be participating in the 7 Days of Hope Blog Tour! Hosted by Sawyer Marie and Abby Elissa. To follow the tour, go to either blogsite, Sundrop Girls or Abby Elissa from April 5 – 11.



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Clarissa Choo is a vessel used for Christ’s glory. Although she has lived in four countries, Heaven is her only Home. She desires to sow His seeds and to serve third culture kids, teens, and writers. Besides writing, she loves to wash dishes, chop ingredients into smithereens, and record hymns on her piano. Peek into her Christian TCK Email Ministry or read more posts.