DENVER (BP)–The day the Twin Towers fell, Stephen Baldwin looked upward.
The youngest of the Baldwin brother actors, he was at the height of his film and television career when Sept. 11, 2001, changed his life and prompted an eternal introspection into his heart and soul.
“After 9/11 and my wife’s conversion [to Christianity], I came to understand something. The impossible was possible,” Baldwin writes in “Livin It: What It Is,” a new book from B&H Publishing Group. “And if anything’s possible, then Jesus Christ could come back to this planet tomorrow. I want to be ready when He comes.”
Baldwin received Christ more than five years ago and has since launched a ministry also called Livin It — a bold campaign to encourage young extreme sports enthusiasts to live out their faith.
Livin It uses music, books, nationwide skateboarding demonstrations, skate DVDs and evangelistic events to bring the Gospel to young athletes.
Baldwin, who has starred in more than 65 films, including “The Usual Suspects” and “The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas,” outlines the purpose of the Livin It ministry and recounts his journey of faith in Livin It: What It Is and two other unique resources, “Livin It: Testimonies” and “Spirit Warriors,” released in July from B&H Publishing Group, the publishing division of LifeWay Christian Resources.
Baldwin shares his testimony in Livin It: What It Is and offers a transparent look into the lives of extreme athletes who have received Christ. The book delivers the testimonies of the popular athletes and encourages young people to boldly stand up for the Gospel.
“God does not call us to hide our faith under a bushel, but to shine His light to every corner,” Baldwin writes in Livin It: What It Is. “Speaking up for Jesus Christ may not always be comfortable; but it is always powerful and effective.”
Livin It: Testimonies, a second book in the Livin It series, also incorporates courageous testimonies from famous extreme sports athletes like Christian Hosoi, Elijah Moore, Luke Braddock and Josh Kasper. The full-color action photography throughout the magazine-format book captures the heart of Christians who are “livin it” through extreme sport ministry.
“As you flip through the pages, you will meet 14 amazing guys,” Baldwin writes in the introduction. “Some of them are skateboarders. Some are BMXers…. Some are still in their teens. A few have been skating or riding for more than 20 years. But they all have one thing in common — they are Livin It!”
To Baldwin, the concept of Livin It means pursuing a life of purpose instead of existing for temporal things of the earth.
“A lot of [the athletes] have tried to find happiness in money, fame, drugs, sex, partying, and other things, and been left unsatisfied,” Baldwin writes. Jesus Christ is the only answer to all of life’s uncertainties, he writes.
Spirit Warriors, meanwhile, is designed to pattern popular graphic novels. With its comic book style and fast-paced action, Spirit Warriors follows the antics of six fictional characters who battle against good and evil.
With mainstream graphic novels as the new trend among young people, Baldwin believes Spirit Warriors has the potential to reach many non-Christians with the Gospel.
“The response to this book has been so positive,” Baldwin said, mentioning that B&H is setting the standard for creating a product like Spirit Warriors. “I’ve had moms come up to me to say thanks for creating content that’s fun, edgy and cool.” Kids will take these graphic novels to lunch with them, he predicted, and show them to their non-Christian friends.
The heart of the Livin It ministry is to create culturally relevant products that present “hip, edgy and cool” messages, all aimed at bringing kids to Christ, Baldwin said. “The content doesn’t apologize for its bold stand for Christ. Jesus is all over it.”
Baldwin said he doesn’t “sugar coat” his message and said the style of Livin It is “cutting-edge” and “street-legit.”
“If you bring the kids dorkville, they don’t listen,” Baldwin said. “If you bring them really cool, they’ll listen … because all of this is really about sharing the news about a man named Jesus Christ.”
For more information about Livin It ministry and Livin It products visit www.bhpublishinggroup.com.