With a sharp sense of humor and storytelling skills befitting the creator of the beloved VeggieTales films, Phil Vischer told a crowd of Christian journalists Wednesday that bankruptcy humbled him and helped him to pursue God instead of a dream.

Suddenly I found myself facing a God I had never heard about in Sunday school. A God that apparently wanted me to let go of my dreams,” shared Vischer, the keynote speaker at the Evangelical Press Association’s opening banquet.

After dropping out of seminary school Vischer co-founded Big Idea Productions and created the talking vegetable children’s animation series VeggieTales in 1993. Quickly, word of mouth spread among Christians about the cute talking cucumber and tomato that taught biblical values and millions of copies of VeggieTales videos were sold.

Big Idea Productions quickly grew from three staff members to over 200 workers by 2000 and was the largest animation studio in the nation, recalled Vischer. People were asking out loud if Vischer would be the next Walt Disney and approached him with ideas to expand the VeggieTales enterprise.

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