The year 2022 has been challenging for many of us, celebrities included. Yet, many of them found and reaffirmed their faith in JESUS this year.
Brazilian football start Neymar shared a message of hope with his more than 185 million followers on social media.
“The pride and love I feel for wearing this shirt has no explanation. If God gave me the opportunity to choose a country to be born in, it would be BRAZIL. Long time to wait for the Enemy to knock me down like this? NEVER ! I am a CHILD OF THE GOD OF THE IMPOSSIBLE and my FAITH is endless.”
The Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) striker is a committed Christian and has often been vocal about his faith. One of his Instagram posts show a picture of him with verse Psalm 23:6 as a caption. Neymar grew up going to Peniel Baptist church in his native Sao Paulo with its lead pastor Newton Lobato revealing that the footballer allegedly tithes around €18,000 (£15,500) every year.
US actor Matthew Perry, who played the ever-popular Chandler in the sitcom FRIENDS, wrote of his experience encountering God in his biography.
“I had been in the presence of God. I was certain of it. And this time I had prayed for the right thing: help.”
TV adventurer Bear Grylls spoke about the impact his Christian faith on his life.
“Faith is in your heart, knowing that you are not alone. There’s something bigger than us out there and therefore that power is for us and not against us and despite my doubts, I’m going to put my trust in that and try to have love at the centre of all we do, and live empowered and go for things and not be driven by fear.”
English diver Andrea Spendolini-Siriex won medals at the Commonwealth Games and the European Championship, giving glory to God after each competition. “After a slight stumble on my part, I was reminded of Philippians 4:13 “We can do all things through Christ that strengthens us”, and boy did we pull 5253 out the bag!”
Award-winning rapper Stormzy said writing his latest album drew him closer to God. “I’m feeling so grateful and I’m feeling so blessed. The Heavy Is The Head [his previous album] 2019 Stormzy was a heavy guy and I’m here and I’m light and I’m joyful and I’ve made something that I’ve never been more proud of and it just gave me so much more faith in God.”
US actor Denzel Washington told the International Leadership Summit that he spent time in prayer when fellow actor Will Smith’s attacked Oscars host Chris Rock. “I don’t wanna say what we talked about, but there but for the grace of God go any of us. Who are we to condemn? I don’t know all the ins and outs of this situation, but I know the only solution was prayer, the way I saw it, the way I see it.”
England’s football star Bukayo Saka was a standout success during the FIFA World Cup. He put his faith in the spotlight when quizzed about the Bible during a press conference.
“For me, it’s really important to have the presence of God in me all the time and it gives me more confidence to know that God’s plan is perfect, so I can go on the pitch and know that God has my back.”
Raised a Hindu, the English born rapper M.I.A spoke of her conversion to Christianity.
“I had a vision and I saw the vision of Jesus Christ. It’s a very crazy thing because it turned my world upside down. Because everything I thought and believed was no longer the case.”
After winning one of golf’s biggest tournament, the US star Scottie Scheffler took to time to attribute his success to God.
“For me, my identity isn’t a golf score. Like Meredith (wife) told me this morning, ‘If you win this golf tournament today, if you lose this golf tournament by 10 shots, if you never win another golf tournament again,’ she goes, ‘I’m still going to love you, you’re still going to be the same person, Jesus loves you and nothing changes.’ All I’m trying to do is glorify God and that’s why I’m here and that’s why I’m in this position.”
Rapper Eminem’s hit song Use This Gospel states, “So my saviour, I call on; to rescue me from these depths of despair; so these demons better step like a stair; because He is my shepherd; I’m armed with Jesus, my weapon is prayer.”
Reality TV star Scarlett Moffatt found her Christian faith after taking part in BBC show Pilgrimage. “My grandad was always really religious and I would do a prayer when I was in a sad place, but I didn’t really know what my religion was and I wanted to find out what religion means to me. Now I would say that I am a Christian. I am now still getting used to it.”