On the set of "Bountiful," produced by Susan Shearer
& Amber Deegan and Directed by Eric Tozzi
Last night at the Wednesday Night Prayer Service for Media City Church a man named Paul came in for prayer. He was from FL and had come to break into Hollywood with his screenplay.
He was broke, living in his car and his father had recently died. He was desperate to find work so he could earn a few hundred dollars to return home. He had found absolutely no work and he was desperate. He knew he needed to return home. He broke down sobbing uncontrollably as we laid hands on and prayed for him.
Later one girl told the story of how she had received $20 unexpectedly and has given it away to someone else and then received even more money unexpectedly. Generosity was the point of her story. She said that God rewards those who "give it away" cheerfully.
As the prayer meeting broke up, I said to Paul and to the group, "So you know we are for real, here is $20 to help you get back to FL." Many others came up to him and gave him money, which he stuffed into his pocket. Yet he was still depressed because of what he saw as insurmountable financial need.
We talked for quite awhile about his screenplay. I asked him if it was honoring to God. He didn't directly answer, but said that it wasn't appropriate to talk about it in a church. I did not condemn him, but rather told him of our mission in 168: to illuminate the word of God and to make God-honoring films.
I explained the rationale and the long view of "The Envelope."
With each generation of filmmakers, the envelope is pushed to the point that shocking things of today will be tame compared to tomorrow's taboos. The result is a society (and children) that is increasingly foul-mouthed and accepting of debauchery. And story suffers greatly too. If you can't rely on shock value to entertain then you actually have to make an excellent story!!
IS IT REALLY EDGY ANYMORE TO BE EDGY? Shouldn't we really be uplifting those who build up society rather that those who degrade it.
Rather, the real rebels are those who rebel against the world's system and values by including beauty and honor and truth in their films and dare I say it, the truth of Jesus.
Please see the Evangelista Award Winning (Best gospel of Jesus Presentation) film on the "Best of 168 2010" DVD. Though not technically perfect, 1st Time Filmmaker Alberto Portillo's "Relentless Heart" is an excellent model and template for a "Gospel Film."
To order DVD click Here or call 818-843-6060.
Back to the miracle:
Twice I urged Paul to count the money. Twice he refused in his depression over the mountain of money he still needed to return home.
The third I asked him, he humored me and pulled out the wad of bills. We counted over $250, more than enough to get him home.
He was completely overwhelmed and excited by his need being completely met! He was giddy and couldn't wait to tell the folks in FL what God had done for him.
Me and a few others are still a little bruised from all the hugs he gave. I am also amazed that God did this and I know he will take care of us always.
And I know that all of our financial problems are nothing to Him who gave us life.