Feature

Faith Fueled

DeAndre (Relentless) Holmes and Richaun Holmes are two of the four sons born to Richard and Lydecia Holmes. They were raised in a Christian home, both parents are pastors of Morning View Word Church on the south side of Chicago. They are a true testament of what can happen when your faith and work ethics drive you to pursue your dream.

Today DeAndre is a rapper on the rise, recently releasing his latest single “Rise Above It,” and Richaun is an up and coming NBA player from the Philadelphia 76ers roster. Both share so many similarities when it comes to their outlook on applying faith to works, because faith without works is dead.

DeAndre was first inspired to become a rapper during his teen years. He would battle rap all the time and was so talented that he received offers to sign. While considering taking a deal he went on a trip to Houston, TX where he witnessed some pioneers in the Christian Rap community take the stage and own it, Canton Jones and Pettidee. While at that concert God began to speak to him and tell him that this is how he wanted him to use his talent. DeAndre says he responded, “God, if this is what you want me to do for you, I don’t want my lyrics to be wack.” His parents were a little concerned. Christian rap wasn’t as widely accepted then as it is today and what they knew about rappers and rap music did was not a testament of the gospel. Over time his parents began to see the ministry in it and that it was more of what the lyrics were about and the message of the songs he created.

DeAndre didn’t accept the offers he received. He went on to attend college and study his word. He hadn’t developed a good flow, he was used to doing battle rap but not ministry or testimony through rap. The more he began to read the bible and pray God began to open his thoughts to write. By 2013 he released his first album, “The Alarm Clock.” He has been blessed with the opportunity to work with Delmar Lawrence III, known in the music community as Mr. Dell, and minister through rap and the word as God opens the doors.

As he grows in Christ and has more life experiences his gift develops even more. DeAndre and his wife experienced a faith growing challenge a couple of years ago when she, Kassy, went to the doctor for a normal pre-natal visit only for them to learn from the doctors that something was wrong with the baby and the baby was not expected to live. While the initial shock was there, DeAndre remembers putting everyone out of the room and telling his wife “the weapon is formed, but it’s not going to prosper.” They stood on the promises of God and kept the faith and today they have a healthy and active toddler who is nicknamed Mr. Unstoppable, which inspired one of DeAndre’s songs “Unstoppable.”

DeAndre isn’t the only one reaping a harvest on his faith and works in the Holmes family. His brother, Richaun, is as well. Richaun is the youngest of his four brothers. He is also married, to Allexis, and they have a toddler as well. The Holmes family is growing and growing.

Richaun had the dream of playing professional basketball since the age of five. He said, “I never saw myself doing anything else.” Richaun, like his brother, developed a talent but his more on athletic side. Because of his love for the game of basketball he participated in the sport as soon as possible and never stopped. He attended basketball camp every year until he aged out. Because of his hard work and practice, he was chosen and added to the 76ers roster. He has been a part of that organization for a couple of years now. It’s a surreal feeling for him. He remembers being a bit star struck the first year from the excitement of being able to meet athletes that he grew up watching.

Richaun recently just experienced hosting his first basketball camp focusing on teaching fundamentals of the sport. He hosted in his home town in Lockport, Illinois and his fan base home in Philadelphia, PA.
His biggest influence is his faith in God. His faith is what drives him to put in as much work as possible and he credits the rest to God. He makes it a point to read his bible and pray every day because he was taught to put God first. His dreams are not capped, he desires to achieve all that he can.

DeAndre and Richaun have an amazing support system from their wives, brothers and especially their parents. When asked how she felt about witnessing everything they have accomplished so far their mother Lydecia responded “It’s really fun to watch because I know the struggle that came with it. Now to see where they are, I am very proud of them.” She credits them for never stopping and continuing to pursue their dreams.

The editor was was raised as a pastor’s daughter in the city of Chicago and now resides in southern Illinois and is married to a minister. Don’t mistake her roles as a preacher’s kid (p.k.) and a preacher’s wife (p.k.) as a lack for awareness for what happens in the life of the average woman. She has had acquaintances and friendships over the years with women from all walks of life and the one thing that she has had in common with them all is her faith. Through those relationships she learned that everyone has moments of doubt, discouragement and even triumphs. The key is to have a connection to other believers so they can encourage each other through the ups and downs of life. That is what inspired her to create Nouveau Exposure Magazine. She has purposed to find other believers with testimonies of success after struggle, dreams coming to fruition by applying faith and action as well as lessons on self love. email address: SharondaCawthon@nouveauexposure.org