I've always considered my musical ability to be a gift from God, pure and simple. I know that's a cliché thing to say, but it's true. I would have had ZERO success without God's blessing, leading and frankly, His intervention. Knowing and BELIEVING this, I feel strongly that the best thing I can do, with this undeserved gift, is to give it right back to Him. As the Lord blesses me, I invest those blessings and gifts back into His Kingdom and for His glory.
This perspective is nothing new. The music I compose has always been a reflection of my spiritual walk in one way or another. What is new(ish), however, is an increasing awareness of the Holy Spirit prompting to be MORE OBVIOUS about my faith in Christ Jesus. Not only as it pertains to my music, but also as it relates to my public persona, social media presence, blog posts and the videos I produce. Following after Jesus has saved me from despair. In light of this, I feel an urgency to SHINE BRIGHT the hope I have in Christ, especially in this increasingly broken and divisive world.
I used to approach my life as though it were primarily about my music career - about "marketing myself." That was my whole purpose. While I very much wanted to honor God with my music and be an "ambassador" for Him, a small part of me wanted a share of the spotlight - and the credit - if that makes sense. I sought affirmation in the appreciation and applause of other humans and my identity was grounded in that, rather than upon Christ. All that changed in the two years leading up to the release of my album, In the Soft Light of Grace. God, by His Spirit and through some dark days, stripped me to my emotional bones. In a time of declining health, worry and confusion, I was forced to lean entirely into God's grace and sovereignty.
I came to realize that the point of my life isn't just music. I am MORE than that. My entire being, all that I am and my every aspect exists to glorify God. Imperfectly, yes, but that's my True North. That is my compass. That's what I want, at my core, to do.
As I press forward into the future with renewed purpose, my hope is that my music will become (and continue to be) a comforting "refuge in the storm" for listeners. A quiet place where a wandering heart might come to better understand, and sense, God's grace and love for them. I want my life and music to serve as a signpost saying... "That way... there's Jesus. He's worthy of your attention. Get to know who He really is."
One thing I have observed over the years is how the music I play breaks down the resistance people have to what they might normally consider 'religious talk.' It's an amazing thing. If I try and talk to someone about my faith outside the context of my music, I can see the walls of resistance go up. However, when I express my faith through music and storytelling - in the context of a concert - it feels natural, appropriate, and virtually everyone is receptive.
It's so wonderful to invite people to my shows and to share with them stories from my life, travels and experiences. In the course of sharing, my faith comes out. I can't help it, it just does. I am not a preacher, pastor or evangelist - or at least, I don't see myself that way - but many (if not most) of my songs are inspired by my spiritual walk and the challenges I have faced. So, when introducing songs at shows, I talk about the events and emotions that have shaped my work. I share passages of scripture (that have inspired certain songs) and talk about how they have encouraged me. So, for me it's not an issue of trying to convince someone to my point of view... I just share myself, my heart and my art. All of which I hope reflect God's grace and perhaps, cause listeners to refect on what the Spirit is speaking to their hearts in that moment.
So, what am I saying?
If I have a 'mission,' I suppose it is this: to use my music, and this gift of music and storytelling, to express God's love, grace and mercy. It is my hope that my music will draw people in to a closer walk with Jesus. For those who are believers, I pray my music will bring them to a place of worship and encourage them to HOLD FAST to their faith. For those who are still seeking out the truth, who are seeking peace with God, I pray my music will be the conduit that softens their heart so that the Holy Spirit may do His work.
If you are seeking the truth about God, searching for peace of mind about your spiritual life, please consider these thoughts. And If you want more specific details on my beliefs, you'll find them here.
Questions? Email David at firstname.lastname@example.org.