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Yvonne—My One and Only Beloved (Preface)

August 21st, 2016



Avalon Spence


Little did I know last year when I accompanied a friend of mine on a visit to her good friends, Rev. Paul and Yvonne Lai just weeks prior to Yvonne’s passing, that I would become involved in the editing of an English version e-Book celebrating Yvonne’s life.  But here I am, having also been requested to write a preface to introduce you to the articles that follow. 

Although I’ve never been an editor of anything before,  my role has involved doing a final review all the articles included in this e-book that were submitted in Chinese and which had been translated into English by others.  While performing my small service in this way, I have been given a wonderful opportunity to glimpse further into the depth of Yvonne’s rich life and drink from the wealth of beautiful words that have poured in from so many people who are so grateful to have known Yvonne and have desired to be part of the celebration of her life.  

My own article for this e-book (‘In Honour of Yvonne’) was written to Rev. Paul Lai after only one visit with them and without having seen any other writings that would pour in following Yvonne’s passing.  There was absolutely no doubt in my mind that Yvonne literally overflowed with the Divine Presence and all the articles that have come in since have continued to bear witness and confirm that reality.   

Words are powerful.  Words and the stories they express can either weaken and destroy or inspire and build up.  I can attest to the fact that these accounts have the power to inspire and build up!  By virtue of having spent time in each of these articles over these last months, I have received so much…inspiration to greater Faith when I’ve been doubting, renewal of Hope to go on when I can’t see my way through dark places and a greater openness to the vulnerability of allowing Divine Love to be expressed through me in service given for the benefit of others.  

I simply couldn’t help but be encouraged in my own life by what I read of Yvonne’s life.  Challenges are a part of life.  We all need role models and someone to encourage us along the way.  Many, many times I’ve come away from working on a set of these articles actually feeling a warmth in my heart, a shift in my spirit and the power of God lifting me through the rest of the day.  Your life will be affected as well as you read, linger and reflect, not just on Yvonne’s life, but on your own as well.  We all need the example and encouragement we get from others who have gone on ahead and finished well!  Yvonne is certainly one of those.

As I conclude my introduction, here is an excerpt from a poem that Queen Elizabeth II holds dear and has shared as expressing the attitude of faith that she herself has strived to live by in order to carry out her service to the people as Queen under the Sovereign leadership of our Lord Jesus Christ.  What an apt description of the way that Yvonne chose to live her life as well!  With her hand in God’s, trusting Him all the way, Yvonne lived with the poise of a queen…. beautifully, courageously and lovingly, and has affected so many other lives to the good…… 

I said to the man who stood at the Gate of the Year 

Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”

And he replied, “Go out into the darkness, and put your hand into the hand of God.

That shall be to you better than light, and safer than a known way.”


May you be encouraged and inspired as you read on………


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