Lynda Randle may be best known as the only African-American in the Gaither family of musicians, but her biggest passion is ministering to hurting women.
Lynda Randle knows what it’s like to be pulled in a million different directions. She’s a relatively successful solo artist, but is most well-known as a regular performer–and the only African-American–in the Gaither Homecoming tours and products. She is the founder of Lynda Randle Ministries in Kansas City, through which she encourages women and aims to build bridges between races. She and her husband, Mike, aim to plant a new church in KC that will bring together a multicultural congregation. She is the older sister of Michael Tait, former member of dc Talk and now the lead singer for the Newsboys. Finally, Randle is A Woman After God’s Own Heart, the title of her new CD (releasing today) and of the women’s conferences she stages 2-3 times per year (most recent was held last weekend in Minnesota). We recently caught up with Randle to discuss her new album, and more.
A Woman after God’s Own Heart is the title of your conferences and your new CD. Tell me what that phrase means to you.
Lynda Randle: It’s from David’s story in the Bible. After all of his sins, all of the mistakes David made, God said, “He is still a man after my own heart.” God’s desires for the heart of his children is to be toward him. In my own life, I’ve blown it many times, but I want to be a woman after God’s own heart. And there’s security in knowing that God loves us unconditionally.
Is that the theme on the album and at your conferences?
Randle: Absolutely. Cee Cee Michaela is speaking again this year [the conference was held in May in Minnesota]. She has an incredible story of secondary virginity and purity, and on what it means to be a woman of God. I think at the end of the day, the women go back feeling that they are loved and appreciated. I just want women just to know that although we wear all these different hats and we blow it, and sometimes we’re not sure who we are, we are deeply and intimately loved by the Father.
Is that any different than, say, 25 years ago? Do you think women need to hear that message more today than ever?
Randle: I think so. The difference between women today and yesterday is the sewing machine–seriously. I’m old school. A lot of young sisters don’t even know how to sew on a button. Some can’t boil water, can’t cook, can’t do anything because there are so many things pulling on young women today–careers, the Internet, Skyping, texting. Yesteryear wasn’t like that. There was a central focus on family and relationships; it wasn’t just all about me. A lot of young sisters today, it’s all about them. They are far from relationships and caring for people.
Right now, I’m taking care of my mom in our home. She had a stroke in December. We are busier than ever, but relationships are so important. My parents took 18 or 19 years of their life to invest in mine; I should give something back. Young kids today don’t know anything about that. But I’m living this thing out.
I understand you also take care of troubled young women?
Randle: Yeah. I have “little sisters” all around the world. We’ve got a young girl who wants to come live with us from Norway in 2012. There’s a young girl from Kentucky that just lived with us for about a year, and I’ve mentored her, like a big sister. Gloria Gaither recently said to me, “If you could mother the world, you would.” I said, “I would. I would bring everybody home and do that.”
After a recent concert in Pittsburgh, I noticed a girl, about 18, who looked despondent. Her mother introduced me, and I went to give her a hug, but she sort of shrunk back. I was like that; I was a rebellious teenager with issues. But I told her that every night when I get up and sing on stage, I’m terrified. I said, “This is nothing I ever dreamed of doing, especially after failing the ninth grade.” I wanted her to see that I was human, but she was still just looked removed and a little bit angry. So that was that.