You Can Find Hope With Him

It’s a sad day for me as I reflect on a friend that has passed away, a friend I didn’t always get along with but one in which I sacrificed a lot to be there for her during difficult times. We taught each other a lot about love, sacrifice, and surrender. 

I’ll never forget a conversation we had recently. She was feeling worthless, like her life had no meaning or purpose, and she struggled with whether or not I truly loved her. She wasn’t sure anyone really loved her. On this particular day, she needed to be rushed to the hospital for a life-threatening health issue but refused on the grounds that no one cared about her anyway. Several people had tried to reason with her all day, and we finally decided to do an intervention. 

I had discussed God with her many times during our friendship and she mostly hadn’t cared. But in this moment, when she was willing to give up on life because of how she felt she measured up to others, I couldn’t let that stop me from pressing in and telling her the hard truth. I spoke to her about salvation. 

I loved this girl with all of my heart but I had to tell her that her salvation does not depend on my loving her, and that it doesn’t depend on any of the people in her life loving her. I told her that it also didn’t come from her loving me. She had to know that salvation comes from giving her heart to Jesus, and allowing herself to be loved by Him. She had to surrender to Him, and depend on Him to fill the brokenness inside because no one else was going to be able to fix that for her. Through choked tears, I spoke passionately in a way I never have before, with words that could have only come from God himself. 

It was a defining moment in our friendship but more importantly, in her journey to know God. This was a person that had told me just two months prior that she would rather go to hell than know Jesus. It’s what she thought she deserved, and I’m happy knowing that she did finally choose Jesus. She started reading the bible and came to understand her  purpose in life. She even led another to Christ before she died, and is now in the arms of our Savior. 

We all need a Savior. Some, like my friend, are stubborn in their belief that they don’t need Him and don’t want Him. I’ve been there myself so I understand, but so I am thankful that she surrendered everything she had to Him, even her life. Heaven is the reward after a life filled with struggle and pain. Do you know where you’re going when you die? I hope it’s into the arms of Jesus. 

Rest in peace my dear friend. 

It’s Not About Me

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I’m not the best singer. I have to work really hard to get my notes clean and to not tremble. I have to work really hard to make sure I don’t run out of breath and to not forget the words. Singing can look so effortless but it’s really not. There is so much technical stuff going on.

As a singer, I want to get it right. I strive for perfection. And when I get it right, I rejoice. Sometimes, maybe I rejoice in myself a little too much. Humble little me can sometimes be not so humble. When you don’t think you’re good enough, it’s easy to hide in the shadows and run from the limelight. But when everything is lining up the way you want it to, it’s easy to think of the next few lyrics and “hey, look at me” simultaneously. But guess what? It’s not about me.

Being on stage can be a dangerous catch 22. It’s a vulnerable place to be because you have all of these people looking at you, judging you… and yet you know your place is to serve God. You are not there for yourself or for their attention. You are there solely to lead and encourage them to forget you are even standing there so they can have a moment with Jesus.

My microphone is not a gateway to seek approval but to humbly worship and lead others to do the same. It’s to let them know it’s ok to forget about all of the troubles in the world and to just focus on Him. It’s an opportunity for the church to collectively thank Jesus together for all of the blessings He has bestowed upon us. And honestly, it’s not even about singing. Not really. The best worship experiences I have ever had were in those moments when I actually stopped singing and just started praising God with prayer in the middle of a song. We can get so caught up just singing words sometimes that we completely miss the point of allowing the thankfulness in our hearts to come to the surface and give it to God. 

When I’m worshiping, I really only have one goal and that is to meet Jesus myself. I want to spend time with Him, and I want others to have a safe place to do that as well. I know that the enemy will continue to try to interfere and prevent me from truly connecting because he doesn’t want people to know Jesus, but I can’t let him. There will always be technical stuff going on and yes, I want to be prepared as best as possible before hitting the stage but in the end, the outcome is really up to God. I lay it all at His feet… every word, every note, and every prayer to bring Him alone the glory.