Born Again Celebrities
January 25, 2019
Born Again Celebrities Give God the Glory
Celebrities who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior give him the glory of their success in their careers. Among mainstream celebrities, there are those who live as evangelical Christians. They are not ashamed of Christ and speak freely of him at every opportunity. Some have written best-selling Christian themed books and others have endeavored to bring the gospel to others. Here are just a few who have achieved fame and popularity and shared their thoughts as believers.
George Foreman, former professional boxer competing from 1969 to 1977 and from 1987 to 1997 is a two-time world heavyweight champion and an Olympic gold medalist. He is also an ordained minister, entrepreneur, and author. In 1977 while in the locker room after a boxing match with Jimmy Young who won with a knockout, Foreman had a near-death experience. He said he died and went to a dark place but it was God’s grace that brought him back. It was a life-changing experience and soon he gave his life to God and became a church minister. In an interview with the Associated Press, Foreman shared, “I knew that Jesus Christ was coming alive in me,” as he came to while lying on a table surrounded by those who found him. Foreman said, “I ran into the shower and turned on the water and — hallelujah! — I was born again. I kissed everybody in the dressing room and told them I loved them. That happened in March 1977, and I never have been the same again.”
Raised a Roman Catholic, Stephen Baldwin, the youngest of four brothers of Hollywood celebrity fame, came to know the Lord after the events of 9/11. Since then, as an evangelical Christian, Baldwin has faced anti-Christian sentiment in Hollywood. He has been involved in ministry and Christian films and remains a powerful voice for Jesus in the entertainment industry. In an interview with CBN, Baldwin said, “Stephen Baldwin believes that now we’re in a particular time in the world’s history where it is time that people stand up for Jesus. That people get more aggressive and radical how they communicate with our culture about Jesus. My point is simply this: I believe I have a calling. Do you know what that calling is? To stand up in a new and hard core, radical way for the Lord. In the process, if I insult a couple of people, if I offend a couple of people, and if I got to shake it up a little bit, as long as it is led by the Holy Spirit, amen.”
Many of us remember actress Kim Fields as Tootie from the 1980s TV sitcom Facts of Life or as Regine in the 1990s Living Single, she also a wife and mom. The veteran actress, TV personality, and star shares her life stories in her latest book BLESSED LIFE: My Surprising Journey of Joy, Tears, and Tales from Harlem to Hollywood published in 2017.
Kim Fields became a Christian at age 14 and has found God to be with her every step of the way since then. An excerpt from an overview of her book describes what she wants to pass on to readers, “Hope, strength, light, memories, and some laughs. Writing this book let me see the remarkable journey I’ve been on, but it also allowed me to see that we all have, in a sense, been on it together. Though the details may be different, I sense that we may share many similarities. And so this book is for us, both to remind and encourage us that what God had done in our pasts, He will do in our futures.”
Kathie Lee Gifford
She’s a TV host, singer, songwriter, and author and is best known as the co-host on the talk show Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee, that ran for 15 years from 1985 to 2000. Kathie Lee Gifford earned 11 Daytime Emmy nominations and won her first Daytime Emmy as part of NBC’s Today team in 2010. When she was 12-years old, she went to the movie theater to watch The Restless Ones, a film produced by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and she felt the Lord speak to her. “As I watched, I heard a voice speak to me directly. Although it wasn’t audible, I sensed God saying deep in my spirit, Kathie, I love you. If you’ll trust me, I’ll make something beautiful out of your life,’” Gifford told Kate Shellnutt of Christianity Today. At the end of the movie someone stood up and invited people to come forward as a step in faith. She did, and asked Jesus into her heart. She is very passionate about her faith and describes herself as a “Bible nerd.” In an interview with Billy Hallowell on The Billy Hallowell Podcast, she recounts what she said to Megyn Kelly after the death of Billy Graham, “I feel like I have the cure for the malignancy of the soul and he has a name — and it’s Jesus and I have to share when I’m given a chance because I don’t want people to not know the freedom they can have in Him.”
He’s a New York Times bestselling author and people around the world recognize him as a movie star and martial arts expert. Chuck Norris is the only man to hold an eighth degree Black Belt Grand Master in Tae Kwon Do in the Western Hemisphere. He plays the hero in Walker, Texas Ranger, the longest running CBS series to date. But he is also a Christian and credits his faith in everything he does. He wrote several Christian based books including Against All Odds, his inspiring story of how he overcame adversity giving God all the glory for where he is today. He speaks of his faith whenever there’s an opportunity. Norris gave his life to the Lord when was 12 years old at a Billy Graham crusade event. “It’s amazing because people come up to me and say, ‘Chuck, you’re the luckiest guy in the world to be a world karate champion and a movie and TV star.’ When they say this to me, I kind of smile because luck had nothing to do with it; God had everything to do with it,” – from his interview with CBN’s The 700 Club.
Actor Chuck Norris places corporal chevrons on U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. John Wright during a promotion ceremony at Camp Taqaddum in the Al Anbar province of Iraq Nov. 2, 2006. Norris is in Iraq on a United Service Organizations (USO) tour.
Outside the Mainstream
Born again celebrities are often ostracized from working in their field. Many remain quiet worshippers, but others, like the ones mentioned here, have proclaimed their faith and use their celebrity status to spread the Gospel and create awareness of Christian causes. God has blessed them in achieving success in their careers and they choose to give back to the Lord by doing his work.
==> Be inspired and read Let Hope Abound.
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