Travis Greene Unashamed to Spread the Gospel, 'No Regrets' Performing at Trump's Inaugur
Gospel recording artist Travis Greene recently received a 2018 Grammy nomination for "Best Gospel Album" and as the success of his modern style worship continues, the singer said he has no regrets performing at Donald Trump's inauguration ball earlier this year because God called him to be unashamed of the gospel in all areas.
Along with being nominated by the Recording Academy, Greene just received a 49th NAACP Image Awards nomination for his album, Crossover: Live From Music City recognized for "Outstanding Gospel Album (Traditional or Contemporary)." The RCA/Inspiration recording artist also recently reached No. 1 on the Billboard Gospel Airplay Chart for his song, "You Waited," marking his third consecutive No. 1 single.
Despite his success, Greene is keeping focused on this mission ahead by using his gifts to share the hope of Jesus Christ with others. Greene is also the Pastor of Forward City Church in Columbia, South Carolina.
Below is an edited transcript of the Dover, Delaware native's interview with The Christian Post. He talks about his ministry, the future, and why he performed at the 2017 inauguration despite the controversy surrounding President Trump.
Christian Post: In your 10-year career so far, what has been the pattern of how God is leading you and growing you as a leader?
Travis Greene: Man, I've learned so much in my 10 years of ministry and travel. I think one way He's grown me as a leader and a pattern that's been expressed is learning people and how to deal with them intimately. For the majority of my career, I think I've been good with people in terms of the public but more in private and in business learning how to deal with people and how to understand people and being aware of the types of people around me. I learned to get the best out of them while helping them to stay motivated in the picture at large.
CP: "You Waited" has been No. 1 on the charts for weeks now, and many of your other songs are sung in churches regularly, what is it about your music that resonates with so many?
Greene: I think the thing about the music that God has graced me to write and produce is that people take from it how authentic it is and relevant it is to their lives. It's something that God has gifted me to do. To take ancient knowledge and truths from His Bible and be able to portray it in modern terms in a way that can really touch the hearts of His people. That's why I believe the songs have been able to resonate with the hearts of people and are being sung in churches. I never get used to hearing other churches and worship teams singing songs that were just songs that I sung around the house. That's really cool!
CP: I took a brief look into your life before all of your music success and I saw that many times the enemy tried to prematurely take you out, whether at birth, through tragedy or even having to deal with the loss of your father at a young age. There are many young men that have also been through a lot and are tempted to give up or go down the wrong path. What words of encouragement would you give to them?
Greene: I would say to anyone who's faced tragedy at a young age or anyone who's been tempted to walk away from the purpose over their lives, the proof of God's existence in your life is that you survived no matter what it was. Because of that survival and because of His grace and because of His mercy our right response should be living a life that is totally surrendered to Him and His plan concerning us. That's what I've tried to do. Instead of focusing on the heartaches and the pain of what was, I encourage everyone to be excited about what God has for your tomorrow. That's how I try to live. Constantly seeing the light and excited about what tomorrow holds.
CP: What's your initial reaction when hearing about award nominations from the Grammys and NAACP?
Greene: When I hear about the award nominations I'm always overwhelmed. It's crazy to me for the music to be recognized especially by such prestigious organizations like the Academy and the NAACP. It's super cool and something that I'm still not used to. I never did this for that. I do this because I enjoy music and I love God but for it to be recognized and appreciated by the music industry is super super cool!
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(PHOTO: REUTERS/BRIAN SNYDER)Gospel Singer Travis Greene performs at the "Liberty" Inaugural Ball for U.S. President Donald Trump and his wife, first lady Melania Trump, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.
CP: I wanted to commend you for your willingness to sing the hope of the Gospel at the inauguration, during such divisive times. Moving forward, Christians may have to face more instances where they have to shine a light during dark times. How do you press on and do what God is calling you to do despite facing persecution?
Greene: My motivation for doing what I feel internally God has called me to do is simply the scale at which I tried to live my life. What I mean by that is, I try to put things on a scale, public opinion versus eternal consequences. To me, on a scale of eternity, it makes way more sense to do what God has called me to do.
There is a scripture that's very scary that says if you are ashamed of me here I'll be ashamed of you there, so I try not to allow fear stand in the way of doing anything God has called me to do. Understanding that I want Him to know that I love Him and out of that love and out of His grace there is a boldness to share His message anywhere no matter what the consequence on earth may be, knowing that I have a promise waiting for me with Him in Heaven.
CP: Do you have any regrets?
Greene: No, absolutely not. I prayed very hard about the decision and that was it. Once God gave me the green light and told me to go it was very simple from that point on so no, I have no regrets. It's something that I knew I was supposed to do and that I did and it was way more positive feedback than negative feedback. So many believers and so many people in the world of sports and entertainment and everywhere that I meet, all appreciate and have shown gratitude for our faith move and taking the gospel of Christ to the capital.
CP: As a leader in times like this, how do you prepare yourself to go out into a world where so many are hurting or being enticed by hatred?
Greene: I prepare myself for the assignment over my life by prayer, meditation, reading the word of God and living a life based off of inspiration. I get asked a lot what inspires me and really it's the world around me, God's creation, it's the miracles I've experienced in my life, it's my beautiful family and friends and all of these things together inspire and inform me of how critical my assignment is into bringing the world into the love and knowledge of Jesus Christ.
CP: What are some goals you have for your 2018 U.S. tour coming up?
Greene: Some goals that I have for this is to reach as many people as possible with the love of Christ. As a kid, I was such a fan of Gospel music. I remember going to concerts and being awestruck by the talent and creativity of so many musical geniuses of that time and it just inspired me in a way that affected my life. That's something I want to do with this tour. God is going to meet us. His presence is going to be there. Miracles are going to happen. I would love to see those things collide with creativity and passion and state of the art production and that's what we are planning to accomplish with this tour.
CP: What can we expect in the future, musically?
Greene: Musically there are a lot of plans and I'm super excited. I don't know how much I want to share, but let's just say I am planning to do some special event music and I believe my next live recording is going to be international. I'll save that country for later. These are a few things musically that are in the works that I'm really excited about and I can't wait to see what God does.
I'm really grateful for the assignment on my life. I understand ministry is something I get to do and it's really exciting for me. I'm excited to see what God has in the future and where He's taking the music He's been faithful so far and I can only imagine what's to come.
For more information visit Greene's site HERE.