Life Lessons from the Cinematic Irish Mob

“I don’t want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product of me.”

–Mob boss Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson) in The Departed

Questionable source notwithstanding, that’s a profoundly Christian statement. The whole idea of “salt” and “light” is that the world in which we live is affected, changed, because of who Christ has made us and where he has placed us. And yet countless churches and Christians saunter through Door #1 and never look back.

What’s wrong with Door #2? It’s hard, for starters. It’s much easier to let something else mold us than to take the initiative to make a difference.

Door #2 also flies in the face of our individual cult of personality. That perspective won’t brook selfishness. While many people (including me) have asserted that we Americans worship celebrity, I’m realizing that the only celebrity we care about more than Anna Nicole or Paris Hilton is ourselves.

Mainly because it hurts, Door #2 deserves more traffic. It demands that we look outward and refuse to allow the world to continue as it is. It’s impossible to choose Door #2 and not care about what is going wrong in our world.

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One thought on “Life Lessons from the Cinematic Irish Mob”

  1. “While many people (including me) have asserted that we Americans worship celebrity, I’m realizing that the only celebrity we care about … is ourselves.”

    Sadly, that’s a very true observation. Good post, man. I loved that line in that movie! (Although, “I thought I was supposed to go into shock, but I can still feel that. Why am I not in shock? That really hurts!” line was very memorable.)

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