Saturday, February 11, 2012
I am sure for the next few weeks we will be inundated with memorials to Whitney Houston. Her passing today made her part of the ultimate statistic - 1 in 1 will die. I am sure as she woke up this morning she had no idea that this would be the last day she would do so. As her day progressed she probably had no idea that today, this day, February 11th 2012 she would breath her last breath and step into eternity.
I am not an expert on the life of Whitney Houston. I know she was a very popular singer and acted in The Bodyguard, was married to Bobby Brown for a while and had a child together. Other than that I couldn’t really tell you, other than her erratic behavior and drug abuse. I have no idea if she was a Christian or even professed faith in God, which is a sign that she did not actively proclaim Christ.
The Grammy Awards will be telecast tomorrow night, in which we will hear many accolades to Ms. Houston. I am also fairly certain we will even hear how she is “with God now” or “in the arms of angels” or people bidding her to “rest in peace”. Thing is, by all accounts she is probably not doing any of those things. From the little research I did this evening Houston was raised in a Baptist home, later attended a Pentecostal church and went to a Catholic school. She sometimes talked about her “faith” but I could find no account of what that “faith” was. Her life was full of drug use, rehab stays and behavior that makes faith in Christ seem to be the farthest thing from the truth. This is not to say that Christians cannot fall into these evils, but they will definitely not stay there. I caution everyone to be really careful about preaching Whitney Houston into heaven. Professing faith does not really mean a lot. And just because she was famous and had an obvious God given talent does not mean that she was a Christian, it just means she wasted her God given talent on selfish ambitions.
So, what to do? Use this as a springboard, a reason to talk to people about death. Explain to them that we are all going to die one day, maybe even today. Don’t scare them into saying a prayer or anything, but make sure they know that today is the day of salvation and that we are not promised another breath on this earth. Make sure they know the true gospel of scripture and are not placing their faith anywhere except on Christ. Not in a prayer, not in church membership or attendance, not on being proclaimed saved by a pastor, not on how good they have lived - only repenting of their sin and trusting in Jesus Christ and His merit can save them. Point them to resources such as Real Truth Matters , www.needgod.com or any other biblically based ministry’s website. Pursue a relationship with them, disciple those that you talk to, show them where your faith lies.
Use this tragic end to a tumultuous life as a way to share the Gospel. Never waste the opportunity to tell someone how they too can know God.