My Take: A concerned evangelical's open letter to Charlie Sheen
March 25th, 2011
09:23 AM ET

My Take: A concerned evangelical's open letter to Charlie Sheen

Editor's Note: Margaret Feinberg is an international speaker and author of "Scouting the Divine" and "The Organic God." Follow her on Twitter.

By Margaret Feinberg, Special to CNN

Dear Charlie,

As one of your 3 million Twitter followers, I’ve given you the ability to speak into my life in 140 characters or less, so I figure the least I can do is return the favor (with a few extra characters). You’ve been on quite a ride: setting a new Twitterlicious record for bagging the most followers in 24 hours, reducing "Two and a Half Men" to reruns on Monday nights, and displaying behavior that defies any sense of rational behavior (even among warlocks).

“Charlie Sheen LIVE: My Violent Torpedo of Truth” tour selling out in just 18 minutes, Brooke Mueller dropping the restraining order, and a big wet kiss from Jimmy Kimmel may make you feel like a #winner, but as a well-meaning fan, I’m asking you to put away the Tiger Blood T-shirts and pull back from the Hollywood media blitz long enough to consider the following:

No. 1: Though “Yes” people are always more fun to surround yourself with, maybe it’s time to make room for people who will challenge your thinking and behavior. Maybe you need some time with people who don’t give a rat’s tail that you’re Charlie Sheen.

I have two recommendations: The first is a guy by the name of Rob Bell. He’s been stirring up a bit of controversy talking about who or what is really a #winner in his new book, "Love Wins." A lot of people don’t know what to think about Bell or his nebulous beliefs, but I guarantee grabbing a cup of coffee with him will make you think about yourself and life differently.

My second recommendation is someone named Franklin Graham. Yep, his dad is named Billy. But before you roll your eyes, Franklin knows a thing or two about booze and babes from his youth. His story just might surprise you. Plus, he’s doing a whole lot of good through an organization called Samaritan’s Purse. Franklin won’t care that you’re Charlie; he’ll only care that you’re a human being, and you need more people in your life like that.

No. 2: You need some more #losers in your life. As television’s highest paid actor (nearly $2 million an episode), we can all see how you feel like a “a total rock star from Mars” and that you are riding the high of being “on a drug ... called Charlie Sheen.” The porn stars and the private jets make you feel like a #winner, but maybe it’s time to hang with some #losers, people who have lost everything.

On the other side of the world, more than half a million people have lost loved ones, everything they own, or a sense of life as they know it. They go to bed at night and wake up in the morning under the shadows of nuclear disaster and uncertainty. Maybe it’s time to take a ride to Japan sans the goddesses and remember that all the wealth, fame and celebrity status you’ve been given could be used to help others in need.

Please don’t just write a check. Look into their eyes. Listen to their stories. The reality check will trump anything you’ve experienced in rehab.

No. 3: You’re selling out too cheap. The erratic behavior and incoherent ramblings have left everyone wondering when you’re going to crash. Comparisons to Anna Nicole Smith abound. Other than those who purchased seats for your Violent Torpedo Tour, everyone else is being given free tickets to a crash and burn party.

In case no one has told you, you’re more valuable than that. Don’t give them the pleasure. Instead of opting for the crash, pull up, Charlie, pull up. Embrace redemption — it’s never too late to turn things around and inspire us all with goodness rather than just another implosion.

No. 4: You have five kids who need you around. Even if you dismiss every argument, I have some names you can’t dismiss so easily: Cassandra, Sam, Lola, Max and Bob. Some say any media attention is good media attention, but I can’t help but wonder what your kids will think and feel when they Google your name years from now.

Your children need a loving, responsible father, which you can choose to be — and maybe that’s the best wake-up call of all. If you won’t come to your senses for any other reason, do it for them.

As for the rest of us fans, we want you back, Charlie, on your “A” game as an actor, and as a healthy dad. We’re rooting for you!

One of your fans,


The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Margaret Feinberg

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Celebrity • Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (942 Responses)
  1. Frederica

    I haven't been following the news... has he been that bad? May God have mercy on his soul. No one can take fame or wealth with him on Judgment Day. He is another human being who needs the Divine Savior Jesus.

    March 26, 2011 at 7:40 am |
  2. Paula

    Drug addiction for me was homeless, lonely and pathetic. To loose all your friends and family in one ill advised relapse hurt.
    Your complaining that they won't let you act like that and pay 2M per episode.
    I pray you sober up-front from all your addictions
    You will mourn Charlie Sheen, the talented, the funny, the popular.
    You won't sell out stadiums to those tears and regret.

    March 26, 2011 at 7:03 am |
  3. maryabarlow

    Most of the men and women are desperate to find a date, but the sad thing is they are also tired of using the internet. The reason is they do all the work instead of that you can use websites like "Lightning Dating" to do the hard work for you.

    March 26, 2011 at 2:23 am |
  4. notv4me

    Ok..Charlie Sheen is a very seriously disturbed man..and those who look past the insanity to justify their own mental illness should see if there is an open appointment with the Dr. after Charlie's session.. should he live long enough to get to one!. It is quite clear that insanity runs not only in family, but in fan base as well..As for Ms. Preacher.. You ought to know that Twitter is no replacement for Prayer..And as you have made clear you are a fan, I would say that you also are an enabler of Mr Sheen to those very behaviors to which you preach repentance for ..and then pass him off to others for wisdom and encouragement..I am not sure how much you may really know of the Messiah you claim! BTW..;Jesus, who's real name is Yeshua, was Jew..a Hebrew, and obeyed the Torah! Now, how do you fare in OBEDIENCE of the Lord you claim? Pray for his health Madame..and stop feeding his illness with twitter notes..that goes for the rest of his adoring fans who will be all teary eyed and sobbing when you all assist him to an early grave via your grand adoration of stupidity!!! Well, at least you might feel more a part of him knowing that some of your money could possibly go to purchase his casket! Oy! With friends like you all that boy has no chance!

    March 26, 2011 at 2:22 am |
  5. Ashley

    Couldn't say it any better myself!

    March 26, 2011 at 1:56 am |
  6. NoBama

    If Charlie cleans up his act what will keep my mind off of gas prices? I need Charlie's trainwreck to keep me occupied.

    March 26, 2011 at 1:33 am |
  7. N8

    This whole "BLOG" is pathetically sad. everyone should concentrate on bettering thier OWN lives instead of worrying about bashing someone elses. . . . . PEACE!

    March 26, 2011 at 1:05 am |
  8. Mr. Sniffles

    So my choice is Charlie Sheen or a braindead evangelical?

    March 25, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
  9. arch

    Who is this person! Does she really believe Sheen cares what she says. People like this need to go back from where they came and never repeat whatever it was that she said. I love these people who know Sheen inside and out because they have had a friend who has "been there" or they have "been there"! It is like the freaky idiotic so-called TV experts telling everybody what is wrong with Sheen based on how he looked on the television the other day! If everybody would just go about their own daily business and not be concerned about Charlie Sheen or his doings, then the media would stop broadcasting all of this junk we see, read and hear about. It is none of our business or any of those bozos from the TV. It is his life. The media did the same thing when "zero man", (Robert Downey Jr.), had some problems. The more the media exposes the issues the more the person gets personal. If they don't have the exposure they tend to mellow out and figure things out. He is a grown man and can handle his own business. Leave him alone!

    March 25, 2011 at 11:12 pm |
  10. BlueMoon

    Hmmm I am not sure why CNN published this letter maybe just to see what sort of response it generated. It seems too have nothing to do with Mr. Sheen but only the writer's biased opinion with a total lack of respect for Mr Sheen's spiritual beliefs. The writer 1st presents herself first as a fan of Mr. Sheen since she follows him on twitter, but then goes on to use this as a platform to present her own beliefs with the theory then Mr. Sheen would be a much better parent and father if he only followed her plan and expectations. Pretty self centered. Does she really care anything about him or is this only about her own self promotion. Mr. Sheen's adult daughter said it best she loves her father very much. From most accounts he has been a very good father and a very active person in her life. Who is this writer to judge his parenting skills??! My guess is much of who Charlie Sheen is as a person concealed beneath the radar of fame. Unless you really know him or any celebrity personally how can you judge them?

    March 25, 2011 at 10:38 pm |
  11. Normal, Illinois

    Nah, let him crash and burn. He's burnt-out anyway.

    March 25, 2011 at 9:46 pm |
  12. HowdyDoody Time

    Sooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, Whassup kids? Time for you to go to bed!

    March 25, 2011 at 9:30 pm |
  13. joey two toes

    you are all a holes. the lady was trying to help. get your heads out of your ass

    March 25, 2011 at 9:22 pm |
  14. voxofreason

    Missing the finer points, people. Wasn't the message really more along the lines of to whom much is given much is expected? Seek help, Charles. You are a wayward soul drowning in excess. U don't need a pie in the sky God. U just need a higher purpose than party, party, party. It gets old and makes u a bore.

    March 25, 2011 at 9:20 pm |
  15. TimeWaster

    Seriously? CNN posted this waste of time article? I wish I hadn't clicked on it and now I've wasted more of my life responding. In good conscience I had to at least let you know of my disappointment in CNN. This article was not news and was certainly not even entertaining. Who's approving this stuff? Give me my 2 minutes back please!

    March 25, 2011 at 9:03 pm |
  16. Ron

    Time for Charlie to grow up, and try his best to be an adult.

    March 25, 2011 at 8:53 pm |
  17. Immy

    Dear Maggie:

    I want to say as a (yawn)...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Thanks for curing my insomnia with this patronizing article.


    March 25, 2011 at 8:47 pm |
  18. Hist

    worst article i have ever read.

    Feinberg who do you think you are? God?

    You think your better then Charlie?

    March 25, 2011 at 8:37 pm |
  19. Hister

    Who does this lady think she is?

    Feinberg ewwwwww.

    March 25, 2011 at 8:35 pm |
    • Kim

      she is excercising her freedom of speech_

      March 25, 2011 at 11:07 pm |
    • Mike

      She knows (not thinks) she a Christian author who happens to care more about Charlie than he apparently cares about himself. If this advice was coming from Dr. Drew, you wouldn't have any problems with it. You're probably thinking, how dare a Christian push her beliefs on Charlie. Wake up call...she didn't refer to Christ once...she simply shared some common sense advice that any psycho-therapist worth their salt would share.

      March 26, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  20. jerseygirl

    She missed the most important person of all. He should try listening not to Bell or Graham but how about his father? A truly classy "winner" who truly loves him for who he is as a person, not his fame or money and will guide him in the best way possible. It is tragic that he is turning his back on this man. What a mistake.

    March 25, 2011 at 8:34 pm |
    • Fond_Phantom

      Charlie speaks with his family, including his Father, on a regular basis (according to his very sane interview on Howard Stern). I do, however, agree with you. This is a matter in which we (including the Zealotous woman who wrote the article) have very limited information, and really no right to give advice – better left to the family and friends, or even better – Charlie, himself!

      March 25, 2011 at 9:17 pm |
    • Gauntletwielder

      I agree about Martin Sheen. I have always had infinite respect and admiration for him. He seems to be an actor's actor. He has had a lengthy, respectable career. I wish him many more years of continued success. Maybe Martin Sheen and Lawrence Fishburne should start a "We Can't Believe Our Kids Did This to Us!" club.

      March 26, 2011 at 6:42 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.