This weekend, actor, producer and media mogul Tyler Perry spoke at Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church.
He told the congregation his story, and how he saw God present throughout the successes and failures of his career.
Perry told the congregants about being a Christian in Hollywood. He explained that he went to seminary and was a minister in his church, but eventually he felt an urge to share the story of Jesus in a different way: “The Lord’s voice spoke to me and said, ‘Your ministry won’t be in a pulpit, but through television and film.’ Though I sometimes don’t do Christian movies, I’m still a Christian. I’m an artist who wants to do a lot of different things.”
Perry’s early career was marked by a lot of struggle as he was attempting to lift his theater productions off the ground. His mother was telling him not to pursue art anymore, and he eventually quit shopping his production and went to work for a phone company.
“When you have a dream and God has given you a vision, and you have people in your ear, you have to pay attention to what God has said to you,” Perry said. “I knew God had more for me, but I had given up on it. I look back at everything I thought was a failure, and I realize God was using that moment for my good.”
Perry also taught from Genesis 22, specifically the story of Abraham and Isaac. He speculated on the anxiety Isaac must have felt upon seeing the altar and the wood and the knife, but no sacrifice. He told those in attendance that if they themselves were anxious about the sacrifices in their path, not to be anxious.
“We’re living under grace. You’re walking under this worry, but God will always be the sacrifice for what you’re going through. Why are you nailing yourself to a cross that Jesus has already come down from? God will provide.”