I am writing to you on behalf of thousands of people who have supported your ministry through its highest moments, and those who will remain after this challenging experience. Unfortunately, when you have been blessed to minister to the multitudes and stand on the platforms you have been afforded, there is no such thing as processing in private. Your life is an open book. The moment you accept the call, you simultaneously agree to a life that is lived “out loud.” The good news is you are in great company – one look at the many people God used should be encouraging.
This open letter is not an attack against you, nor suggesting you stop ministering. That would be ludicrous and a travesty with a gift as great as yours. Especially when none of your critics have the authority to condemn you to such a harsh degree. As I read through many comments about you, I am amazed at the lack of grace from keyboard warriors, who consistently live a sub-par life in private. Not to mention, those who obviously have no idea of the real details. Truth is, many Christians look for perfection everywhere except the mirror.
Surely, you never expected the backlash you received after posting the video. The sad thing is, while onlookers slammed you for partying with Bad Bunny, you were actually celebrating with other believers. Even still, the Bible is filled with stories surrounding people who messed up, got it right, and went on to do great things for the Kingdom of God. It is good to know that your destiny is not in the hands of those willing to cancel you.
Yesterday, Maverick City posted a public statement of separation from you (which is their right). It is what many organizations do in times like these to “protect the brand.” Whether for a season or the foreseeable future, accept the breakup, take the time to heal, and keep moving. Some people and/or entities are only “assigned” for a certain space in our story. Their contribution to our lives is cemented in history, but never intended to go the distance.
The recent comments have been brutal toward you. If you zero in on the negativity of these people when they are in the throes of their negative spin, you will anchor yourself to their personal baggage and participate in their internal struggle. People have even declared an end to listening to your music. I wonder if these same people skip over the Psalms, since David was a murderer and adulterer. Somehow, he was still a man after God’s heart.
Sabrina Harrison, Co-Founder of AMEN Church, posted videos on her Instagram account showing how you live, love, and reflect Jesus without a microphone in your hand. She wrote:
Due to behavior that is consistent with my core values and beliefs, I have decided to celebrate and support my brother. These are just a few of the many videos I have of him being a reflection of Jesus. @dantebowe keep shining His light bright. I’ve seen you give the shoes off your feet to the homeless, serve faithfully, and love unconditionally… not for likes, but because that’s just who you are. You will reach the entire world, not just the saints. Keep loving until people ask why.
I felt it necessary to share these recent videos now. – We don’t give to be seen, but I dont mind being seen giving, when it represents the faithful seeds of others. This is faith in action. #dantebowe What if we all commented less opinions, and got more serious about prayer and our capacity to make a significant difference in the world? Wouldn’t that be the greatest miracle we’ve ever seen?
As you enter this new season of expansion, it is normal to be uncomfortable. New beginnings can be messy. All seasons of life, even the ones you like the least, represent purpose. Each season is a signal that you are not stuck. And even though you will lose some things, you are strong enough to keep going. You hurt and heal, you build and release; it is all part of the process called life. Then, in the most unlikely of places, you make real connections. Grace finds you. You will see worthwhile things growing in the dirt of imperfection.
We are all a work in progress. Many ideas of spirituality involve sanding ourselves down and smoothing ourselves out so that we appear nice and shiny. But I believe it is the jagged edges of our humanity that connect us to our Savior and one another! Afraid of being human is what keeps the church stagnant. God knows we are not perfect in the sense that many attempt to display. Jesus came to Earth so that he could be touched with the feelings of our infirmities. In other words, so that he could understand what it is like to be human. He now knows and understands… the Bible states, “When Jesus came, so did grace and truth!”
Ultimately, your post became prey to the fodder of gossip hounds. Understanding that we all have things in our past, church folk need to promote a culture of magnanimity that recognizes that we are all on a journey and no one has arrived. By striving to improve, especially in virtue, we can set an expectation that does not dwell on past mistakes. It is time to look forward – eyes set on the upcoming song release with AMEN Church titled, “I’d Give It All.”
In closing, I support utilizing your gift amid stormy weather. I also appreciate your decision to retreat from the public eye and spend more time with the gift-giver. Thank God for grace and mercy, not just for you, but also for the rest of us, who remain grateful for new mercies daily. Remember, none of your critics are as “holy” in private as they are in public. Be encouraged, Dante, this too shall pass!
By Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
The Focus: Dante Bowe to leave Maverick City Music after ‘Bad Bunny video’ backlash
Top Image Courtesy of Instagram (Dante Bowe)
Featured Image Courtesy of Twitter (Dante Bowe)