Blog Archives

Contrasting Amy Winehouse And Danniella Westbrook

Last night, my friend Dave Clemo made a contrast between Amy Winehouse and Danniella Westbrook on his Facebook page. Referring to Winehouse’ death and Westbrook’s conversion, he wrote:

Amy Winehouse & Daniella Westbrook. Both were young and famous. Both had serious drug addictions. One died, the other survived and has been clean for ten years. One is dead, the other is born again. That’s the reality of faith in the Lord Jesus.

While I share Christian faith with Dave I would put it slightly differently, since Westbrook had been clean for drugs for about eight years before she found faith in Christ. However, there is certainly a poignant contrast to be made between these two famous young women who consumed vast quantities of narcotics. In addition to Dave’s words, I received this afternoon the weekly email from The Word Magazine, in which the lead quote was from Winehouse:

I don’t need help because if I can’t help myself I can’t be helped.

How tragic is that? Westbrook sought help – first to be rid of her addiction, second in faith. Winehouse ruled out the possibility. Some criticise Christianity for being a ‘crutch’, but what if we all have broken legs, so to speak? While there are certain forms of dependency that are immature, to deny the need of dependence upon others is dangerously foolish, as Winehouse’s words show.

Don’t misunderstand me: I’m not writing this to join in some pious post-mortem condemnation of Winehouse. I hope and pray that whatever went on in her final hours and days, the God of mercy was reaching out to her. But perhaps an age that talks of either not needing help or only of self-help needs to hear again that a true mark of maturity is knowing when and where to seek help.

Life and eternity depends on it.

The Press And Danniella Westbrook’s Conversion

Former EastEnders soap star and notorious cocaine addict Danniella Westbrook has become a Christian. Read this interview in The Mirror, which is utterly devoid of the cynicism Christians often expect from the press. Not so the Daily Mail, often the self-proclaimed defender of Christian values, from the snide title of its piece to the snarky comments about finance. Is this a class thing? Westbrook more neatly fits the Mirror’s demographic, yet that section of society generally has a lower attachment to Christianity.