Worship Pastor / Composer Travis L. Boyd and his wife, Cynthia, provide inspiration and resources for the worship community and all believers through sharing the blessings of worship, faith, family, ministry, music, love, & life. We also share information about Worship Sounds Music, which can be found on our Worship Sounds website at worshipsounds.com ~ Downloadable Choral Anthems * Solos * Orchestrations * Worship Songs * Accompaniment Trax

Posts tagged ‘calling’

Callings and Miracles, A testimony of God’s faithfulness

The five year anniversary of Travis’ service at our current church is this month, on the 17th.  In light of this milestone, it seems appropriate to share how the Lord called and led Travis and our family to leave the church where Travis had served for almost 12 years and come to a new place of ministry.  We saw God’s hand in so many ways during the process.  It is not an easy thing to make a cross country move with a family of 8, and a lot of obstacles were in our way.  The Lord moved them or helped us overcome them, one at a time.  To write this story as a narrative would result in a book; so here is the story of our calling and move, told as a series of mountains moved.

1.  God worked in our hearts and in the hearts of others.

The first time that Travis got a call from the Chairperson of the Music and Worship Minister Search Committee from our current church, he told her that he was not interested.  Somehow, that was not the end of the story.  God worked in our hearts and in the hearts of the Committee, and He prompted them to try again.  In spite of the fact that we had 6 boys, then ages 2, 2 (twins), 4, 5, 8. and 15 and were in the middle of the process of adopting the younger 5 boys, a second phone call resulted in an ongoing dialogue that eventually led to recognizing God’s call to a new place of service.  I can’t speak to the committee thought processes except to say that calling a Minister of Worship who was in his 50s certainly wasn’t the trend.  Whatever other barriers to consideration may have been discussed, the age factor was certainly one that had to be overcome.

2.  God worked through DHS workers, lawyers, unbelieveable piles of paperwork, and the judicial process. 

With god, nothing is impossibleAt a time when meetings were being held, court dates were being met, and snags to progress were common in our journey to adopt our 5 younger boys, we were also dealing with the probability and then the certainty of a major cross-country move.  As we made two trips to Georgia that Fall, the adoption process was moving very slowly and sometimes seemed to be stalled.  There was nothing we could do to speed up the judical process other than handling everything we were asked to do (which was a lot!) in a timely manner and praying that God would intervene.  At one point, we encountered an obstacle that made a delay seem very likely.  A delay beyond our moving date would have meant that only my husband and our oldest son would have been able to make the move initially.  I would have had to stay behind in Oklahoma with the younger 5 boys, and Travis would have had to fly back in several times for court proceedings, or we would have had to just delay moving altogether.   Even as we interviewed movers and got quotes (which involved taking the representatives for the potential movers through our home, our garage, our storage building, and two rental storage units, as well as our backyard and allowing them to estimate the volume and tonnage of all of our stuff), we had no idea when the adoption process would be finalized.  We chose a moving company, had a garage sale, and gave a lot of things away, emptying the two rented storage units… and the adoption process still dragged on.  A date was set for the movers to come and begin packing, and yet the adoption was still not final.  Finally, we reached the end of the process, and the adoption was finalized… two days before the movers were to come and begin packing our belongings.

3.  God worked in the midst of the economic crash of 2008 and the housing values crash that followed.

As many readers will recall, the Fall of 2008 was a turbulent time.  it was an election year, and the economic crash loomed large as we were in the midst of the process of planning to move.  What that meant for us was that we were going to have to purchase or rent before the dust settled, at a time before the housing values were really affected very much.  Values were no longer at peak prices but were still close to that level.  It is not easy to find a house that is a good choice for a family of 8 with a broad age range even in the best of circumstances.  We had a specific school district in mind, based upon a recommendation, so that narrowed our search somewhat.  Our other main criteria were price, overall size (living space), and number of bedrooms and baths.  We felt that we needed at least a 4 bedroom home, preferably with at least 2 and a half baths.  However, we were really looking for a home that had the potential to meet our future needs as the boys grew; so we hoped to find a home with 5 bedrooms.  We also desired 2 living areas because the wide age range would result in a great variety of activities taking place at any one time.  We felt that everyone would need “a place to be”.  In addition, a safe location was very important, and we hoped to find a yard suitable for playing outside.  We also hoped to find a home with a small office or with a room large enough to accomodate an office area.

for I know

We had flown to Georgia in mid-October for several days with several purposes: going in view of a call to the church, having several meetings and get-togethers that week-end, and  finding a home (if Travis was indeed called as the new Minister of Music and Worship that Sunday).  With the combined efforts of our own internet searches and our realtor’s expertise, we had a total of 12 houses that met all of our criteria, so we looked at some on Friday and Saturday and again on Monday.  To anyone who knows this area, only 12 houses to view seems like a small number.  However, we were being very financially conservative in setting our price limit because we had no idea how long it was going to take to sell our Oklahoma home in view of the financial collapse.  The price factor ruled out a lot of the larger homes that would have provided the space our family needed.  Some of the homes were unsuitable because of factors like a cliff for a back yard.  Others simply had an unworkable lay-out or condition issues that would have made them a poor choice.

After seeing all of the homes, we had 3 that were possibilities.  One had a wonderful kitchen and good layout.  The drawbacks to that home were the fact that there was no office space and the fact that the home was on the main entrace street into the neighborhood, which would have made it less safe for our boys, especially considering the fact that one of our boys has special needs and doesn’t always understand safety issues.  The second home was large enough and had enough bedrooms and baths.  It had a great yard and great first floor lay-out.  However, the second floor lay-out was weird.  The area that would have become an upstairs family room (2nd living area or play room) was separated from the other bedrooms by the Master Bedroom, which meant that the children would have to go through the Master bedroom to get to it.  This room also had the washer/dryer hook-ups in a closet.  In other words, the only 2nd living space would also be the utility room, and the Master Bedroom would have functioned as a hallway.  Our third contender was head and shoulders above all of the other houses.  It had 3 bedrooms upstairs plus a loft space that had a half wall, open to the two story family room below.  It had another bedroom in the basement, which would work for our teen-aged son.  It had 3 living areas:  a small formal living room, a larger family room next to the kitchen, and a downstairs den in the basement.   It was located on a cul-de-sac and had front and back yards that were both fairly flat (a rare thing in this area) because the slope occurs on the sides of the house.  It also had a small room off the Master Bedroom that could be used as an office, and it had 3 and a half baths.  in addition, there was an unfinished room in the basement which was large enough to be a bedroom, playroom, or music studio.  When we were walking up the slope on one side of the house after viewing the back yard, I picked up a small pinecone and took it home as a tangible reminder of the place that I hoped would become our new home.   Home #3 seemed like the best choice.  With safe outdoor play areas and all of the rooms previously mentioned, the home had the most potential to eventually meet the needs for our family of 8.  We did not have the time to negotiate a contract before flying home, but at least we thought we had found our new home and had a couple of other possiblities if that one didn’t work out.

The house we hoped to buy in Georgia

The house we hoped to buy in Georgia

We were not going to be able to buy a home right away since we still had to sell our home in Oklahoma, but we hoped to be able to do a lease/purchase agreement.  However, the day after arriving back in Oklahoma, our realtor told us that there was already another offer on the home, and it looked as though the sellers might take that one.  The economic crash worked in our favor in this situation.  The other buyers were offering less that selling price because property values were beginning to fall.  However. the other buyers would be buying the home outright.  Normally, a lease/purchase would not be as attractive an option as a sale; but we were able to get the home by signing a contract to purchase the home at full price after leasing for up to one year.

The economic crash did not work in our favor when we were trying to sell our home in Oklahoma.  We had to take almost $40.000 less for it than it would have been worth if we had sold it before the crash.  In addition, it actually took almost 14 months before we were able to close on the home.  We had to get a brief extension of our lease agreement.  The fact that we did not come out well on the home after living there for 12 years and making numerous improvements was very difficult.  It meant that our payments would be higher than optimum on our Georgia home and would make it difficult for us to make ends meet.  However, after a couple of years, the economic crash again worked in our favor. Since interest rates had continued to fall, we were able to refinance and get a much better rate as well as a 15 year mortgage.  The payments still make it difficult for us, but at least we are building equity faster.  That’s important because of our age and because of all of the equity we lost due to the crash.

God is Faithful sunrise photoAlthough we have had to do a LOT of work on this home, it comes closer to meeting our many needs (for the price that we were able to pay) than any other home.  God worked through the timing of so many things to make it possible for us to live here.  We have been able to finish the unfinished room, do a lot of land-scaping work, re-build the deck, turn an under-the-eaves space into an additional closet, put in a door to the backyard, extend our patio by 6 feet to the location of the new door, and add extra shelving and cabinets all over the house and in the garage to maximize our storage space.  So, in spite of the fact that our pantry is too small for a family this size and that we have to turn our table for 8 at a crazy angle to fit it in the room, we are grateful.  Even though our boys’ bedrooms are small and our 3 youngest share a room, they have had a safe place to learn to ride their bikes in our cul-de-sac.  And even though the circumstances of this move and other moves have meant that we don’t have as much equity in a home as we should by this time in our lives, we are thankful for mountains moved and obstacles overcome that have allowed us to have a home that comes close to meeting our needs and still has potential for improvements.

4.  God continues to work to meet the needs of our family.

Romans 8 28With six boys of varying ages still at home, we are constantly surrounded by needs of various kinds.  Our 9 year old has special needs, and God has been at work through countless circumstances to meet the needs that he has.  We have had wonderful teachers and therapists, special helpers at church, and lots of people who love him and have been important in his life.  Our oldest son has graduated from high school and is moving into a new phase of life.  We can also see God’s hand at work for him.  Each of our boys have known people that have become very important in their lives, both in our previous church, schools, and community and now in our current church, schools, and communities in Georgia.  Our family has also been blessed as others have helped us in very tanglible ways, with everything from physical labor to child care to gifts of clothing outgrown by their children.  We see God’s hand at work constantly.  For every need that remains, there have been countless needs met and innumerable blessings along the way.

5.  God continues to work through the Worship Ministry at our church.

praise and give thanks to the LordWe have met and come to know so many wonderful people at our church in Georgia (and every place where Travis has served).  Since our curent church has worship ministry programs for every age group, we’ve known so many awesome and talented folks who have a great love for the Lord and a passion for Worship Ministry.  Some of them have since made moves of their own, but there remains a committed and faithful group of people who just love to praise the Lord and are willing to commit themselves to serve.  There is plenty of work to do to keep up with all that is going on in Worship Ministry here, and Travis stays more than busy.  As a couple and as individuals, we have learned and grown through evey circumstance that the Lord has used in our lives, all of the places of service, and all of the lives that have touched our own.  We have a greater passion for Worship Ministry than ever, and God has even opened some new doors that have allowed us to serve the body of Christ in new ways (such as this blog).

6.  God will continue to demonstrate His love throughout all of our lives… and beyond. 

Faith hope loveWe have seen the heart of God revealed through circumstances, through people, through the Word, and through our own relationship with Him.  God is so good.  He continues to give us a new song of praise.  It’s a blessing to look back and see all that He has done in our lives and in ministry in the past 5 years, and it is a blessing to know that His work in our lives continues, no matter what the future holds.  We are so blessed to know the One who holds our present, our future, and our eternity.

7.  God is at work in the hearts and lives of each of our children.

Our adult daughter, who still lives in Oklahoma, has been able to move forward with some very important life choices.  We also see God at work in lives of each of our boys, and we are so thankful for all of the people who have invested in their lives.  Thank you!

We are grateful.

Thank you, God, for your goodness to us in so many ways.  Thank you for loving us, for salvation in Christ, for your mercy, your strength, your provision, and for the blessings you have sent our way.  We love you, Lord.

Thank-you-signWe are thankful for you!

To all of you that we have had the privelege to know, we love you all.  Every church family is still very special to us, and every individual has a place in our hearts.  We pray for you all to be blessed and fruitful in your lives and ministries.  We also pray God’s blessing on our church family here.  Obviously, God wanted to us to join you in ministry for this time period.  Five years ago, He moved many mountains in order to make that possible.  So often, in over 30 years of Worship Ministry, we have seen God confirm His calling to a new place of service through miraculous events that He has caused to work for our good.  He is always at work in other ways as well… ways that we may not see or understand right now.  Through it all, we have learned (and are continuing to learn) that life can be challenging and even overwhelming, but God is good!  As the song says, “How can we keep from singing His praise?”


This post was written by C. A. Boyd


Mud Pies and Ministry

Picture this scenario:
A small child has the exciting opportunity to play in the mud.  He has all the tools that he needs to accomplish this task.  He has his hands to shape and form the mud, his feet to make footprints and splash and squish, some pebbles, wildflowers, and sticks for decoration, and his imagination to pretend that the mud is a giant lake of chocolate pudding or that the mud monster is lurking in the depths below.  Most importantly, the child has something else.  He has a passion for mud play.  He enjoys it thoroughly.  He abandons any concerns about staying clean or messing up anything and just uses his ‘tools’ to have fun in the mud.  He becomes an expert at mud play.

Then, the child has an idea.  The joy of playing in the mud reminds him of all of the other joys in life.  He realizes that he has had a lot of joyful times and times of being loved and cared for because of someone very special.  He decides that he must do somethiing in his own childish way to say “thank you” to his parent (or parents) and to express the love that he feels.   He doesn’t have much to work with; but he has become a mud play expert.  The child uses the tools he has been given to fashion a message in mud.  He creates the most beautiful mud pie that his little hands can form and carefully places pebbles and flowers on top to decorate it.  Now, he is ready to present his mud pie to the recipient (s).

The mud pie is formed of the most elemental substance and is clearly not edible and not even something that can become a keepsake; and yet, it is special.  It is special not because of the recipe used to make it or the skill of the mud pie maker.  It is special because it expresses something that a small child may possess but may have a hard time articulating:  a thankful and loving heart.  Both the heart of the giver and the heart of the recipient of the gift are important, for both are equally involved in the importance of the moment.  It is the love of these two for each other that gives the mud pie its importance.

  For a moment in time, the child has taken what was available to him or her and has used it to create something that becomes an expression of love for a parent, thankfulness for the joys of life, and the recognition of the blessings of giving.  The parent or parents have in turn accepted the gift and found their hearts touched by this loving and pure gesture from the heart of their child.  At that moment, the mud pie is a symbol of their very real connection and loving bond, which is the true gift for both parties. 

What do mud pies have to do with ministry? 

Quite a lot, actually.   When it comes to our relationship with God, we are His children.  We are the ones who long to express what is in our hearts through taking what it available to us, doing our best to make it into something as beautiful and excellent as possible, and hoping that God will overlook the imperfections and accept our offering.  We have a passion for using the gifts and abilities we’ve been given to create something that pleases Him! 

At this point, we need to keep several things in mind about our “mud pies.”

First, God looks upon the heart.
It is the heart of the giver that is so much more important than the gift itself.  While it is important to do our best and strive for an excellent love offering of the bits and pieces that make up our lives, we must not get so wrapped up in the excellence of the gift that we begin to forget the source of everything used to create it.  If the gift of the moment is a song, remember that God not only invented music, but He also gave us the capability to produce and to hear a range of musical pitch that allows us to use this gift.  He gives us life and breath and musical abilities and this moment in time to share the song.  We cannot be wrapped up in what we have been able to accomplish when we remember that God has given every part of what makes it possible for us to take all those hours of practice and learning and share a song with some level of skill and artistry.  He gave the very hours that we used to practice and learn and refine our skills, and He gave the abilities that were developed in the process.  All of the elements used to create and refine whatever our gift and calling may be in order to bring glory to God come from Him to us and then through us back to Him.   These blessings of time and abilities and purpose in our lives all flow from God’s ultimate gift:  His desire for relationship with us and His willingness to sacrifice everything in order to make that happen.
The gift of the song (or whatever the gift may be) is a moment in time, a temporal expression of love and gratitude to our eternal God.  It is a small child holding up a mud pie to the One who made both the mud and the child.

Secondly. all that we give back to the Lord will pass away except that which bears fruit for His Kingdom. 
There will be a new heaven and new earth, a new body, and a new song.  The only things we can do that will last are expressions of love and gratitude that God can use to impact the lives of others and turn their hearts toward Him.   And even then, it is His Spirit that brings the eternal value to the gift.  Without His Spirit indwelling us and speaking God’s love and mercy through us and through our gifts, the most excellent expressions of love and gratitude of which we were capable would only be a moment in time.  Trophies and sculptures, paintings, buildings and inventions, books and blogs, a clean home, strong relationships, a job well done….these are all gifts that can be an expression of love and thankfulness to our God,  seeking to bring Him glory.   But the eternal fruit can only come by His Spirit, and everything else is a mud pie moment in time.

Finally, it is within the process of the doing and the striving and the seeking and the becoming that God can show Himself strong in our lives.
The presentation of the gift that is the fruit of your abilities and labors is secondary to God.  More important to Him is that we are pressing toward the mark of the high calling…becoming like Christ.  Likewise, to the earthly parent, the sweetness of the mud pie moment lies in what it says about who this child is becoming…someone capable of thankfulness and of love….someone who longs to express these and finds a way to do so.  To God, our mud pie gifts are meaningless without the heart attitude that He desires in all of His children.  His word makes it clear that he could cause the rocks to give Him praise.  We must not become too focused on the vehicle of our praise (the use of our abilities and skills in presenting to God any gifts that we prepare for Him through our lives).  Instead, our focus needs to be upon the Object of our praise…..our awesome and loving God and our victorious Savior. 

In ministry, we often focus on plans and programs, goals, and ideas.  Yet, we must remember that it is the ongoing process of becoming like Christ that is the ultimate gift to our God.  With lifelong preparation and refinement by God’s Holy Spirit at work within us, our lives become a Kingdom gift that has eternal significance.  We have taken God’s best gifts to us:  His love, mercy, and grace, His forgiveness, His Son, His Life within us, His presence, His Spirit, His Word….and allowed these to transform us into the image of our Lord, which is our ultimate gift back to Him.  All other gifts pale in comparison to a beautiful and eternally changed life..

So, when the process or the preparation in our service to the Lord becomes a priority above our relationship with Him, we must remember that without the work of God’s Spirit, this gift or service to Him is just a mud pie.   Our intentions can be honorable in that we genuinely want to make a difference for the Lord.  However, our very busy-ness can distract us from the primary priority of relationship with the Lord.  Only His work in our lives transforms us into the image of His Son and allows whatever we do to make a greater spiritual impact.  Without staying in fellowship with God and allowing His Spirit to work through us, our efforts become a mud pie moment in time and nothing more.

May God help us to focus on lasting expressions of His love in our lives that He can use through the work of His Holy Spirit to touch the world with the eternal Hope of His Salvation!

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”    John 1:4


This post was written by C. Boyd


For additional posts about the giving of our lives and all of our abilities and efforts to the Lord, be sure to view our posts entitled:

Music is a gift…Worship the Giver!


Worship…it’s all about Giving!


Do you know someone who is looking for answers?

Thank you for spending your valuable time reading the contents of this page.  We hope that it has been helpful to you.   If you or someone that you know is looking for answers about life, we hope that you will visit our page called “Do You Know Jesus?”.   The links provided on this page will help to answer life’s deepest questions.   Here is the link to “Do You Know Jesus?”:  http://www.worshipsounds.wordpress.com/do-you-know-jesus/

Please feel free to share this URL with anyone who is looking for answers about life and eternity.


Song Story: “The Magic of Jesus”

Velma Baptist Church, where Travis and Cindy were saved in 1978 and first became involved in worship ministry. Velma Baptist was our home church during the time that this song story took place.

The stories of our songs are really stories of our faith journey.   At the time that these events took place, Travis and I were both teaching public school music.  Travis was a Band Director for grades 5 – 12, and I taught Elementary Music, K – 5.  When Travis and I were both saved at Velma, Oklahoma, on September 3rd, 1978, we came out of the choir loft to respond to the invitation to know Christ as our Lord and Savior.   Having been invited to the church by one of Travis’ band students, we had first attended on Father’s Day.   We’d been attending all summer at the time of our salvation, and we had already begun serving in the music ministry of the church.  God’s Holy Spirit had been at work in our hearts, drawing us to the Lord.  After we were both saved and then baptised a week later, we rapidly became more active in the life of our church, looking for new ways to serve.  Both of us helped with youth, entertained at youth functions (in a band with our Pastor on drums, our part-time Music Minister and teaching colleague on piano, and Travis on bass guitar), worked in Vacation Bible School, went as sponsor on youth trips and to youth camp at Falls Creek,  sang solos when asked, and did all we could to learn and grow as Christians in the first year of our faith walk.   During that year, Travis also began going to a class our Pastor had begun for young men who were called to ministry.   Though he hadn’t yet made public his acceptance of God’s call on his life to vocational ministry, Travis demonstrated his willingness to serve through his desire to attend this special class.  In the midst of all of these rapid changes in our hearts and lives, another change took place.  Travis began to write songs about his faith walk and to sing them when given the opportunity.   The first song that he was inspired to write was “The Magic of Jesus.”

In February of 1979, we attended our churchwide Valentine Banquet.  The entertainer for the event was a Christian magician.  He did a great job with the tricks he performed and then spoke about real magic.  Stating that all of the tricks were just illusions, he explained that the only real magic was the magic of Jesus.  He talked about how magic that is real is truly supernatural, going beyond what we call the laws of nature in a way that defies any ‘natural’ explanation.  Whether walking on water, healing people, or changing a life from the inside out, the real magic of Jesus demonstrates that He is Lord over all of Creation.   This message and the truth that it conveyed inspired Travis to write “The Magic of Jesus.”   Until this point, I know of only 2 songs that Travis had written with lyrics.   He wrote a song called “Money” (while in High School) about how people place too much importance on material things that don’t bring happiness.  Then, when we were dating, he wrote a song for me.   He did write other music, but it was all instrumental.  He wrote original pieces for his bands to play in concert when he was a Band Director, and he did arrangements of well-known songs for his marching bands.  “The Magic of Jesus” was the beginning point of the faith songs that Travis would write for decades to come.   The next time that Travis was scheduled to sing a solo at church, he sang “The Magic of Jesus,” accompanying himself on piano.  When I heard him play and sing this song, I knew that something was happening.  It was my first realization that the Lord was going to use Travis in some way for His Kingdom, even beyond our local church music ministry.  This event took place only a few months before Travis again responded to the invitation in May of 1979.  This time, he was sharing with his church family the fact that he felt the Lord was calling him into some kind of vocational ministry.   Since that time, I’ve been an eyewitness to the work of God through Travis’ life and music.  It really has been magical…in the truest sense of the word.  What God has done through Travis with these messages of faith has been far beyond what Travis could have or would have done on his own.  The ministry of and through music that God has allowed Travis to share flows from the supernatural power of Christ in him….the ONLY kind of magic that is real and eternal.

“Water turned into wine, and He fed the multitude.

Come and see what the magic of Jesus can do for you.

Healing the leper, and causing the blind to see,

The magic of Jesus is here today for you and me.

If you’ll open your heart, and let the Son of God come in and cleanse your soul,

He’ll mend your sin-torn life, if you let Him take control.

Eternity is just a prayer away…a sinner’s pleading call.

Because the magic of Jesus is the greatest magic of all.”

(lyrics from “The Magic of Jesus”  c.  1979  by Travis L. Boyd)
Song story by Cynthia Boyd

You’ll find many Choral Anthems, Vocal Solos, Orchestrations, Accompaniment Tracks, and Congreational Worship Songs by Travis L. Boyd on our WorshipSounds Music  website @ http://www.worshipsounds.com

Click photo above to go to our WorshipSounds website

Click photo above to go to our WorshipSounds website


Do you know Jesus?

The decision to ask Jesus to come into your heart and life as your Lord and Savior is the best decision you could ever make!  The one true God is ready to give you forgiveness and eternal life as soon as you understand your need for Him and believe on the name of His only Son, Jesus, for your salvation.  Here’s a blog page link to help you find the answers to your questions about Jesus.  http://www.worshipsounds.wordpress.com/do-you-know-jesus/



Link to our  “Song Stories”  category to see all of the song story posts:  https://worshipsounds.wordpress.com/category/song-stories/


Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: