I felt that I had strayed from God before SHINE21. It seemed like I was going my own way, even though I was still aware that God was there with me. I had lots of difficulty with prayer – so much so that I had given up on praying altogether. However, I knew that God was constantly calling me to come home to Him, and that I cannot continue like this. So, I entered the retreat wanting to revive my faith and renew my relationship with God.
Through the retreat, God revealed to me many truths. He reminded me of His immense love and mercy: that I can just turn back to Him when I fall, and that He has a plan for everything. I just need to trust and follow Him. He also assured me that I do not need to worry and fear, for His good plan will always work.
God then showed me that prayer is really so beautiful and such a great gift, that it is our relationship with God, and it is really how I can just simply talk to Him and converse with Him about whatever troubles I have and not have to hide from Him. He has renewed my desire for His presence, especially His true presence in the Holy Eucharist. He truly revealed that all my desires are fulfilled by Him and Him alone, that only He can fill the void in my heart.
After SHINE, I have learnt now to really surrender everything weighing on my heart to God, and to put my trust in Him and rely on Him for whatever that I cannot understand. Truly, as St. Augustine said, my heart is restless, until it rests in You, O God.