Why Country Star Granger Smith Proudly Proclaims His Faith
By Movieguide® Contributor
Country music star Granger Smith shared his motivation for boldly declaring his faith despite the backlash he may receive from doing so.
“My quickest answer to that is probably the answer that would make other people shudder; it would make other people a little wary of it,” Smith told CBN’s “Quick Start” podcast when asked about his boldness. “But here’s my answer: the fear of the Lord. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”
“When I say, ‘The fear of the Lord,’ it’s not like a Halloween scary. It’s not like a man with a mask popping out from the bushes. It’s not that kind of fear. It’s understanding Who is sovereign, Who is providential, Who has, as the old Sunday school song says, ‘the whole world in His hands,’” he continued.
“When you trust that and you believe that, and there is a certain aspect of that that says, ‘If I believe in this, why would I fear what anyone else says? Why would I fear anything from a man when I have the fear of the Lord?’” Smith added.
Smith has shared his faith on social media and in interviews for years now, but he admits that his faith was not always so strong.
In 2019, Smith lost his three-year-old son, River, to a drowning accident.
“[Losing my son] showed me that I didn’t have a good faith,” Smith told TODAY.com. “My faith was weak.”
Rather than rely on the Lord for strength, Smith now realizes that he had been looking to himself for answers.
“Although I was a cultural Christian, I really relied on myself,” Smith explained. “I was my Savior. I fixed my own problems. ‘Self-help in America’ – like that was my religion.”
Following the death of his son, Smith realized that self-help has its limits. There are some things in life that only the living God can redeem.
“It took [the death of my son] for me to go, ‘There are some things in life that self-help cannot fix or make better,” he told CBN. “That was the catalyst that happened in 2019, when I lost my son River.”
Smith began to take his faith seriously and make it more than just a cultural habit. During that time, he wrote a book—“Like a River: Finding the Faith and Strength to Move Forward After Loss and Heartbreak”—in which he chronicled his rebirth in Christianity.
“A lot of times, when I was talking about writing the book and people would say, ‘You’re writing a book? What’s it about?’ And I would say, ‘Well, it’s about losing my son.’ … And as I continued to write, I learned, ‘Well, that’s not really what this book is about.’ It’s really not. That how it opens and the catalyst to it – that’s how the curtain opens – but really, it’s about me dying and me being reborn and the new path that followed,” he said.
Smith’s commitment to the Lord has only grown since then. He recently announced that he would be retiring from country music to pursue ministry. Smith’s “Like a River” tour, which ended in August, marked the end of his country music career.
“[I] want to glorify God the best way that I can. I want to learn and grow and serve my local church and allow my pastors to equip and affirm those next steps. Lord willing, I want to be used to help people find their purpose,” Smith said in an Instagram post announcing his move into full-time ministry.
The musician announced that he would be leaving the stage to pursue full-time ministry this past spring.
“Let’s be clear,” he continued in the post. “This is not retirement. That would mean I’m quitting work altogether. It’s also not because I’m burned out or unwell or sick or heartbroken or grieving. I am more at peace and more free than any other time of my life. It’s not for any of those reasons.”
“Let me tell you the real reason,” Smith wrote. “It’s the parable that Jesus used in Matthew 13:44.”
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field,” he shared.
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