Hypocrisy is everywhere. We see it splashed all over the media, especially during election season. Candidates make negative claims about their opponents, while at the same time hiding their own faults and flaws.
What was it Jesus said? Take the log out of your own eye before removing the speck from your brother’s? The Pharisees of Jesus’ day weren’t too keen on this idea.
And the Pharisees of today aren’t big fans of it either. Even in the church, we see it. Sadly, many congregations are not places for the divorced, the addicted, the recovering or the lost.
Because of this, a lot of people are turned off by the idea of being a Christian. From the outside, they observe a culture which preaches perfection over grace.
This is exactly what up-and-coming Christian singer and musician Austin French went through. As a pastor’s kid, you’d think it would be easy for French to follow in his father’s footsteps.
But, as French shared on The Billy Hallowell Podcast, his experience was exactly the opposite. “I grew up in a church culture where … if Jesus touches you once … that’s awesome,” he explained.
“But you’d better not fall again because that’ll make you a bad Christian … Don’t share the dirty parts.” French went on to share how this way of thinking seemed backward to him.
“In Scripture, Jesus says he came for the sick and the needy,” French said. And it is this mentality that led him to minister to the broken.
Before he could minister to the broken, however, French went through his own period of pain and confusion.
“I was really hurt by the church,” he says on his website. “I was really over it … I was going to have nothing to do with Christianity.”
The singer/songwriter even told Hallowell he’d vowed to never become a Christian at one point. He was tired of the hurt and hypocrisy.
“As an 8-year-old kid I remember writing in my journal, ‘I will never be a Christian,'” French said. “And I just hated the church — I hated Christrians, didn’t want to be a part of it.”
Fast forward to an eighth-grade Christian music camp. The camp was a turning point for French, his website reveals.
When the camp pastor addressed all the questions French had been asking about the hypocrisy he’d witnessed, the artist decided to be a part of the solution.
“So I decided that day in eighth grade that I wanted to be a Christian artist,” French wrote on his website, “and write music for my friends who didn’t go to church, and music for the broken people in my church.”
Now that music is reaching people from all over with the release of French’s debut album, “Wide Open.” The album features songs with titles like “Why God,” “Living Proof,” and “Break My Heart.”
“After 3 years of writing, praying, and following Jesus on this crazy journey… my debut album is officially released!!” he wrote on Facebook.
His hit single, “Freedom Hymn,” has been played countless times on Christian radio stations. The lyrics speak of freedom in Christ, forgiveness and redemption.
French resides in Nashville with his wife, Jocelyn. They have two sweet little boys named Coleman and Owen.
The musician has certainly come a long way since appearing on NBC’s “The Voice,” and ABC’s “Rising Star.”
From a hurting preacher’s kid to a worship pastor in a church full of recovering addicts, French’s journey and experience is an inspiration and testimony to all who have struggled or felt unworthy or neglected.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.