Opportunity of Sin

Recently we had our staff retreat for my office. We had a wonderful retreat leader who began the day with some powerful reflections before giving us most of the day to unpack the wisdom and let the Holy Spirit work on us.

The biggest impact might have been a conversion in her own heart throughout the day. She had made an off the cuff remark that maybe wasn’t the fairest to some others in ministry. I didn’t think much of it, but it obviously pierced her heart over lunch that she had done a wrong.

What happened next was to begin the afternoon she completely explained her action, how she came to realize the error of her ways, and that God didn’t shame her. Instead, God asked her a question. The question was this:

“What are you going to do about it?”

We all reflected on the power of God’s mercy, and that it isn’t so much a blank slate of forgiveness to abuse, but really an opportunity. God was inviting her to make a change, to do penance. To make amends.

This struck me as often I find myself apologizing in ministry almost as much as I’m doing the ministry God called me to. My wife Sharon often tells me to stop apologizing and saying sorry for things I don’t need to apologize for. And she’s right, I am often too much a people pleaser and don’t stand up for myself. But I also tell her that I kept screwing up! So I have to apologize!

But I think I often fail at the more critical next step. I often apologize, but I don’t answer God’s question of what am I going to do about it, and then act on it.

So I just spent tonight (when I wrote this) apologizing and seizing the opportunity to act in direct response and make a change. I’m not perfect, far from it. But I can be better, so I need to try.

So I ask you as we wrap this season of Youth Ministry, what opportunity is God placing before you to make a change?

Share and let’s hold one another accountable this summer! #SummerofOpportunity

A Christmas Story 2015

T’was the week before Christmas and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse
2 kids in bed, both fast asleep
so very rare to not hear a peep.

The year has been kind, a joy I could say
Ezra is 1 and does nothing but play
Okay you caught me, a bit of a lie
After all this kid is most DEFINTELY a guy

All of his toys, trucks, trains and more
Most inevitably end up all over the floor
But not until they are covered in drool
Or down in the toilet, which he thinks is a pool

The kid loves his sports, he’s got quite the aim
Our faces are proof, they’ll never be the same
Unlike Bautista, not a bat Ezzie flips
Instead it’s his food, whether veggies or chips

Although our days end quite literally in pain
Our boy has been nothing but a positive gain
The way he leans in mouth wide for a kiss
Or the moments he wrestles with his favorite big sis

Our house fills with laughter as he schemes and plots
a peekaboo master who hides in bare spots
And although we lose things down open vents
We are so very blessed God made us his rents

Now for the oldest, Jacinta our joy
For she is most certainly no doubt not a boy
She twirls, and sings, and loves all things pink
The questions she asks makes my brain hurt to think

She started piano and she loves to play
And play and play and play and play

This kid is quite smart, she didn’t get that from me
Much to Grandma’s delight, she got my personality
Smarts, wit and temper, sure quite the mix
My ego has never taken so many licks

Our little lady loves to read, draw and sew
And can often be found cuddling her bro
But don’t you be fooled by her dainty like skill
For it is on the soccer field she’s out to kill

Jacinta is quite special, we know that indeed
She is always concerned about those most in need
Her prayers are not one to ever be selfish
And its always for others she would give her last wish

As the parents of these kids, we are well aware
That there has to be something, so much more out there
Although we are tired, and full of kid snot
We love being parents, no really, a lot

We can always do better, ways to learn, ways to grow
But with our family, what we like to show
Is all of the ways that we can spread love
By sharing a laugh, and sending prayers above.

Love Colm, Sharon, Jacinta, and Ezra

Mawriage Is What Brings Us Together

There’s been a lot of talk about marriage recently. I hate the war of words that’s going on. I think what we need to focus on is honouring the dignity of all, supporting families as best as we can while defending what we believe in with above all things charity.

I think that goes for all people in any debate or disagreement. If you can’t love them, your argument is invalid to me. And there’s a lot of invalid arguments out there.

Don’t be #JerksForJesus people. That’s not classy, that’s not helpful.

With that said. The sacrament of matrimony is the most important thing in my life; sacred and precious to me. As I often say in talks, Sharon is my primary vocation in life. She’s my “ticket” to heaven. Through her, I experience Christ’s love and mercy. Through my flawed attempts to love her with all that I am, in turn, Christ’s love flows into the world.

So six years ago today I made a promise. I continue to try to live up to it every day. To celebrate, we’ve uploaded the goofy video we made with our friends Marie and Greg for our wedding. While almost 300 people were enjoying our potluck reception (epic by the way), they got to enjoy seeing our beautiful faces explain how we got to where we were.

So internets regrettably you weren’t invited to our wedding. But now it’s like you were there!

Enjoy Part 1.

Spontaneous Prayer

A toddler's praise

Sometimes God blesses you with random moments of hilarity and pride to show you you’re not a failure as a parent. The following was one of those moments. Behold Jacinta’s praise song from this morning;

 

Jesus Christ, of The Lord! Be our guest, Give us thank! of The Lord!

of The Lord, Jesus Christ! Keep us safe. Give us beds!

The end.