As of Monday evening, we have completed the recording portion of the CD project at Christ Community Church. It took much longer than what we originally anticipated, but, quite frankly, I am not sure most of us knew exactly what to expect when we got into this. I know I didn’t. In the end, God has shown His faithfulness throughout the process. Please pray that He continues to work to accomplish His purposes for this project. Pray that Jesus Christ would be glorified through this project and music.
I am so thankful for the worship team at our church. This includes everyone, not just those who ended up in the studio. We have continued to work on this project while still managing to practice and perform for Sunday mornings. Schedules have often been changed on short notice. There have been times that we did not have much time to prepare the music for Sunday morning. However, both the music and tech teams were flexible and worked diligently and served faithfully throughout the process. They are a blessing to me and to our church body.
Today is exactly nine months from the day we had our first practice for this project. As mentioned, it took us longer to get to this point than I anticipated. At first, we had planned a few practices to firm everything up before going to the studio. Twenty practices later, we finally went to the studio. We were originally set up for 24 hours in the studio. In the end, we were in the studio about 80 hours.
As we progressed through each stage, it became more apparent that it was going to take longer to complete the project the way we wanted. Travis King, the chief audio engineer from 12 Bar Productions, has been excellent throughout the process. We would discuss the progress as we took each step and he provided us with the options available to us. He and the studio have been very generous towards us. Travis challenged and encouraged us along the way. His work and input have been a blessing. Now, he has the task of editing, mixing, and mastering the work we have done. Pray that God will bless and guide him throughout this process.
In the beginning, this project was proposed as an outreach tool for the ministry of Christ Community Church. The church graciously raised the funds to get the project launched. In addition, the church leadership offered me the opportunity to use the completed project for additional ministry purposes beyond the scope of our church. I did not ask for this – they insisted that this would be the case. It is just another example of how the leadership and people of CCC have supported and encouraged me throughout my ministry here. They have challenged and supported me as I seek direction in my ministry.
As it turns out, the project will end up being jointly funded between CCC and PuddleJoy Music. When the decision was made to put in the extra recording time, I let the studio know that we expected to be billed for the extra studio time. That, in addition to the CD production costs, caused the final cost to be quite a bit more than what was originally raised. However, once again, God has shown His faithfulness in this process. Before the situation even arose, He had provided me with the funds to cover the additional cost. We had set aside money for an anticipated expense, which did not materialize. So, the money was provided for the additional project costs.
I am actually grateful to share the burden of the cost, since it will be a tool that I can use beyond the scope of my ministry at CCC. In the end, I am glad it worked out this way. When the project is complete, there will be two versions of the CD. The CCC version will be utilized by the church for ministry and outreach purposes. I will offer a separate version on my website and will also have the individual songs available for listening and download. I am excited to see how it all turns out.
God is faithful. I cannot ever say this enough. Throughout this process, there have been some struggles and I have questioned God, myself, and my abilities frequently. At each stage, though, God showed His hand. When I thought things looked bleak, He would shine a beam of light into my gloom. God frequently used my wife to remind me why I am doing what I do. She continues to be a gift from God, in more ways than I could ever count.
I don’t know how God will use the end product, but I pray it will be a continuation of how He uses small things to accomplish His great purposes (1 Corinthians 1:26-31). When I hear that children are singing the songs during the week; when I see someone place their hands over their heart while they sing one of these songs; when I hear that the songs are meaningful to others – I am so grateful that God would use someone like me for His purposes.
How gracious and merciful is our God, that we, hopeless sinners, could be granted the privilege of being His children and working and living for the gospel of Jesus Christ. What words could I say that could ever express the magnitude of such a gift? Thanks be to our Lord Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory forever.
Together for His glory…