“Only God can handle me!“ 😅
Born in Miami, FL to exiled Cuban parents, I come from a family of artists where the spotlight feels like home. However, name-calling during my early school years led to paralyzing self-consciousness. It wasn’t until I began modeling at age 14 that I began to come out of my shell. I was soon working with the top designers such as Chanel, Ferragamo, Escada, Oscar de la Renta, and others. I worked as a runway and magazine model, commercial and film actress, and singer. After appearing in Cosmopolitan and Maxim magazines, and working on various films, I felt well on my way to making a name for myself.
Growing up Catholic, I thought I had experienced true religion. That is, until my brother became born again at a pizza shop in Miami Beach where he and I would frequent. I witnessed how God completely changed his life and provided all of his needs. I remember laying across from him on the sofa as he would listen to worship music and I would fight the tears. The lyrics would say, in Spanish, “Renew my heart, Jesus I pray. I no longer want to be the same. Renew my heart, Jesus I pray. Will you replace my heart with yours? Because everything I have inside my heart is in need for you to change me, oh Lord. Because everything I have inside my heart is in need of more of you.“ I struggled with not wanting to give up my life that I had found so pleasurable, but I wanted God SO badly. Like so many who have been wrongly taught, I believed that I had to earn my way to God. I don’t have “that day“ that so many speak of, but God certainly knows the moment that I received him.
I tried to pursue my career after having been born again, but found it to be quite a challenge. I constantly felt pressured into compromising my beliefs. This revealed the need to strengthen my relationship with God. Therefore, I decided to walk away from my dreams. Nearly 10 years after moving, starting a family, and a new business, I heard a voice one day that said “Follow your dreams.“ Soon after, I heard a commercial for the first time that said the words “modeling and acting for Christ”, something that made me ponder. However, it wasn’t until I took my car to get serviced (located on Fortune way) that God made it crystal clear by my now good friend Cleveland’s utterance. He saw a book that I was reading and proceeded to describe a book that he was reading about praying over your dreams. He asked me about my dreams, but I didn’t say anything about the dreams that I had left on the proverbial altar. What came next during that conversation sprung up tears as I knew that his words came straight from heaven. “When I see you, I see lights.“ he said. That same day, I told my friends that God was calling me back to the industry because I was certain of that. However, I did not have a promoting to do anything about it so I didn’t.
It now came as no surprise when a friend of mine tagged me on a post about a feature film, Open my Eyes, which was being filmed locally. The audition was located on Fortune Way (same street as the auto shop), and the film is about a man who lost his eyesight due to an accident. Well, my uncle had just lost his eyesight due to an accident. I knew this was God. I landed the lead role and all I could do was cry grateful tears and fall on my knees in thanksgiving. Who knew that this opportunity would also give life to songs that I had merely written in a journal years prior, and would also be asked to write and perform the theme song? He resurrected my dreams and career, but now I do it for Him instead of me. I have since been on several films and series, and have even been asked to join crew as production designer for Undefiled.
Interview with Andy Kirkendall
Interview with Isaac Hernandez
The Nikkie B. Show radio interview.
How Faith Has Impacted My Acting Career
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