Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Are You A Ruler? Do You Measure Up? – Motown Founder Berry Gordy’s Legacy!

Berry Gordy Square - Berry Gordy (Photo-Donna Dymally Photography)
Berry Gordy expresses appreciation of ‘Berry Gordy Square’ (Photo: Donna Dymally Photography)

*This past Sunday, I heard a message about the power God infuses into us. Among the Bible verses referenced was Philippians 4:13, “I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency].”

This is a KJV amplified rendering of the more familiar, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” The message was a challenge to believers who walk by faith to receive the power that God sends from Zion, enabling us to become rulers in the midst of our enemies. That is, to be leaders, overseers and achievers in the purposes of God.

With that, I began to think of how I could develop a story to apply this truth to our contemporary human experience. It came to me the next day as I attended a ceremony in Hollywood where Motown founder Berry Gordy was being honored with a street sign – “Berry Gordy Square” – at the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Argyle Avenue where (after leaving Detroit) he had set up his vast West Coast operations nearly 50 years ago. As the many dignitaries and celebrities in attendance took to the podium to salute Mr. Gordy for his governance and guidance in the fiercely competitive entertainment industry, they also spoke of his character as a rule of measurement – a standard of excellence!

Berry Gordy Square - Smokey Robinson (Photo-Donna Dymally Photography)
Smokey Robinson tells of how Motown music was a groundbreaker (Photo: Donna Dymally Photography)

As it was pointed out during the ‘60’s civil rights era where politics lagged, Gordy forged ahead in the midst of all the hate and prejudice; against all odds; and created not just music for Black America, but music for all America and the world! Smokey Robinson shared a story of how he encountered at an airport, a man from Tanzania praising Motown music. Smokey said, “God ordained Motown…there will never ever be another Motown…the common bond was the love of Motown music…it broke through the color line of black and white.”

Stevie Wonder, before singing his version of “Happy Birthday” to Mr. Gordy – who turned 90 today, Thanksgiving Day (11-28-19) – reminded us of how love conquers hate and quoted former Vice President Joe Biden saying, “hate only hides, it never goes away.”

Berry Gordy Square - Stevie Wonder & Berry Gordy (Photo-Donna Dymally Photography)
Los Angeles City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, Stevie Wonder and Berry Gordy (Photo: Donna Dymally Photography)

God gives us power according to our belief and our faith, so for him to be endowed with so much power, Gordy must have proven his trust in God. To that extent, Danny Bakewell Sr., the owner and publisher of the Los Angeles Sentinel said, “Brian Epstein discovered and managed The Beatles; Colonel Parker discovered and managed Elvis Presley; Berry Gordy discovered and managed The Miracles, The Supremes, The Temptations, the Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, The Jackson 5 and many, many more!” Now that’s power!

So, are you a ruler in your circle of influence? Do you measure up? Are you seeking God’s favor and empowerment to do His will and carry out His purposes? Ask God to reveal His purpose for your life, believe, walk in faith, and trust Him. On our journey, we all fall down (perhaps many times), but we have to keep getting back up…and keep movin’!

We salute Berry Gordy for his contribution to the world, and a job well done!!

(Photos: Donna Dymally Photography – [email protected])

Lee Bailey & Larry Buford (11-25-19 at Berry Gordy Square dedication)
EURweb’s Lee Bailey & Larry Buford (11-25-19 at Berry Gordy Square dedication)

Larry Buford is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer. Author of “Things Are Gettin’ Outta Hand” and “Book To The Future.” (Amazon and Barnes & Noble) Email [email protected]

Larry Buford
Larry Buford is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer, and author of Book/CD titled "Things Are Gettin' Outta Hand" (Steuben Pub.) He writes Human Interest articles and entertainment reviews for various newspapers across the country. He is also an editor, and provides services for press releases, interviews, business letters, resumes, etc. A native Detroiter, he is a former Motown songwriter.



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