Then God shared with me and said, “Marvin, you’re thirsting for the wrong things”. He took me to the Psalms where the story of David talks of when he was so focused and busy doing the work of ministry that his son Absalom and his most trusted advisor began to come against him. God began to say to me, “Marvin, you can’t be so focused on the work of the ministry that you lose focus of the God of the work. You’re thirsting for the wrong things. You’re thirsting for the applause of the people. If you thirst for me, I will turn the hearts of the people.” And that’s what I began to do; I began to thirst for God. And that’s where “Thirsty” came from.
ARW: Tell us about Never Would Have Made It.
MS: Never Would Have Made It was actually written the Sunday after my father’s funeral. We had eulogized him. And it was difficult for me. I had to throw the blanket in the casket. I had to close the casket. I had stand up and say “earth to earth, ashes to ashes”. I had to preach the message and drop him off at the cemetery to be buried. But the Sunday after that, I went into the church and everybody was functioning. They were functioning normally. The ushers were where they were supposed to be; the deacons were where they were supposed to be. And I was standing there thinking, “What’s going on? Don’t these people see that I’m in pain? Don’t they see I am hurting?” Then I said, “God, I’m not preaching today. I can’t do it. I don’t think I can make it.” God said to me, “Marvin, there’s something you need to understand. Although your father isn’t with you physically, I will never leave you nor will I forsake you. I will be with you always even until the end of the earth.” Then I walked into the pulpit with my Bible. When God began to assure me that He was there for me, I stood up. I grabbed the microphone and started singing, Never Would Have Made It.
ARW: The song came just like that?
MS: The song came just like that; the whole entire song. I started singing, “never would have made it, never could have made it without you. I would have lost it all, but now I see how you were there for me and because of this, I’m stronger, I’m wiser, I’m better, so much better. And when I look back over all you brought me through. I realize I made it because I had you to hold on to.” It came out just like that. Needless to say, I didn’t’ preach that Sunday. I can’t even sing that song at my church; I can’t. We’ve traveled all over the nation and I sing it everywhere. It really wrecks every church because it’s simple; it speaks to everybody.
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