Written by David Martin
That title…the words that close the 150th and final Psalm…mean so much to this Remnant Fellowship Church. The messages poured out by GOD’S Spirit through Gwen Shamblin in nearly 30 years of Weigh Down and more than 13 years of the Remnant Fellowship have inspired much more than lost weight and changed lives. They have inspired an ever-growing catalog of MUSIC that literally is pouring down from the Heavens like a waterfall! Beginning with Michael Shamblin in the 1990s…and continuing with Michael and many more gifted musicians in this Church…we have experienced and continue to experience new and fresh music at a rate that feels like a fountain that never stops flowing.
As our focus has turned away from selfish desires and onto a wholehearted, 100 percent connected relationship with GOD Almighty, those who are gifted with the ability to share, write, sing, and play music cannot help but give GOD praise for His rescuing Hand and for the abundant joy that we now have each and every day. And this is much more than individuals writing down words and melodies. Ensembles of vocalists and instrumentalists are rehearsing regularly. Vocal and instrumental music lessons are taking place throughout each week. The sounds of handbells…along with woodwind, brass, stringed, and percussive instruments fill our Sanctuary and Halls regularly. Men, women, teenagers, and children – all ages – are sharing their gifts gladly and jubilantly. Listed below is a sampling of how much praise in song is on the hearts and minds of our members on an ongoing basis:
- Private and Group Voice Lessons
- Flute Lessons
- Brass Lessons
- Saxophone Lessons
- Guitar Lessons
- Piano Lessons
- Violin Lessons
- Praise Band Rehearsals – For Worship Assemblies and Concerts
- Adult Choir Rehearsals
- Middle School Choir Rehearsals
- Bell Choir Rehearsals – For Worship Assemblies and Weddings
- Remnant Chamber Orchestra Rehearsals – For Worship Assemblies and Weddings
- Youth Brass Small Ensemble
- Various Woodwind Duets and Trios
- Various Acoustic Ensembles
- A steady flow of original songs are submitted to the Music Team on a regular basis
As you can see, the list is long and the inspiration is Spirit-led. The largest and most powerfully impacting collections of music that are resulting from this message involve “Viewsicals” that have been and are being written by Michael Shamblin and directed by both Gwen and Michael Shamblin. The HOSANNA Symphony was written, recorded, and debuted in 2006 and has been performed several more times since then. And even as this article is being written, much work is being done on the next Viewsical…with a title and performance date that is soon-to-be-named! These special events are a beautiful and typical example of the use of GOD’S spiritual gifts in this Church. Truly, as Paul says in I Corinthians 12:18 when referencing the Body of Christ – “But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.” Each set of gifts within this Church comes together to pull off these deep, meaningful, powerful, convicting, and life-changing “Viewsicals.”
And where would we all be…what would we listen to for encouragement and worship to our GOD…without the amazing WORSHIP music that we enjoy as a Church? Michael Shamblin has written the vast majority of these beautiful anthems of praise…led by the Spirit of GOD, and our Remnant musicians take great joy in helping to play these songs for the glory of GOD and for the encouragement of the Saints everywhere! Our Praise Band is made up of the following musicians who play at all of our Remnant Assemblies:
- Michael Shamblin – Vast catalog of music of all styles – All with NO formal training! Michael helps lead the Band and the Remnant in worship. His songwriting has been and continues to be the backbone of our music experience in the Remnant. His composition of our Viewsicals, along with his other music projects and his music videos, are a lifeblood of encouragement in song to every Saint. Michael writes Godly music in nearly every musical style imaginable.
- David Martin – Spent most of his life singing music of all styles, including vocal groups, choirs, bands, and worship leading for the Remnant. In addition to helping lead our Remnant Choir, David has written several songs to encourage the Saints that are inspired by his changed life in this message.
- B.B. Barcus – Graduate of Belmont University’s prestigious Music Program along with his wife Miley, has toured as a guitar player for world famous musicians – including Shania Twain, Kenny Loggins, and more. B.B. also is a key producer and mixer for Weigh Down and the Remnant Fellowship…as he works closely with Michael Shamblin on the “sound” of our recordings.
- John Radebaugh – A lifetime musician. He (guitar and vocals) and his wife Julie (piano and vocals) have written a large catalog of Godly music and have been a part of bands of many different styles for years.
- Matt Weaver – Graduate of Belmont University’s prestigious Music Program, has written a large catalog of Godly music, can play piano, guitar, organ, and accordion. Matt also can play nearly every style of music.
- Dustin Hertz – A lifetime drummer and percussionist. Dustin served in the U.S. Air Force and played drums and percussion for bands during his service time. Dustin can play proficiently in nearly every style of music.
Many other musicians contribute their gifts in various styles of praise music as well, including the following Saints:
- Tish Dunn – World class flautist, trained at Northwestern University in Chicago, is a regular substitute flautist for the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra.
- Julie Radebaugh – As mentioned above with her husband John, Julie’s smooth voice, piano skills, and songwriting encourages all of the Saints. She continues to write inspiring Godly music.
- Paula Smith – Overseer of our Bell Choir, has written original pieces for the Bell Choir, piano, piano/vocal, and vocal only arrangements. Paula’s skill crosses over many styles of music.
- Miley Barcus – As mentioned above with her husband B.B., this graduate from Belmont University has one of the most powerful voices anywhere. Miley played the key role of Mary (the mother of Jesus) in the HOSANNA Symphony. Her stage presence, voice, and songwriting is a powerful testimony to the Saints.
- John Weber – This classically trained tenor nearly knows no end to his high vocal range. John has an incredibly powerful voice and pairs with Paula Smith often on pieces (for vocal and piano) that are moving beyond words.
Also, several of our Youth members are exhibiting the gift of music and are being lifted up by GOD to encourage the Saints in many ways. Just within the membership of this Church, GOD is inspiring worship pop, rock, and hip-hop music, classical music, wedding music, modern and historical choir music, symphonies, jazz, instrumental anthems, music videos, and much more. GOD gets all of the glory for this and every gift on display through this music, and it is clear that His Spirit is moving through all of it!
Finally, in these days, GOD has provided us with the tools and technology to record much of this continually growing catalog of praise in quicker fashion than what typically happens in the world. GOD surely is in a hurry to see His will done, and we praise Him that any of us can be used as vessels for His praise, honor, and glory. If you are new to Remnant Fellowship and/or Weigh Down Ministries, take some time to peruse the vast catalog of music that is being birthed by GOD through our musicians. It truly will become the musical “soundtrack to your life”…giving you strength, encouragement, conviction, and adoration for GOD in His perfect timing…no matter what you are going through. To GOD be the glory! And as Psalm 150 says,
“Praise the Lord. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with tambourine and dancing, praise him with the strings and flute, praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals. Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.”