I’ve often had the question asked of me, “So when did you know you were supposed to be a musician?” That question is easy to answer, and I knew that I was called to music ministry when I was fourteen years old. For about three years, I had been writing simple songs with friends but nothing truly serious until I was inspired to write “Jesus is your Friend.”
It was my first “real” song and I wanted to share it with everyone. My family was doing a concert and hymn sing at a local church one night, and as we were wrapping up cables and putting the equipment away, I struck up a conversation with my grandma who had come to see the concert that night. I told her about my new song, and she said she would love to hear it some time. She saw that the keyboard hadn’t been put away yet, so she asked if I could play the song right then. I was a little nervous, but I sat down to play anyway. The whole room became silent, and it was then that I realized that everyone was listening. My stomach fluttered and my hands got clammy, but I smiled and kept playing.
When the song was over, everyone applauded, and I realized in that moment that maybe my song was okay… even good. A gentleman from the congregation came up to me and praised me for a job well done, saying again and again that he just couldn’t get enough of my voice. From that moment on, I referred to him as “Roger: my biggest fan.”
At age fourteen, I really didn’t have a concept of music ministry, but I knew what it meant to sing, and I knew I liked it. That evening served as validation of my talents, and I haven’t stopped singing and playing since!