Kate Spade New York notebook

Kate Spade Hope

I was chewing on my own faith this past week and getting stuck on some of Jesus’ words like dry bread in the back of my throat. It was a particularly hard tenet to swallow: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6 NIV). This isn’t something I want to readily believe. In fact, something in me wants to kick it against the wall and refuse it. But when I think of Kate Spade, dear Robin Williams, a son of an old friend (only in his twenties), or anyone else who has lost all hope to turn to suicide, I think of Jesus.


I think of my own faith in God and how I almost lost it when living in Amsterdam years ago. Yet, oddly enough, there was something about Jesus I just couldn’t let go of. With an invisible string, like fishing line, God slowly reeled me back in through the years with Christ’s love and grace.


Terribly thankful for the slow pull, I then think of all the things I long to say to those we have lost, only knowing now what silent distress they must have been under.


I would say:


You are loved.


Even if all the world says otherwise in every possible way, and it doesn’t seem so right now. If everything you’ve gripped has fallen through your grasp and is now gone, it’s okay, let it go. God will be there with you even as you mourn that loss. Even if the truth hurts and you’ve betrayed your own honor in some way, the ultimate truth underneath ALL of that is: You are STILL loved, redeemable, and incredibly valued by God. So much so, He sent His one and only son to sacrificially die for you so that you can live a new life, here on earth and later in heaven, where you will never be separated from God and His good presence and provision—no matter what.


I would share God’s promises to never leave us, even in the worst, dark-of-night, circumstances:


“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” – Hebrews 13:5B NKJV


“Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” – Psalm 23:4 NKJV


“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, nor heavenly rulers neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 8:37-39 NIV


I would cry with them, hug them, pray with them, wipe snotty tears together, and call them later to check in. Lastly, I would encourage and challenge them to open-up to other people. Because at the end, when it’s too late, we all crawl out of the woodwork wishing we had known so we could have helped.


You are not alone, lots and lots of people have felt this way even if our Facebook feeds tell us otherwise and the advertisement agencies want us to believe no one else lives in the mundane.


Although many of the faiths and different walks of spirituality seem to grab onto a single, thin, golden, line of spiritual truths and helpful practices, none of them offers the hope of Jesus who is the ultimate shame eraser. He is, most respectfully, the essential “Mr. Clean” scrubbing before us and behind us, addressing both the shame we have created ourselves (sin) and the shame others have put on us by not loving us the way we deserve (sinning against us). He confirms Fifth Harmony’s appeal, that yes, you are worth it, in the most holy and powerful way.