I saw this a few months ago and somehow am just getting an article written up about it. In a sermon series titled “Sticks and Stones” at Elevation Church in North Carolina Pastor Steven Furtick brings guitarist Lance Gatch on stage to discuss how he got to where is. For those of you who do not know Lance Gatch is the music director for Elevation Worship services. He speaks into a mic to all of their campus worship teams during worship so that everyone is on the same page and together at the same time. Sounds like a huge job right! Well what I did not know is that he did not start there. In fact when he and his wife London came to Elevation he was not a very good guitar player. He had experience in drums, bass and keys but not guitar.
When they got there he wanted to be on stage at Elevation but they were not looking for bassists or drummers and the leaders at the time told him that he was not good enough to play lead guitar for Elevation. At that point Lance made a decision to not accept what was being said. This is very crucial for all of us worship leaders and guitarists. At some point in your career and even multiple times in your career you will have someone tell you that you are not good enough that you do not have what it takes. Even if said with the motivation of love these words are death. They do not bring life to us. At these, where the rubber meets the road scenarios, is where we have to personally make a decision. We have to decide that we will not accept those words but we will treat them as fuel. We need to move forward and say well these are definite areas where I need to improve in but I will not be bound by this.
Lance went on to practice, practice, practice and then practice some more. Pastor Steven Furtick goes on to say that he locked himself in his room for months and even scared his wife with how intense and focused he was. He came back a few months later to try out again and those same worship leaders that said he was not good enough now said that he was one of the best guitarists they had. Now he is standing on the stage every week with one of the largest and most known worship bands in the world. I want you to just sit and think for a moment about what would have happened if he would have said “You guys are right. I am not good enough. I probably never will be. I am just going to sit around and wait until something that I am good at pops up.” Mind blowing right? What areas of your ministry are you sitting back and wrongly placing value in what others say? What areas of music do you continually tell yourself that you are not good enough in?
I challenge you to a: watch the video above then b: spend sometime in prayer and conversation with Jesus about not only what he has called you to do with your talents but also what he thinks of you. If we center ourselves on Christ and speak truth to ourselves about how he sees us. The truth is that he loves you and that there is nothing you cannot do through him. Too often do we write ourselves off and allow others to write us off because we were not born with the ability. News flash, none of us have the ability to do anything that God has called us to do. It is through him that we receive the tools, talents and skills to achieve what he has called us to do. We just have to work hard at pursuing that and taking action to the things he has called us to do in the moment. If you have a hard time accepting this then you are normal but I encourage you to reflect on this. The Maker of the universe and the One who holds the key to it loves you. He sent his one and only son to die for you. If he wants you to do something he will give you the tools and he will make it happen if you are faithful.
It’s kind of like the works vs faith thing. You cannot just have faith without works but you also can’t just do good things. Well you cannot just practice away with out centering yourself on Christ and what he has for your life just like you cannot just sit around and expect God to do something miraculous in your life just because you are called to it. Get out there any start practicing. Start working towards your dreams, callings, aspirations etc. God has huge plans for you all.
Stay tuned for part 2 of this short article series on “Stacking Experiences” where we talk about the experiences God puts in our lives to prepare us for what he really has for us.