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The Story Behind the Title

Updated: Feb 7

I contemplated 'Strengthened by Mercy: A Journey to True Freedom' as the title of my book. That's how I felt. Bit by bit, from the start of the pandemic, God was strengthening my feeble self whose tank ran dry from my stubborn self-reliance and self-imposed need to be perfect. He strengthened me enough to stand on my two feet after my parents suddenly passed away a year into the pandemic.

But it did not resonate with my target readers. My quest for another title began. What’s clear though was that two words - ‘Mercy' which encapsulates the story of my life and ‘Freedom’ which surfaced repeatedly in my mind-mapping exercise - should remain in the title.

On May 26th last year, after visiting Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament of the Merciful Redeemer Parish, I was led to Isaiah 41:14 - ‘Fear not...I will help you, says the Lord your Redeemer’. The word ‘Redeemer’ struck me and kaboom, I knew I have found my title.

Just when I thought that was it, the word ‘despair’ jumped out at me while singing at mass on August 7th. Upon confirmation from a group of family and friends who unanimously agreed that adding ‘from despair’ into the subtitle makes it more relatable, that is definitely it.

God speaks through the Scriptures, songs, loved ones… All it takes is to quiet ourselves and seek His voice, and He will make Himself heard.

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