When he was a young boy, Laurie says he was stunned when his mom walked out on his dad and moved him cross-country to California. That was one of the events in his life that left him feeling lost and made him vulnerable to the hippie drug culture. But Laurie was a truth-seeker, and Jesus redeemed his life forever during that time, as the movie shows. He went on to become a highly effective evangelist, and five decades later he still pastors Harvest Christian Fellowship, a 15,000-member church.
Laurie shares in a video (below) that his mother Charlene, his only family for much of his life, eventually did commit her life to Christ as well. It came when she didn’t have much time left on this earth. He said she struggled in many ways, was married seven times and the film depicts her as an alcoholic. But in the end, she turned her life over to Jesus.
“She chased after all of the empty promises of this world, and sadly saw the emptiness of all of it,” he said. “But thankfully, she came back to her faith and returned to it one month before she entered eternity.
“She did become a believer eventually, which just shows there is hope for anyone, no matter what you’ve done, no matter what mistakes you’ve made, no matter what sins you’ve committed. We serve a God of second chances and third chances and fourth chances.”
Laurie’s stepfather, Oscar, also came to faith later in life. He was able to have a relationship with him for 15 more years. Oscar grew in his faith, becoming a Bible-distributing Gideon and an elder in his church.
“Just one of the most amazing things I ever have seen,” Laurie said. “In the movie, you just see Greg longing for his father, but in real life, Greg found his father.”
–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice