NEW SINGLE AT ITUNES NOW
“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1
I boarded a plane for Joplin, Missouri last week. The plane was too small for our carry-ons, the seats didn’t recline and the windows were dusty. The man next to me had traveled to Joplin a number of times over the last month to help the town recover from the devastating tornado that hit on May 22nd.
I’ve always believed that music can enter our hearts and bring refreshing even in the hardest times. Our mission in going to Joplin was to offer what we could; music that would bring hope in a dark hour.
After arriving, I met a pastor’s wife and her family. When the tornado hit, this family was in an IHOP having dinner. They survived by squeezing into the huge freezer in the back of the restaurant. She drove us to our lodging, past a main street of wreckage where many businesses such as Wal-Mart and Home Depot had been swept away.
The next morning we saw the work that was being accomplished at their church. Semi-trucks full of food and supplies filled a huge tent. Clothing and household items were available for those who lost homes.
I spoke to a teenage girl who said that 20 of her friends lost houses. At one point, the tornado path was about 4 miles wide. We drove to that spot, and as far as I could see the trees were stripped. Only the strong ones remained. Every house for miles was in rubble. It looked like the third world.
A music festival “Hope and Healing” was planned for that night. I saw such dedication by the volunteers preparing and serving meals for 2,000 people. If I could describe the Church in Joplin in one word, I would say “beautiful”.
All the believers there were joyfully and sacrificially caring for the broken. We were braving 100-degree temperatures, but it was worth it!
Becca and I took the stage and started with “My Adoration” as people came to the front to receive prayer. I was most encouraged by the stories I heard throughout the day of how people saw God’s hand delivering them through this storm. Many lives were saved.
Joplin will carry on, by faith. It’s in times like these that our faith can grow stronger, when we can’t see the healing, but we believe for the healing. As I read Hebrews 11, I see a list of patriarchs of the “Bible days” and all of the accomplishments they have made ‘by faith’. It’s too easy to close the book and imagine that those people are special, more gifted, or more deserving of mention than maybe my story will be. But this is not the case. Each one of us has a place in God’s history book and we are important to the work He is doing today. My story is unfolding and I can only walk it out by faith. All of us have a ‘by faith’ story.
Some times I feel physically tired from traveling, sleeping in different beds, adjusting to inconveniences, for the purpose of singing our songs and encouraging others. This is when I silently call on the Lord and believe for renewed strength. I determine that I will go forward by faith. Not by my strength, but believing for His.
So is our new album, “By Faith”. When we were in the studio, my voice was nearing complete exhaustion. Becca and I knew it wasn’t going to be easy to press to the end of the recording. It was a total of 8 months and endless hours of purposeful work believing that these songs are going to make a difference, and change lives, by faith. I am seeing God do what we felt was impossible at times, with the release of the first song.
What is your ‘by faith’ story?