DECATUR — Every day, when he writes gospel music, Anthony Stanley is fully aware of how different his life could have been if he didn’t make a specific decision. A rising hip-hop star at a young age, he wrote his first song at 8 and was opening for stars such as Wacka Flocka and Chingy by the time he was in his mid-teens. He knew that music was what he wanted to do for the rest of his life, and a record contract was set dangling in front of him. But before he could sign it, Stanley had a revelation.
“I was 18 and in college at the time,” said the Decatur resident, who is hosting an event in commemoration of his first gospel single Saturday, Aug. 9 at Maranatha Assembly of God. “I had an encounter with Jesus, face-to-face in my apartment, and I fell to my knees and said I’d dedicate my life to him. It changed my whole life, obviously.”
Stanley was true to his word – that was the last of him as a secular rap artist. Looking back, it’s obvious to him that he eventually would have had to abandon popular hip-hop music due to the way it clashed with his lifestyle. Even as a teenager, he was already tired of being told what kind of image to portray in his music, especially when it was the image of a lifestyle he couldn’t personally advocate.
“They wanted me to change my identity, and I couldn’t do that,” he said. “I’m not going to rap about doing and selling drugs when I never even did anything like that. I know for a fact that it was the Holy Spirit that gave me enough strength to turn it all down and embrace the unknown.”Read More
Early one morning I had a supernatural encounter, one like I had never experienced before. It was about 3:00 am when the Lord took me into a vision and showed me this man. The man had on an apostolic robe like an Apostle. The glory of God was surrounding him, and he carried weight in the spirit. Next, I noticed a big book in his hands, and out of it poured the revelation of the Lord. As the Lord showed me the assignment he placed on this man of God’s life, I felt as if I knew him because my spirit instantly connected with his. Read More