James Corden is a British comedian who is a genuinely big deal on American television with a talk show that is on well past my bedtime. He is a remarkably talented guy who might be best known on this side of the pond for his Carpool Karaoke segments with various celebrities. His fifteen minutes with Adele is both very funny and a showcase for his own singing talents. Just Google it for an enjoyable few minutes of entertainment.
Corden comes across as witty and upbeat but apparently he went through a dark period a few years ago when he realized his lifestyle was shallow and self-destructive. He grew up in a devout Christian family and grew up attending church. So he called on his parents for support in his miserable state and they came through for him. This is the way he describes the experience:
“‘They sat on the tiny two-seater sofa and I sat on the floor, I was just talking to the floor really. I felt embarrassment that they were seeing me like this, so embarrassed about so many things – about the way I’d behaved or acted at points over that seven or eight-month period. My dad just stood up and walked across to where I was, and he just put his arms round me and said, ‘You’ve just got to get through this, son.’ I started to cry. Just as you do when your dad hugs you and you are 30. My mum came over and joined us and we sat there. My dad said, ‘I’m going to say a prayer for you. It will be all right, but you can’t carry on like this and only you can decide what happens now.’ Every tear that left my eyes made me feel a little lighter. Dad said a prayer as he kissed my forehead, and Mum came over and joined the hug. I’ve no idea how long we stayed there, but it felt like a lifetime. When they left later on, Dad turned to me and said: 'You’ve so much to be thankful for, James. I know it’s been a tricky year, but you can’t carry on like this.'
This was a turning point for James and he looks back at it with gratitude. We hear a lot of stories of people abandoning religion or living with the condemnation of religious family members. This was so refreshing and touching.