When Ben Affleck won best director for “ARGO” at the 65th BAFTA’s (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) he gave a memorable acceptance speech that alluded to his rollercoaster ride in the business:
“This is a second act for me and you have given me that….” he said. “I’m so grateful and proud, and I dedicate this to anyone else out there trying to get their second act.”
Three months later I had the opportunity to host Ben and his executive producer in Tampa on a site visit for his upcoming film “Live By Night.” After spending the day showcasing the area, we said our good-byes, and he wished me the best of luck on my upcoming journey.
I replied, “Thanks, I’m headed out to find my second act.” He smiled at me and knew exactly what I was referring to.
I had shared with him that months earlier I began a faith journey and was led to quit working full time after a near 20-year career in sports, entertainment and politics. My “director” (the Holy Spirit) couldn’t have written a better script as I sat with Hollywood’s elite and shared the same morning of Ben’s site visit I received an offer on my home. That was key to releasing me into the wilderness of faith.
Now, three years and more than 50,000 miles later, I find myself tucked away in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. How did I get from Florida to Idaho? By being led.
Being led required an intimate relationship with God, which meant learning how to spend extended time with Him. He promises us in Jeremiah 29:13-14 “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the LORD.” By responding to His invitation, He did immeasurably more than I ever thought. He filled my life with incredible adventure, hundreds of divine appointments, healed deep soul wounds, and taught me that true relationship is about letting go of ”doing” anything for Him and learning to just ”be” with Him. Above all, He made sure I knew He loves me.
It was like finding the pearl of great price. I had sold my home and gave everything away and found Him! This new freedom, this intimacy, this wild adventure is the life of faith I had been longing for. He empowered me to face my fears, endure fiery trials, embrace His deafening silence, and allow doubt and loneliness to thoroughly run their course. And through it all I’ve learned to deny Satan’s lies and embrace that He is a good God. He is ONLY good and His goodness triumphs over everything!
True to His goodness, on our third anniversary, the Holy Spirit gave me a gift and showed me my first step out of the wilderness. “It’s time to begin sharing all the lessons gathered inside your heart.”
I’m responding to His gift by creating this blog -- my second act -- and hope to inspire wayward souls to begin seeking God with all their heart. Every journey begins with a first step. I hope reading this blog will be your first step toward a deeper relationship. The Holy Spirit is waiting to lead you, too.
And like Ben, I dedicate this blog to anyone else out there trying to get their second act.