As Grammy and Dove Award-winning recording artist Zach Williams performs concerts around the country, he realizes the importance of sharing his own personal testimony of God’s redemption, hoping to connect audiences with Christ.
Although Williams grew up in church and heard the gospel at a young age, it wasn’t until his life was spiraling out of control — with the lifestyle accompanied by a secular rock band — that he realized his need to surrender his life to Christ.
“I realized when I gave my life to the Lord that He never left me,” Williams told The Baptist Paper. “Even in my darkest moments He was always right there with me. I look back at my life and see how many times I was traveling down the wrong path and making wrong choices, yet God was still keeping me safe even when I thought I was too far gone.”
After leaving the band Williams found renewed purpose and passion by committing to write songs with a gospel message, along with developing a heart of repentance and opportunities to refocus on his family. With the release of his 2017 album, “Chain Breaker,” Williams realized how God was stirring not only in his own life but in listeners around the world.
“Over the past few years I’ve met all kinds of people who are dealing with addictions, cancer and other very serious situations,” Williams said. “These are the people I write songs for because I can relate to them. We all have similar pasts and similar scars — I’m just an average guy who is struggling like everyone else. The folks coming to the shows don’t get a chance to share their own stories on a bigger stage, and I feel like it’s a huge opportunity for me to share songs that they can relate to and journeys they have walked through.”
As Williams started writing songs rooted in gospel truths, it didn’t take long before those like “Chain Breaker,” “Old Church Choir” and “Fear is a Liar” started topping the charts and connected with audiences around the world. He also had the unique opportunity to partner with country music superstar Dolly Parton for the duet “There Was Jesus,” which helped his music gain widespread attention.
With the increased platform and popularity, Williams’ music quickly began garnering accolades. But despite prestigious awards and honors, he says it is the message behind the music that motivates him to reach audiences for Christ.
“The message that I share with people is that it doesn’t matter what you’ve done in the past, God’s got a plan for you and He can turn things around and redeem any situation,” Williams said. “No one is too far gone that the Savior can’t reach. It’s about surrendering your life to Him, giving everything over to Him and realizing that you can’t handle things on your own strength.”
This fall Williams will tour with recording artists TobyMac and MercyMe, and in December he will perform on the “I Don’t Want Christmas To End” Tour, which partners with the Salvation Army to help provide food boxes for needy families.
“I want people to know that there’s no limit to what God can do in their life,” Williams declared. “I want them to know that Jesus came to rescue and redeem and why they need Him as their Savior.
“Jesus has completely changed my life and I wouldn’t be here today without Him. That’s where these songs are coming from, and I can’t help but share them with others because Jesus is my rescue story.”