By Jeannie Law, (Interview) BREATHEcast News Reporter
Rapping dad phenomenon Derek Clark has been the talk of YouTube as he keeps the world updated periodically with adorable videos of him rapping with his children. An author and motivational speaker, Clark chatted with BreatheCast about his incredible testimony and life story filled with movie twists and turns, redemption, and forgiveness.
A very young Clark was dropped off at the county shelter of at the age of five. He spent 13 years in the foster care system. Feeling rejected and forgotten. He said he always prayed to get out and be reunited with his family regardless of the intense abusive environment.
Clark’s dad was in prison for the criminally insane and his abusive mother dropped him off in the system but kept his brother and sister. At one point Clark said he hoped to get out and live with his sister, but that dream shattered when she was shot and killed and shortly after his brother was killed.
At this point, a 17-year-old Clark was filled with hate and anger because his prayers never came true. He said and that is when he decided to make a pact that he would “hate God forever.” He soon entered a vicious cycle of negativity.
“Every time something bad happened I blamed God,” he said.
Although Clark was labeled as a child “mentally handicapped” and constantly found himself in trouble. He managed shake off the labels and become very successful in business. He owned a multi-million-dollar company in his thirty’s but success did not change his attitude towards God.
“I believed in God, but I felt that He just didn’t love me,” Clark said.
On July 4 of 2008 Clark’s life would change forever. Clark now married with kids decided to invite his friends over for a barbeque. He sat and conversed with his guests as his 3-year-old daughter played with their 3-year-old daughter by the pool.
The girls had on their life jackets and were jumping in and out of the pool.They laughed and talked and ate, and all of a sudden his friend’s son started screaming out to his parent that his little sister is laying at the bottom of the pool. Clark and his friends rushed over and got the little girl out of the pool. She was purple and was not breathing. He said he then called 911, but the ambulance did not show up until 15 to 20 minutes later. “She’s dead for 15 minutes, she was gone,” he said.
At this point Clark said he was on the phone cursing out 911 and his wife who had been watching Joel Osteen then placed her hands on the little girl and prayed, “‘Dear God please help this little girl to live,’ and the little girls eyes open.” The ambulance finally showed up and they take took little Ellie away.
As the men headed to the hospital in the car, Clark yelled out “I’m so mad at God, why would God do this?!” in to which Clark said he will never forget what his friend responded, “‘If God takes away my little girl I will praise Him, I will praise Him.'”
A day later the little girl was completely back to normal and all of the water in her lungs miraculously dissipated. That marked the beginning of Clark’s journey with God.
That night, “I got on my knees and I cried my eyes out thanking God for this little girl” Clark said. He had told God he knew God did not care for him but he was glad that He saved that little girl’s life. The successful author then said he heard God audibly say, “I never abandoned you, you abandoned me.”
Clark said his eyes were instantly opened and his “life flashed backwards” and he suddenly saw God’s hand throughout his entire life. “He hooked me up with the right foster homes, with the right mentors, with all these milestones” he said.
Clark immediately began to write his book “I Will Never Give Up On God Again” because he stated, “I went from feeling abandoned by God to feeling embraced by God.”
He didn’t have a drug or alcohol problem he had a negativity problem against God; but that was the moment it all turned around. Clark experienced a complete transformation and compared his experience to the famous Saul to Paul conversion.
He began to share his story worldwide after meeting with former President Bush, in which he performed a song written for the troops. After writing the story of his life in book form, Clark felt compelled to travel and share his story as a motivational speaker. At that point he made the decision, with his wife’s full support, to give up his career and pursue that full time.
Five years later Clark is now ranked the No. 1 inspiring motivational speaker on Google, to which “he give’s all Glory to God.” He stated that he now understands that what happened to him is not greater then what has happened through him. He has since made peace and forgiven his parents for what has happened.
Clark continues to travel the world encouraging people with his music, his books, and of course his amazing testimony.
Derek Clark Quote to remember:
“Never let a weakness destroy your greatness”