One evening at my church, before Eucharistic Adoration, there was a talk by a local youth group leader. And during this talk she said something that changed everything for me. She said “The reason it is so hard to find quiet time with God is because it is so important. Satan has placed before us so many distractions to get in the way of our alone time with our Father and Creator.”
I realized during my prayer time in the presence of Jesus during Adoration that I had done an awful lot of talking and whining, but not a lot of listening.
That night, I couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned and eventually made my way out to the couch, fidgety. Knowing what was weighing on my mind, I sat alone in the dark room and began to pray.
I said “Lord, I don’t spend enough time listening. So, I’m going to ask you a very important question. And them I’m going to listen for one hour, saying nothing, praying for nothing, simply awaiting your answer.”
Still with some trepidation I finally prayed. I said “Lord, I really think you want me to make films with Sonlight Pictures. But that may be my will getting in the way of your will, Lord. So, I want to take my will out of the picture. I’ll do whatever it is you want me to do.”
I took a deep breath and finally prayed, “So…. do you want me to make Christian films?”
Two things happened which surprised me and which made me know the answer was from my Lord. First, the answer was immediate and with a sense of urgency. Second, the answer was nothing I had ever considered.
The reply to my prayer was this. “Peter, I don’t want you to do this. I NEED you to do this!”
Need? Did I hear Need? God NEEDS me to do this? What?????
I was just looking for approval, something like “Well, Pete, you sure have done a lot of prep work here, so yeah, you can go ahead and make your little movies.”
But God needs me to make movies? Well, that’s not a hobby. That’s a vocation! And if it’s my vocation, then I have a lot of work to do!
That was about six months ago. Since then we’ve incorporated Sonlight Pictures. We’ve finished shooting Club God and we’ve written a six-part Christian teen web series called Purgatory, USA that is scheduled to shoot this summer.
And it wasn’t until I was editing Club God that I realized the conversation that God has with the comedian in the story is really the conversation God was trying to have with me all those years I was afraid to ask him about his will in my life. In the story God complains about people praying and not listening to his answer. Or that he may say No, but its for the right reasons. Or that we have to honor him above all things.
When will I learn that I should just trust the Almighty and be done with it? Why must my own insecurities get in the way time and time again?
Looking back I realize that everything the Lord had me do in the past has led me to this moment. I have acted professionally. I’ve worked in front and behind the camera. I’ve written screenplays. I’ve directed projects. I’ve managed mulit-million dollar projects in my “real job.” I’ve had to overcome health challenges and learn to persevere. All things, all jobs, have led me to this… Sonlight Pictures.
I can only thank Jesus for his patience with me. And his mercy.
And now the real journey begins…