Choir plans trip to Hawaii

by Donna Evans

“I am standing on God’s promise that He is able to do immeasurably more than all we can ask or imagine . . . and when I put my faith glasses on, all things are possible.” — Cori Wittman, All In by Mark Batterson

Sometimes you get an idea and know it’s the real thing. But you also immediately know that everyone else will think you have totally lost your marbles. And that’s when you come to a fork in the road and do one of two things: 1) nothing or 2) muster your courage and throw out the fleece and see what happens. Because if you never throw out that fleece, if you never ask, if you stay on the shore and never jump in the water, there’s only one guarantee: NOTHING will happen.

Thus began this story a couple of years ago. The idea was to take the student choir of Woodland Heights Baptist Church in Conway, named The Front, to Honolulu in June to sing and minister. I approached our pastor, David Hatfield, and then met with music minister William Love and minister to students Kent Dixon to make this adventure a reality. With much prayer, the planning process for this project began.

The itinerary will include singing in several churches, a beach ministry, performing on Centerstage at the Ala Moana Mall, ministering to children and the elderly community and doing maintenance and general handiwork at Kalihi Union Church. We will work with Randy and Gay Hongo, music ministers and missionaries, who have traveled the world singing the Great Good News and blessing others with their testimonies of God’s faithfulness.

Woodland Heights Baptist Church (WHBC) has a rich history of music ministry and education.

While many churches are discontinuing their choral programs because of lack of interest, WHBC has maintained a high standard of excellence in its music curriculum, with choirs established for all ages. And why is this important? Because if the church does not educate and teach children to be worshippers, independently and corporately, and use their talents and gifts to glorify our God and lead others to do so, who will be there in another generation to do it?

There are 55-60 student members of The Front, ranging from seventh grade through college. They are loyal in their attendance, meeting each Sunday afternoon for rehearsal. They are “the cream of the crop” and lead in the morning worship once a month. The Front recently sang for a Renewal Ranch worship service on a Saturday morning. There was not a dry eye in the house as they sang the song “Blessings” by Laura Story. They sang with strength and passion:

“But what if Your blessings come through raindrops?
What if Your healing comes through tears?
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?
What if trials of this life — the rain, the storms, the hardest nights — are Your  mercies in disguise?”

And why is that important? Why were grown men and their families weeping? Because the words and harmonies flowed together to bring a message of real hope. And EVERYONE in the world — whether they live at Renewal Ranch in the 501 or on a beautiful Hawaiian island in the middle of the Pacific — EVERYONE wants to be loved and know love, and EVERYONE needs to know there is real hope and help for the life they live on this earth. And THAT is why we sing — to deliver that message with clarity and courage and energy!

Just as the children of Israel were instructed in 2 Chronicles 20, we are called to step to “The Front” and praise and believe Him when we cannot see the battle outcome, to trust Him in all circumstances, even in the rain and storms of life. It is believing that He will provide financially for this project to happen, when in reality it seems to be absolutely impossible.

As Christians, we either trust Him, or we do not. There is no middle ground. And that is what putting on those faith glasses is really all about — choosing to believe Him and trusting He can and will really do more than we could possibly imagine or ask. It’s about looking through those glasses and seeing His smile and KNOWING He is Who He says He is.

Those faith glasses are available to anyone who would like a pair.

All you have to do is put them on.