When It hurts so Bad (Part I)


Forgive them

Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works. You also must beware of him, for he has greatly resisted our words – 2 Timothy 4:14-15 (NKJV)

It has taken me many years to voice it out but one lesson I have learnt is that only a friend can betray a friend, a stranger has nothing to gain. The closest person inflicts the sharpest pain. Through it all, I learnt a lot from The Apostle Paul. Almost from the time the apostle Paul came to faith in Christ, he faced opposition. From his dramatic conversion, all the way to the finish line of his execution and home going, the hurdles of opposition placed in Paul’s path were both constant and cruel. Paul was constantly heckled, rejected, cursed, hunted like prey, abandoned, beaten with rods, whipped, stoned, lied about, ridiculed, hounded, arrested, and imprisoned. Yet, despite all these, he finished faithfully. He endured to the end.

It was near the finish line, in view of his beheading, that the apostle penned his second and final letter to Timothy. In the closing of that letter and his life, we get a glimpse of two men who opposed him, two who made his difficult endurance race, even harder.

I’m sure that you have heard the old saying that there are two things certain in life: death and taxes. A third certainty is that sooner or later we will be hurt by someone else. Unless we choose to become a hermit and live alone in a cave, we will always be vulnerable to being hurt. Sometimes people hurt us accidentally, other times it is intentional. Sometimes they hurt us by their actions, other times it is by their words. At times, the wounds are superficial and heal quickly and at other times they are deep and scar us for the rest of our lives. However you want to say it, you can just be assured at sometime in your life, you are going to be hurt by another person. What in the world should you do when it happens? What can you do in response to such pain?

Paul gives us a hint in 2 Timothy:

2 Timothy 4:14-15 (NKJV) Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works. 15 You also must beware of him, for he has greatly resisted our words.

These are the words of a person who was greatly hurt by a man named Alexander. These personal comments are shared in the last recorded words by the apostle Paul. As he gives final instructions to his son in the faith, Timothy, he reminds him that being hurt by other people is one of the hazards of being in the human race.

What exactly did Alexander do to Paul? We have absolutely no idea — Paul never tells Timothy or the readers of his letter. The word translated “harm” is the Greek word kakos which means: “something which is depraved or evil.” The word translated “much” can mean: “a large amount or something which occurs many times.” Whatever Alexander did to Paul, it was no small thing. It was deeply hurtful and must have either been done repeatedly or it was something that had a long lasting effect.

Here we learn an important principle, Paul refused to dwell on what had happened to him. If he had been like most of us, he would have gone into all the gory details of how bad he had been hurt. Paul was different. He refused to throw himself a pity party to gain sympathy from others. He also refused to allow bitterness and hatred to crawl into his brain. Paul had developed the ability to remember the best and to forget the rest of the bad which happened in life. His mentioning of it was simply told to be of a warning to Timothy. And yet, in the manner in which Paul tells this story, we discover some valuable lessons of how to respond to the hurts which others will inflict upon us in the span of your lives.

I want you to understand that what happened to Paul will happen to you. People will slander you. They will exclude you from their group. You will be criticized unjustly. Another worker might block you from a promotion. The one person you think would never disappoint you might someday betray you. A fellow Christian whom you love and respect may hurt you very badly. The person who promised to love you until death may walk out on you for someone else. What in the world can we do when other people hurt us with their words and their actions?

  1. YOU CAN EXPECT TO BE HURT BY OTHERS

It would be wonderful to be able to be vaccinated from being hurt by others. I wish there was a spiritual ointment which could be rubbed on the wounds which others inflict that would take the pain away. Unfortunately, no such cure exists. Paul mentions this painful relationship so matter-of-factually that it seems that he had learned to prepare himself for the reality of such actions and responses from others. Paul had been hurt many times from those he loved. So get it right. The Godly will be opposed. Sometimes it is your very own brethren who will accuse you.

In the third chapter of his letter Paul told Timothy that anyone who desired to live a godly life, anyone who wanted to live the kind of a life that pleased God would face opposition from time to time. He could count on it! But, Paul went on to tell Timothy that he could train himself to overcome it.

Count on It!

By the way, you and I can count on the same thing as well. If you are growing in godliness, growing in your relationship to living the kind of life that God has for you, you can count on facing opposition every now and then. But, the other certainty we can count on is God’s help to overcome the conflict. What can we do about it? Listen to what Paul had to say in 2 Timothy 1:15 (NKJV) This you know, that all those in Asia have turned away from me, among whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes. The word Paul uses here for “turned away” is often used by Paul to speak of turning away from truth.

Because Paul was preaching the truth, many were turning away from him. The truth causes divisions. When you stand up for the truth, those in sin or those who have a different theology will turn away from you.

2 Timothy 4:10 (NKJV) for Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and has departed for Thessalonica; Crescens for Galatia, Titus for Dalmatia.

I can imagine that if you weren’t right with God, Paul was the last person you would want to be around. Because Demas was in sin, he turned away from Paul. Demas loved the “present world,” which is a reference to Judaism. The word “world” is aion and means: “age.” Demas couldn’t give up his religious traditions so he stayed away from Paul.

2 Timothy 4:16 (NKJV) At my first defense no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them.

Being rejected by friends, even Christian friends, because of your stand for the truth is a hurtful thing. I think we all know the pain of being rejected by friends because of our stand for the truth.

  1. REFUSE TO BECOME ANGRY AND BITTER.

The fastest way to become embittered is to dwell on the wrong others have done to you. Paul learned to forgive and forget and go on down the road of life. We know this is what Paul must have done for he never dwells on the injury Alexander brought to him. You know that you are on the road to bitterness when you continually review and rehearse the video tape in your brain of what was done to you. It is watched, and then rewound, and watched again and again.

The effect of wrath and bitterness can be deadly. Most of us have seen the signs placed on trucks and other vessels carrying hazardous materials. The acid we carry around when we are bitter will invariably spill as much on us as it will be poured on the one who has harmed us. Anger and bitterness and stress will physically increase your blood pressure, emotionally lead you into depression, spiritually sour your worship and prayer. Socially, it will cause you to be so unpleasant that no one will want to be around you.

Carrying a grudge is a loser’s game. I like what I read about one US President Richard Nixon when he was forced to resign the Presidency of the United States in 1974. He said to his staff in his farewell address, “Never hate your enemies because when you hate them, they have gotten you” The grudge you carry will end up causing more pain and frustration than the original pain inflicted on you.

Is this not what Jesus said in Luke 17:3-4 (NKJV) “Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 “And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, ‘I repent,’ you shall forgive him.”

Jesus knew that if we will not forgive those who hurt us, we allow them to continue to hurt us. I know this sounds impossible to some people, but the only way to heal the pain of the past is to forgive the one who hurt you. It is imperative because forgiveness not only heals your memory but it also changes your perspective about life. It is like cutting a malignant tumor out of your inner body. It is like being a prisoner and then being set free for life. It is also the only way to break the cycle of blame and pain in a relationship in life. Without forgiveness, the cycle will go on and on.

Forgiveness of other people is the first and foremost step of regaining healing and wholeness in your life when others have hurt you. The way we can forgive others is by remembering that God is working through their actions, even their evil actions, for our good.

Genesis 50:20 (NKJV) “But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.

Romans 8:28 (NKJV) And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

  1. LEAVE THE REVENGE TO THE LORD.

Did you see the secret to Paul being able to let go of the wrong brought upon him by Alexander? He said, 2 Timothy 4:14 (NKJV) Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works.

I am afraid that we sometimes have given people the impression that if you love God enough, you will just forgive the person and go on as if nothing really happened. What we have failed to state is that, yes, often what that person did to you was indeed terrible and should be punished. That is the reason we hurt so badly. We know that an injustice has been done and that it should be punished. I think that is only human nature and it is a lie if someone tries to tell you such feelings are wrong and are sinful. That proves you are a human being! But, be very careful at this point. It is one thing to acknowledge that God ought to punish that person, and a far different thing to decide to become God and do the punishing for him. Forgiveness does not mean that the injustice did not occur or that it should not be punished. But it is coming to the place and point of trusting that God is much better at administering justice than we are. Forgiveness means deferring the scales of justice to him.

That may be the most difficult thing in life to do. Romans 12:19-20 (NKJV) “Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”

The word “avenge” is the Greek ekdikeo which means: “to vindicate one’s rights, to punish a person.” We are not to try to punish someone who has wronged us even though that is the natural response. Rejecting vengeance is not natural; we can only live like this supernaturally as we walk in dependance upon God. In our flesh, we all take joy in someone who gets even. There is a story about a truck driver who dropped in at an all-night restaurant where he had gone to take some food. The waitress had just served him when three swaggering, leather-jacketed motorcyclists–of the Hell’s Angels type–entered and rushed up to him, apparently looking for a fight. One grabbed his plate of food off his table; another took a handful of his Ugali (Nsima); and the third picked up his fanta and began to drink it.

The truck driver did not respond as they probably expected. Instead, he calmly rose, got into his pocket, walked to the front of the room, took some money and paid his bill and went out the door. The waitress followed him to persuade him to take another portion of food but she could only stand and watch him out the door as the big truck drove away into the night.

When she returned, one of the cyclists said to her, “Well, he’s not much of a man, is he?”

She replied, “I can’t answer as to that, but he’s not much of a truck driver. He just ran over three motorcycles out in the parking lot.”

We laugh at a story like that. We love stories like that, don’t we? That’s because we’re sinful and in our flesh we love revenge! May God help us to be more like Him.

Vengeance is God’s job, not ours. The effects of holding a grudge are very serious. Modern medicine has shown that emotions like bitterness and anger can cause physical problems such as headaches, backaches, allergic disorders, ulcers, high blood pressure, and heart attacks, to name just a few. When we do not love our enemies but strike back at them, we are usurping Gods’s prerogative to mete out justice. God says, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” By seeking revenge, we really inflict great harm on ourselves. Let’s trust Him to make things right and be willing to suffer the wrong.

The person who is able to take the wrong without bitter resentment or slandering is reflecting one of the most beautiful characteristics of Jesus Christ that you will ever see. That is exactly what our Lord was like– He gave up his rights (Philippians 2:5-11). He took wrongs and he was defrauded; he did it patiently and without reacting. Peter said of Christ,

1 Peter 2:23 (NKJV) “who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;”

Jesus committed himself to God knowing that God was in control and His will and purpose were at work both in what He gained and what He lost. Forgiveness and non-retaliation are beautiful traits of Christ likeness that a believer can display.

Mark it down, whenever a Christian sets out on a course to exact revenge and repay evil for evil and wrong for wrong, that person has begun to play God. Perhaps, you are thinking, “Austin, you don’t have any idea what it feels like to be really wronged”. Oh, yes I do! And I’m sure that all of you know what it feels like also. Nearly everybody in that knows me can testify of my wounds. But God’s word speaks to us in a timely fashion. The scripture says:

Ephesians 4:32 (NKJV) And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you.

To forgive means: “to give up a claim; to cease bearing resentment”. The most important nine words in that verse are these: “Just as God, For Christ’s Sake, has forgiven you”. Never forget that no one will ever wrong you like you wronged God. And yet, for the sake of what Christ did for us at Calvary, God has chosen to forgive each and every one of us. As recipients of his marvelous grace, how can we do any less to those who may have wronged

Give ear to my words O Lord


Bill Sprouse Jr. (1975)

My voice3Give ear to my words O Lord
Consider my meditation
Harken unto the voice of my cry
My King and my God
For unto Thee will I pray
My voice shalt Thou hear
In the morning
O Lord in the morning
Will I direct my prayer
Unto Thee and will look up

Give ear to my words O Lord
Consider my meditation
Harken unto the voice of my cry
My King and my God
For unto Thee will I pray
My voice shalt Thou hear
In the morning
O Lord in the morning
Will I direct my prayer
Unto Thee and will look up

Give ear to my words O Lord
Consider my meditation
Harken unto the voice of my cry
My King and my God
For unto Thee will I pray
My voice shalt Thou hear
In the morning
O Lord in the morning
Will I direct my prayer
Unto Thee and will look up

O Lord in the morning
Will I direct my prayer
Unto Thee and will look up

This song is actually a Psalm. Psalm 5: 1- 3 word for word. “Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation. Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up. Psalms 5:1-3”.

The song was first published in the Marantha praise 5 series. The words and tune were written by Bill Sprouse in 1975. The writer of this song died shortly after it was recorded. The cover was an interesting painting of a young “soda jerk” relaxing in a juke box joint after hours. Bill Sprouse (The song writer) is behind the counter with his fizzy glass in hand and sees a couple of angels clapping by the juke box that has lit up with MARANATHA lighting up on it & and presumably playing the Lord’s Music that can be heard on the album!

Bill Sprouse was described by those that knew him as a friend and a most humble Godly young man who loved all God’s people no matter who they were. He was NEVER a respecter of Persons and would reach out to everyone.  Shockingly he passed away while taking a shower in his rented home with other fine Christian brothers. Those who met him say they shall never forget those blessed early days at Calvary with Bill,Oden and Mustard Seed faith, Tom Stipes and his Wing and a Prayer band, Love Song, Children of the Day and all the rest who helped make Calvary Chapel of Santa Ana truly the Limozine of  churches! God’s Spirit. Through all the ministries there drew the lost in quickly and powerfully with amazing Joy like no other church they had ever seen or heard could do. God blessed Papa /Pastor Chuck (The Founder of Maranatha Music) like none other, BECAUSE WHEN GOD GUIDES, GOD PROVIDES!

All we can say is join the many brethren that loved Bill and say thank you Jesus for taking OUR BELOVED BIG BILL straight to live with You forever in Heaven with our Holy Father GOD.

A couple of comments about the Psalm and the song

It Is A Personal Prayer – The Psalmist uses the words, “My words,” “My meditation,” “My cry,” My King,” and ”My God.” David was a king and most everything was done for him, but his prayer had to be personal. The Preacher, the parent, the politician, and every other person must make their prayer to God in person. No one else can approach the throne of grace for you. Every Christian must have a personal relationship with God and his communion with God must be personal. Sure we can pray for each other and help by taking our petitions for others to the throne. But we cannot pray instead or in place of another. The Christian must always remember that God is personal, “MY GOD!”

It Is A Profound And Personal Prayer – David’s prayer began with the words, “Give ear to my words.” The words we speak to God are very important. We are to be in an attitude of prayer all the day long, but nothing will take the place of our words to God in the morning. Prayer is more than just bowing our head. There needs to be some time of reverence and quietness, but God is waiting to hear words from our lips. The Bible says that out of the heart the mouth speaks. What a privilege to pour out our heart to God! Our sense of need and urgency needs to be expressed to God. God is not interested in planned eloquence; broken and burning words will be much more effective. Praying out loud to God is profitable because it keeps our prayers from becoming repetitive and wondering. Silent prayer can be vague and shallow. God is our Father and He longs to hear our words as we speak to Him. There are those times when words do not come; David called it meditation. God does know the deeps thoughts of our soul. I believe this refers to the desperate sigh of the Christian. God is attracted to the moans of the Christian that bears a load beyond human words. Sometimes the weight of our burden results in half-uttered prayers that only God can interpret. When human language fails, God still understands. The David said his prayer turns into a cry. This is when our prayers rise to the next level. It does not mean that we have to scream to get the attention of God; it simply means God’s is aware of the intensity of our prayer. Many call this prevailing prayer. This is the time when all of our energy and all of our emotions are focused toward God.

It Is A Resolute Prayer – “For unto Thee do I pray,” he was reaching out to God with a holy boldness. God is our King, but He is a kind and loving King, He will not deny us. Because He is the King, when He knows that we seek help from no other, He will give us His full attention.

It Is An Obedient Prayer – David is setting his day and his life in order before the Lord. The Lord desires first place in our lives and prayer in the morning indicates that we are giving Him His rightful place. His Word tells us how to pray and when to pray. When things are in order, our prayers will be heard. There is no man that can pray enough to defy the Word and will of God. The answer will not come if there is sin and rebellion. David could look up to God and see that things were right between he and his God. The main intent of our prayer should be to conform us into His image, according to His plan and purpose.

It Is An Expectant Prayer – David looked up expectantly for the things he prayed for. It is the picture of a child holding out his hands to a loving parent. As we pray we are to look to Heaven for an indication that God’s favor will be extended to us. Simply put, we are to look for the answer to our prayer! When a man places the trust of his heart and soul in the hands of God, he can look up, he ought to look up, knowing that God will not ignore or disappoint him. May we all draw near to God each morning. We do not know that the day will bring, but we can visit with the One who does know. When the see the rising of the sun in prayer, we can face the setting of the sun in praise.

Humble yourself before your Lord and King


Humble Youself

Who is the man for whom the Lord will have regard
He who is broken and has a humble heart
God is not impressed with the loftiness of man
For everything was made for Him,
And comes from His own hand.

So… Humble yourself before your Lord and King
Give Him your heart, offer your everything
There’s no limit, on the love He has for you
So humble yourself and see what God will do.

Who are the people that the Lord will bless
Those who love and fear Him and seek His righteousness
Nothing else in all the world can satisfy your soul
But the One who made the universe
He longs to make you whole.

So… Humble yourself before your Lord and King
Give Him your heart, offer your everything
There’s no limit, on the love He has for you
So humble yourself and see what God will do.

If My people humble themselves and pray,
I will hear them, lead them in My ways.
Humble yourself and let Him have His way.
Love His Word and His will obey.
For His eyes are on the one whose heart is true
So humble yourself and see what God will do.

Humble yourself before your Lord and King
Give Him your heart, offer your everything
There’s no limit, on the love He has for you
So humble yourself and see what God will do.

One of my best songs of Kelly Willard is the one she performed as a Featured Soloist in the Maranatha Praise Series Number 12. So Humble Yourself.

About Kelly Willard

“Simple, honest, unpretentious, easy to listen to over and over…”

These are a few words that many people use when describing the music and voice of Kelly Willard.

Although Kelly has lent her talents to the atistry of such well-known artists as Bob Bennett, Bruce Carroll, Jim Cole, Dion DiMucci, Bob Fitts, Amy Grant, Buddy Greene, Keith Green, Steve Green, Karen Lafferty, Lenny LeBlanc, Fernando Ortega, Twila Paris,  Ricky Skaggs, Paul Overstreet, and inumerable Praise and Worship recordings over the years, she remains as simple and approachable as a person can be.

Born and raised in Winter Haven, Florida, Kelly took to the piano at the tender age of five. Piano lessons were short-lived, as she preferred the unconventional path of playing ‘by ear’. Learning by listening to the radio and recordings, Kelly began to compose her own songs when she was thirteen years old. Accompanying the choir at her church, playing and singing in nursing homes on Sunday afternoons, and traveling with a part-time Gospel group on weekends kept her sharing her talents with people.

At the young age of sixteen years, Kelly moved to Nashville, TN, where music became her livelihood. Taking the opportunities afforded her to accompany such groups as The Jake Hess Sound, The Archers, and Seth, she continued to offer her God-given abilities. But, Kelly credits her vocal development to a man from Oklahoma City, OK, named Harlan Rogers. She says that he encouraged her and taught her, actually having to talk he into singing solos. “I really didn’t think I had what it took to sing solo, but Harlan kept insisting that I did, and if it weren’t for his influence and belief in my giftings, I probably never would have sung anything outside of a ‘group’ setting.”

Kelly married at age eighteen, joined Harlan Rogers & Friends, and traveled the midwest until 1977, when she and her husband, Dan, moved to Southern California to be a part pf the then current flow of “Jesus Music” people, ministering and recording in that area. She played keyboards and sung background vocals on projects for such artists as Karen Lafferty, Bob Bennett, Tommy Coomes, Roby Duke, and Lewis McVay before Maranatha!Music approached her to record her own solo project.

1979 witnessed the release of her first solo album titled, BLAME IT ON THE ONE I LOVE, produced by Jonathan David Brown. The release of this album thrust Kelly into the eyes, ears and hearts of the public, as much of her music received extensive National radio airplay, and she began touring the United States and other countries.

In 1981 Kelly was involved in the production of her second album, WILLING HEART.

1983 brought the release of her next “project”, a son, named BRYAN ASHER WILLARD. Bryan is a musician/writer/worship leader in his own right, and lives with his wife and three daughters in Wisconsin. He is currently working with Jason Upton’s ministry, THE KEY OF DAVID, as well as playing the bass guitar with Jason’s band. Later that same year Maranatha!Music released what many people have termed their “favorite Kelly Willard album, titled PSALMS,HYMNS & SPIRITUAL SONGS. This recording is what Kelly considers “a personal look at her relationship with God, through worshipful music.”

In 1986, Kelly bore a second child, her beautiful and most cherished daughter, named HAYLIE GRACE WILLARD, who entered her Eternal Home with Jesus at the age of eighteen. (August  29, 2004)

Her fourth and fifth albums, released between 1986 and 1991, are titled MESSAGE FROM A KING, and GARDEN.

In 1996 Kelly had the opportunity to record a “Positive Country” CD, which was originally only released in Holland, but which Kelly has recently re-released through her website, for all to hear. It is titled HOMESICK FOR HEAVEN.

With all that Kelly has had the opportunity to do, she has expressed that her favorite thing is, “to worship God, and lead others in doing the same.” She states,”I believe God’s greatest desire is to Love us. And, as we receive His Love for us, our hearts respond with authentic love, praise and adoration for Him. It is in this setting that I believe our own healing and restoration takes place. To be a part of this kind of ministry is an honor and responsibility that keeps me on my knees before Him. I am truly humbled that He would grant me the privelege of being a carrier of His Presence.”

SOLO RECORDINGS

  • Blame It On The One I Love (Maranatha!Music)
  • Willing Heart (Maranatha!Music)
  • Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs (Maranatha!Music)
  • Message From A King (Maranatha!Music)
  • Garden (Asaph Records)
  • Lookin’ Back {“Best Of KW”} (Maranatha!Muaic)
  • Bless My Little Girl {Lullaby} (Integrity Music)
  • My First Christmas (Integrity Music)
  • Faithful Heart / Songs from the Red Letters (Maranatha!Music)…with Rita Baloche, Billy Batsone, Lenny LeBlanc
  • Homesick For Heaven

                                                                                                                                                                                                       

DUETS

Rita Baloche

  • Give It All To The Lord
  • Praise Him
  • Bowing My Heart (w/Paul Baloche)

Brown Bannister

  • There is a Redeemer

Billy Batstone

  • If The Son Sets You Free
  • It is Good to Give Thanks To The Lord

David Baroni

  • To Be a Child Again

Bob Bennett

  • Our God and Father

Bruce Carroll

  • Sometimes Miracles Hide

Milton Carroll

  • Who Will Bring the Children to His Throne

Morris Chapman

  • Love One Another
  • All Heaven Declares

Terry Clark

  • He Is Our Peace

Paul Clark

  • Woman/Man That I Love
  • Altar Of Love
  • Love Of My Life

Jim Cole

  • If Time Could Really Tell

Dion DiMucci

  • There In Your Heart

Roby Duke

  • Our Love

Barbara Fairchild

  • Mary Washed His Feet With Her Tears

Bob Fitts

  • As You Give Unto These

Steve Fry

  • Only You

Buddy Greene

  • Only God
  • All Creatures of Our God and King

Keith Green

  • I Want to Be More Like Jesus

Steve Green

  • He Who Began a Good Work
  • Hidden Valleys
    Ed Kerr
  • You’ll See a Man

Lenny LeBlanc

  • There Is None Like You
  • Your Steadfast Love
  • Your Love
  • Open My Eyes
  • No Greater Love
  • Love Them
  • God, How I Long to be Near To You

Julie Miller

  • I Will Arise and Go to Jesus (w/Russ Taff)

Fernando Ortega

  • Is This the Night of Your Return
  • Lord I want to be Like Jesus

Twila Paris

  • I Feel It
  • Leaning On the Everlasting Arms{w/Jamie Owens-Collins}

Cindy Richardson

  • Grace Alone

Rick Riso

  • Think About His Love

Harlan Rogers

  • At The Cross

Haylie Willard

  • Beautiful Jesus

AS BACKGROUND VOCALIST FOR

  • David Baroni
  • Karen Lafferty
  • Bob Bennett
  • Maranatha!Singers
  • Pearl Brick
  • (Praise 3-20)
  • Scott Wesley Brown
  • Will McFarland
  • Bruce Carroll
  • Lewis McVay
  • Morris Chapman
  • Julie Miller
  • Paul Clark
  • David Miller
  • Tommy Coomes
  • Eric Nelson
  • Roby Duke
  • Fernando Ortega
  • Emmanuel
  • Paul Overstreet
  • Barbara Fairchild
  • John Pantry
  • Faithful Heart: Songs from the Red Letters
  • John & Debbie Phillips
  • Stoney Ferguson
  • Twila Paris
  • Bob Fitts
  • Praise Band 1 & 2
  • Oden Fong
  • Psalms Alive Series
  • Buddy Greene
  • Lulu Roman
  • Keith Green
  • Ricky Skaggs
  • Steve Green
  • Billy Sprague
  • Harvest
  • Tom Stipe
  • Annie Herring
  • Dwight Thompson
  • Bruce Herring
  • Matthew Ward
  • Bruce Hibbard
  • Words of Worship Series
  • Hosanna!Integrity Worship Series
  • Chris Wright
  • Julie Joyner
  • Ed Kerr

In addition to being a solo artist and studio musician, Kelly is also an accomplished songwriter. The following is a list of a few artists who have recorded her songs.

  • The Archers
  • Laurie Boone
  • Barbara Fairchild
  • David Gates
  • Amy Grant
  • Keith Green
  • Steve Green
  • Pamela Duel Hart
  • Heirloom
  • Integrity/Hosanna Music Series
  • Maranatha! Praise Series
  • Maranatha! Kids Praise Series
  • Michele Pillar Carlton
  • Lisa Welchel
  • The Whites
  • Ricky Skaggs and The Whites

Source: http://www.kellywillard.com/discography/

Top 25 Maranatha Songs


For those that love the Maranatha Music and that kind of worship music, here come and reminisce the memories of the Maranatha music. I have here a list of 25 Top songs by Maranatha. Hope you enjoy.

Top 25 Decade Worship 2000s – Maranatha! Praise Band
00:01 1.Open The Eyes Of My Heart
03:25 2.You’Re Worthy Of My Praise
06:31 3.Lord, I Lift Your Name On High
08:55 4.Trading My Sorrows
12:49 5.Shout To The Lord
16:07 6.I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever
19:46 7.Here I Am To Worship
24:14 8.Draw Me Close
28:35 9.Come, Now Is The Time To Worship
31:39 10.We Fall Down
34:35 11.Breathe
38:27 12.Shine, Jesus Shine (Lord, The Light Of Your Love)
40:54 13.You Are My King (Amazing Love)
44:41 14.As The Deer
47:22 15.God Of Wonders
51:25 16.I Love You, Lord
53:40 17.You Are My All In All
56:55 18.Change My Heart Oh God
59:47 19.The Heart Of Worship
01:03:38 20.Lord, Reign In Me
01:07:04 21.Forever
01:12:00 22.He Is Exalted
01:14:41 23.Above All
01:19:24 24.Awesome God
01:21:19 25.Better Is One Day

About The Maranatha

Maranatha Music began as a non-profit outreach of Calvary Chapel in 1971. The Jesus People of the late 1960s and early 1970s began to write new hymns and worship songs with a folk-rock style. Maranatha Music was founded at this time in order to publish and promote this new type of Christian music. Founder Chuck Smith sold the label to his nephew Chuck Fromm. The label is currently distributed by Warner Music Entertainment’s Word Music.

Background

In the early 1970s Calvary Chapel was home to more than 15 musical groups that were representative of the Jesus people movement. Some of the early Maranatha! recording groups were Sweet Comfort Band, Love Song, Chuck Girard, Children of the Day, The Way, Debby Kerner, Mustard Seed Faith, Karen Lafferty, and Daniel Amos. The label’s first release was a various artists compilation entitled The Everlastin’ Living Jesus Music Concert, in 1971.

Maranatha! also branched into the children’s market segment. Premier products included Psalty the singing songbook and the Kid’s Praise Kids. In the early 1990s this segment represented about 40% of company revenues.

In the 1980s, Maranatha! launched Broken Records, a label focusing on modern rock, punk and alternative music. The “Colours” series contained instrumental music in the vein of New Age artists, but the label avoided the term.

Here is a complete list of albums I think they produced. Which of these is your favorite?

Maranatha Praise Series.

  • Praise 1: The Praise Album (1974)
  • Praise 2: Open Our Eyes (1976)
  • Praise 3: Behold, Bless Ye the Lord (1979)
  • Praise 4: In His Time (1980)
  • Praise 5: Glorify Thy Name (1981)
  • Praise 6: You Are My Hiding Place (1982)
  • Praise 7: The Lord Reigns (1985)
  • Praise 8: As the Deer (1986)
  • Praise 9: Great Are You Lord (1987)
  • Praise 10: O Lord, My Lord (1988)
  • Praise 11: Let Us Worship the Lord, Jehovah (1989)
  • Praise 12: He Is Able (1989)
  • Praise 13: Meet Us Here (1990)
  • Praise 14: I Will Celebrate (1991)
  • Praise 15: He Has Made Me Glad (1992)
  • Praise 16: The Power of Your Love (1997)
  • Praise 17: In Your Presence (1997)
  • Praise 18: Grace Alone (1998)
  • Praise 19: Glorious Father (1999)
  • Praise 20: Who Is Like the Lord (1999)
  • 20 Years of Hope: 1971-1991 (1991)

Maranatha Colours Discography

  • A Time For Joy – Reflections In Guitar – Steve Erquiaga and Wayne Brasel (1986)
  • A Time For Peace – Ivory Sessions – Jeffrey Lams, Frank Martin, Kenneth Nash (1985)
  • Christmas Colours – John Andrew Schreiner (1992)
  • Classical Praise Cello – Robin Thompson-Clarke (1993)
  • Classical Praise Piano – Tom Keene (1991)
  • Colours In The Night – Saxophone Solos (1993)
  • Hiding Place – Music For Devotions – Nick Coetzee (1999)
  • Hymns In Colour – Harlan Rogers and Smitty Price (1989)
  • I Love You Lord – Classical Guitar Praise – Rob and Gilly Bennett (1990)
  • Instruments Of Your Peace – Celtic Music For Devotions – John Andrew Schreiner (1999)
  • Jesus You Are My Life – Shawn Tubbs (1999)
  • Jesus, Draw Me Close – Music For Devotions – Phil Kristianson (1998)
  • Palette – A Colours Sampler – Tom Howard Ensemble, Phil Keaggy and Jeffrey Lams (1986)
  • Praise – Harlan Rogers and Smitty Price (1987)
  • Praise Beyond Words – Harlan Rogers, Phil Keaggy, Tom Howard (1991)
  • Prisms – Portraits In Synthesis – Jeffrey Lams and John Andrew Schreiner (1986)
  • Rainmaker – Music For Devotions – Nick Coetzee (1994)
  • Reflection – A Colours Sampler – Tom Howard, Phil Keaggy, Smitty Price and Harlan Rogers (1987)
  • Solo Piano – Tom Howard (1987)
  • Spectrum – The Colours Sampler – Tom Howard, Phil Keaggy, Jeffrey Lams, John Andrew Schreiner and Steve Erquiaga (1986)
  • Technicolours – Bob Somma & John Campbell (1991)
  • The Colours Of Praise Two – Harlan Rogers and Smitty Price (1988)
  • The Gift – A Colours Christmas – Jeffrey Lams, John Andrew Schreiner, Tom Howard, Harlan Rogers and Smitty Price (1986)
  • The Harvest – Piano Solos – Tom Howard (1986)
  • The Hidden Passage – Tom Howard (1986)
  • The Wind and the Wheat – Phil Keaggy (1994)
  • Timeless – Hymns In Colour – Harlan Rogers & Smitty Price (1986)

 

Oh Lord, You’re Beautiful


By Keith Green

Oh Lord You are beautiful

Oh Lord, you’re beautiful,
Your face is all I seek,
For when your eyes are on this child,
Your grace abounds to me.

Oh Lord, you’re beautiful,
Your face is all I seek,
For when your eyes are on this child,
Your grace abounds to me.

I want to take your word and shine it all around.
But first help me to just, live it Lord.
And when I’m doing well, help me to never seek a crown.
For my reward is giving glory to you.

Oh Lord, please light the fire,
That once burned bright and clear.
Replace the lamp of my first love,
That burns with Holy fear.

I want to take your word and shine it all around.
But first help me to just, live it Lord.
And when I’m doing well, help me to never seek a crown.
For my reward is giving glory to you.

Oh Lord, you’re beautiful,
Your face is all I seek,
For when your eyes are on this child,
Your grace abounds to me.

Oh Lord, you’re beautiful,
Your face is all I seek,
For when your eyes are on this child,
Your grace abounds to me.

This lovely song was done by Keith Green, one of my favorite artists. When I became converted in the late 1980s Keith Green was the contemporary gospel artist and I grew up to love his music. One the albums he did was – So You Wanna Go Back to Egypt (1980) published in 1980. On this album was a song called Oh Lord you are beautiful.

The story behind the Song – Oh Lord You are beautiful.

The song is still a popular worship song sung in churches across the globe. At the time of writing this song it was perceived to be too hard rock and many did not appreciate Keith’s music. But I wonder what we can say given our contemporary tunes. , “Oh Lord, You’re Beautiful” is probably the most recognizable song Keith Green ever penned. Here’s what Green said about the start of this classic:

“On Monday night of this week, at about midnight, I wrote a letter to the Lord. I didn’t know where to mail it, so I put it in my Bible (laughs). And I asked him, ‘Lord, you’ve gotta do something about my heart. You know, a lot of time’s gone by since I met you. And it’s startin’ to harden up, you know. It’s kind of natural. I wanna to have baby skin Lord. I wanna to have skin like a baby on my heart. It’s starting to get old and wrinkled and callous.’ It’s not ‘cause of anything I’m doing. It’s ‘cause of a lot of things I’m not doing. And I stayed up till about 2 in the morning writing this song…” (Keith Green, as recorded live on Oh, Lord, You’re Beautiful: Songs of Worship)

Oh Lord, you’re beautiful,
Your face is all I see,
For when your eyes are on this child,
Your grace abounds to me.
I want to take your word and shine it all around.
But first help me to just, live it Lord.
And when I’m doing well, help me to never seek a crown.
For my reward is giving glory to you.

About Keith Green

Keith Green was killed in a plane crash at the young age of 28. Keith Green was one of those lights that burned bright and fast. In the brief years that he lived as a follower of Jesus, he wrote some of the best worship music of the 1970s, he influenced greats like Bob Dylan and Rich Mullins, and he inspired thousands of people to head out to the mission field. He also played a mean piano.

If you’re 40 or older, you will probably remember Keith as a zealous recording artist who wore his convictions on his sleeve. If you’re younger than 40 you may at least be aware that Keith wrote some of the songs we sing in church, classics like O Lord, You’re Beautiful and Create in Me a Clean Heart.

Keith Green was a firebrand for Jesus. People used to compare him to John the Baptist, and not just because of his passion. Keith had little time for hypocrites. Keith was very open and honest about his personal struggles, but if you weren’t on fire for Jesus, he was going to let you know what he thought about that! He was famous for saying things like this:

“If your heart takes more pleasure in reading novels, or watching TV, or going to the movies, or talking to friends, rather than just sitting alone with God and embracing him, sharing his cares and his burdens, weeping and rejoicing with him, then how are you going to handle forever and ever in his presence? You’d be bored to tears in heaven, if you’re not ecstatic about God now!”

Keith stepped on a few toes when he started holding concerts for free. He then proceeded to jump on those same toes by claiming that Christian musicians who charged for their concerts or Christian bookshops who sold records for profit were sinning. How could you put a price-tag on the gospel? Keith had strong convictions about things and those who didn’t share his convictions were likely to be judged guilty of compromising.

Of course Christian young people just loved it! Those who were too young to notice – myself included – got fired up about these things later when reading about Keith in the book No Compromise. We wanted to be as sold out and radical as he was.

But what many people don’t know was that Keith’s zeal often led to crushing disappointment with his own perceived failings. He’d promise God that he was going to pray for an hour or read five chapters of the Bible before breakfast and then, when he’d slept in late, he would be devastated at having let God down. Like many zealous Christians, Keith based his relationship with God on his own performance. If he didn’t “feel” right with God then he believed he wasn’t right. This self-centered view sometimes blinded him to the love of God. He once confided to a friend, “Sometimes I’m not sure if God loves me” (No Compromise, p.355).

Happily, in the final year of his life, Keith the Firebrand encountered the grace of a loving God who accepted him just the way he was. He met John Dawson, of YWAM fame, and through that relationship began to re-discover the love of Christ. As his wife Melody tells in The Keith Green Story, , Keith softened and began to rethink his approach to ministry. He wrote letters apologizing to those he had offended, including those profiteering Christian book-sellers:

“My desire to not exclude anyone, has not decreased at all… I hope you can understand that I am a man of principle, and yet, like a pendulum, I have a tendency to go too far to make a point. I fear that in the past I have done just that.” (No Compromise, p.352)

Without compromising his beliefs, Keith became a giver of grace. Relationships were restored and he knew real peace. Having encountered the Father-heart of God, Keith released his final, and most worship-oriented album of all, Songs for the Shepherded.. Remember, this was 1982; years before most Christian recording artists started releasing worship albums.

One of the songs on that album is There is a Redeemer. This song was originally written by Melody Green in the late 1970s. When she and Keith went to record Songs for the Shepherd, she introduced him to her song by singing these now-famous lyrics:

There is a Redeemer,
Jesus, God’s own Son,
Precious Lamb of God, Messiah,
Oh, Holy One!

Thank you O my Father,
For giving us Your Son,
And leaving Your Spirit,
‘Til the work on earth is done.

As Melody remembers in No Compromise (p.327), Keith loved the song but wanted to make it longer. Within a few minutes he had come up with the following verse:

When I stand in Glory,
I will see His face,
And there I’ll serve my King forever,
In that holy place.

Five short months later Keith was standing in Glory, seeing his Father face-to-face.

About 10 years ago I watched a film of Keith Green leading a Bible study. I guess it was recorded after his grace-awakening because he just shone with the peace of God. I recall he said something like this:

“When I was a new believer, people used to call me a prophet, and I liked that label. But after a while I began to realize that being a ‘prophet’ was just an excuse for being moody. I don’t want to be known as a prophet. I just want to be a Christian.”

Me too. Whatever your talent or field of expertise, whatever your ministry or platform, to be recognized by others as a follower of Christ is just about the greatest honor there is.

On July 28, 1982, at the age of 28, Keith and two of their young children, Josiah and Bethany, were in a small plane crash and went to be with Jesus. Although Keith was one of America’s best-selling Christian musicians and songwriters, recording 5 albums in his lifetime with over 1.5 million in distribution, Keith considered himself first and foremost a servant of Jesus. He often said that when he died he only wanted to be remembered as having been worthy to bear the name of “Christian”.

Lord, dismiss us with Thy blessing


John Fawcett (1740-1817)

Christian quotes2

Lord, dismiss us with Thy blessing;
Fill our hearts with joy and peace;
Let us each Thy love possessing,
Triumph in redeeming grace.
O refresh us, O refresh us,
Traveling through this wilderness.

Thanks we give and adoration
For Thy Gospel’s joyful sound;
May the fruits of Thy salvation
In our hearts and lives abound.
Ever faithful, ever faithful,
To the truth may we be found.

So that when Thy love shall call us,
Savior, from the world away,
Let no fear of death appall us,
Glad Thy summons to obey.
May we ever, may we ever,
Reign with Thee in endless day.

John Fawcett is well known for his other hymn “Blest Be the Tie that Binds”. But he is also the writer of this hymn, Lord dismiss us. Now there are so many hymns that start with the same words as this one and often it creates confusion as to who exactly wrote this hymn. After much research, I found out that one eminent historian by the name of John Julian wrote and clarified in his book, the Dictionary of Hymnology. This hymn was written by John Fawcett.

About the Hymn Writer

Fawcett, John, D.D., was born Jan. 6, 1739 or 1740, at Lidget Green, near Bradford, Yorks. He was converted at the age of sixteen under the ministry of G. Whitefield. He started by joining the Methodists, but three years later he joined the Baptist Church at Bradford. He was soon a well known preacher and got ordained as a Baptist minister at Wainsgate, near Hebden Bridge, Yorks in 1765. In 1772 he was invited to London, to succeed the celebrated Dr. J. Gill, as pastor of Carter’s Lane; the invitation had been formally accepted, the farewell sermon at Wainsgate had been preached and the wagons loaded with his goods for removal, when the love and tears of his attached people prevailed and he decided to remain. In 1777 a new chapel was built for him at Hebden Bridge, and about the same time he opened a school at Brearley Hall, his place of residence. In 1793 he was invited to become President of the Baptist Academy at Bristol, but declined. In 1811 he received from America the degree of D.D., and died in 1817, at the age of 78. Dr. Fawcett was the author of a number of prose works on Practical Religion, several of which attained a large circulation. His poetical publications are:—

(1) Poetic Essays, 1767; (2) The Christian’s Humble Plea, a Poem, in answer to Dr. Priestley against the Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, 1772; (3) Three hymns, in the Gospel Magazine, 1777; (4) The Death of Eumenio, a Divine Poem, 1779; (5) Another poem, suggested by the decease of a friend, The Reign of Death, 1780; and (6) Hymns adapted to the circumstances of Public Worship and Private Devotion, Leeds, G. Wright & Son. 1782. They are 166 in number, and were mostly composed to be sung after sermons by the author.

Whilst not attaining a high degree of excellence as poetry, they are “eminently spiritual and practical,” and a number of them are found in all the Baptist and Congregational hymn-books that have appeared during the last 100 years. The best known of these are, “Infinite excellence is Thine;” “How precious is the Book divine;” “Thus far my God hath led me on;” “Religion is the chief concern;” “Blest be the tie that binds;” “I my Ebenezer raise;” and “Praise to Thee, Thou great Creator.” These hymns, together with others by Fawcett, are annotated under their respective first lines. [Rev. W. R. Stevenson, M.A.]

When I’ve Gone the Last Mile of The Way


Last mile

By Johnson Oatman, Jr.

If I walk in the pathway of duty,
If I work till the close of the day,
I shall see the great King in His beauty,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

Refrain:
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way,
I will rest at the close of the day;
And I know there are joys that await me,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

If for Christ I proclaim the glad story,
If I seek for His sheep gone astray,
I am sure He will show me His glory,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

Here the dearest of ties we must sever,
Tears of sorrow are seen every day;
But no sickness, no sighing forever,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

And if here I have earnestly striven,
And have tried all His will to obey,
’Twill enhance all the rapture of heaven,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

The last mile is extremely important. In a race, it signals the finish. It ushers in the pride of completing the race. I am privileged to live in Kenya, the land of marathon runners. Every international Marathon, my family looks forward to those enduring Kenyans and for sure we are rewarded with a gold or silver medal.

In life, every mile is important—especially the last mile. As the Apostle Paul says in 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” The last mile can be a joyful, passionate, fervent, emotional, tearful, doubtful or traumatic experience. Some people have doubts about the last mile—yet they hope it will turn out to their liking.There is no better statement one can make at the end of the last mile.

In 1908 Johnson Oatman Jr wrote this great hymn titled “The Last mile of the way”. I remember singing this hymn with my now late bossom childhood friend Ray Munsaka Slaighter during our high school days. In those days when there were no MP3s or CDs, Ray came one school term with a white cassette of Jimmy Swarggart and this song was on it. It was the only cassette we had and we played it over and over till our dry radio batteries would go flat. Little did I know this song would mean a lot in my later years. I thank God for all my experiences. He is still working on me, to make me what I ought to be.

About the Hymn Writer

Johnson Oatman Jr. was born on April 21, 1856. He was from New Jersey and he can be said to have followed the foot-steps of his father, Johnson Oatman Sr., in many ways. Johnson Oatman Jr. accepted his father’s faith, making it his own. They worked side by side in the family trading business, Johnson Oatman and Son. Although the son sang, his father outshone him with his incredible voice, known not only in the local Methodist Episcopal Church, but throughout the area. Johnson Oatman Jr. would soon find his own niche within Christianity.

When he was nineteen, the younger Johnson became an ordained minister. He served where needed, but never pastored his own church. At age thirty-six, he tried his hand at hymn-writing. He went on to write at least 5,000 hymns in his lifetime. He is the writer of hymns like No not one, Count your blessing name them one by one, Am pressing on the upward way – Higher Ground, The Hallelujah side and the lat mile of the way.

The Last Mile of the way was only published  one year before Wilhelmina, his wife of thirty-one years, passed away. Johnson had another seventeen years before the last mile of his life on earth. In his song he says

If I walk in the pathway of duty,
If I work till the close of the day;
I shall see the great King in His beauty,
When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.”

Following verse one, Johnson identifies Christian service that God will reward: “If for Christ I proclaim the glad story, If I seek for His sheep gone astray,” and later, “And if here I have earnestly striven, And have tried all His will to obey.” The third verse mentions one of the benefits of Heaven as “No sickness, no sighing forever,” and the chorus covers all else our imaginations can’t begin to fathom with the phrase: “And I know there are joys that await me, When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.”

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