Dennis Quaid Says He Spent Many Nights “Screaming at God” as He Battled Severe Addiction

dennis quaid

“My greatest mistake was being addicted to cocaine,” actor Dennis Quaid admitted in a Newsweek article. “I started after I left college and came to Los Angeles in 1974.”

He says that while it was initially very casual, the addiction was eventually something that took over his life.

The star of the Christian blockbuster “I Can Only Imagine” that hit theatres this year says he got to a point where his cocaine use was so prevalent that he slept only one hour a night

“I was basically doing cocaine pretty much on a daily basis during the 80s,” he expounded in a recent interview shared by the Daily Mail. “I spent many, many a night screaming at God to please take this away from me, I’ll never do it again because I’ve only got an hour before I have to be at work.”

But then 4 p.m. would roll around, and he would think to himself, ‘oh that’s not so bad.’

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It took a couple of “white light” experiences to give Quaid the reality check he truly needed.

“I had a white light experience where I saw myself either dead or losing everything that meant anything to me,” said Quaid.

He had a similar experience while jamming with his band in L.A.

“I had one of those white-light experiences that night where I kind of realized I was going to be dead in five years if I didn’t change my ways,” shared Quaid. “The next day I was in rehab.”

“That time in my life—those years in the ’90s recovering—actually chiseled me into a person,” said the rising actor. “It gave me the resolve and a resilience to persevere in life. If I hadn’t gone through that period, I don’t know if I’d still be acting. In the end, it taught me humility. I really learned to appreciate what I have in this life.”

dennis quaid

The outspoken Christian says his experience acting in “I Can Only Imagine” also helped to shape who he is as a man of faith.

The actor claims he had never even heard the song before the movie, but he says “it hit him so profoundly, in the heart, in a place where I just don’t even have words.”

“I grew up in a Baptist church, went to Sunday school, and then I got baptized when I was nine and made the decision the same day as my brother,” Quaid explained. “My brother and I, Randy, were both baptized on the same day.”

Quaid says he went through a time of rediscovering who God really was while he traveled the world in his late 20s, and it ultimately led him to one conclusion: Jesus.

“The question I had as I went around the world was ‘Who is God?’ I became a seeker really… I read the Bible cover to cover. For me, it’s Jesus… it’s the red words of Jesus. How simple it is. There really is redemption and that was the inspiration.”

To this day, Quaid is eternally grateful for God sweeping him up in His arms and saving him from a powerful addiction that he certainly couldn’t fight in his own strength.

“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”~Matthew 19:26

Kelsey Straeter
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Kelsey is an editor at Outreach. She’s passionate about fear fighting, freedom writing, and the pursuit of excellence in the name of crucifying perfectionism. Glitter is her favorite color, 2nd only to pink, and 3rd only to pink glitter.