Monday, February 13, 2012

Last Thoughts on Whitney Houston

My heart sank as I read the text message a friend sent to me: "Did you hear the news about Whitney Houston?" I had a sick feeling in my stomach, and even before I grudgingly typed in "," I already knew---she was dead. You don't understand, as a kid, I was the hugest Whitney fan. I knew every song of hers and would often record myself in our old tape recorder singing along to her tunes. She was such a picture of class and dignity, stirring my emotions as her heavenly voice echoed in my bedroom. I wanted to be like her when I grew up.

Fast forward several years, and now I'm in my mid-20's. Whitney's life is spinning out of control as most media outlets report scenes of wild parties and heavy drug use. I can't believe it! What happened to the classy, elegant Whitney I had grown up listening to? Her infamous Diane Sawyer interview airs and I watch her declare, "Crack is whack!" proving media reports to be true. How could this be? I wondered. Why would a woman who has so much give it all up for  . . . drugs?

I, thankfully, have never experienced the horrors of battling drug addiction, so I cannot speak from experience. However, I have faced enormous emotional pain, so thick I thought it would swallow me whole. I do know what it's like to feel like your life is totally out of control, and no matter what you do, you'll never win. I know what it's like to cry so hard there are no tears left. I think I can relate to the pain Whitney must have felt in her short life.

 Which brings me to the point: Where do you turn when you have nothing left? When your heart is shattered and your life destroyed, when those you thought you could turn to turn out to betray you, when your hopes and dreams come crashing down, who can you go to? The difference between "Christians" and "those who know their God" (Daniel 11:32) is as different as Mother Teresa and Chelsea Handler. Many claim to be "Christians," but not many can truly say they KNOW God. I have learned in my own emotional struggles that God is so much more than just a religious figurehead or distant unknown. He is such a friend! I have learned to truly "cast all my cares on Him" and allowed Him to sustain me (Psalm 55:22).

Drugs, sex, money, power---none of it truly satisfies or brings the healing our hearts so desperately seek after. My prayer is that Whitney's life will serve to be a "life lesson" for those who struggle. There is a God who is waiting on you to cast your cares on Him and trust Him as he exchanges your pain for His peace, your shame for his grace, your life for his purpose. So, next time you need a "fix," will you try Him? I guarantee, you will not be disappointed.