The most beautiful voice ever heard on this planet has been silenced. And it happened long before Whitney Houston’s tragic death. Anyone who heard her in recent years, anyone who saw her in recent days, knows. She was a shell of her former self. I feel like I’ve seen this movie before. Young talent rises to fame, makes a huge impact on the world, peaks, makes bad choices, fails to maintain an expected level of success, begins to decline, public turns on them, famous person turns on themselves. Death.
Here’s the truth: we don’t know them. We didn’t know her.
Oh, we feel like we do. We watched Whitney grow up. We saw her on MTV and at the movies. We heard her on the radio. We saw this stunningly gorgeous women grace magazine covers. We watched as she wowed the world with a rendition of the National Anthem so stirring that it hit the pop charts. But we didn’t know her and frankly, we don’t really know anyone but ourselves. Worse than that, we fail to understand the power of the enemy that sought her destruction—the same enemy that seeks our own.
At the funeral service held inside the New Jersey church where Whitney perfected her voice, her friend and co-star of the film, The Bodyguard, Kevin Costner took the podium. In a moving tribute, he revealed that Whitney Houston didn’t always feel like a superstar; that she didn’t always feel good enough, pretty enough, or talented enough. He said that if he could talk to her now, he would tell her that as she’s being escorted by an army of angels to sing before God, not to worry. That she’ll be good enough.
The same goes for you. By grace, you have been granted a pardon. By grace, all that is wrong is made right. By grace, you are good enough. There’s nothing you can do to add to it. There’s nothing you can do to diminish it. As Jesus said, “It is done.”
No, we didn’t know Whitney Houston. We didn’t know her heart. But we do know ourselves. And we know what we believe.
We know that if we accept the gift of grace given to us, it is then that we truly discover the greatest love of all.