Today is a very different day.
I’ve sent everybody here in the studios in Las Colinas, Texas, back home and told them to be with their families and spend the day so you and I can spend some time. Whether you’re in the airport or in the car driving home or you’re like me, somebody who has to work today, that we could be together and share the truth on the history of Thanksgiving, the history of our country, the history of the season and what it’s really all about. I am convinced that Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Year’s are put together really through divine providence, that when we are humble enough, we will see the meaning of Christmas and we’ll be able to change our life in the new year. That’s what it’s really all about, I think, but it’s the humility part that gets us and this is really one of those days that you either love or hate.
We all have people in our family that we don’t necessarily get along with. We were talking at the family dinner table last night, my daughter and my new grandchild and my eldest daughter and my two youngest kids. We had my son-in-law’s mom at the table last night. We read our — we read our scriptures at the table last night and we started talking about family and we started talking about the holidays. And I just love having my family near, but there — it hasn’t always been that way. And I said to my — I said to my kids, you know, it’s important, I think, to get away from your parents and your family for a while because otherwise I would have been that stinky younger brother. I would always be who my family thought I was.
But I want you to come to the table today, and this is one of the reasons why I really wanted to spend some time with you one on one today. I really wanted to spend some time with you today talking about what this is really all about so you — even if you have one of those family situations where you just don’t want to go because you don’t get along with somebody at the family or maybe you don’t get along with anybody in the family, or maybe you’re going into a situation where everybody disagrees with you. That’s okay. And to recognize that we’re all different and our jobs are to be a beacon of hope and not to engage in fear and worry and doubt but faith, hope and confidence and to give thanks.
Last summer I wrote, while we were in the midst of still putting together Man in the Moon, I was working on another project. It’s called Believe Again. When they asked me what the name of the CD would be, I said “Believe Again.” Believe, period, Again, period. So many of us have lost faith. So many of us are going to lose faith because things are going to get hard. And we live in a time now, in a world now where if it’s hard, it shouldn’t happen. It shouldn’t be that way. “I was promised that it wouldn’t be hard.” You were never promised that. In fact, it is our struggles. It is the things that we question, the things that push us up against the wall. Those are the things that make us.
So at the end of spring of this year, I wrote a letter about Christmas. I had a guy who’s never produced an album before get together with an album producer and get together with people that we found on YouTube. We went and we scoured YouTube. We thought, “This person sounds great.” And we called them up and we asked them: “We’d like to try to do a CD but we want to do it with all people of different faith, all different faith. Is faith, does it play a role to you?” If the answer was yes, we asked them to join. Some of them quite honestly when they found out who was responsible for the CD didn’t want to participate, and strangely not because of my politics but because of my personal faith. They missed the point. The point was people of all walks of life getting together and celebrating God and showing that we can work together.
But I wrote a note back in spring to all those involved and I said:
Out of all of the gifts that we can give to America as a gift, the only one that really will matter will be the gift of light. Such spiritual darkness is rolling over the entire planet and most of the world has let their light burn out over the years. Some have had their flame intentionally snuffed out. They’ve done it themselves. Our job will be to show the world that flicker of light again and gently rekindle that flame. With divine providence and guidance from above, if we are loyal, pure, and focused on the love that he expects from us and requires us to share, we will see that flicker begin and blaze back to life.
Freedom is slipping through the fingers of so many around the world. And I think it’s about time that we accept the mantle of new civil rights leaders of the world, at least until — at least until the time when those people that were supposed to do it show up. Our task is harder right now because much of the world has plunged into darkness and can no longer see the truth. But those of us who are awake have something that the others don’t: The power of truth. The struggles against powers and principalities that nears our ancestors have conquered before. It was just the beginning, and there is more struggle that will come. But hopefully with these songs that you will put together, travelers from around the world will find their way and help preserve the rights of man.
So many in the world are whining about trouble or whining about struggle. And in our part of the world, so much of it is for no reason whatsoever. I feel as though our dad, our God, is about to say, “You want to cry about something? I’ll give you something to cry about,” just as any dad would. It will be our job to recognize that we brought most of this upon ourselves. Let us see and share the gift of redemption that is far more valuable than any gold, Frankincense, or myrrh. If we follow our promptings with joy and eagerness and exactness, that those of you who are recording this CD, your voices will fill the air with praises to our God and king.
Find out what you promised him you would do in your lifetime and then may we all live our lives in such a way that we may be a gift of light, of courage, of joy in a troubled and frightened world. Many mighty miracles will be seen in the coming days and I think mighty miracles just may come from what you set out to do.
It’s strange I find myself believing in people sometimes more than the people themselves do. But I really think I know who they are and what they’re capable of doing.
May they this season find blessings in the love and peace of God and may they never fear, no matter what the darkness tries to do, because the gift of life, the gift of light, conquers all.