Being thankful is a process by which you recognize and appreciate with your mind, heart and spirit the good works being completed by those close and far for all which is done in "giving". All of us are thankful for people who come in our lives to support, but we seldom stop to "thank them" for their continued affirmations of sharing/caring. Herein, is the real focus of this brief writing today...
This brings us all to the point to say, "THANK YOU" for what you have done for us. Andre Crouch recently passed away and one of the things he told me before he died, was the reason he wrote THE BLOOD WILL NEVER LOSE ITS POWER and how miraculously he was called to write songs. You see, when he was a young man, his father was a preacher and one day, he stood before the congregation and declared his son would write music and lead in worship as God was calling him to preach with his music.
There was one problem, Andrea Crouch did not write music, lead worship or sing in his elementary years. He had never been any of the things his father pastor had even prophesied!
Can you imagine if you father suddenly stood before a group of people and prophetically told everyone in the room he was looking forward to hearing Andrea lead in worship in the coming days, when the young man not only did not know music, but had no idea this "word of knowledge" would ever be shared? He was mortified when a few days later the family received a "hand me down" piano. The following week, Andrea sat at the piano in front of the entire church when his father called him up to "lead in music".
For a few days earlier, the little boy had tinkered around with one hand on the piano, but at that moment, he begin to quickly walk across the keyboard and was leading in worship! The miracle of miracles happened. In his younger years, the little boy and his sister would go to a barbecue where many great stars, music artists and even celebrities gathered. While they were eating, he went to a piano and scribbled some words on a page.
As the barbecue sauce flowed outside, by this small baby grand piano this wonderful young boy was writing his first song..."The blood, that Jesus gave for me, way way back on Calvary, well its the blood that gives me strength, from day to day, it will never lose its power. It reaches to the highest mountains and it goes to the lowest valleys. I'm talking the blood that gives me strength from day to day it will never lose its power." He finished the song and kept throwing the paper away, but his sister kept picking it up. His song went around the world and changed his life and those who have sang this song since.
I'm personally thankful for my dear friend, mentor and loving colleague Andrea. I'm thankful Michael Omartian and I got to be close to him in the Sound Kitchen in Nashville with Randy Stonehill, Evie, The Archers, Love Song and the list goes on and on of the powerful time we all had together. I am even more thankful we could break communion together, serving the elements of the bread and the wine and doing this in remembrance of our Savior together as a team.
"How can I say thanks, for the thing you have done for me. Things, so underserved, yet you came to prove your love to me. The voices of a million angels, could not express my gratitude, all that I am and ever hope to be, I owe it all to Thee! To God be the glory, to God be the glory, yes to God be the Glory for the things He has done. Just let me live, my life, let it be pleasing unto Thee and should I gain, any praise, let it go to Calvary, to Calvary. To God be the Glory to God be the glory, yes to God be the glory for the things He has done." Andrea Crouch would later write in the early seventies when a little boy went to Falls Creek and heard this song. Weeping this little boy wanted to give tribute to Christ, never knowing the songwriter himself would be sitting with me on the same piano bench.
Have you ever felt like you were in the presence of a king? You literally were sitting across from one of the greatest legends of your time and you were a small dot in the world of impact this great man had made? I did and when I saw his humility, his love and his mission, there was something more powerful than words which impressed me, it was His life. This man shared Jesus with Michael Jackson just a few weeks before he died. This man shared songs with the world of Christ, which made him peculiar to the lost and welcomed to those who knew truth.
Stop for a moment and think about people who have come in to your life and have led you to the cross. Think about the medical doctor, the mechanic, the nurse, the teacher, the mailman, the giver who told you about God and now, you live differently because the smallest nudge of insight, made you a king or queen. These are the thankful moments we live in each and every day. If I could be more like Andrea Crouch, I would be a better man. If I could live more like Steven Curtis Chapman in his private prayer life, I would be a better man. If i could live facing danger more like Steve Saint or Carman, I would be better because their testimony is real.
Here is the problem, these are famous people and they are incredible. The greatest saints of people in my life are the men and women you have never heard the name. There will never be a movie about them, you will never hear a song written about them, their will never be a book about their lives, but yet, I am profoundly different because of who they are and what they stand for than any other person on the planet. I won't bore you with their full names, but read these well, so you KNOW who the kings and queens were which shared something that changed my life. Its not the whole list, but in part it is...
Jimmy, Jack, Melvin, Linn, Chuck, Wendell, Anthony, Claude, Mark, Calvin, Rick, Norman, Matthew, Matt, Ruthann, Lydia, Laddie, Joe, Beverly, Ruby, Lynda, Carole, Jere, Joyce, Steve, Denise, Daysha, Jonathan, Jeffery, Nathan, Rick, Carolyn, Sarah, David, Terri, Scott, Dana, Paul, Perry, Billy, Pat, Wes, Brad, Heidi, Natalie, Brianna, Kent, Michael, Bear, Lauren, David, Steve, Jackie, Mart, Matt, Bill, Jim, Dave, Miles, Steven, Scott, David, Herb, Tommy, Merry, Heather, Stan, Peyton, Dalton, Joyce, Don, Bruce, Kim, Robin, Gary, Gina, Karla, Donnell, Beverly, Cindy, Jimmy, Patrick, Jana, Wes, Dana, Kenny, Suzy, John, Karen, Joley, Kaitlyn, Josh, Mark, Megan, Mackenzie, Ray, Stephanie, Matthew, Kim, Margaret, Anne, Annalisa, Bruce, D'Andre, Richard, Cade, Grant, Bob, Kelli, Jami-Lynn, David, Mickey, Tim, Toni, Marie, Donna, Hal, Deanna, Kerry, Barbara, Nick, Don, Charlotte, Conley, Clint, Jamie, Mark, Curt, Christie, Paul, Megann, Mark, Megan, Tom, Dean, Marty, Lisa, Lynn, Scott, Tony, David, Shelby, Corby, Randy, Terri, Jackie, Sheryl, Shaun, Kelly, Barry, Skye, Debbie, Sherri, Rodney, Dobber, Grady, Cera, Era, Vera, Brother, Noni, Bill and the list of those who know God goes on and on and on. Thank you heroes. Thank you for those who are believing and living truth, verses just talking about it.
Thank you Andrea for your legacy. Thank you heroes for your faith and ever present example to challenge our hearts. Thank you family and comrades for the faith you instilled in me by your words, your insights and your lives. Thank you for every handicapped person who has gone through the "valleys" before to help us be better and realize all of life can only get better. Thank you people of faith who showed me the road when I needed the most strength. Keep keeping on dear friends and the best days are ahead!
Kevin McAfee is a filmmaker who writes for the purpose of inspiring others to make a difference in the world through faith in God and using the visual language of film. His blog shares the hopes of impacting culture, because his heart is in media missions and the church.