This month’s subject is all about giving. My story is about how people give in ways we don’t necessarily recognize, and how great that impact can be. I’m the vocalist of August Burns Red. I’ve been touring for 7 years. God blessed me with a voice, and a desire to write lyrics and play music. When I first started music I didn’t do it for the glory of God, however, through the years I’ve honestly had the desire to write about God’s love and how He has carried me through my struggles by His grace.
Most musicians pursue a career in their craft to fulfill their own desires. But there’s a spirit of generosity that lies within every artist in this industry. We have this innate desire to share with others — through our music, through the relationships with build, through our fans, etc. Whether it be a 100 kids in a hole in the wall in Tokyo, or 20,000 at a festival in Germany, the fact remains that we wish to connect and share with them. And they wish the same with us. Why? Because we give them something. It’s nothing tangible, or materialistic. Through our music, we give them a feeling, a power, an emotion, a desire. Because of this, I’ve heard many amazing stories of people overcoming addictions, fears, doubts, and personal struggles in their lives. Our music has given them hope. Our music has restored them, rejuvenated them, encouraged them, inspired them. This is amazing, and I thank God for the opportunity to be used in such a beautiful way.
Thus, through our own dreams we have helped inspire others by fully giving ourselves to what we love, and then spreading that love to those in need.
The dynamic in this unique relationship is a give and take. You see, the fans give as well. I’ve had fans give me bracelets, letters, clothing, crosses, etc. to show their love and appreciation. They are the ones who go out and buy our records the day they hit the shelves. They are the ones who buy three shirts at the merch table simply because they want to support us that much. They are the ones who will come to every show they can until we hang our hats. They are the ones that are waiting outside of the club at noon when the doors don’t even open until 7 p.m. They are the ones who have our lyrics tattooed on their bodies. They are the ones who share their stories with us as we share ours with them.
We’ve heard fans tell us that we’ve kept them going, and sure enough, they’ve kept us going as well. This kind of generosity is easily overlooked. I wouldn’t be nearly as thankful as I am if I didn’t have this perspective. I want to encourage all of you to start looking for generosity in unexpected places in your lives. It brings an unparalleled gratitude. Let’s all try to give a little more, and be thankful for those who have given to us.