Thursday, 30 May 2013


I have a younger brother and when we were growing up he used to be (read: had to be) better than me at seemingly everything. We grew up playing basketball and he was more athletic and more skilled than me and the only way I could beat him was to use my four years of extra growth (which lasted until he had a growth spurt and started hitting the gym). Now the only way I can beat him is to punch him in the kidneys...I don't actually punch him in the kidneys, but I'm trying to illustrate that the only way I can outplay my brother is to rough him up a little, that's just what big brothers do!

Of course, when I was younger I was insanely jealous. He got picked to play for representative teams and travel all around the country. I was lucky if I got to pick my jersey. My parents used to do that pity thing, you know when they pat you on the head and tell you that you have other gifts and you're still special even though you suck at basketball...Yep, thanks mum.

As I've grown up I haven't grown any less jealous. Every time I see a flashy sports car I think "man, if only..." or every time I see a young family I think "I just can't wait to have babies!" I don't know if any one else does this, but I often think that anywhere else would be better than here. Don't get me wrong, I love my job, I love where I live, I love my family and I like my girlfriend; but give me a choice between a Ferrari and my little, yellow, granny-car Suzuki and I'd take the Ferrari.



So often I look at other people's circumstances and I think "I want that, I want to be like you" but actually, God has given me the gift of who I am and what I am right now. This was probably what I wrestled with the most when I was single and especially when I was discerning the priesthood. Single life and discernment frustrated the junk out of me because I wanted to say "yep, I'm going to be a priest" or "yep, I'm going to get married". I would get so downhearted when I would watch a friend get ordained or when one of my mates announced on Facebook he had a girlfriend; because I felt like I was so far away from doing either.

But when I look back on my "single/discerning" phase I grin. Then I chuckle. Then I laugh hysterically. Those were some awesome times and while my friends were having the awesome experiences of ordination or relationships; I was travelling Australia, visiting my family in the Philippines, playing in the annual Interseminary Soccer tournament in Wagga Wagga, recording Christian rap songs, enjoying the lovely Cairns weather or taking tourist-y photos at Sydney's great landmarks. I came that close to letting jealousy of my friends blind me from the gifts God was giving me right there and then.

So often I let jealousy creep in and now I don't have my parents telling me that I have other gifts. I don't want to miss out on the gifts God has for me today because I'm too busy dreaming about Ferraris.

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