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Kanye West Credits ‘Radical Obedience’ to Christ for Getting Him Through Mental Health Crisis

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Rapper Kanye West, known for his unorthodox opinions and unfiltered style, told Forbes in a newly released interview it was his “radical obedience” to Jesus Christ that helped him through his headline-grabbing mental breakdown in 2016.


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Tré Goins-Phillips

Rapper Kanye West, known for his unorthodox opinions and unfiltered style, told Forbes in a newly released interview it was his “radical obedience” to Jesus Christ that helped him through his headline-grabbing mental breakdown in 2016.

West earned a great deal of media coverage when, three years ago, he claimed to be $53 million in debt—at the time, he asked Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for $1 billion—and checked into a hospital in Los Angeles for more than a week, suffering with symptoms of sleep deprivation and temporary psychosis. Ultimately, the entertainment icon canceled his tour dates.

When asked how he managed to cope with his health crisis, the 42-year-old West told the magazine it was “being in service to Christ, the radical obedience” that got him through such a dark season.

“I’m just blessed through the grace of God to go from tweeting at Mark Zuckerberg” to where he is today, West told Forbes, adding he can laugh today about his past decisions. “People wondered, ‘Why did you tweet at Mark Zuckerberg?’ And I was like, ‘Hey, I heard he was looking for aliens.’”

West, talking about the success of his well-known shoe line, Yeezy, said, “God does have a way of lining things up.”

For anyone who has followed West in recent months, none of his comments should be surprising. The performer and fashion designer has signaled an increased focus on spirituality.

In December, West described the YouVersion Bible app as his “favorite app” and said Hebrews 3:12-13 is his favorite passage.

The verse reads:

Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”

In addition, West has been hosting “Sunday services,” weekly music-only and invite-only worship events with an obviously Christian bent.

What else?

During his interview with Forbes, West explained why he chooses to make his apparel out of strictly one kind of material rather than blending fabrics.

The entertainer, husband to reality TV star Kim Kardashian, read Leviticus 19:19, which reads, in part, “Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.”

“I tell my apparel team that. The clothes that we’re using, like, a single material,” West said. “I remember sending a manager I used to work with a really rude email about how every time he wore this wool jacket with leather sleeves he set culture back by 10 years.”

“Now,” he continued, “I can send him the verse from the Bible that says you should not wear a garment of cloth made of two kinds of material.”