Today, millions of Americans and people around the world are coming to love
southern gospel music, and a big reason is the popularity of the Bill and Gloria
Gaither Homecoming concerts and videos. For more than 40 years, the Gaithers
have been writing and performing Christian songs. "He Touched Me," "There's
Something About That Name," and some 600 others are featured in many church
hymnals. But "Because He Lives" is perhaps the best known.
In the late 1960s, while expecting their third child, the Gaithers were going
through a traumatic time. Their firstborn, Suzanne, was 4, and her sister Amy
was three months old. The timing for another baby wasn't ideal. On top of that,
Bill was recovering from a bout with mononucleosis.
The breakup of the marriage of Bill's sister, Mary Ann, had left his family
devastated. What's more, a close friend's accusation that Bill and Gloria were
using their ministry just to make a buck blindsided the couple and plunged Bill
into a deep depression.
Gloria also remembers it as a time of fear and sadness. The educational system
was being infiltrated with the "God is dead" idea, while drug abuse and racial
tension were increasing. The thought of bringing another child into the world
was taking its toll.
But after a simple prayer by one of Bill's close friendsa prayer that commanded
the devil to back offboth Bill and Gloria recall that the strength of the Holy
Spirit seemed to come to their aid. Christ's resurrection, in all its power, was
reaffirmed in their hearts. They were assured that the future, left in God's
hands, would be just fine.
In July 1970 a healthy baby, Benjamin, was born. Inspired by the miracle of
their son's birth, "Because He Lives" poured out of the Gaithers' grateful
hearts. The song clearly affirms the hope believers have in Christ. We can face
tomorrow, with all its uncertainty, as we realize that God holds the future and
makes life worth living.