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Commentary: I walked away from Hollywood to walk with God

July 21, 2012|By Lindsey Farmer

I am done.

I am done calling myself a Christian, but living a life that centered around me.

I am done working in an industry that has hardened my heart and drained me of who God created me to be.

I am done living a half-life; done loving half-heartedly; done serving and loving God only when it's convenient for me.

Why?

A few months ago, I was an employed 24-year-old who was using her university degree (film and television production). I worked as a production assistant on a popular TV show. I was at the bottom of the totem pole, but at least I was on the totem pole. I worked for extremely successful people who had produced numerous hit shows and they treated me like a human being, which I hear is a lot better than production assistants on some other shows. I had heard the horror stories, but luckily never experienced them myself.

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At that time, I was living in Santa Monica, a five-minute bike ride from the beach. I enjoyed good friends, a great community and spending Sundays at church volunteering as a junior high group leader.

To the outside world, my life looked pretty good. But to anyone who knew me, I was struggling. On average, I worked 12 hours per day, five days per week. About 75% of my time was spent scanning documents or copying and assembling scripts. Already miserable because my most common tasks made me feel small and unimportant, I also listened to a lot of drama among my supervisors, which only added to my discontent.

Growing up, I was enthralled with television, especially comedies, and watching the blooper reel with the cast laughing and having fun made me think, "What an awesome place to work.''

But the dreams and expectations I had built as a child were not being met. Sometimes I got to do cool things, like hang with Academy Award-winning actors and watch them at their craft, or sit in on important meetings. Once I even drank scotch with the producers.

But all of these little moments didn't make up for the fact that I felt incomplete. I was not whole. There was a void. I realized it wasn't just that I played such a small role in a big picture, I was unhappy because I was working for the wrong big picture. I saw these successful people who seemed to have it all and yet a simple conversation could reveal that something was missing.

I'll never forget one of our producers responding to my simple question, "How are you?"

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