Casting Crowns brings gospel to Huntington CenterWritten by Vicki L. Kroll | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Hall’s divine direction is clear. And it’s not as frontman of Casting Crowns, the Christian group that has sold 8.2 million albums according to Nielsen SoundScan and won multiple Grammy and Dove awards.
“Student ministry is definitely what I’m called to,” the singer-songwriter said. “All the members of the band work in student ministry, not just me. That’s why student ministry and our church take priority, and we have to work our tours around that.”
Casting Crowns mainly travels Thursday through Saturday so members can be at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Ga., Sunday through Wednesday.
“I don’t think we’d have the songs that we have if we weren’t in the church,” Hall said during a call from his Atlanta home. “The songs that we sing come out of our ministry. … I’ve been a youth pastor for half of my life, so themes usually start off as things that we’re teaching in Bible studies and devotions and things like that and then evolve into songs.”
“Come to the Well,” the title track from the band’s 2011 album, is an example. Hall said while talking about the story of the woman at the well in the Gospel of John, he was struck by something Jesus said.
“[Jesus] says to her, ‘You know, if you keep drinking from this well, you’re just going to be thirsty again.’ And that little truth right there just got a hold of me. There are a lot of things in this world that we have turned into the well in our lives instead of going to the true well. So like this lady thought she was standing by a well and talking to a man, then she slowly started realizing she was standing by a hole in the ground and she was talking to the well. And that realization that Jesus is the well is where all these songs come from.”
“Courageous,” the first single from “Come to the Well,” sprang from Bible study.
“One of the ideas behind the song ‘Courageous’ is that men in our culture — we all struggle with it — tend to be passionate about things that don’t really matter and then passive about the things that matter most,” he said.
Hall mentioned the two Adams — the one who watched Eve talk to a snake and eat the apple and the one who steps on the serpent’s head.
“[The second Adam] stands there and fights for his bride, and that’s the man that we want to be,” he said. “Man Up is a Bible study my pastor leads every Wednesday night at our church; 250, 300 men meet every Wednesday just getting the word and talking about being a passionate man, being passionate for their walk with God and being passionate for their families.”
Hall, guitarist Juan DeVevo, lead guitarist Hector Cervantes, violinist Melodee DeVevo, pianist Megan Garrett, bassist Chris Huffman and drummer Brian Scoggin are passionate about sharing ministry through music.
“Any moment that you’re exposed to Crowns, I’m hoping that you’re going to hear the Gospel very clearly, that God’s pursuing you not to a religion but into a relationship with him through Jesus. Not through being good, not through once-a-week visits to buildings on Sunday, but a relationship, an everyday walking around kind of thing with the father through the son,” Hall said.
Casting Crowns will play a 7 p.m. show March 3 at Huntington Center. Tickets range from $15 to $45. Matthew West, Royal Tailor and Lindsay McCaul will open.