Black Panther star Letitia Wright recently revealed in an interview that her life has been changed and transformed by Jesus Christ.
Wright is best known for playing the role of Shuri in the Marvel Cinematic Universe film Black Panther, and its recent sequel Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. In the film series, Shuri is the sister of King T’Challa, played by actor Chadwick Boseman who died in 2020 after battling colon cancer.
Wright has had a highly successful acting career. She’s starred in the television series Top Boy, Coming Up, Humans, Doctor Who and Black Mirror – for which she was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award.
However, all that glitters isn’t gold. On the inside, Wright was struggling. She suffered from deep depression and was considering quitting her career. She told The Guardian that she “partied and drank and tried to obliterate herself in work, but none of it helped.”
Then, one of her friends – actor Malachi Kirby – called her and told her that God had told him to reach out. Kirby invited her along to a Bible study, where “her life was transformed. Her depression lifted, and her career soared.”
“It gave me the centering I needed, the good foundation I needed,” she told The Guardian. “It helped me to put into perspective what was important for me. Chasing something that is not tangible or not wholesome is not the way I want to go. If I was to pack all this up I’d still be happy with my faith, the contentment I feel and the connection to God.”
We all chase things. You feel you need a better job, or better role, or more accolades, or more recognition. And I was chasing that. I had been chasing, chasing, chasing, but feeling empty. I realized I don’t have to chase that any more. If I trust that God has a plan for my life and I follow that and trust I’m doing the right things, then if people feel it, they will.
I had to find what worked for me and I found that Jesus worked for me. The more I prayed, the more I felt connected, and the less anxious.”
In 2019, Wright won the BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) Rising Star Award. In her acceptance speech, she again boldly proclaimed her faith.
“I identify myself as a child of God and I can’t get up here without thanking God,” Wright said. She also wasn’t shy about recounting her battle with depression.
She added, “A few years ago I saw myself in a deep state of depression and I literally wanted to quit acting. The only thing that pulled me out of it was God, my belief, my faith and my family, and an email from BAFTA asking me to become part of the BAFTA Breakthrough Brits.”
Wright then concluded her acceptance speech with a word of encouragement to young people. She said:
I want to encourage you – anyone going through a hard time… God made you and you’re important … I just want to encourage you and God loves you. Just let your light shine.
There’s not a lot of good news that comes out of Hollywood or the film industry.
But Wright’s story reminds us that even in the darkest of places, Jesus Christ is still at work. In fact, it’s when the darkness is deepest that a light shines the brightest.
Wright’s realization that no amount of fame, recognition or accolades would satisfy her is a good reminder for the rest of us. What are we seeking? What are we chasing? Will it satisfy us?
As Saint Augustine wrote in his Confessions, “My heart is restless, O Lord, until it rests in You.”
Photo from Getty Images.