Chapman's Live Out Loud Tour Was Everything But Quiet
- Thursday, February 21, 2002
Always one to put on a good show, Steven Curtis Chapman did not disappoint the 8,000 plus attendees of the March 1 Lakeland, Fla., date of his Live Out Loud tour, especially one die-hard, dedicated fan who happens to be yours truly, The J Man.
If you've ever been to one of Chapman's tours, you know that the caliber of excellence he strives to accomplish rises with every new tour. This tour, in support of his new CD, Declaration, is no exception.
I think we put the power company out of business that night. The stellar effects ranged from spiraling light patterns that looked like pyrotechnics to a rising video screen that portrayed Chapman's heart while he took care of the music.
Steven and the band kicked off their set with a rousing performance of See The Glory, complete with video game sound effects and popping lights that were sure to please Mario and Luigi.
After the energetic opener, he and the band went full force with crowd favorites like Let Us Pray and The Change.
Magnificent Obsession, Speechless, and a worship set that included In The Secret and Open The Eyes of My Heart were among the most moving performances. The songs seemed to resonate even more after Chapman's battle last year with paralyzed vocal chords.
An acoustic version of the wedding classic I Will Be Here followed, for those who were "over 30 and [had] to sit down to rest." The loving relationship Steven has with his wife, Mary Beth, permeates the song, even though he describes it as "holy wedlock, holy headlock!"
The screen then rose for a video appearance by "the amazingly beautiful little Asian girl" -- Chapman's adopted daughter, Shaohannah, while Mr. Guitar traded in the strings for the ivories on When Love Takes You In.
Along for the ride was an opening artist known for her ability to get an audience thinking about an intense relationship with an intense God -- none other than Sparrow recording artist, Nichole Nordeman. She performed a new track titled I AM, (from her new record scheduled for release in September).
But what was the real reason Steven, the band, Nichole, and the crew were there? It wasn't to put on a good show, though they did. It wasn't to see the fans. But it was to bring to light something the fans needed to know about: The redemptive grace of God, revealed through the story of five missionaries killed by the Auca Indians in the late 1950s, deep in the Amazon jungle.
The late pilot and one of the five missionaries, Nate Saint's son Steve, made an appearance at the concert and told about the five brave young men and their families. Then he brought out Mincaye, one of the Aucas who killed the missionaries and is now a Christian and "grandfather" to the missionaries' grandchildren. (Steve and Mincaye are slated to appear at most dates on the spring tour.)
Afterward, Steven, with Mincaye's help, told the story in his own way, using a medley of songs like More To This Life, Children of the Burning Heart, God is God, and No Greater Love.
I encourage you to pick up Elisabeth Elliot's Through Gates of Splendor to read this awesome story of redemption.
Steven left the stage after an exciting performance of The Great Adventure but returned for an encore that included Live Out Loud and Dive.
For updated tour information, go to www.stevencurtischapman.com
There's definitely more to say. God is an awesome God! Thank God for Mincaye and the people of the Waodoni (formerly Auca) tribe. Thank God for someone like Steven Curtis Chapman, who's not afraid to live boldly with a passion that screams and proclaims the redemptive work of God's grace!
Enjoy the Live Out Loud tour!
Until Next Time. . .
The J Man
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