Changed Lives Through Christ - Blog
Current Blog... A WILLING HEART 5/31/2020
Elly May Clampett was her character name; she was a true hillbilly; a charming, country redneck. And she was known as one of the stars in the famous show, The Beverly Hillbillies, a sitcom that ran for almost a decade back in the 60s. People still tune in to the reruns today. It continues to be widely popular.
The character of Elly May was filled by the young Donna Douglas. She was chosen from among 500 girls! While her audition did capture the attention of the producers, a screen test was still required. It boiled down to only five girls competing for the role and Donna really wanted it.
Then, right in the middle of everything, Donna was involved in a car accident that put her in the hospital for two weeks. She wasn’t steady on her feet, but she was released just in time to complete the screen test. She prayed she would somehow get the part and asked God to allow her the role. He answered that prayer; she got to play “Ella May” for nine years.
So how did Donna Douglas find her faith-walk in the Lord? Well, her young life was not without hardships. Growing up near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, her family was poor; they didn’t even have a car. Even so, she was influenced by godly parents and raised in a Christian home. She attended a Catholic school, was active in sports, and became a bit of a tom-boy. She never planned on being an actress back then, but she just kind of slipped into it. When she finally started traveling due to her career, she realized how inexperienced and naive she was about the world.
In an interview with Times-News she said, “I loved Jesus, but I didn’t know the Word of God.” She was weak in her faith. Then she moved to New York. The big-city-madness probably unnerved her. And there she was: a young girl all alone. That’s when she decided to trust Jesus completely with her future and build her life on His firm foundation. And that’s when she truly made a commitment to God.
Miss Douglas accomplished a lot in her lifetime. She appeared in seven movies. She appeared on 26 various television shows including McMillan And Wife, Mister Ed, Dr. Kildare, 77 Sunset Strip, Route 66, The Twilight Zone, and U.S. Marshall to name a few. She also has had a Gospel singing career and has recorded several albums and soundtracks.
In her later years, Donna Douglas wanted to be remembered as more than a country bumpkin. In an article published by Mark Ellis at God Reports, she talked about what was most important to her. She spent many of her days speaking at various gatherings and in churches. She would share her testimony but also emphasized the importance of knowing, understanding and applying the Bible, and learning to grow deep roots in the Christian faith, especially during one’s early years.
As a classic television fan and historian, I, Eddie Lucas, wanted to delve deeper
to find out more about these special friends like Donna Douglas, and go beyond
what had previously been written in articles and books to find the answers
to questions that casual, as well as die-hard fans have always wanted to ask.
I wished to capture first-hand accounts and preserve for posterity
the historical significance of classic shows like The Beverly Hillbillies.
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Donna had a big heart for young people, too. “They have so much pulling on them in every direction to deceive them in so many ways . . . I try to encourage them that nobody can be better than you. If you want God’s best for you life, it’s out there for you. That’s what my life shows, that you don’t have to compromise.”
Miss Douglas lived out her faith in God. She said, “God brought people into my path to make a way for me . . . If you have that willing heart, it’s amazing what He can do [for you].”
Yes, God will open doors for you, and lead you on the right paths if you will put your whole trust in Him. Like the old hymn says, “Trust and obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus, just trust and obey.”
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