A Light Amidst The Darkness: MercyMe

by

Charles White

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If you turn on your radio, the last thing you expect to hear on your favorite Top 40 station is a song from a Christian Worship and Praise group. However, MercyMe changed all that when they released their song, I Can Only Imagine, into the mainstream pop market. Although a beautiful song, no one could ever have thought that this song would become one of the most popular tunes of 2002 and that their album would continue to be on Billboard Chart’s top 200 a year later. True to their roots as a Christian Worship and Praise group, MercyMe continues to find grounding in both their faith and their family and not in the fame and money that their incredibly successful album has garnered them.

 

Truth be told, MercyMe never dreamed that they would ever find mainstream success.  In fact, the band thinks all of their recent success is quite odd. “We are a worship band! These things don't happen to a worship band! We never planned this, it just happened. Don't get us wrong, we are enjoying it, but never saw it coming.”

 

But success has kept coming and coming for MercyMe. The group’s platinum-certified album has earned them critical acclaim as well as multiple Dove Awards and a coveted AMA award nomination for Favorite Contemporary Inspirational Artist. Their song, I Can Only Imagine, remained in the number one slot on the Radio and Records AC Chart for an incredible ten weeks and has remained popular in multiple musical formats.

 

Despite their success, MercyMe has never forgotten their faith, family and friends and names them as the most important part of their lives. Each and everyday, they struggle to remember who and what they are and keep things real. “It's God first, family second and ministry third.   We are the same as anyone else, so keeping it real is a reminder that we had nothing to do with what is going on right now with MercyMe, but only God can take the credit.”

 

In fact, when asked to offer their definition of success, their response is quite simple: integrity. “When MercyMe is finished, I would consider it a success if people remembered us as great husbands, and fathers, and ones who accomplished everything with our integrity intact.”

 

The group’s unusual name came from one of the group’s grandmothers. As he told her that he was starting a band, she replied, " Mercy me! Get a real job!" I think that even she would agree that MercyMe has found their calling and that they are doing a wonderful job of touching the hearts and minds of millions of people through their Christ-centered and powerful music. It is a music that has been embraced by countless individuals who are searching for a light amidst the darkness that is quite pervasive throughout our world today.