Money

Growing up in a lower-income family, I hated my life

Shanice Lim // March 20, 2018, 4:23 pm

Childhood

My parents separated when I was 10.

I was too young to understand anything about separation, but one thing I knew for sure was that our house now felt emptier.

After the separation, my mother moved us to our aunt’s place where the 4 of us settled in a single room. Over time, I began to realise how difficult it was for my mother, being the sole breadwinner of the family.

I saw her struggle to pay off bills and rent to the point that our allowances became a problem. I was still too young to help her so all I could do was to worry with her. I worried about money and all kinds of things other 16-year-old teenagers wouldn’t really bother about.

I had no choice but to grow up quickly into an independent person.


In 2013, I entered polytechnic. Honestly, by that point of time – I hated my life.

Why was life so unfair? I started comparing my family to other people’s families. At every turn, I felt like I was on the losing side. My family wasn’t complete, it wasn’t financially stable. I wasn’t pleased with anything in my life.

And around this time, I stopped taking money from my mother because I knew it was more important for her to provide for my younger sibling. That meant I had to scrape through my polytechnic days with a part-time job.

Thankfully, despite having to work part-time, I was able to graduate from polytechnic with a Diploma with Merit, and got into a local university. In retrospect, I believe God knew me even before I knew him – He was already guiding my way back then.

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:5)


The period right before I began university was my turning point – it was then I encountered God.

Ever since then, I came to experience who God is and also His unmerited love for us. He has provided for my family so abundantly, and I have truly been blessed by the people who He has placed in my life – especially my Church family.

Our financials have improved since, and despite the occasional hiccups in my family, I believe that God will heal and bind our wounds because He makes everything beautiful in His perfect time (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

After being a Christian for just under 2 years, God has revealed so much to me: How He has plans to prosper and not harm us and how these plans give us a hope and future. God can turn our suffering into greater things.


There is a reason for every thing that has occurred in our lives.

I hope that we will be like Job, who never lost faith in his sovereign God despite incredible suffering in life. God doesn’t promise that the Christian would be smooth-sailing, but He delivers us and guides us through it all.

I thank God that He has been so good and faithful. In dry seasons or rainy days, I choose to say that He is good to me. For all the problems in my life, I still know that nothing is too difficult for God.

If you’re struggling, feeling like you’re suffocating you – if you hate your life – I want to leave you with the promise that God loves you.

He hears us and collects every single tear we shed. And if mere tears are precious to Him – how much more the one who cries?


This is a submission from a participant of our Greater Love Giveaway. From now till the end of March 2018, we are giving away a pack of limited edition Thir.st “Greater Love” Stickers in exchange for every story. Stories must have a personal/local angle and be of 800-1000 words. Send us yours here.