what might surprise you is that i kind of know the guys a little better than most. no, i'm not a creepy stalker or anything. at least i hope not - jason if you are reading this can you confirm? ;) but i do know them well enough that they reached out to me yesterday and asked me to help them out.
and, well duh, since they are one of the best groups on the planet i said yes. but before i go on, let me tell you how i came to know of 33miles.
before chris and i moved to louisiana, chris served a small church in kilgore, texas - st. luke's united methodist church. it is where he worked when we met, where we got married, and where i first started serving with him by helping out with umyf (that is united methodist youth fellowship for any non-methodist folks out there).
there was a gentleman there by the name of robert. robert was a dreamer and he really liked to dream big. in the small towns of east texas, there isn't much draw for big-name christian bands to come and perform, but robert knew if he asked the right one that God would make it happen. enter 33miles. he asked a few folks at the church, me included, to be part of a volunteer team to help sell tickets, accommodate the bands, spread the word, and work at the concert. after a couple of months of hard work, st. lukes umc hosted 33miles to a small crowd at the local junior college auditorium.
i worked with a couple of other ladies in the kitchen to prepare the meals for the band and their road army before the concert. this is when i met jason and chris. here is a moment where i'm going to be totally honest: i had no idea what to expect. i'd never met anyone i considered to be famous or anything like that. (well except for whoopi goldberg after seeing her in a musical on broadway my freshman year in high school.) i was afraid of how to act or what to say, how they would act or anything. to say i'm an awkward bird in situations like that would be a gross understatement.
let's just say that i was more than pleasantly surprised. these are two of the most grounded, thankful, and talented individuals you could ever have the pleasure of meeting. they spoke to everyone, thanked everyone, sat down and talked with people, enjoyed everyone's company and were completely gracious the entire time they were there. they were normal, every day guys, who had this God-given talent, and they were truly using it to His glory.
if you are like me, sometimes you really wonder if christian performers are reallllly giving all the praise to God while they are soaking it up in the spotlight on the stage. maybe i'm a cynic - any maybe if i had met more Christian performers in person, i would know for sure. but with 33miles, they leave it all on the stage. i've seen them pray with their families before meals, perform for free for a high-school friend to help benefit their sick little boy, and i've watched them perform, many times, and seen what God has done for their group over the past few years. to me, they are the real deal.
so, i've told you all of that to tell you this. they need your help. they need my help too. and so i'm reaching out to my friends and online family to see if you can help them. here is a little snippet of what has been going on with 33miles in the last year
to say the very least it has been a rough year for them. but they see that the promise of God reigns, that God can bring beautiful life out of what we see as ashes. so, on another leap of faith, they have started a kickstarter campaign. kickstarter is totally awesome - it is a platform that allows you to drive a campaign and receive pledges from your friends, fans, and family. i'd never heard of it before now but it really is a neat tool.
so. i guess now comes the really awkward part where i'd really just rather end the blog post and go on about my business. but i can't do that. i really just love these guys too much, and see how much God has done for them, to not reach out to you guys. i'm going to ask you to prayerfully consider pledging towards their campaign. there is no amount to small or too large to give - anything to help get them towards their goal of $20,000 would be appreciated more than you could ever know.
God has given them this gift - this talent, this drive, and this faith, to keep on keepin' on. they know God will provide.
this is one of my absolute favorite songs by them.
but wait - there is a little something in it for you - if you head over to their campaign page, you will see that depending on how much you pledge, you will receive a token of appreciation from 33miles. autographed posters and cds, digital downloads, phone calls, even a spot on the cover jacket (executive producer: skye mclain... my name in big shiny lights! lol) are just some of the sweet things these guys have offered in return of your faithful pledge.
you may be thinking - what will my $15 do? well - not much by itself. but if every follower of my blog (that is only 170 people...) gave $15, that is a whopping $2550. that would push them to almost half of their goal. i don't like to ask you guys on here to do anything (except faithfully oblige to read my everyday fodder...) and to be sure i don't feel comfortable asking you to give your hard-earned money to a cause. but it is a cause i truly believe in and one i'd like you to be a part of with me.
so pray about it. at least do that. and if God leads you to pledge, don't let fear hold you back. i want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.
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