I can’t say how many times I’ve felt alone and overwhelmed in my life.
It seems that we all struggle and wrestle through some days.
These quotes tell my story and the journey of making my CD ‘Hope On My Horizon’ …
“Every exit is an entry somewhere else.” Tom Stoppard
Having your best friends “assassinate” you blows your world apart. It crushes you. It carves up your confidence and tears you to shreds. It was only a number of years ago I was cornered by those close to me and thrown overboard into a tempest.
The frightening and sad part I found being pushed off the edge by those I loved and trusted was the horrid crashing and burning of those close friendships, along with leaving behind a community of awesome people I had done life with coupled with the overnight destruction of the music I was part of making – my ‘success’ was set on fire and I was left helpless to just stand there and watch it burn – I lost it all and had to simply start over.
I stepped into a sad painful ‘exit’ which was also an ‘entry’ to no obligations and no demands. It transported me to a space where I had too much time on my hands and left my choices wide open …
When my influence and opportunity and close friends were sadly stripped away I was left standing alone with God with only what I had left – my family and a few close friends and my faith in Him and the gifts He’d given me. Through my whole life I’ve known I needed to use my gifts more than I had as a songwriter but I’d always been too busy doing other things to dedicate myself to finishing my music and sharing it with people who needed a hope and a future … in the resounding solitary silence God whispered so clearly to me that now was the time to finally focus on taking the songwriting gifts He’d given me and put them to work for others.
“Pray as if everything depended on God and work as if everything depended on you.” St. Ignatius Loyola
My true confession though is I had spent most of my life waiting … waiting for God to “do something” … waiting for Him to move mountains and bring me the “opportunity” … it was like I expected Father Christmas God to smile and set me on His knee and give me what I had been telling Him I wanted with my fervent prayers and hands held out for a hand-me-down. Sure I was taking a few faltering steps forward but I hadn’t seriously put my money where my mouth was and taken real steps of faith towards what I was asking His help with. I had fooled myself into thinking that just because God had given me these gifts He would miraculously work out everything and all I had to do was lie on the shipwrecked beach getting a tan till He sent a heavenly cruise ship to pick me up loaded with everything my heart desired.
Sitting on my shipwrecked shore staring at an empty horizon I finally realised God had been waiting on me for a long time … waiting for me to take the gifts He had already given me and work with them even if I couldn’t see anything on the horizon. The verse I had mumbled since I was a teenager was suddenly crystal clear to me – “Great gifts mean great responsibilities; greater gifts, greater responsibilities!” Luke 12:48 The Message Bible.
My life had been filled with my excuses about how I didn’t have the time or the money or the energy or the inspiration to make my music when quite simply I had chosen to waste away the years! Sure I had limitations but I could have chipped away a little at a time even with the beautiful cacophony of working a day job and raising a family and loving my wife. I had to face up to the facts that I had filled those days with excuses instead of action. No one but me was to blame for my dreams being unfulfilled, least of all God. In a sudden cathartic moment I admited it was my own fault that my music had been stagnant so many years. I was finally agreeing with the cold hard truth staring me in the face that my inaction was the real reason I had settled for a desert of dead dreams.
Facing up to this fact was most of the battle. The abandonment by my best friends and being thrown overboard into a sea of disappointment and emptiness that forced me to swim for dry land was a terrible time but it became a life-changing catalyst. It was awful. I was terrified. I got pushed under and my lungs filled with salty fear. I gasped to breathe and truly thought I’d never make it through this.
But when I crawled ashore with shattered dreams and was left alone without the bustling business I managed to get up, dust myself and my dreams off, and take the first steps I had spent years avoiding – I started towards making my CD ‘Hope On My Horizon’ …
This qoute glared at me every day I stayed with my son during a visit to where he lives in LA. Hanging on the back of his apartment door it goaded and taunted me, reminding me that just because I was now ‘on the right track’ I couldn’t stop or take a break or let the current just take me. I had to take these dreams … and make these dreams.
In some ways I had done all the hard work – between my ears. Now all that was left was just the gritty toil of writing, re-writing, recording, producing and marketing the CD. But throughout all of that work I’ve had more difficult doubting days than I dare admit. More than a few times I’ve given up on the inside to the fear and shadows shouting at me that I should pack up my dreams and forget all this nonsense of making music that could give people hope and courage … but God in His patience would quietly whisper to me that …
God never lost confidence in me.
You, my fans and supporters, never flagged in your faith in me as a songwriter who’s music makes a difference.
The mountain I had to conquer was inside of me – my fears of failing and what others thought of me was waiting for me when I floundered ashore on the beach that day.
My fears had dictated to me that sure I could dream about making a record but I should be a grown-up and just knuckle down to the hum drum of my lot in life and live out the rest of my days with those songs still on the inside of me.
Faith changed that.
My CD ‘Hope On My Horizon’ releases on July 1 2015.
Fear is not equal to faith.
These quotes helped me fight through fear and maybe, just maybe, these tacky quotes can help you live a better life too.
NOTE: I’ll get behind you turning your ‘dreams’ into ‘done’ by giving you a copy of a song from my CD at no charge. Just click here to grab your copy!