I enjoy good movies and TV. And I tend to be optimistic about the potential of local believers to make a difference in the media. I’m more than a little proud when I see something good come out of our city’s studios — and prouder still when I can say I know someone who appears in the credits.
So much of my business is words. I speak them. I write them. (I’m typing them now.) I pray them. And I say I am doing it all for God.
I say I have faith. I preach the faith. Yet I pass the San Gabriel Mountains, and I do not see them move. In fact, at rush hour, my car barely moves.
Every generation in its turn is proud of its accomplishments — proud even to the point of arrogance. Usually we’re a lot more impressed than we ought to be. As we get older, if we are wise like King Solomon, we come to realize that “Nothing is new under the sun!”
Now that people call me Father, I’m beginning to appreciate the trouble I made for my dad when I was young. I’m not talking about any spectacular rebellion. But, like a lot of young guys, I bristled at the idea that anyone should have authority over me.
Repentance and belief: these are not two unrelated ideas. The more we indulge our sinful thoughts and desires, the more difficult it is to sustain a life of faith. We no longer see reality as it is. We become blinded by the motes and beams we’ve allowed to impair us.
Lent is a great gift of our tradition. It’s forty days when we get God’s help to change the things we most need to change. Make the most of it.
One of the symptoms of our fallen nature is an itch — a dissatisfaction with the way things are. It’s a restlessness that makes us want to move on, to do something else or go somewhere different. But our impulsive, random changes don’t fix the problem.
“You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless till they rest in you.” So said Saint Augustine, who was a man of many gifts, but more sins. He was at the same time a spiritual seeker and a spiritual slacker.
Want to know how to make it to the top in show business?
I know, I know what you’re thinking: I’m a priest! How should I know?
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