A Checkered Past

Growing older has taught me to see more clearly the symbiotic relationship between extreme adversity and supreme destiny. I’ve often read and also witnessed in person, both men and women of great accomplishment travel raucous paths before ultimately reaching their rightful position. It’s as if the rocky journey was a prerequisite for sustained greatness, perhaps because it made them battle tested. Additionally, I have noticed that most of us have a proclivity to focus on the headlines of a person’s life rather than digging a bit deeper to discover the full story. We tend to celebrate the glories while ignoring the travails of the developmental phases; which seem to go unnoticed until they are highlighted.

Where man sees flaws, God sees potential for greatness.

Recently, my studies have taken me to the book of Exodus where the Hebrews were enslaved by ancient Egyptians. It is in this book that we read of Moses’ leadership; which helped lead the people of Israel out of bondage and toward the Promised Land of Canaan. He was also the man to whom God spoke the Ten Commandments, the official benchmark for moral and spiritual living. But when you take a glance back at Moses’ pre-head honcho days, his future did not look so promising.

Moses was born during a period when the King of Egypt decreed for all Hebrew boys to be killed at birth. It goes without saying, had his mother not hid him from Egyptian officials, Moses’ legacy would have never gotten off the ground. Another layer of drama was added to his life when he killed an Egyptian in cold blood and was forced to flee to the land of Midian. Still, the God of Abraham remained faithful to Moses, viewing him as the warrior who would be malleable enough to receive divine instruction and then lead His chosen people to the land flowing with milk and honey. However, there was one more obstacle standing in the way; Moses was a poor communicator. In fact, he even pleaded with God to consider someone else for the assignment, preferably someone who could speak well. Despite this apparent flaw, God stayed the course with Moses and an entire nation was literally saved as a result.

Like Moses, you and I may have experienced episodes in our lives which seem to disqualify us from positions of prominence because of past missteps. But rest assured that God is able to make a way out of no way. Where man sees flaws, God sees potential for greatness. Therefore, you should never allow your past failures to negatively impact the bright future God has waiting for you!

Michael Winans Jr is a 3rd generation member of the world renowned Winans family. Mike began his music career at the age of 16 singing alongside his cousins in the Gospel group, Winans Phase II. Soon after, Mike initiated a career in songwriting/production and formed his own company, Baby Mike Music. In 2006, he signed a co publishing deal with EMI Music and began working with many renowned artists. His music career spawned him millions of album sales and a Grammy nomination. But in 2013, Mike’s life took an unexpected turn when he was sentenced to nearly 14 years in Federal Prison. However, Mike has taken a position of strength by redirecting his attention to his foundation, Christ. Mike is now a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, teaching nightly bible studies and ushering fellow inmates into the revelation of Christ.