William Murphy released his latest CD, “God Chaser” on Feb 5. The album was birthed from songs that were written in his church, The dReam Center Church of Atlanta. According to Murphy, “these are songs that we got in moments of prayer, moments of worship just in church, and God began to speak.”
Over the years he has mentored many, including Tasha Cobbs who served as his worship pastor for almost 7 years. Cobbs released her debut CD the same day as Murphy. The singer and pastor also has a heart for young people. He and his wife, Danielle have four children (17, 16, 12, 9) and he says “I’m just naturally passionate about the generation that’s coming after me.”
For more than eighteen years, he has mentored Miah White, who he shares writing credits with on the lead single “You Reign." In this candid interview, the singer reveals why he believes it is his assignment to produce, “the kind of music where, when people sing it, they get a response from God,” the history of some songs, his advice to young people and more.
What is a God Chaser?
“To me, it is somebody who’s been through life and realized that they are a little bit behind schedule and just use their relationship with God to get back on schedule. The issue is not that God is running, but that life has a way of setting you back and worship is the way that we access God’s presence. When we access God’s presence we get back on target and life so “God Chaser” is one of those records that provides the necessary resources in song form to get back on track in your life and to be able to access God’s presence consistently so that you’re able to hear from God, able to get wisdom and direction in life.”
Tell me how "You Reign" came about.
“The song was written in my church by one of my daughters in the Lord, Miah White. I had an opportunity to share some things and some wisdom and just kind of mentor her in worship. She wrote this song and I started singing it. I felt like it was one of the songs that I was supposed to release to the body of Christ. I changed a couple of things and added a couple of things and she let me put my name on it (laughs), but the original concept came from Miah. It’s a happy song, it’s a comeback song. I wrote that line “over my circumstance, given me another chance, He reigns.” There are times in life when you just have to remind yourself that the devil is not in charge. God is still sovereign. He still reigns, so we enjoy singing that song, it’s a happy song. It’s a song that just encourages people to keep believing God for something better.”
You’ve said that “It’s Working” is your favorite song. Why is that?
"We got this song after a message on Romans 8: 28. I just started singing what I heard. That song is for people who haven’t been perfect. I wrote, 'I haven’t been perfect, but I have been faithful,' There are some people who haven’t been perfect, made some mistakes along the way, but they have been faithful. So that’s one of my favorite songs on the record. The song ends with ‘God is leaning in my direction.’ We have a wonderful time singing it. It’s a prophetic song.”
You have said that these are songs for the church.
"My assignment to the body of Christ is to produce music that helps people encounter God’s presence, both corporately and personally. Our focus is to continue to hear from God, position ourselves to be able to hear from God and to produce the kind of music that anybody’s church can sing. It’s to produce the kinds of songs that, when they are sung, the people not only get a response from people, but number one, they get a response from God. I had an opportunity to work on this record with (producer) Aaron Lindsey and we were sitting in the studio and we both commented on the fact that in every song we literally could sense God’s presence. It was almost like, as the songs filled the room, God’s presence began to fill the room and we knew at that point, okay, we’ve got the right record.”
Talk about your passion for young people and your church’s focus on them.
“It’s our assignment to continue to raise up the next generation of kingdom leaders. I will be producing another record out of our church and a lot of our young people are involved in that. They’re writing songs, they’re rapping, they’re singing on it, so we have a major responsibility to the generation coming after us. You can always tell the success of a man because after he steps to the side, there’s another group of people that he’s mentored, trained, raised to come behind him to continue what he was doing. It’s said if you have no successor then you have no success. I’m excited about Tasha Cobbs, Miah White, Ernest Vaughan and all of my sons and daughters who are coming behind me to continue the legacy of worship that God has given to our house.”
What advice would you give young people?
“Find someone who’s already successful. Get up under that anointing, submit yourself to that. What God is going to do is that you will see it multiply in your life.”
What’s a typical church service like at the dReam Center?
“God gave me a revelation 7 years ago when He had us start the dReam Center as I was reading Leviticus 4. This is my personal revelation and is not relevant to anybody else’s church for their worship experience. The writer was talking about how to prepare an offering. What I heard was ‘kill the bull,’ all the stuff that’s unnecessary, everything that’s been added over the years. God said get rid of it and then He gave me another revelation. The only place I found in scripture that Jesus made a reference to time and the worship experience or the church experience was when He was talking to his disciples, He asked the disciples ‘could you not pray with me for one hour?’ The revelation was that one hour in church is enough, so we created what we call the most powerful hour in the city. One of the things God spoke to me was that He didn’t want me to give more time to worship than the Word or more to the Word than to worship.”
How would you describe yourself?
“I’m a God chaser. I’m just an ordinary guy with an extraordinary grace from Christ.”
William Murphy’s “God Chaser” is available at retailers and digital outlets.