Book Excerpt: Produced by Faith by DeVon Franklin
Both approaches are problematic. If we lock our faith in the closet from nine to five because we're afraid of ridicule or questions about our loyalty, what governs our choices in climbing the career ladder? Will we lie, cheat others, or stab people in the back, then go home at the end of the day and put on our "I'm a Christian" clothes again? Plenty of people do exactly that because they fear that if they go public with their faith at work, they will be perceived as weak, divisive, or unwilling to do whatever it takes to succeed. But if we make such a choice, what does that say about our faith?
On the other hand, as believers we sometimes shun the secular world and limit our job prospects to a select group of potential employers or industries that we believe will be Christian friendly. But by doing so, we can lock ourselves in an echo chamber of ideas and beliefs just like our own, so we never really stretch or grow. Sometimes, we come to regard the world outside our bubble as the enemy.
When some Christians learn that I've worked in entertainment for over ten years, I can feel them take a mental step backward, as if they feel I'm sleeping with the enemy. I'm not offended; to many Christians, Hollywood is a modern-day Sodom and Gomorrah. This business is probably the last place most people expect to find a young Christian visibly and vocally expressing his faith while progressing in his career. But the truth is that not only has relying on my faith not harmed my career prospects, it has actually enhanced them.
Thrilling opportunities to work with the most dynamic people in the world have come my way precisely because I have been uncompromising about my Christian principles and making service to God the centerpiece of my work. Over the course of my career I have developed a set of guiding principles that I live by:
- God's will has priority over mine.
- Commit to the process of success that God has planned for me, no matter how long it takes.
- God has the authority to put my ambition in check.
- Strive to let the love of Christ be apparent in everything I do.
- Do not allow sin to reside in any area of my life. If I allow it, I understand it will limit my ability to receive God's full blessings.
- Do everything in my power to bring God's purpose for my life to fruition (faith without works is dead).
- Don't take shortcuts; if I want to be true to my beliefs, then shortcuts do not exist.
- Remember on the down days to never give up on myself and the dreams God has given me.
Published on June 14, 2012