Actor Neal McDonough has known the lows of Hollywood, such as the time his career was in deep trouble because he would not do sex scenes.
But in an interview with Fox News, McDonough revealed the source of his strength through the lean times.
“I was blessed at a very young age to have a strong relationship with God. And it’s been paramount in my life, as everyone kind of knows,” he said.
McDonough now plays Malcolm Beck in the hit show “Yellowstone” alongside Kevin Costner and served as the host of the TV special “O Holy Night: Christmas with The Tabernacle Choir.”
“It’s shows like ‘O Holy Night’ that kind of reinforce that family is the most important thing on the planet. There’s nothing like family,” he told Fox.
The spiritual message of the special should be the core of the Christmas season, McDonough said.
“We get caught up in so many things, especially during the holiday season. … It can be a very emotional time. But when you have a core to lean back on, whether it’s immediate family or our heavenly Father, that’s how you get through things in life. And for me, it’s vitally important. … It’s about family and it’s about love,” he said.
McDonough said opportunities such as “O Holy Night” come along too rarely.
“There are few times where I get to talk about things that are really, really important to me in my life, and that’s my relationship with God and family,” McDonough said.
“In the films that [my wife Ruvé and I] have been doing … the last couple of years, they talk about those things. [They] talk about what it’s like to have your faith challenged or how you can overcome certain difficulties in life knowing that God has your back.”
McDonough shared some rules that provide guardrails for life.
“Family first, me second. God first, me second. And when you run by those rules, things are a lot easier. You’re not as tempted to do stupid things,” he said.
“We’re all flawed, we’re all human. We all make mistakes every single day. But it’s how we get up the next day and kind of dust it off that dictates what kind of person you are.”
In 2010, McDonough said he was fired from the ABC show “Scoundrels” because he would not do sex scenes, according to another Fox report.
“I remember falling to my knees and saying, ‘God, why have you forgotten about me? Why am I being punished so much?’” he said.
“And as soon as those words came out of my mouth, I realized what self-absorbed questions those were. God has given me so much. We all experience challenges in our lives. I should be grateful — and thankful — for all the blessings I’m given.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.