Actor Corbin Bernsen has enjoyed decades of Hollywood success starring in popular TV shows like "L.A. Law" and "Psych," but his most recent foray into faith and family friendly films has led him on a very different journey.
Bernsen, who wrote and directed "Christian Mingle: The Movie," his latest feature film, dropped by TheBlaze newsroom last week to chat with this author for the Freefall podcast series, describing what led him to produce the faith-themed romantic comedy.
"I wouldn’t say [the project is] the end of a road, it’s a big stopping point, a big rest stop on a journey," he said. "It’s a nice rest stop on a faith journey that I’ve been on for about… seven years."
Bernsen described a wake-up call of sorts that he experienced a few years back after his father passed away — one that started him on a path toward refining his faith and more deeply questioning what's beyond this life.
"My father passed away back then and I was sitting with a bag of ashes, and I was looking at these ashes one day and — here I have a wonderful family, a beautiful wife of 26 years, four great kids, I’m pretty secure in my work … consistently I’m very blessed with my career and what I’ve been able to do," he said. "But I am sitting with this bag of ashes and I’m just thinking, you know, I think I’m 55, or at this point 54, and I’m thinking, ‘Here’s my dad’s ashes. Is that it?'"
Listen to Bernsen describe his journey below:
It was after that experience that Bernsen began making films of his own that explore central themes of finding and discovering faith, with "Christian Mingle: The Movie" serving as the latest in that series.
The movie's plot focuses on a young woman who, out of desperation, uses the popular Christian Mingle dating site to try and find a good guy — all while embellishing her faith; in the end, she discovers Christ despite her initial deception.
And for Berson, it was another step forward in exploring his own faith.
"I’ve arrived at this place where I’m secure in my thought. I’m still exploring. For me, personally, it’s always going to be a journey," he told TheBlaze. "But now, in story telling, I feel like I want to say, ‘Now, let’s put that faith into play.’”
The Freefall interview offers a sweeping look at Bernsen's views on a variety of matters surrounding faith and Hollywood. Despite the bad that we've see in in the world, the actor said that he believes everyone, regardless of how they act, knows the difference between right and wrong.
"I believe even the darkest of hearts, they know in their heart right from wrong. I believe in man that much. I believe in humans," Bernsen said. "I believe in God’s creation of us. We know right from wrong. We know good."
In a 2013 interview with Fox News, Bernsen rejected the "born again" Christian label, noting that his faith is very much still forming.
"I consider myself to be Christian. It's the kind of a thing that I struggle with. I have faith, I believe in God. I look at Christ as this magnificent figure. I don't go to the evangelical side of it I suppose," he said. "It's hard to describe because this is of late, really trying to express what I am and what a lot of people are, people of faith."
Watch the trailer for "Christian Mingle" below: