It’s been a little over a week since the death of Whitney Houston. I’m not glorifying her when I mention her name, but the Lord was dealing with me this past Friday about her. I came home on Friday night from sitting a coffee shop working on my novel and ended up watching ABC’s 20/20. It was a special entitled One Moment In Time: The Life of Whitney Houston.
I don’t know who happen to watch it, but I did. In a short summary, it focused on her entire life (the ups and downs of her life). Over the course of this week, I saw numerous posts on Facebook about her. Some were focusing on the funeral ceremony and some were angry that the media was still talking about the downs of her life. Well, as I watched it, God showed me something and I wonder if anybody else caught the lesson (or we missed it altogether). As we live life, people live and die. It was like that in the Bible days. One thing we tend to miss is that there are lessons to learn through somebody’s life (example: we learn that David was a man after God’s on heart, and that adultery can tarnish your character). This is true about Whitney Houston and this will be the focus of this blogpost.
During her years before releasing her first album in 1985, it was evident that God gave her a gift, and of course, it was her voice (she would be known to the world as “The Voice”). As I watched the part where she was singing in the choir as a teenager, her gift was being used to the fullest and was being perfected. Between 1985 and 1992, she was the icon to the world in the realm of female vocalists. I’ll admit there were times when I was tired of hearing some of the songs she sang (and for those who knew me back in the day, I chose her songs that weren’t so popular). But still, she was blessing many people with her voice.
Many people will have opinions, but I will only focus on her gift for this post. Between 1992 and 2012, her gift was a target for the devil. Notice, I didn’t say Bobby Brown was the cause of her downfall. She has to take full responsibility for this, just like we have to take responsibility for the gift God has given us. Sure, people can influence us to do many things, but the responsibility to protect it lies on us. Just because we have a gift doesn’t mean we’ll always have it. This is what happened to Whitney especially at the turn of the millennium. By the time she appeared on Oprah in 2009, her gift was gone.
Yes, it is a tragedy that her life was cut short, but the lesson that we should’ve gained from Whitney Houston’s life is this: everybody has a unique gift. Instead of trying to compete, use the gift that God has given you, and protect it at all costs because the devil knows how much of an impact your gift will make on other people. If anything, what we are to do with our gift especially if we’re a chosen generation, a royal priesthood and a holy nation to show forth the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9), is to use it so that others will know that God is with us and more importantly, in us! The purpose is so that others will give praise to God and not give praise to us. This is where we miss it due to the temptation of self-gratification.