Chapter One, To the Gates of Hell, recounts for us how Jacky became a Christian. Blah blah blah, failed the bar exam, blah blah blah, made his wife miserable, blah bling blah, went to church, read C.S. Lewis, became transformed. Ta-Da! Magic!
He also dogs on Janet Reno putting her feet up on her desk while she was interviewing him for the State Attorney’s office back in the day. Oh, and that she’s a cop-hater. We’ll get back to Janet Reno later in the book.
I love how surprised he was to go to a church in Miami where people were wearing shorts. Um, it’s Florida and it gets fucking hot. What else do you need to know? “I wondered if I had wandered into a hippie commune.” But he knows better, because Richard Nixon went to this Presbyterian church back in the day, and we know how he felt about hippies, yes sirree bob!
So, this new pastor is a revelation, and he talks to Jack and gives him Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis to read, and just like that, he’s a Jesus freak, ready to enter the gates of hell.
Chapter Two – Trial Run. So, with the help of Jasus, Thompson finally passes his bar exam and begins to work in various places. Nothing seems to satisfy him, and then he begins to take medical malpractice cases, one of which “taught [him] more about human nature than medicine or law.” It was a case of a stillborn birth, and in the midst of attempting to resuscitate the infant, it was discovered that the patient had actually been carrying twins. Apparently, the doctor told the nurses to stop trying to save the “dead” baby and help with the second. But, the child was not dead! So, the doctor tried to cover his tracks, but a woman that was full of faith and God and Jesus’ good lovin’ risked her job to defy the doctor’s orders (of course, he has to mention it’s a Christian woman; no heathens, or worse, Jews would have done as much).
Thompson is at a loss for what he should do with his life. So, he does what any other rational being would do and goes to a counselor, Christian, of course, who asks him, “What is it you think God is calling you to do?”
He wanted to be radical and used by god for a higher purpose, to help others, even if it meant putting HIMSELF in harm’s way. He knows that sounds “egomaniacal,” and it does! So, his vocational counselor tells him to pray on it and he does. He opens his own law practice and then makes a fateful decision one day. To listen to the radio.
And it changed his life . . . forever. I’ve heard that Phil Collins can have the effect on people . . .