Excerpt Actor’s Devotional March 4th

Posted: May 11, 2009 in Devotionals



Actor’s Devotional


“How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?” – Dr Seuss


Evangeline and Sidney were a happy Canadian couple.  They had been married for only a few years when their first son Jim came along.  Then in 1950 they were blessed with a second bundle of joy; they named him John.  Their families had always tended to be on the large side, so it was with great sorrow but not much shock when Sidney died of a heart attack a the age of 35.  John was just 5 years old.  Not being one to flout family tradition, John also became a fairly large person himself.  So big in fact that he was playing football on his high school football team as a freshman. This was in the days when the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League (CFL) and the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League (NHL) dominated Toronto’s sport scene. Major league baseball had yet to arrive in Toronto and most red-blooded Canadian boys who didn’t dream of playing for the NHL dreamt of playing for the CFL. Being just such a young man, sports dominated a lot of John’s early life. When a severe knee injury put an end to his plans to tryout for the CFL, and, oddly, the military, he set his sights on becoming a sportswriter. To this end he enrolled at Centennial College in 1968, electing to major in journalism.


Once at Centennial he found his call, as he signed up for a drama course and was immediately bitten by the acting bug.  Another thing happened immediately too… he found out he was good. John liked comedy… he was funny guy.  He decided after only 2 years of college to go out and chase his dream.  So he was off on an odyssey that would place him in over 60 television and movie productions over the next 24 years. 


It was a very forgettable start.  John was a bit player in a movie called “Hercules in New York”, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger (credited as Arnold Strong) that was a predictable dud at the box office.  But John persevered and it wasn’t long before he started landing more important roles.  Probably the most significant of those was his joining of The Second City Company, a troupe of young comedians based out of Chicago that had recently opened a Toronto branch.  When they took their act from the club to the small screen for SCTV, John was chosen to be one of the comedians to be on the show.  He bloomed.  So much so that soon Hollywood was calling for him to come join them on the big screen.  John had arrived.


His first big role was in the cult classic 1941, directed by Stephen Spielberg.  Soon after he made friends from some of the cast of the wildly popular American TV show Saturday Night Live.  When Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi made their 70’s classic The Blues Brothers, they immediately thought of John and had him brought in as a character actor.  A string of hit comedies followed that read like a Who’s Who of 20th century comedy.  Stripes, Splash, Heavy Metal, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Brewster’s Millions, Sesame Street’s Follow That Bird, Little Shop of Horrors, Planes Trains and Automobiles, She’s Having a Baby, Spaceballs, Home Alone, were all films that partook of John’s growing comic genius.  And that was only the 1980’s.  In the 1990’s he even took on some more serious roles such as the small town Southern lawyer in Oliver Stone’s JFK.  But his primary love remained comedy, and in that field John was huge… literally.


John’s bigness was beginning to catch up with him.  By all accounts he was an obese man, well over 300 pounds.  That was quite surprising seeing as how he had been tapped, by a popular men’s magazine, in a yearly poll as one of the world’s sexiest men.  Family and friends begged John to consider losing weight and being healthier in general.  John though was always too busy.  However, after a health scare in the early nineties he actually decided to give it a try.  John lost 75 pounds, quit smoking and started eating more healthy.  He had just finished another surprise box office hit, Cool Runnings, and was excited to begin work on a new comedy called Wagons East!  The film was never finished.  Having put off the advice of family and friends, knowing that his family had had a history of heart problems, John’s new lifestyle was just too little too late.  It was on this day in 1994 that a prince of North American comedy died in his sleep of a massive heart attack.  His autopsy showed he had final stage heart disease, as well as atherosclerosis.  John Candy was only 43 years old.


What is it in us that always drives us to do things that are not only not in our best interest, but also are often in it’s worse interest.  We know we should handle certain problems (physical and emotional), but we always think we have more time.  The Truth is we aren’t promised anything… not in terms of life expectancy.  We are here for a moment and then we are gone.  Think about that today.  What is God asking, impressing upon you to do.  Don’t put it off.  It could all end in an instant.  Ask yourself if you want to be another statistic, or do you want your life to count… right here, right now… and for how long?  There is an immeasurable difference between late and too late.



Psalms 95:6 Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker; 7 for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care. Today, if you hear his voice, 8 do not harden your hearts…


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