I’ve been waiting for (dreading) this interview with Nicki Minaj. It aired on Nightline last night, and I’d been hearing about it (via twitter) for a week or so. I didn’t watch last night, but I found it online first thing this morning to see what went down.
My “dread” was of the head-shaking “here we go again” variety. There are plenty of things in this interview I take issue with. And on another day, I might write a post about any one of these quotes from the interview:
“I love the F-bomb.”
I mean come on, that post all but writes itself.
“I don’t want to offend moms and children that come to my shows, but … “
But what? You don’t think your Barbie-doll-like appearance and bubble gum color costumes appeal to the tween set?
“Can Sophia sing that one?”
(referring to the 8 year old whose YouTube video of her singing Super Bass landed her on “Ellen.”) And don’t get me started on the parents thinking it was “cute” to have their 8 year old singing a song that includes “He just gotta give me that look, when he give me that look / Then the panties comin’ off, off, unh”
I wrote a bit about Nicki’s hit “Stupid Hoe” before her Super Bowl appearance. And her Grammy performance left me shaking my head. So I had already mentally prepared for this post. I was ready to be angry. My defenses were up. I was mapping out my response to every “I’m-gonna-change-the-world” or “My-music-is-about-empowering-women” comment. PUH-leeeez.
But instead I find myself with a completely different set of emotions after watching the interview. Heartache. Grief. Conviction.
I’ve watched the interview three times and all I can see is a little girl who grew up in a hellish nightmare that no child should experience. A kid who was robbed of the innocence of childhood, and who never experienced the love of a father. Under all the wigs and costumes and makeup and bravado, there’s a young woman who desperately wants to be cherished and loved.
Here’s what was whispered to my heart while I watched the interview: God loves Nicki Minaj.
As much as he loves me.
And you. And the young ladies (and men) in your student ministry who may be growing up in their own version of a hellish childhood.
So today I’m not going to get all wound up about her music. Today I need to embrace the heartache, in order to be reminded of the vastness of God’s love. I need to recognize the search for Truth that is exposed in the lyrics of so many mainstream artists. I need to pray for wisdom, so that when given the opportunity, I’ll be bold enough to point to that Truth. And I need to pray for Nicki Minaj, that she’ll discover the love of the true Father.