This question may seem simple, but how we answer it has profound implications for our relationship with God, our character, and even the direction of our lives.
Gospel music artist Gordon Mote has had to answer this question multiple times throughout his life. As a singer, pianist, producer, and arranger, Mote is a man of many talents—and he has a fan base and several Grammy nominations to prove it. But that doesn’t mean his life and career have always been easy.
What to Do When People Treat You Unfairly
Mote has been blind since birth, but he was also born with astounding musical abilities. He surprised his family when, at only 3 years old, he sat down at the piano to play “Jesus Loves Me” with both hands.
As he grew up, his abilities expanded to include impressive runs and riffs on the piano with a powerful voice to match. Yet Mote still struggled to break through as an artist in the beginning of his career. And he wasn’t always given a fair shot at being heard.
“My blindness has been an obstacle from time to time—just getting people to be okay with that and give me the same opportunities,” he says.
Thankfully, Mote was able to overcome that hurdle, and he didn’t allow it to deter or embitter him.
“Life isn’t always going to be fun,” he says. “Life isn’t always going to be fair. Look at Jesus. He wasn't treated fairly by any stretch. So why should we expect any more than He got?”
Jesus revealed the best way to respond when we’re treated unfairly when He said, “But I say to you, do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39).
God’s Promises for Our Trials
While each person has their own unique struggles, sometimes hard circumstances occur that affect nearly everyone, such as the global coronavirus pandemic.
When the virus spread throughout the U.S., millions of businesses, churches, and stadiums shuttered their doors. Concerts were canceled. Tours were postponed. For Gospel music artists, whose livelihood depends on gathering large crowds, this presented a problem.
Mote says the lockdowns certainly took a chunk out of his music business last year, but thankfully, he also had his work as a producer and arranger to lean on. But he knows not all music artists had that extra branch of income.
In seasons when you’re facing a seemingly insurmountable problem and aren’t sure what the future holds, Mote says it’s important to focus on biblical promises like Romans 8:28.
“We know that God has a hope and a future for us all,” he says. “And we know that all things work together for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.
“There are so many promises [in Scripture]. If we believe what we say we believe and we lean on those verses, we can press on toward the goal, get it done, and move on to the next thing. God didn't say, ‘Hey, I want you to do this, but you're on your own.’ We're not on our own. He's with us every step of the way."
With that mindset, Mote continues to create and perform music, trusting God to lead him and impact those who hear his songs. One of his upcoming performances will be at the Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky, for the 40 Days & Nights of Gospel Music event.
When he’s not performing during the music festival, Mote is excited to tour the entire Ark Encounter. He wants his whole family to experience the life-size replica of Noah’s Ark, its realistic exhibits, the massive family playground, the Ararat Ridge Zoo, and more.
“I want to bring my family and tour the whole park,” he says. “I want to be a tourist!”