Pop star Robin Thicke has had a bit of a spiritual awakening following his father’s sudden death in 2016 and his girlfriend’s miscarriage, which she revealed earlier this year.
Thicke released a new single, “Testify,” last week, and it strikes a few spiritual chords — a sharp turn away from the overly sexual, made-for-radio pop tunes for which he’s famous.
In December 2016, the 41-year-old singer’s father, Alan Thicke, known for his role in the 1980s sitcom “Growing Pains,” collapsed while playing a pick-up ice hockey game with his youngest son, Carter, at Pickwick Gardens in Burbank.
Thicke’s father later died of a heart attack. He was 69 years old.
Then in August, Thicke’s 24-year-old girlfriend, model April Love Geary, revealed she had a miscarriage before giving birth to the couple’s daughter, Mia Love. The duo is now expecting their second child.
“It’s cathartic just to be able to say it and then let it live, as opposed to in the middle of a conversation or a quote,” Thicke told People. “Once you put it into song form, then it can live forever. And so the message in the song is really about the hope and the light at the end of that tunnel when you feel that you lost or you feel that you don’t know what to do next.”
He added, “You know, that reconnection to God or spirituality or something deeper than the surface is what brings you back home to who you really are and who you want to be.”
While not much is known about Thicke’s faith, his father took “Growing Pains” co-star Kirk Cameron under his wing many years ago, when the 48-year-old actor converted to Christianity.
Following his embrace of the Christian faith, Cameron said he began to feel uncomfortable performing scenes that were suggestive or didn’t align with his beliefs in some way. The elder Thicke ultimately advised Cameron to step away from secular entertainment and pursue faith-based opportunities.
“What I said was, very sincerely, ‘If you’re seriously disturbed by a show like ‘Growing Pains’ being blue, then I think you’re not going to find a gentler vehicle on network TV for your beliefs, and what you should do is take the wonderful fan base which you have, and take your fan base to Christian broadcasting where you don’t have to fight with the people you disagree with,’” Alan Thicke told Fox News in 2012. “And all these years later I think that’s exactly what he’s done.”
While Thicke’s new song and comments about God are very broad and seem more aligned with a general spirituality, the Lord uses the brokenness and pain we experience on this earth as opportunities to meet us, to give us glimmers of mercy and grace in a dark and often hopeless world.
Only time will tell where this spiritual journey leads Thicke. Our prayer is that he approaches this chapter of his life with humility and an open heart and mind, listening for and seeking out God’s clarion call.