NASHVILLE — Gospel singer CeCe Winans reflected on God’s faithfulness throughout her decadeslong career, her passion for championing the next generation of Christian musicians and how becoming a grandmother has impacted her artistry.
Winans, one of the most decorated artists in the history of CCM and a 12-time Grammy Award winner, performed a rousing rendition of her song Believe For It at the 52nd annual Dove Awards. She also snagged awards for Gospel Artist of the Year, Gospel Worship Recorded Song of the Year, Gospel Worship Album of the Year and Inspirational Recorded Song of the Year.
“After so many years of doing this, I'm breathing harder … but it gets better,” the 57-year-old singer told reporters following the ceremony. “It gets better. I feel so encouraged. And it reminds us that the Word of God is always relevant. It doesn't matter how old you get, the Word of God never gets old. And so I'm excited that I'm getting the chance to connect with the younger generation ... I'm honored to still be a part of this industry.”
Winans, whose daughter, Ashley Love, recently gave birth to the singer’s first grandchild, Wyatt, told The Christian Post that becoming a grandmother reminded her that God is truly a “God of generations.”
“When you become a parent, you get a real revelation of God’s love,” she said. “When you become a grandparent, you get another surge of life. You understand the importance of everything in the world and how it will impact that little one. I am so honored to sing gospel music. I'm so, so blessed that I truly believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. And I'm excited about God being a God of generations; that He keeps being faithful. I know my grandson Wyatt will be just fine.”
She later added: “The greatest thing my parents gave me was my faith, to teach me the Word of God, and to introduce me to Jesus. The greatest thing I've given my children is my faith. And I just want to continue to share that; the power of the Word of God, the power of the love of God, and we're getting the chance to do that on generations.”
Winans, who was nominated in five categories at this year’s Dove Awards, said she’s excited about championing the next generation of gospel artists, from Tasha Cobbs to Jonathan McReynolds, who hosted the Tuesday night awards alongside Natalie Grant.
“I've been able to see them start and continue to rise, and I get excited because they're remembering that it's not just about a song … but it's about your life, the lifestyle that you live behind the song. I'm excited about encouraging the next generation.”
Throughout her remarkable career, Winans has performed with some of the biggest names in both Christian and mainstream music, including Whitney Houston. When offering advice to up-and-coming artists, Winans stressed the importance of staying rooted in a deep, lasting relationship with Jesus and connecting with a local church.
“It's not easy, as glamorous as it looks. It's not easy to be an artist. It’s so important that you really have a relationship with Him, and not just out here singing a song. Because you're going to face hard times ... you want to be anchored in the Word of God. You want to be anchored in a home church.”
“As artists, and as young people, we feel like, because we sing gospel music, we don't need to home church. That is not true. I could preach on that all night ... you need to be in a place that you can get poured into because we're always pouring out. Through that relationship, you understand who you are.”
When asked about what kind of legacy she wants to leave, Winans said she wants to leave one of hope, power and transformation — “a legacy that says, ‘You know what? Gospel music is the best music anybody could ever sing.”