By Michael Ashcraft —
Growing up in the small town of Ocala, Florida — the “horse capital of the world,” Khalid Snowden was brought to church by his single-parent mom (and grandma) along with his younger sister.
“The image I gave off in the church was a good boy,” Khalid says. During his middle-school years, there were times Khalid struggled with inferiority and anger to the point where he even talked back to his teachers when given directions.
Then came the summer or revival in his church in Ocala.
“There was revival for youth and young adults during summer of 2005 at my family church, and I decided to give my life to God,” recalls Khalid (unrelated to whistleblower Edward Snowden). “It was a lot of fun. Many of the youth and young adults were giving their lives to Jesus and just being happy.”
But a friend unnerved him with a prediction.
“You know when we go back to school, you’re not going to be saved,” she told him.
“I was so offended. I wanted to prove her wrong, that I could stay saved regardless of being back in school,” he says.
Sadly, he found the temptations and peer pressure to be too much. Plus, he realizes now, he was working to be good in his flesh, as opposed to following the Spirit. And he slowly slipped away.
“I may not have murdered anyone, but my sins were enough to send me to Hell. I was walking according to the flesh and not being truly born-again,” he recalls. “I used to wonder if I was even savable.”
Then during his freshman year at college, he reencountered God. It wasn’t in the enthusiasm-environment of revival at church among Christian friends. It was being away from home, in his college apartment.
His mom sent him texts from time to time, but the one she sent towards the end of the first semester of his freshman year in 2009 hit home. It was Psalm 51:7: “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”
Suddenly, he was inundated with conviction of the Holy Spirit and yearned for a God cleansing.
“I really got convicted of sin and came to the end of myself,” he remembers. “I was ready to surrender. I was ready to change my desires, my will and commit myself to God. It wasn’t until that night that I was ready to give it all up to God, even those sensitive areas that I used to pretend that didn’t exist at all. I never looked back since then.”
He dove into the Word deeply, which led to a fuller appreciation of God’s amazing grace, he says.
He married his girlfriend and together they launched into full-fledged, uncompromising Christianity, which is not to say that they lived sinless lives. Today at 30, Khalid has twin boys with his wife and has spent a big part of his career in education.
Like so many other blacks who had never seen a major breakthrough of African Americans in politics, Khalid rejoiced at seeing Barak Obama win the presidency of the United States.
But during Obama’s second term, Khalid and his wife felt more and more out of touch with the president they once rejoiced over. It was during his first term that Christian baker Jack Phillips was persecuted for declining to decorate a gay wedding cake because it was against his biblical convictions. LBGTQ agenda began to encroach on the freedom and convictions of religious minorities. Muslims were given more space and respect while Christians were attacked and ridiculed.
“I would just remember listening to Obama speak about his agenda and his policies, and I remember we began to say this man’s agenda doesn’t respect our faith and we no longer agree with the Obama administration,” he says. “Listening to Obama speak on things, I realized that what they’re standing for and trying to bring to America was conflicting with our Biblical values.”
The party that has enjoyed the monolithic black vote since Lyndon Johnson signed Civil Rights legislation had drifted too far from the Christian values held by many blacks.
Khalid is part of a burgeoning movement called Blexit, the black exit from the Democrat party as it espouses ideologies that conflict with many blacks’ social values. Started by conservative commentator Candace Owens, she compares white Democratic politicians telling blacks how to vote “a plantation.”
The movement may be gaining steam, because many were surprised that President Trump won 26% of non-white voters, the highest showing for the GOP since 1960.
Khalid’s faith in God supersedes politics and race. “The more I read the Bible, the more I identified as a Christian, as a redeemed saint, not as black,” he says.
Michael Ashcraft does Christian journalism for free. To pay for life, he sells bamboo steamers on Amazon.