You are viewing 
Reflections : Basic Instinct, Showgirls & God?
 
Share

Basic Instinct, Showgirls & God?

By Rusty Wright, Founder of Rusty Wright Communications
Reflection Options
Text Size:

Reflection Rating
No Ratings
Let us know what you think:
(please log in to vote)
Subscribe To Reflection
1. RSS Feed: RSS
2. By Email: Log in now to view or change your subscription status.


Self-described "Hollywood Animal" Joe Eszterhas, the blockbuster screenwriter famous for steamy eroticism and dark thrillers, says God found him and life's never been better.

Say what?

Basic Instinct and God? Showgirls and Jesus?

Seems the master storyteller is telling a new story.

"My life has turned inside-out," he wrote in the Washington Post's On Faith .

Films from Eszterhas' screenplays have grossed over one billion box office dollars. Time Magazine once called him "America's king of sex and violence." Jack Valenti, the late head of the Motion Picture Association, once labeled him "desperately ill and in need of medical attention."

Once Hollywood's highest-paid screenwriter, Eszterhas has said he's "been a bad boy all my life. I was the king-daddy of sex and violence, the wild hair, the rogue elephant, the drinking, drugging, wild man, the cocaine cowboy."

Deadly Addictions

Eszterhas' Hungarian childhood included almost five years in refugee camps. Acutely poor, he ate pine-needle soup and suffered from rickets. Smoking and alcohol use begun in youth haunted his adulthood. He had surgery for throat cancer; medical experts warned that continued substance use would kill him. With a family he cherished, Joe was desperate to live. But he couldn't relinquish his addictions.

Finally, feeling hopeless, sobbing alone on a curb, "I cried and begged God to help me," Eszterhas writes. "I hadn't prayed since I was a boy. I had made fun of God and those who loved God in my writings. And now, through my sobs, I heard myself asking God to help me and from the moment I asked, He did."

"I didn't at first understand why He did. I didn't deserve His help, I thought. I was unworthy. I ignore Him for forty years and then suddenly I ask Him to help me and He does? It took me some time to understand that God helped me because He loves me. Because even though we don't deserve God's love, God loves us - all of us."

Eszterhas replaced his excesses with prayer and long walks. He's written a book, Crossbearer , "as a thank-you to God. Not just for saving my life, but for saving me."

The front of the book quotes this New Testament statement : "Therefore, since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Also through Him, we have obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God." Faith, peace, access, hope; sounds as if it could be Eszterhas' new personal theme.

Will It Last?

Road to Damascus? Perhaps. Skeptics watch. Some feel he's just swung from one emotional excess to another. But it has been seven years. His wife, Naomi, says the transformation has been gradual but real. It appears to be lasting. They're living in Ohio, raising their sons and continuing to give thanks:

"I am witness to and the beneficiary of God's love for all of us," Joe writes. "I am witness, too, to the fact that His love is so strong that it was even able to open my rusty old closed heart."

"I will thank Him forever because He gave me new life and a heart which is truly able to love for the first time in my life. His love is mine."

A hopeful postscript: Eszterhas says his throat surgeon has pronounced him "cured." The man who removed about eighty percent of Joe's larynx says the tissue has regenerated such that evidence of the cancer is gone. The surgeon called it "a miracle."

Amazing medical development. Amazing life changes. Amazing grace.

Rusty Wright is an author and lecturer who has spoken on six continents. He holds Bachelor of Science (psychology) and Master of Theology degrees from Duke and Oxford universities, respectively.
 

If you enjoyed this reflection...

Delve Into Jesus is funded entirely by donations from our members and visitors. Your financial gift will help us to continue making content like this available to a global audience. Please click here to learn how you can contribute to our ministry.

Comments


Please login to add a comment


Other Areas of the Site to Explore
  • Discovery - Discovery is the heart of Delve Into Jesus. Here, we hope you will find answers to all your questions about God, Christianity, Jesus Christ and Christian Living.
  • Join a Discussion - Our forums are the place for lively discussion on any topic that relates to Christianity. Find a topic that interests you and join the debate, or start a new topic about something that's been on your mind. Share your thoughts and get to know what others are thinking.
  • Resources - Discover the movies, books and web sites that other members have found inspirational, meaningful and encouraging.
  • Prayer - Let other members know the challenges you're currently facing and let them say a word of prayer for you. Browse the other prayer requests and spend a moment with the Lord interceding for your fellow members.

Delve Christian Ministries