To receive daily emails from Breaking Christian News to your inbox CLICK HERE


SHARE THIS ARTICLE Printer friendly version of this page

Will Graham: "What I Learned from Portraying My Grandfather in 'Unbroken'"

Will Graham : Sep 17, 2018 : Billygraham.org

"It was a nerve-wracking experience that took me far out of my comfort zone, but it was also an incredible blessing." -Will Graham

[Billygraham.org] In 2014, Angelina Jolie directed an award-winning film called Unbroken. It tells the incredible true story of Louis Zamperini, a juvenile delinquent turned Olympian and war hero. After Louis' WWII plane crashed in the Pacific, he floated at sea for 47 days before being captured and ruthlessly tortured by the Japanese. He survived unimaginable atrocities and starvation, finally making it home to his family after the war. (Photo: Will Graham as Billy Graham in 'Unbroken'/via BillyGraham.org)

That was where Unbroken ended, and it was a great high point. But that's not where Louis Zamperini's story ended. In fact, the struggles were just beginning.

After returning home, Louis' life looked great on the outside. He was a celebrity, he married a woman whom he dearly loved, and they had a beautiful little baby. On the inside, however, Louis was sinking into a dark well of despair. He suffered from what we now know as PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), was haunted by nightmares, was on the verge of divorce, and had become an alcoholic.

He had survived the ruthlessness of war, but was now on the road to destruction in peacetime.

This second part of Louis' story is being told in the Universal Studios film Unbroken: Path to Redemption, slated for nationwide theater release on Sept. 14. In it, we witness Louis in all of his heartache and pain, but we also get a glimpse of the answer to his struggles.

You see, Louis only found true and lasting peace when he surrendered his life to Christ at my grandfather's historic 1949 Los Angeles Crusade. After beginning a relationship with Jesus, Louis never had another nightmare, never took another sip of alcohol, and his marriage was restored.

Early last year I was approached with the unique and unexpected opportunity to portray my grandfather in the film. I'm not an actor, but I prayerfully decided to accept this role. It was a nerve-wracking experience that took me far out of my comfort zone, but it was also an incredible blessing.

The biggest impact for me came from deeply studying my grandfather in preparing for the role, immersing myself in his early sermons.

First, I was reminded of my grandfather's deep love for—and reliance upon—the Bible. He quoted Scripture repeatedly and at length throughout his messages. His most commonly used phrase was "The Bible says ..." He knew that the Bible was the divine, powerful, living Word of God, and it pierced the hearts of those hearing it.

Second, my grandfather preached with a sense of urgency. He knew that Heaven and Hell hung in the balance. Decisions made in that massive tent on the corner of Hill and Washington streets in Los Angeles would not only affect lives, but eternities as well.

Third, my grandfather didn't just ask people to respond to the Good News of Christ. He commanded them with an authority that could come only from God. "This may be your only chance. Come now!" he would call out. Of course, those in the audience had the free will to walk forward or not, but my grandfather made it very clear that this was their opportunity to begin a new life with Jesus.

Looking back on it, we now know that Louis Zamperini was one of those who responded to the call, and he was radically changed and saved. That was 1949, but today there are just as many—if not more—people like Louis out there. People who are lost and struggling, who have no hope or peace.

Will you be like my grandfather, holding tight to the Scripture as you share the hope that you have with urgency and authority? I'm committed to doing so, and I hope you will too. Subscribe for free to Breaking Christian News here.







SHARE THIS ARTICLE Printer friendly version of this page

To receive daily emails from Breaking Christian News to your inbox CLICK HERE

Other Recent Articles from Breaking Christian News

Franklin Graham Outraged Over Jim Carrey's Abortion Art: 'That's Sick', Calls Out Twitter for 'Message of Hate'

Hundreds Rally in Times Square to Protest Anti-Semitic Congresswoman Ilhan Omar

Nevada Senate Passes National Popular Vote Bill in Bid to Upend Electoral College

Democrats Remove 'So Help Me God' from Oath in US House of Representatives

"Save Chick-fil-A Bill" Passes Texas House, Banning Religious Discrimination

The Mainstream Media Has Finally "Found Jesus" on the Immigration Crisis, Says White House Spokesman

'I Have to Wonder What They're Afraid of': 'Unplanned' Film Banned in Canada for Its Life-affirming Content

Alabama Refuses to Air Children's "Arthur" Episode Over Gay Marriage Storyline

Ex-LGBT Will March on Washington This Weekend to Celebrate Freedom

Prayer Alert: Nigerian Pastor and Daughter, Plus 16 Worshipers Kidnapped by Gunmen Who Stormed Choir Practice

"Drunken Philistines": Israeli Scientists Use Yeast from Ancient Beer to Recreate 5,000-Year-Old Drink

HEALTH: Depressed, Anxious, or Afflicted with Other Mental or "Mood" Disorders? Doctors are Now Prescribing Exercise Over Meds

Anything BUT 'Peaceful': This Ramadan Islamic Jihadis Have Murdered at Least 364 People, and Injured over 400 in Just 2 Weeks

LA Mayor Publicly Supports US Embassy in Jerusalem: Now He's Being Lambasted by the Left

Christian Student Forced to Recite Islamic Conversion Prayer in Maryland School: Pray for Supreme Court Decision!

France: New Court Decision Orders Hospital to HALT the Starvation of Vincent Lambert

Family of BABY Cut from His Mother's Womb is Praying for a Miracle for Him

NPR Issues a 'Guidance Reminder' to Their Staff to Make Sure They Don't Refer to the Pre-born as 'Babies'—But Wait, There's More...

Dem Presidential Candidate Pete Buttigieg Takes Extreme Position on Abortion during Fox News Town Hall

NFL Star Benjamin Watson Calls Out Alyssa Milano Over Abortion Comments: Agrees to Dialogue Personally With Her



Search the Articles Archives

Keyword:  
Author:  
Words Posted On:  
Day Month Year



To Order by Phone Call: 1-866-354-5245 (1-541-926-3250 outside the U.S.)

BCN Plus

An BCN Paid Advertisement

An BCN Paid Advertisement
A BCN Paid Advertisement
A BCN Paid Advertisement
BCN Store
Follow BCN on Twitter
Are You Praying for Our Government Leaders?
BCN Staff

Steve Shultz
Steve Shultz, Managing Editor
Founder and Owner


Aimee Herd
Aimee Herd, Editor


Teresa Neumann
Teresa Neumann, Reporter

BCN Plus
Are You Praying for President Trump?
 
An ElijahList Paid Advertisement
 
BCN Contact Info

All articles on this site and emails from BCN are copyrighted property of Breaking Christian News. Permission is given to link to, or share a BCN story if proper attribution is given to both the original writer and summarizer of the story. Breaking Christian News 2005-2017. All Rights Reserved.


Breaking Christian News is a division of Elijah List Publications, Inc. All Rights Reserved


Disclaimer: Articles and links, as well as the source articles linked to; do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Breaking Christian News.

541-924-3906