“I Can Only Imagine” What a World It Will Be With God in Charge

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MP3 Audio (3.63 MB)


“I Can Only Imagine” What a World It Will Be With God in Charge

MP3 Audio (3.63 MB)

I recently watched the movie "I Can Only Imagine." It's a wonderful movie about a wonderful song by the same name. I did not want to watch it at first because I felt it would be too emotional for me (I worried the plot would hit too close to home for me on account of my own painful childhood experiences). However, it only inspired me, because it reminded me of how awesome our Father in heaven is!

The movie is based on the true story of a young man, Bart Millard, who grew up in Greenville, Texas. Bart’s mother walked out on him and his dad after they divorced when he was 3 years old. Bart suffered emotional and physical abuse at the hands of his father.

Many times the young boy thought his dad was going to kill him. In an interview, Bart said of his upbringing: “I ended up living in fear for most of my childhood… If he got embarrassed or cut off in traffic or whatever, he would take a swing at me… I was like his punching bag." Bart grew up like that with no family support.

Then when he was a freshman in high school, things took a drastic turn for Bart. His dad became terminally ill with cancer, which caused him to repent of his ways and find God. Bart and his dad mended their relationship.

Millard took care of his dad and literally became his nurse. It was his dad’s new faith in God that transformed his life. “That’s when things really changed, because it went from us really not having much contact to talking for two or three hours every night until we fell asleep,” he says.

“I got a front row seat to see this guy go from being a monster to falling desperately in love with Jesus,” Millard says. “By the time he passed away when I was a freshman in college, not only was he my best friend, he was like the godliest man I’d ever known. And it’s literally changed the trajectory of my life.”

Years later Bart Marshall Millard became a songwriter who is best known as the leader of the band MercyMe. He wrote the song, “I Can Only Imagine,” which is the best-selling contemporary Christian single of all time. You can read more of his inspiring story here. The movie is worth watching as it explores the themes of forgiveness and healing.

How many of us have gone through tough times and we hope for things to change? Alternatively, we may even think the phrase, “I can only imagine…”.

The truth is, God is your hope! 

God is and was my hope. God was Bart’s hope. God was his dad’s hope that transformed him before he died so he could be the father he never could have been on his own. And God transformed a severely abused young Bart into someone who totally trusts Him, going on to write songs that worship Him and encourage others. God is our healer!

He is our Father who loves us so much! The movie inspired me because I know my Father in heaven brought me through so much just like Bart. And He is still there with me every day. But He is not just my Father, He is a Father to all of us! He will love you when you feel no one else does. He has the power to deliver you from whatever you are going through. 

Our world is broken. There is so much pain and suffering. Our world is in need of intervention that only God can give.  Psalm 147 says: He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. The LORD sustains the humble but casts the wicked to the ground … His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse, nor his delight in the legs of the warrior;  the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love" (Psalm 147:3-6, Psalm 147:10-11). I encourage you to read the whole chapter of Psalm 147.

“I can only imagine” what a world will be with God in charge. The great news is it will happen! I earnestly pray for His Kingdom to come when "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death, or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away" (Revelation 21:4).


  • mnewbe

    Hello and Happy Sabbath!!!

    I have read several of your articles Janet largely due to the fact that you had a difficult childhood and I can really relate to that. I too came from a severely abusive childhood followed by becoming a victim of a violent crime, which involved kidnapping and rape. I was 18 when this crime happened to me and could not understand, I thought I was safe now that I was out of the abusive home. But, what I learned is that their is evil everywhere. God called me at age 24. I experienced that Joy of His Spirit and learning Truth. The diffifculty through my conversion has been learning to trust and rely on God through everyday circumstances. The fears I had and still have some are overwhelming at times, but I constantly ask my Father in Heaven to help me.

    I had the experince that Bart had, in that my dad, who abused me, changed and was sorry for what he had done. I also learned that he was adopted and abused himself and drinking intensifed his abuses. I do not know if God called him at his late age, but I know he did know of the truth. But, to experience that forgiveness in our conversations seemed almost unreal. God made this happen!

  • Janet Treadway

    Thanks Marsha for taking the time to write and share your painful story. So sorry you went through so much. Sadly we represent so many who are and have been abuse, women and men alike. It also, as you mentioned, happens to men as well. One day God will heal the broken and we will be apart of that because we have been there and we understand their pain. And even all the abusers, I hope will be healed. You are so courageous and I cannot even imagine, well yes I can, what you went through. The good thing is you did not become bitter but instead you were able to forgive. What an awesome thing God has done in your life. Never forget who what a special Father you have who will help you everyday and draw you even closer to a complete healing. Thanks so much again for sharing your story as I know those who read it will give them encouragement. ,

  • tconnors

    I read your articles because they are so well written. Thy Kingdom Come!! Terry Connors

  • Janet Treadway

    Thank you so much Terry. You made my day! The world sure does need God's intervention.

  • J G

    Janet wrote: "..Our world is broken. There is so much pain and suffering. Our world is in need of intervention that only God can give.."
    And yet God's intervention has been involved from before the “beginning,” but in works (Acts 15:18; Heb 4:3) most don’t recognize. God is perfect. He is working His perfect Plan of salvation (Psalm 74:12). His thoughts/ways are far above ours. We must experience, like Adam and Eve, sin, death, good, evil, vanity and hope: "For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope," Romans 8:20
    God allowed, for His Plan, the most subtle beast of the field into the Garden of Eden, and "The LORD knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are vanity." Psalm 94:11
    God sent His Son not to condemn people, but: "… that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;" Heb 2:14
    Isaiah 54:7 For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee.
    For many that small moment in God's eye may be about 7,000 years. I look forward to those great mercies and a time when we will not imagine: what a world will be with god, Satan, in charge.

  • Janet Treadway

    Thanks John for your comments. How good God is that He is with us through our struggles but will also intervene to heal the whole world.

  • Deanne

    Hi Janet,

    My husband Jim watched this movie with me. We cried many times throughout as it reminded us of the childhoods we experienced, but ultimately we were inspired. It definitely is a movie worth watching in this dark world and a great reminder to daily pray for God’s Kingdom to come when all will be healed. We can only imagine.

    Deanne Trahan

  • Janet Treadway

    Deanne I am so sorry you and your husband suffered such pain in your childhood. You will be able to relate to those who suffered through the same thing and be a witness to them of what God has done for you. We never have to let our childhood define us but only maker us stronger with God's help. How awesome God is be so tender to those who have suffered so much. Thanks again for your comments.

  • Justice777

    Wonderful article, Janet! Thank you for writing it. I also enjoyed this movie and found it to be very inspiring. May God's Kingdom come soon and that which we've imagined will be reality!

  • Janet Treadway

    Thanks so much Jeannie for your kind comments. We all know how broken this world is and that only God can heal it.

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