Testimony: Tom McCormick

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Our fifth post in an ongoing series right here on the blog: Delanco Camp veteran Tom McCormick, pictured here with Tenth Avenue North singer Michael Donehey, has been willing to share what God has been teaching him. If you would like to share your testimony or what God’s been teaching you, email kevin.wolf@delanco.org with blog testimony in the subject line.

Lent. The time of reflection and repentance in the life of the Church. As a Roman Catholic, Lent is extremely important, as we focus on the need to repent, to examine our lives and prepare us for the most holy day, the Resurrection of Christ.

We fast, practice abstinence, go to confession more regularly, all with the intention of drawing closer to the mystery of the Passion. But an aspect of Lent that we focus on is forgiveness. We talk about God forgiving us, how He loves us so much that He forgives our sins, but we also discuss the need to forgive others. As Christ said, unless we forgive others, God will NOT forgive us. That is heavy!!

It is one of the hardest things for a Christian to do, as it is an act of the will, and we may not be so inclined to forgive when we think we deserve to hold a grudge. God does not hold a grudge towards us, so we should not be so quick to do so.

As we continue on with Lent, let us concentrate on His forgiveness, for He has forgiven us a great deal, and we should be quick to forgive. We expect God to forgive us the moment we ask, we should be as quick to forgive. “God have mercy on me, a sinner” should be our prayer.

May God continue to guide us as we seek His heart during Lent.

Advent Devotion: Our blessed hope

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As we continue on with Advent and draw closer to the celebration of the Christ Child, let us focus on two other aspects of Advent. We are just about ready to celebrate His first Advent.

We all know the story, how God visited us in a manger, and lived with us. This is what we concentrate on this time of year. However, another aspect of Advent that does not get a lot of discussion is His second Advent, or as we call it, the Second Coming.

Jesus promised us He would return, and that is one of the blessed hopes we as Christians have. Jesus will come again to take us home, to make all things right and we will see the defeat of sin and death. What a great anticipation!

But like the first believers, who thought Christ was coming in their time, they waited, and so are we, waiting. But let us not be sad that He has not come yet, for in a very real sense He has, and this is an aspect of Advent that is here, now!

He came as a baby, He will come in glory but right now, we have His blessed presence within us! This is also an Advent, when we look forward to His coming in our daily lives. This is something that we can rejoice in every day. We do not need to wait for Christmas to enjoy Advent, for we can enjoy it daily as we enjoy His presence, now!

Tom McCormick attended camp in his youth and is now a camper parent and volunteer at camp.

Lent Reflection: A closer walk with thee

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During this time of Lent, we are called to focus on our sins and shortcomings, and for some, that means giving up of something and/or adding something to our lives in hopes of drawing closer to God.

While sin is never a fun topic to think of, these 40 days are here to form and shape us. Just like the paralytic Jesus encountered, we always don’t come to God with our greatest need in hand. In Mark 2:1-12, the paralytic’s friends come to Christ with one purpose…to have their friend healed. With great determination, they lower him to Jesus. How hard do we try to get to Jesus? Are we willing to dig and claw our way through mud and climb the heights to get to Christ? Jesus sees their faith and heals the man, right?

Not right away..He sees his greatest need, for his sins to be forgiven. Jesus pronounces his sins forgiven, and He opens up the floodgates of controversy! How can this man dare to forgive sins? Who does He think He is? think the Pharisees. Jesus is about to give them the answer…as He alone can.

“So you may know that the Son of Man has power to forgive sins…” Wow!! What a statement! Not only does He forgive his sins, He heals him so he can walk. The man thought he needed to be healed physically, Christ knew he needed his spiritual problem to be healed first. How often do we come to Christ with a material, physical or even spiritual issue before we address our sin issue?

Christ knows our sins need forgiven before we do, and He waits for us to ask, so our relationship with Him many not be hindered. Lent is a time when we look inward, to examine ourselves and see areas that need change, and to ask God to forgive us, so we can move on in out walk with Him. May we all find “a closer walk with Thee” during this time of Lent.

Tom McCormick is an alum, parent and volunteer at Delanco Camp. Image credit: Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons