I’ve never been someone I’d call brave. Most of my life has been rooted in fear and acceptance. It seems that the later part of my life has led me to more opportunities to be courageous, but I don’t always follow through. I ask myself why? But for some reason the only response I have is a trust issue. Not a trust of if God’s capable of delivering me, but whether God is willing.
Back in December 2015, we held a Christmas night of worship where we focused on the power and redemptive nature of Christ coming to earth. During that worship gathering, we challenged our people to pray over whatever was on their hearts. At the front of the stage was a manager as well as heart shaped cards. We asked them to come up, write down what was on their hearts, and place it in the manager. I remember sitting back and watching this unfold and it was quite powerful.
The next day, our Cultivate core team gathered around that manager and prayed over those cards. Some were encouraging with people writing words like “Joy, Peace, Grace, Forgiven, etc..” But others were heavier. A lot heavier. As we wrapped up praying, I remember Ian turning to me and saying “My dad had a great idea. He said we should write songs with those cards.” From that moment, I knew this was something we needed to do.
As songs began to be written and truth began pouring out of God’s word, it was apparent to me that there was something that each heart needed to remember to do. We each needed to remember to be brave.
Hebrews 4:16 convicts this point by saying “Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
“Let us draw near with confidence…” This leads me back to my trust issue. If I really believe God is capable of anything, shouldn’t I also be confident in his delivery of my situation?
Now does that mean he’ll answer how I want him to? Probably not. But it should remind and comfort me to know that HE knows best.
As we were developing the songs and settling on a name for our new album, I kept coming back to “The Hearts Project.” The reason is twofold.
Because this was an undertaking for us to write songs that not only spoke loudly the hearts of our people, but also were songs that they needed to sing. We often times sing or read scripture we want to read. But there is power in singing and reading what we need to sing or read.
Secondly, it allowed us to get right to the heart of the issues and even blessings we had in our lives. It reminded us that God is the giver and the deliverer. Not us!
So we titled the album, Brave: The Hearts Project. We want to be a people that “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace.”
In my fear, I’m dead. But in my bravery, I’m alive.
Jesus reminded us to draw near, he challenges us to be brave in times of trouble.
Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves. About three o’clock in the morning Jesus came toward them, walking on the water. When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here!”
BRAVE: THE HEARTS PROJECT CAN BE FOUND ON ITUNES AND GOOGLE PLAY, AS WELL AS CDs AT OKOLONA CHRISTIAN CHURCH. CONTACT US FOR MORE INFORMATION.
Church Website: www.okolonacc.org