It doesn’t happen very often, but every once in a while, I complain directly to God about something that’s bothering me. Last week, my frustration with an ongoing issue finally got to the point that one of my thoughts went up to God in the form of a question: Why can’t you just have an angel appear to me in a dream and tell me what to do? I’m tired of playing these cat and mouse games where I’m always struggling to try to figure out what I should do.
I recently heard about a conversation that took place between some members of my extended family. The question they were apparently attempting to answer was, Why does Harry take the time to write a religious article every week? They came to the conclusion that I probably have some deep-seated guilt about my past that compels me to write. Writing a weekly article is apparently the only way I can atone for my guilt.
If you pay attention to the news, you know about the recent resignation of our local U.S. Congressman, Aaron Schock. Schock is currently under investigation for violating federal law while he was in office. Some of the violations include using campaign funds for his own personal benefit, overcharging the government for mileage expenses, and flying around in private jets that were owned by individuals or companies who donated money to his campaign.
During the first three years of my law practice (1983 to 1986), I rented an office from some other attorneys. In addition to the use of an office, I was allowed to use the other attorneys’ receptionist to answer a separate telephone line that I had set up in the reception area. My agreement also included an arrangement in which I was able to use one of the secretaries to prepare legal documents. She kept track of the time she spent doing my work, and I paid an agreed-upon hourly rate to the attorneys for her services.
Last November, I received a letter from the wife (“Carla”) of one of my longtime business coaches and mentors. In the letter, Carla said her husband (“Dan”) was going to be celebrating his 60th birthday in December. She said that, as a gift, she wanted to give him letters from his friends and colleagues. She asked if I would be willing to write a letter to her husband that told him how I had benefited from my relationship with him.
I recently stumbled across an old article that Fr. John Hardon had given to me more than 20 years ago. The title of the article was “Writing and the Spiritual Life.” He gave the article to me after telling me that I had an obligation to influence other Catholics through the written word. After rereading the article, I decided to republish it here so you could also benefit from Fr. Hardon’s wisdom.
Last week, I wrote about how an adorer (“Tony”) had criticized me because of an article that I had written about Amazon.com and its founder, Jeff Bezos. Tony provided several reasons why I (and other Catholics) should refuse to do business with Amazon, one of which is that “Amazon distributes pornography.” Here’s how I responded to the comment about the pornography issue:
About five years ago, I was attending a weekday Mass at a local church. Halfway through the Mass, two women in their sixties snuck in the side door of the church and ran over to the nearest pew. Both women were wearing gray sweatshirts. The way they scurried over to the pew reminded me of the animated mice you would see in a Disney movie — because the women were short, pudgy, cute, and grinning from ear to ear.