The Magills and B3 Ministries
Redemption Songs: The Magills and B3 Ministries
Thanks to Center for Creative Media, under the direction of Doug Rittenhouse, who produced this video for B3 Ministries and The Magills! Click here to support The Magills work through B3 Ministries.
Matt and Megan Magill met on the stage in 1998 and have been at home together there ever since. They were married in 2001 and moved to New York City to pursue careers in music and theater. Having relocated to Tyler, TX in 2010, Matt and Megan now regularly perform around Texas and occasionally far beyond.
"People are often struck by our transparency wondering how we're able to be who we are on a stage in front of others. My answer is that we're full of faults and full of grace. Learning to live in the tension between who we are and who we are becoming has characterized our life and art together for years now." - Matt Magill
From Eguide Magazine
By Matt Magill
My Fisher-price record player spun Michael Jackson’s Thriller when I was 10, and you can still find me at the record store on Saturday afternoons 27 years later. Music has always been a central part of me.
Like it does for most people, music has always reflected the changes I’ve lived through. When I was angry, I liked angry music. When I was hurt I desired painful music. When hormones began to rage, I liked music about sex. When I did drugs, I liked music about drugs.
But in 2005, living in NYC with my wife of 4 years (Megan), and nearing a crossroads where divorce was very much on the table, disappointment and disillusionment characterized our experience with one another.
We turned to grace. And our songs began to change.
We’d moved to NYC 4 years earlier—Megan high on hopes of success in musical theater, and me seeking a band with which to write, record and tour. We had dreams. On the surface our dreams were pure and simple. But a closer look revealed something both impure and complicated. We sought individual success and self-justification. For Megan and I success would mean personal validation and nothing less.
Megan’s career began to take off. I waited more tables and wrote fewer songs. An existential crisis loomed. Who was I apart from the achievement of the success I had always dreamed of for myself? I desired to have addictions removed from my life and become the husband that Megan prayed I would become—but how?
I needed forgiveness from my wife, and I needed to forgive my wife. And we needed to forgive ourselves for all the damage we’d done to one another. We needed a well from which to draw because we were dry and dying of thirst.
We found the answer in the Grace of God—the one-way love of God to the loveless, His help to the helpless. We were led to a community of people who received us as we were and loved us into what we could become.
We were then, and continue to be, restored to sanity by the “true north” of Christ’s love for us. It is still the air we breathe, lest we inevitably suffocate one-another with our individual passions and pursuits. It is the food we are nourished by (broken body and blood poured out) lest we become exhausted by the futility of self-reliance and begin another time of starvation.
When we receive God’s love in Christ, we are enabled to love one another in the same way. It’s a daily bread in that we will never get beyond—the need for His grace—and yet God will never stop supplying us with a daily grace that surprises us with its singularly steadfast, never-forsaking constancy.
When people ask us the inevitable “genre” question, “what’s your music like,” I sometimes have trouble answering. I could say Americana, rockabilly, country, gospel, swamp-grass-space-folk, or some might even say “Christian.”
But in the end those are just categories that once made it easier for record stores to file your product.
The truth is that our music is grace music.
These days I’m seeking to craft songs that are first and foremost compassionate. I want others to know that they are not alone in their frustration, confusion, or desperation, and in that in the midst of it all, that they are loved. When we share our music and stories, Megan and I want to be transparent about our continued need for grace, and to be bold in proclaiming God’s ability to provide for us all.
Photographer/Videographer: Micah Coltman
Liberty Hall, Tyler, TX