I watch The 700 Club on www.cbn.com nearly every day, as I’m getting dressed, and a few days ago, they did a story that really spoke to me about a country songwriter named Allen Shamblin.
Mr. Shamblin is now a very successful songwriter. His first successful song was called “He Walked on Water” and was recorded by Randy Travis. Miranda Lambert has also recorded his songs, as well as other well-known country artists.
But what struck me was Mr. Shamblin’s story of how he became a songwriter. One day he was driving to his job as a real estate appraiser, and he began pounding on his dashboard, and saying to himself, “No, this can’t be my life!” He wasn’t happy in his job, but he wasn’t sure what it was he was supposed to be doing with his life. So he began to ask himself, “What am I passionate about?” And the answer kept coming to him…music, music, music.
So he says one night he took a walk, and asked God to help him become a songwriter. God spoke to his heart right then and there, and he knew that was the path he was supposed to take.
And here’s what really hit home for me: He began thanking God for what He was going to do. He said, “Thank you, God, for the songs that are going to come.”
His success didn’t happen overnight. The problem was, Mr. Shamblin barely played guitar, and didn’t have any songwriting experience. He began filling up notebooks with words, verses, choruses, but he simply couldn’t get any songs to come together.
So Mr. Shamblin went for another walk and said, “Lord, I thought you told me you were going to send me songs, and I’m going to keep thanking you until they get here.”
He met a lady who introduced him to a famous fiddle player, who listened to his songs. The fiddle player introduced him to some studio executives from Nashville, and they said they liked his songs, and encouraged him to move to Nashville. It took him two years to work up the courage to move there, but three years after moving there, he still didn’t have any big breaks. What did he say at that point?
“I questioned myself more than I questioned God. I thought, ‘Am I doing the right things? Am I doing everything I’m supposed to be doing?'” He was about to give up. But then he turned on the TV and heard someone say, “There’s someone out there fixing to give up on a dream. Don’t give up. The race always gets toughest before you cross the finish line.”
Thirty minutes later, Allen wrote his first big hit, “He Walked on Water.” Allen says that the song “literally poured out like honey out of a jar.”
That’s not the only thing that poured out of Mr. Shamblin, like honey out of a jar. When I first heard him say that he thanked God for the songs he believed would come, it was like honey dripped off his tongue. Wow! I thought. Why don’t I exhibit that kind of faith? Why don’t I ask God for things in such a trusting manner, and then go on my way, thanking Him for how He is going to answer that prayer? It was so simple, yet so profound.
That’s the kind of faith God honors. That’s the kind of faith that makes things happen. That’s the kind of faith that enables people like Mr. Shamblin to wait, sometimes for years, for God to answer their prayer, without feeling the need to get angry with God.
When our faith pours out of us like honey from a jar, other amazing things pour out of us, too….like the six number-one hits that Mr. Shambelin has written.
“Your lips, my bride, drip honey…” (Song of Solomon 4:11)
Faith like honey. Let it pour.