by Clement Clayrant Chen
Before getting to know the Lord and falling in love with Him, I always felt lonely and unloved. I was born into a non-Christian family, and did not know who Jesus was. The only ‘gods’ I knew were the traditional Chinese gods. Growing up with the idea of karma led me to strive to be a perfect person without committing a single mistake. Consequently, when I was faced with life struggles, I believed that I deserved these struggles as a punishment for my past mistakes. This left me feeling hopeless, but somehow it led me on a search for a loving God.
One day I chanced upon a Catholic Church and I felt a strong attraction in that instant. I kept attending mass and met many faithful and loving people in the community during my university years. I slowly and steadily got to know the Lord more and more. This was also the point I joined RCIY and began participating in OYP events and retreats. At each retreat, I always experienced my burdens being lifted and surprisingly, I felt happier and more grateful. I felt very blessed to be able to know the Lord more and to experience His love. And so, I fell in love with the Lord.
God touched and moved my heart multiple times during my RCIY journey. During the RCIY retreat, they shared about The Parable of the Prodigal Son. It was then that I first heard about God’s unconditional love for His children. I resonated deeply with the elder son in the parable as I had always felt that I was never enough for Him, and that other people always received better treatment than me. Later that night during Eucharistic Adoration, God really spoke to me and touched my heart. He told me to let go of every burden and to surrender them all to Him. He reassured me that He loves me equally and He never forgets about me. I just needed to believe in Him and His plans for me.
Clement receiving the Sacrament of Baptism
Being God’s child does not mean that all my problems, struggles and anxieties are gone. I still face them daily, but now I have someone who I can trust and rely on, someone I can talk to and cry to, someone who can understand me more than anyone else. My Lord is always here with me. He shows His love to me in many ways: through the Church, the scriptures, reflections, Eucharistic Adoration, my communities and even my non-Catholic friends! In coming to know the Lord, I have experienced deep assurances of His plans for me. He gives me hope amidst the struggles that I am facing. Yes, I may struggle sometimes, but He is there to comfort me and invites me to stand up and walk together with Him. How loving is our God!
Having experienced true love, I was happily baptised and welcomed into the family of God after one year of journeying in RCIY. I am so blessed to finally enter into life in Christ. I was lost but now I am found. My brothers and sisters, I am praying that you may be touched by God and personally encounter His divine love for you. Will you open the door of your heart for the Lord to enter?