“…It’s the most wonderful time of the year”
Praise. Worship. Workshops. Good food. Old and new friendships. Testimonies. Games. Small groups. Inspiring talks… But at the center of the Shine Gathering, is Jesus and His never-ending love for us. He is present in everyone we meet and all that happens at this life-changing gathering. Shine is a great place to seek answers to those big questions on your mind: Who am I? What is life really about? Is God real? What does it mean to be Christian? How can God have time for me?
Jesus mentions in the Gospel the certainty of God wanting to be invited into a relationship with you. He says, “Ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be open to you.” So will you ask? Will you seek? And will you knock? The choice is yours. Don’t let this experience go to waste. Everyone walks differently in this life, our faith journey’s are unique. The Shine Gathering is an experience of unity and an opportunity to embrace the God that unites us.
I attended my first Shine Gathering four years ago when I was in the Year 9 Ministry Class. It was an experience like no other. I was a shy 15-year-old who had no idea what I was getting myself into. But I came ready to embrace whatever I was to experience. I went in with no expectations, and I am so glad I did. Shine changed my life forever. It was the beginning of an unexpected adventure of discovering who I am as a child of God. I can’t wait to experience Shine again this year.
The theme of Shine this year is ‘YOU KNOW MY NAME’. “I have called you by name. You are mine,” is how Isaiah gets God to articulate this truth. Who doesn’t want to be called by name, known? The “knowing” and the “naming” seem to hit that inner part of ourselves and as disoriented, forgotten or ashamed as we feel ourselves to be, attention from another reminds us of our true shape in God.
Looking forward to seeing you there!