The walk of faith is a long, winding, consistent road for the Christian. Sometimes we worry, sometimes we struggle to gather courage to tell a friend or co-worker about Jesus and sometimesâ€¦we even doubt our own salvation. It takes faith to overcome each concern, and thatâ€™s something the Whisnants know all about, so they titled their 2015 release: Walk of Faith.
â€œIt kind of summarizes our whole ministry really,â€ says Jeff Whisnant. â€œYou donâ€™t stay in ministry as long as we do without having a whole lot of faith.â€
Walk of Faith released July 21st and I had an opportunity to sit down with Jeff, Susan and Aaron to talk about the project. They shared their favorite songs, why they picked them and how they spent extra time on the production to make it their best yet. If one thing is certain, The Whisnants believe that these new songs are going to make a great impact on believers and they are excited to get it in the hands of the general public.
When I asked the group how they selected the title Walk of Faith, Susan answered, â€œMarsha Henry wrote a song called, â€œItâ€™s a Walk of Faith.â€ When we were deciding about a title to this project we took a week of thinking and making notes. We decided on Walk of Faith because it summarizes the whole project. The songs are about not worrying, telling someone about Christ and holding on to grace. The whole CD is about the Christianâ€™s walk of faith.â€
â€œItâ€™s a Walk of Faith,â€ isnâ€™t the only tune about faith on the project. The Whisnantsâ€™ current single, â€œWorry Ends Where Faith Begins,â€ follows along the same theme. â€œIt is a simple song,â€ Susan goes on. â€œWe talk faith, we talk big, but we all tend to worry. We all tend to sit up at night trying to figure out how we are going to fix things. Thatâ€™s what this song is about.â€ Aaron Hise adds, â€œAt some point in your life youâ€™ve worried about something; whether it’s finances, family, health issues. I know I have. Itâ€™s definitely a song that will speak to anybody.â€
In addition to those faith songs, Susan explains how they believe the whole project will make an impact on the children of God. â€œThis project is very much our heart,â€ she begins. â€œItâ€™s going to help people. If youâ€™re worried â€“ we have a song for that. If you doubt your salvation â€“ we have a song for it. I donâ€™t like to sing fluff songs, but songs that are going to help people; this project has nailed it in every facet.â€
One such song Susan sings is called, â€œSaved Is All You Have To Be.â€ Susan explains, â€œYou know how somebody knows they need to tell their friend about the Lord but they say, â€˜I need my pastor to go talk to them and tell them about Jesus,â€™ or, â€˜I wish somebody would tell my friend about Jesusâ€¦â€™ This song says: saved is all you have to be to go and tell the news. It doesnâ€™t take degrees or grand philosophies to give a testimony. You may think youâ€™re not the one to share salvationâ€™s plan, but certain words are not the key. God will give you what you need.â€
Another song from this project with a strong lyric is â€œHolding On To Grace.â€ Susan tells us about the message. â€œA lot of people believe that they can be good enough: not drink, not cuss, not hang out with folks who do, but keep their marriage intact instead. They think that if theyâ€™re good people, that will get them to heaven and it has nothing to do with it. Itâ€™s a deep song that may hit a nerve.â€ Aaron interjects, â€œI donâ€™t know if itâ€™s a song weâ€™ll sing every night, but if we need it, itâ€™s there.â€
Jeff tells us about his favorite song. â€œItâ€™s a catchy song that has a play on words, itâ€™s called â€˜A Grave Mistake.â€™ The song talks about how those who nailed Jesus to the cross thought they won. Satan thought he won the victory, but when Jesus came out of the grave they realized they made a grave mistake.â€
Producing a CD with thought out arrangements and a deep theme takes time. â€œWe spent four months on this project,â€ Susan shares, â€œI feel like we worked hard on this project, more than any other one.â€
Jeff adds, â€œItâ€™s a good mix; we have medium, slow, fast songs and ballads. Trey Ivey (of Legacy Five) produced this project and itâ€™s the first main line project heâ€™s worked on. We also worked with Cliff Duren from Brentwood Baptist, who wrote orchestration for eight of our songs. We have a choir on two songs as well.â€ Concerning the style, Aaron says, â€œAs a listener, it’s Whisnants. Weâ€™ve not changed. Itâ€™s not anything new or different; itâ€™s truly Whisnant songs, same message and material.â€
â€œTo me, the combination of good songs and the production we spent on it, I think itâ€™s made for a great record,â€ says Jeff. â€œWeâ€™re excited about it and we hope the people like it as much as we do.â€ Susan interjects, â€œEvery song will touch you. Itâ€™s very similar to More Than Enough, which has the â€œPotterâ€™s Handâ€ and â€œAll Is Well.â€ If they love that, theyâ€™re gonna love this. Itâ€™s straight up and down Whisnants; but to me, itâ€™s a step above anything weâ€™ve ever done.â€
Faith encompasses so many different areas of our Christian lives. When it comes to summing it up; the Whisnants took 12 songs and did it in 43 minutes on this new project. After listening to Jeff, Susan and Aaron talk about these songs and how much the lyrics mean to them, I believe this project will have a powerful effect on every life that pauses and listens to the messages therein. Twelve songs, eight orchestrations, and four months of hard workâ€¦itâ€™s a walk of faith.
For more information about Walk of Faith, visit the Whisnants website: www.whisnants.com.
By Lynn Mills
First published by SGN Scoops in August 2015. For current issues of SGN Scoops digital magazine, visit the SGN Scoops mainpage.