Bieber shares faith in new movie

Justin Bieber’s movie “Never Say Never” hit theaters this weekend, where Bieber showed his faith on the big screen.

Emily Arnold, Writer

On Feb. 11, “Never Say Never” 3-D hit theaters, revealing the life story of the current pop/R&B sensation, Justin Bieber—the 16-year-old from Canada who skyrocketed to stardom after posting videos on YouTube. The prominent messages of hope, perseverance and faith throughout the documentary may surprise some viewers.

After seeing the movie, sophomore Jacob Tomita admitted, “He’s actually a cool dude, a really good musician and a genuinely nice guy who follows Jesus.”

Bieber displays faith through movie

Bieber and his mother, Pattie Mallette, show their spiritual side in this movie with numerous scenes revealing their habit of praying before concerts, before meals, for healing and just to give glory to God. However, this documentary isn’t the first place Bieber has expressed his faith.

In an interview with Ellen Degeneres on Feb. 9, she asked Bieber what he hopes people will take from “Never Say Never.

“God has blessed so many people [with talent], but it takes a lot of hard work as well,” Bieber said. “He wants you to work for it, and He wants you to always trust Him and just don’t stop and never give up.”

Bieber shares through book

His first chance to convey this sentiment was in his autobiography, “First Step 2 Forever: My Story,” which hit shelves in October 2010. Bieber’s amazement at his own whirlwind of success is evident from the first page.

“Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I’d sell millions of records, sing for the president of the United States and sell out a massive arena tour,” said Bieber. “That’s what this book is about: my journey, from singing and busking on the sidewalk in Stratford, Ontario, to performing and showing my appreciation to millions of fans all over the world for making this dream a reality.”

Bieber’s fan base is large and connected

Bieber’s fans have connected with him greatly through social media, a means of communication that has never been utilized to this extent before. As of 1 p.m. on Feb. 15, Bieber had 7,310,511 followers on Twitter while his “Baby” music video is the most watched video on YouTube with 463,036,900 views. These numbers are constantly rising.

According to “Never Say Never,” Bieber sold out his Aug. 31 Madison Square Garden concert in just 22 minutes. He won four American Music Awards and was nominated for two Grammy’s this year. “Never Say Never” grossed a whopping $30.3 million dollars on opening weekend. Currently, this 16-year-old is said to be worth $100 million dollars.

Bieber credits God with success

“The success I’ve achieved comes to me from God, through the people who love and support me, and I include my fans in that,” said Bieber in his autobiography.

Still, some people are skeptical of Bieber’s faith, not quite sure what to make of it. After all, there have been numerous young pop stars who once called themselves Christians, but later abandoned their faith in the midst of the Hollywood chaos.

“Justin just seems so naive. It’s really hard to judge the spirituality of someone so young, and to me, he just comes across as your average hormonal teenage boy,” senior Jerod McLaughin said.

Bieber sets priorities

Aware of the potential dangers of the industry, Bieber knows that to stay grounded, he has to always keep God first and learn from his friends and family.

In an interview on YouTube, Bieber told the Associated Press that he has a relationship with God and believes that Jesus died on the cross for his sins.

“He’s the reason I’m here so I definitely have to remember that and as soon as I start forgetting, I gotta click back and be like, ‘This is why I’m here.’”

“Seriously God could totally use him in crazy ways if he stays grounded and finds his identity in Christ and not in the world,” said freshman Marin Cordova.

Bieber loves fans

At a radio show in June of 2009, only 40 fans showed up to watch Bieber perform, but now—just twenty months later—he has millions of eyes watching him daily. However, Bieber hopes that his current career will not eclipse his ability to embrace adolescence. He still desires to live like a regular 16-year-old as much as possible. He still plays sports and video games, goes to the movies, spends time with friends, tries to find time to rest, and like most teenage guys, he admittedly loves the ladies. Bieber makes sure to charm his mostly female fan-base whenever possible.

For instance, he said in his book, “You don’t have to work hard at pretending you care about a girl’s feelings if you actually do care — not just about girls, but people in general.”

Bieber cares for fans by giving back

He shows his care for people by maintaining communication with his fans — mainly over Twitter, handing out free tickets, meeting a child from the Make-A-Wish foundation at every concert, donating to charities and praying for those in need.

“I am in the position to give back thanks to my fans and God,” Bieber tweeted. “I wrote ‘Pray’ thinking I wanted to help others and I feel like I have a responsibility to do so.”

Bieber has a passion for charities that involve kids and gave a portion of his “My World Acoustic” CD sales to the Children’s Miracle Network — money for children’s hospitals. Also, he donated 1 dollar from every concert ticket to Pencils of Promise, an organization that builds schools in developing countries. In the second leg of the “My World” tour, they raised enough to build 15 schools in third-world countries. Also, Bieber donated $1.06 from each ticket sold at a Nashville concert to the Community Foundation to go toward flood relief. He raised about $32,000 at this particular concert.

Bieber’s tweets constantly reflect how thankful he is for all the blessings God has given him. Before the Grammy’s, he tweeted, “Regardless of what happens, today is a great day…So blessed and grateful. This is just the beginning. Dream big and never say never.”

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