Only Jesus – Romans
I’ve been listening to Christian music probably since college. That’s when I discovered it and there were Christian artists that really built me – built my faith. Being dyslexic and ADD, I didn’t read the Bible much for myself so when I would hear somebody like Steven Curtis Chapman singing about His grace being sufficient for us or that He’s going to finish what He started in me – that made me know I wanted to go find the verses and figure out where it came from so I could know more about Jesus. And really, Christian music connected me with God and connected me to His work.
But if I ever got in the room and had the chance to meet somebody like Steven Curtis Chapman, it isn’t going to happen because I would never know what to say. I’d see one of those guys across the room like “I’m not walking up, I’m not walking up” – so I just sort of stayed back. So it’s really funny now that I am singing and traveling – people are coming to meet me and want to introduce themselves and I always love the ones that are a little nervous, because that’s the kind of guy I am.
“I got some things right and I’ve been walking with God”
I was in Walmart and a guy walked up to me. He seriously said, “Dude, I just want you to know I’m your favorite band,” and I thought, “I like this guy.” I said, “Thanks man,” and he goes, “Dude, one of your songs, man, it really changed my life. I was driving on 75 going to work and I knew I was where I wasn’t supposed to be. One of your songs came on and I just had to pull off the exit, and I got some things right and I’ve been walking with God,” he said, “that song go – ah…” He was trying to think of the name of a song, and I thought “well I’ll help you,” so I said, “you know what was it about?” and he said, “Well, it was about God – like His love.” “Ah, ‘Who Am I?” and he goes “No, no, no,” and I was like “okay.” And he said, “Like the wind, like the wave,” “Oh ‘Praise You in the Storm.’” “no, no, no.” At this point I was like “Okay, I’m not helping you anymore, I’m just going to let you do this.” So we start going through it trying to figure it out and he never could figure out the name of the song. We get to the end of this little conversation and he said, “Man, I can’t remember but all I know is that it was there when I needed it and I’m closer to Jesus for it and I just want to thank you for that.”
When you give me 4 minutes of your life and I get to talk to you, the last thing I want you to know about is me. You need to know about Jesus.
He left, and I’m walking through the aisles of Walmart trying to think… “East to West? What song could it have been?” The cool thing about that little moment is that it reminds me that I know my place. I know why I’m writing songs. I know why I’m traveling city to city – because when you give me 4 minutes of your life and I get to talk to you, the last thing I want you to know about is me. You need to know about Jesus, because I’m going home and I’m not going to be here later. The people that always spoke the most to me were people who never had it all together. They were broken people. So my goal in a concert, is I get to run a few laps around with you on your race. I get to be a part of your story and if I want to get an hour or two hours or four minutes – what else would I point to then something that’ll never leave?
The people in the Bible, they never set out to be heroes – no one got up thinking “I want to be the hero.” They got up thinking “I love God so much, I’ll do whatever he says.”
Any time a chance came to step, they would step. And then when people would come their way to give them praise they would say, “Woah, woah, woah, wrong guy. If you’re seeing me right now you’re seeing the wrong thing.” Have you ever noticed that Paul and almost every letter he wrote would always say something like, “you do remember that I was the scum of the earth, right? You do remember that I am a train wreck, right? Please keep your eyes on what matters because people fall. God doesn’t fall. Right?”
The question I want to ask with the song “Only Jesus” is: the people you work with, the people you go to school with, the people you spend your time with – are they really all in your life just to know you? Or has God planted you there on purpose to make Him known through your story? I’m a singer, somebody’s a farmer, somebody’s a nurse; but that’s not why we’re here. We’re here to make God known through being a farmer, a singer, a nurse. Your story, your scars – that’s how we point people to only Jesus.