This past April I had the privilege of visiting one of the greatest locations for aspiring Christian musicians, a place I had been longing to visit for forever. Of course, I’m talking about none other than ‘Music City’ – Nashville, TN. My friend received an email from a very well-known music publishing company stating that they were conducting their annual songwriter’s retreat and she more than nudged me to attend. I thought that this was a perfect opportunity to learn from the PRO’s and scratch another item off my bucket list. I also had the privilege of having my husband tag along with me. Little did I know that this weekend was going to be more for our marriage and our relationship with God than it was about writing songs. That’s how God works.
Upon arriving at the hotel in Franklin, TN, just about 20 minutes from downtown Nashville, we were notified that our hotel room had been upgraded to the honeymoon suite. We also had the luxury of driving around in a new Corvette. As you can imagine my husband was in heaven! While we were living it up in Nashville things back at home was not so luxurious. Our son Tristan was sick with a 102 fever but my mom took really good care of him. Thank God for grandparents. My husband and I were also having some trouble with our business back at home. Without getting into details, my husband was discouraged to the point of severe depression, which he didn’t share with me until our last day there. On the other hand, the retreat was fantastic. I was learning from Grammy and Dove award winners, and even writing songs with them. I was in my own little heaven.
Since my husband couldn’t actually attend the retreat with me he had a lot of time to tour different sites of Nashville, and a lot of time to think, which is not always a good thing. My husband, who is now settling into his 50’s, was becoming increasingly depressed about where God really wanted him in his career and location-wise. In my own heart, I had been struggling with a disconnect between my husband and I. Even though we work together back home we rarely have time to just sit and talk about non-business things. And with our son now in the picture, it’s become harder to have that precious time. So God was working in both our hearts this weekend which all came to a head on Sunday before we left for home. In Nashville, there is a small church that is becoming increasingly popular by the minute. It’s called The Belonging CO and is Pastored by husband and wife team Henry and Alex Seeley. It’s the home church to big-time Christian artists Natalie Grant and Kari Jobe. So, of course, this is the church I needed to go to on Sunday before we left for home. Thankfully their services are in the evening only so we were able to attend after the songwriter’s retreat was over. A few hours before the service I had begun to not feel so well. I toyed with the idea of not going after all, but felt in my heart that the bigger the resistance to not do something was actually a sign to in fact do it! When we walked in we were immediately recognized by a couple who attended the songwriter’s retreat. And two of the church leaders had in fact attended and taught at the retreat. Go figure!
So I’m sure by now you’re thinking, “So why do you think that God is the God of disappointment if all these great things are happening?” Well, just give me a few more minutes and I’ll explain. My husband and I came to Nashville full of disappointments that were happening back home and desperately needed some encouragement. Me in our marriage and him in his career. Pastor Henry came out and delivered a message that seemed to be hand-crafted by God and straight to our hearts. God’s timing is always perfect. Martha had faith that the Messiah could resurrect her in last days but her faith in Jesus’ ability to resurrect Lazarus on Earth was very small if non-existent. And that’s how most Christians live. We have faith that Jesus can bring us into heaven but we have little faith that He can bring to life the seemingly dead things in our lives. Up until this point, God had been the God of disappointment in my own life. I had not seen what I wanted in my music career and in my marriage. My husband had not seen what he wanted in his career. We were both frustrated to the point of hopelessness. But you can bet that upon hearing this message that God was already bringing to life the issues we thought were a hopeless case.
So what are the disappointments in your life that you feel lay dead with no hope of bringing them back to life? I know you have them! We all do. Do you have faith that Jesus can take your disappointments that lie in the grave and call them back to life just as He did Lazarus? Choose to trust and believe today. If Jesus brought Himself back to life then I’m sure He can bring anything back to life.