Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Seeing With Fresh Eyes - Bowling Family Concert Recap

I mentioned Monday that the past few weeks has been great for concerts in Arkansas. Saturday I went to go see the Whisnants, which check out my guest blog post on Yankee Gospel Girl's blog for that recap!

Sunday I had the chance to see the Bowling Family in Little Rock at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church. I'm starting to get to know more about the churches in Central Arkansas that have concerts regularly in the area, and this was one I had not heard of before. When I got there, I found out that this was the first group the church had brought in and not only that but most of the people there knew nothing of the Bowling Family before Sunday.

The pastor talked about the group briefly at the start of the service. He mentioned watching them on YouTube the week before and how he wasn't going to preach because from watching clips he knew the gospel would be presented. 

The Bowling Family - Troy Peach, Hope, Kelly and Mike Bowling
and John Jeffrey
The church took its regular Sunday offering as John Jeffrey played "Shout to the Lord." The music pastor came up and introduced the Bowling Family. Mike could feel spirit as the song had played before and asked John to keep playing the song as he led the congregation in singing it. I loved how they completely deviated from what was planned to follow what he felt led to do and lead in worship.

Then, they started singing and let the audience see what they had been missing out on! Mike sang "I'll Be Alright As Soon As I Touch Calvary." Then, they sang two songs from their latest project Safe After the Storm, "Come Along Let's Fly" and "I Know Enough." Loved hearing Kelly sing the second one!! They then sang "How Blessed." It was good to hear them stage this song! I'm not sure if they do it regularly or not anymore, but I've always been a fan of that one!

They asked the congregation how many were seeing them for the first time. Only a handful of us did not have our hands raised. They introduced Troy and Hope, and then Hope was featured on "Everything's Gonna Turn Out Right." She is growing so much as a vocalist and becoming more comfortable in her role!

Hope, Katelanne and Gracie Bowling
Troy then introduced Mike and Kelly. When he mentioned that Kelly was the prettiest part of the Crabb Family, some light bulbs went off and some recognized that name at least. They then sang "Don't You Wanna Go."

Mike and Kelly brought their two youngest girls up, Katelanne and Gracie. The three girls sang together, "Accentuate the Positive" and "Healer." Their girls have great harmony together already!

Kelly then gave their testimony. I normally see the Bowling Family three to four times a year, depending on when they are nearby. By now I've heard their testimony several times, and it's miraculous and amazing every time, but there was something about sitting among people who were hearing it for the first time. Sometimes we can let things lose that sense of amazement because we've heard it before. It's like a familiar song or a scripture passage can leap out at us when we listen to or read it with fresh eyes. That's the way I felt Sunday. 

They showed clips of the bus accident as Kelly shared what happened on July 1, 2010. She said that the sheriff later said in an interview that he expected several fatalities. She also went into details on how hard the recovery process was for them. It was seven months of no singing, no traveling, physical therapy, headaches for Mike, and their lives were just put on hold.

She said that through all of it she learned that "God is good whether the sun is shining or whether the rain is falling." All those songs that she had been singing since she was a teenager came back full circle. She learned how much you could rely on them and their messages. She said it was good to know that even on the days when the doctors weren't sure what to say that they could stand on the promises of God. She could trust that God heard their cries. They then sang "Your Cries Have Awoken the Master." It was such a powerful moment! 

Mike said that they had a request for "By the Time," so they sang it next. Then they sang "I Still Glory in the Cross" before the invitation. They sang "I Surrender All" as an invitation which featured Troy and then "What a Day That Will Be" to close.

The pastor came back up and asked them to sing one more, so it actually ended with "Victory in Jesus." It was an incredible service. It was great to see the Bowling Family with so many new people, and I'm sure new fans now. It really helped me see the family with fresh eyes. I know that even though it might have been the first gospel concert the church had, I'm confident because of the service that they had it won't be the last!

Side note - Thanks to Troy Peach and people from the church for helping me after my car wouldn't start after the concert. Troy helped find jumper cables from church members to boost me off! Thanks again!!

1 comment:

  1. Lauren, so enjoyed reading this. Thanks for sharing so cool how God uses the Bowling family to reach new people who have not of heard of them. The new fans must be ammazed how God brought them through these trials. Also praise God that you got your car restarted with the help of Troy. Thanks for sharing again!


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