As a working actress in Hollywood for many years, my routine included auditioning. I’d walk into a room full of competitive actors all competing for the same role and it was always intimidating. It required preparation and confidence. Many of the casting director’s (CD’s as we say in the biz) were tough to get a reaction from and you’d usually receive little or no feedback whether you were good or you plainly stunk. Many times I felt I had not delivered and then I would unexpectedly land the role, or the opposite scenario would play out. I learned as an actor that I had to be prepared for anything and then walk away and have a life – one built on the will of God.
Today as I cast projects for Cooke Pictures, I have a different perspective. I’m the one casting – choosing and evaluating. I want each person who walks into the room to win the role, but sadly somehow most of them miss the mark. Many of them act out the role rather than becoming the character. In other words – they act. So why do so many actors miss the mark?
I believe there are several reasons, but one of the biggest is that they aren’t observant. The best one’s see everything and they are particularly observant of humanity – their needs, manipulations, diversities, environments, and their actions so that when they read a script they instantly find a connection to that personality.
The 2nd reason actors fail is they are lazy. The good actors know once they have connected into that general personality, they have to start to build a relationship and a deeper understanding of the character’s past and present so they will know intimately what the character will choose for the future. Rehearsal of the words written can only come alive when they have been observant and studied.
Finally, good professional actors must make themselves vulnerable – willing to reach inside themselves and become that character and not like another character. Once they have accomplished this the role becomes a part of them – it becomes theirs and they can move into it on stage or screen seamlessly. It’s a highly developed skill that requires discipline and focus.
Each of us are like none other. When I cast a role, I want the actor to bring their unique selves into the role. God wants us to use our unique personality and life journey to be used to speak and reach others. He wants us to research His Word and to have observed and studied it so thoroughly that His story becomes interwoven within our lives making it seamless – believable and infectious to others. Just as a good actor transforms into the character he has studied on stage. I challenge you to make His story yours today. To let His Story transform you into His image.
When we fail at this, we present ourselves to nonbelievers as the scriptures say in I Cor. 13:1 NLT “a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.” There’s no love, passion, or truth in our words and the world sees us as acting the role or as posers. We’re just posing as Christians – posing for the name and not living it.
When your story of how Christ has transformed and changed your life is so interwoven and so real that when you walk into a room the audience listens, takes notice, and is transfixed, then you will have taken on the role of your life – that of a true believer and follower of Jesus. Your life will never be meaningless or insignificant because God’s purpose in giving you life will have been fulfilled. Your life is to bring the life and truth of Jesus to others. It’s not pretend or made up it’s real and authentic and what our culture and world is demanding of us today. In fact they are desperate for it. Don’t act the part of a Christian, choose to become one.
II Timothy 2:15 NLT, “Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word or truth.”