Christafari - Part II
- Monday, November 01, 1999
Although the response from our fans was overwhelming, the reaction of a few local pastors stirred up controversy on the island prior to our arrival. It was the same old, same old...... But this time vicious rumors replaced general apprehension. It turns out that from the pulpit certain ministers were banning their congregations from attending our concert because of our hair, our album cover artwork and our reggae sound. I spent the majority of the time prior to the show dispelling these misconceptions about us, quoting scriptures and sharing my heart with the island. Later at the venue we had a chance to seriously rehearse our set with the same Arubian bass player from the night before. Confident that the bass player now knew all of the parts we finished our sound check and headed back to the hotel to rest prior to the show.
Back at the venue the local talent warmed up the crowd and we arrived at the outdoor amphitheater towards the end of the last opening act's set. Low and behold our bassist was nowhere to be found. Initially we were concerned, but soon the concern turned into panic. The band before us had stretched their set for as long as they could. The promoter walked in and said "What are you going to do if this guy doesn't show up"? I quickly responded, "That's not an option!" What little faith we had. We prayed. After praying we knew that we had to go on stage immediately. Just then I remembered that David Fohe our backing vocalist (the lead vocalist for the Christian reggae band "Youth Exodus") could play several instruments. I turned to him and asked him if he could cover the parts. With initial hesitance we stepped up on stage knowing that it would take nothing short of a miracle from heaven to make our show sound good.
A miracle is just what God delivered. It turns out that David is an excellent bassist (in fact he can play almost every instrument well). And he knew our set inside and out as he plucked away on those strings with panic on his face and sweat pouring off of his hands. After a few songs we locked into a groove and forgot that this was David's first show with us on bass. It is awesome how God works. As we were about ready to sacrifice the show, there was a ram in the bush provided by the Most High. By the end of our set the Arubian bassist finally arrived. We didn't need him. Perhaps God wanted him to hear the message instead of performing the music.
The show in Aruba turned out to be the high point of the tour. As we all relied on God, he gave us a better performance than the night before, and the ministry time was extremely powerful. Over 50 people got saved that night! The Lord also broke the bondage of legalism and hollow religion in the amphitheater as I had everyone get on their knees on the hard concrete and re-surrender their lives to Him. There wasn't a dry eye in the place. We ended the night with praise and worship. When we sang the song "Lord I Lift Your Name on High" I had the whole audience turn around and face away from the stage. Although it initially seemed awkward, it worked. Their focus and attention was diverted from the stage to the Throne Room of the Most High God. What followed was a depth of worship that I have never experienced before. To God be the glory!
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