What To Do With A Spotlight

I have a confession to make…I watched an awards show, the VMA’s…. Yes, yes I know unforgivable! But in my defense first-it was a rerun and second-there is absolutely nothing good to watch on any of the 14,990,837 TV channels  at 11:00 o’clock at night-ALSO because of the nature of living in Hollywood it has been impossible NOT to hear the whirlwind of sound bites repeatedly and violently being shoved in my ears about EVERYTHING that happens in this crazy place. But In the midst of this avalanche of often unwanted information I usually tune out-I kept hearing a story that peaked my interest. It was of someone by the name of Justin being ridiculed for thanking Jesus. Hmmm.

So that’s how I ended up in-front of the TV at close to the middle of the night, watching a rerun of a show that has seemed to do nothing but build the ego’s of already pompous people and tear down good values in a fun and entertaining way. YAY! I watched as the first number began. Someone our geniration has come to know all to well took the stage, Lady Gaga. I watched, as honestly, she gave the performance of a lifetime. It was surprising, dynamic and as much as I hate to admit it, stunning. The performance to be quite honest was amazing, the performance being given by someone who actually regularly tells her concert goers to confess with their mouths that Satan is with us….wow….

As a Jesus guy myself, this is not my cup of, well-really anything. Aside from being a bit freaky, I so suddenly wished there was someone as talented and influential singing the RIGHT messages as loud as she is presenting the wrong ones (Keep reading you wont be disappointed).

I continued watching the spectacle. The night raced on with more lights, costumes and fan-pleasing performances by Kanye West and J-Z. Awards being given out by the most famous and important people, and then even more flashy and eye-catching performances from everybody from Beyoncé to a homage to Brittney Spears. As the loud, bright, and flashy continued, I steadily grew weary and increasingly sad. Sad at all of the glorification of blatant rebellion and lack of morals. I picked up the remote to turn off this depressing world to close my eyes, when something stopped me and kept me from giving up on pop culture as a whole.

There in the midst of all the noise, something really amazing happened. Kim Kardashian walked onto the stage and announced the winner for Best Male Video. Sixteen-year-old Justin Beiber stood up to accept the award. He, in his hip glasses and bright red pants, riding much too low for a reputable young man (close to mine when I was a 17-year-old boy), walks (not runs) to the stage. As he accepts the award, he turns to the crowd of self-important people, seemingly influential figures, controversial performers, rich big wigs, stars and names known all around the world, & as they all quiet down this young man steps to the mic, and says this,

“I just want to say thank you so much, not only to God but to Jesus, Because I wouldn’t be here without him. He’s really blessed me. He’s put me in this position. So I want to say thank you so much.

Also, I want to say thank you to all the other nominees, They were amazing. I’m a true fan of all of them, so I want to share this award with all them. You guys are amazing.”

Then, he walked off the stage. I sat back amazed. I don’t know about you, but I thought this was beautiful. In this a sea of self-love I was watching amidst all the “I’d like to thank my agent’s” and impersonal shout-outs to God, comes a young, fresh-faced, inexperienced, boy, who with the short time he is given on stage, recognizes, not just the undefined name of “God” but rather, he specifically gives Jesus the credit.

First, what a very brave thing to do. I can’t imagine the kind of pressure to do and say things a certain way especially when you’re young and fame and things of this world are so appealingly displayed.

Second-I don’t know much about this young man. I know he is a flawed human who has made mistakes, but I think honestly it’s amazing and inspiring that, in the middle of all that darkness, someone was willing to speak out in the arena that God had given him in the midst of unbelievable pressure, to give Jesus the credit.

Unfortunately, I was alone in my thinking. The day, after joke after joke, comment after comment, and jab after jab, spilled over the media outlets about how dumb this kid was because of a grammatical error. That would be enough to make me want to give up all together. And I don’t know how it will be handled by him. But I think that this young man will be blessed by God in someway, because Jesus once said,

“Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.”

Matthew 10:32 NLT

Jesus blesses and uses those who recognize him. That is the point of this. Jesus doesn’t bless and use us because we never make mistakes, or have perfect grammar (I would actually never be blessed if this were true, so I’m with you Justin if you reading this). But he just loves it simply when we turn everything we have back to him.

So this has inspired me to begin to recognize Jesus wherever God has put me, whether it’s in the office, behind a computer or in front of a huge crowd. I figure if a 17-year-old heart-throb can do it in front of millions of people, I can do it to the arena God has given me. So here goes.

I give all the credit for everything I have been given, my amazing family, my incredible girlfriend, any kind of platform I have, and anything I will become to Jesus.

I hope that this might inspire you to recognize Jesus in the arena He has given you, whether it’s a house and family, or a world stage, He WILL bless us when we look and point to Him.

To watch clip click here

To encourage this young man of faith click here


18 thoughts on “What To Do With A Spotlight

  1. I love this. You aren’t afraid of pointing out the good in others. As surprising as it may sound, a lot of young folks in our culture don’t do that…and they definitely don’t give credit to Jesus either. Good for Justin Beiber…and good for you 😉 You are a wonderful light in this silly town.

  2. Hi Nathan,

    My husband and I are cheering you on from Vancouver, Canada!! Hollywood is starving for God’s love. May his favor follow you through your journeys. Looking forward to reading more of your reflections and testimonies!!


  3. Just keep doing what you are doing! God is with you; and Jesus is honored and glorified by your efforts to be a light in the dark. God bless yo as you serve Him. 😉

  4. I haven’t watched an award show in quite a while, but when I hear thanks to God, it doesn’t do much to me. But, when I hear Jesus, I hoot and do a little dance (not really), but yes! I am cheering all the way. That is awesome. Thank you for your example in Hollywood. Yes, you already are making a difference!

  5. Oh this is so awesome! And what a challenge to give Jesus credit in every arena, even in somewhere is seemingly hard as unsaved family members… Thank you for writing this. So excited for you and your Hollywood journey – we need more warriors. I’ll be praying for you, too 🙂

  6. I didn’t watch the award show- I am always blown away at how silly it all is. I agree with what you said about Justin. The sad part is that there have been so many young Christians like him in Hollywood, and they don’t usually make it without being completely changed. Prayerfully it will be different for him.

    • I totally agree! It’s sometimes a depressing thing to watch peoples light fade, but I think our job is to be a light and pray for those who do have a voice. I think you are SO right in praying. It’s neat to hear someone come from a realistic stance but a hopeful and prayerful one as well. Keep it up!

  7. It is very true that we need to pray for those in difficult positions as light bearers. Sometimes it is easy to write them off. I will certainly make it a matter to pray more specifically for individuals in this position. Thanks for the reminder. God bless.

  8. a friend directed me to your blog, i have only read this post but will def take the time to read your others. thank you for your words, my husband works in the industry, as will our daughter when she graduates college next may, so we have had our share of critics, christian and non, that dont approve. we are bible-believing born-again christians, and believe that wherever God has placed us, He will use us. how else would non-believers in the industry get to see Jesus? what if we are the only Jesus they see? yes, he is the token “christian”, and its a good thing…. because he does his job as unto the Lord, they respect his work ethic, because they know he prays to God, they go to him to intercede on their behalf because they dont even know how to pray, when he is around they become better people, they wont use profanity or crude humor, these are just some of the ways a little light can infiltrate a dark world. my husband is not perfect, but God is, and so he will represent Christ wherever he is placed, even in hollywood. we should be praying for our soldiers, like you, like my husband and daughter, in that battle, because it is indeed a dark place to be, and you need all the support you can get! push onward and upward for the kingdom!!! you have our support!

    • That is so amazing. We totally need more people like your husband, he sounds like the kind of person I would love to emulate. The darkest places need the brightest lights, and where not here to please anyone, even christians, we just serve God. What a neat place God has put your family. Thank you for your kind words.

  9. I find this interesting, considering Justin doesn’t really seem to be a Christian. And just because he came out with a song called Pray doesnt make him a Christian, and all he sings about is girls. But I do, however, have to give him his due credit for saying what he said. So I give a loud and hearty WOOT to his comment. Someday if I get into the industry successivley like I dream, it’ll be for God’s glory, and I hope to repeat Justin’s action at the award ceremony: Give credit to Jesus, and who cares what the world thinks. =)

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