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The Dads Band Project | Waiting Room

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Rock: Classic Rock Jazz: Jazz Fusion Moods: Christian
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Waiting Room

by The Dads Band Project

Four musicians. Four fathers of children with severe disabilities. Performing their own music, the music that flows from their experiences of genuine faith lived in the middle of suffering, sorrow, and joyful hope.
Genre: Rock: Classic Rock
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Singing Songs About Heaven
4:39 $0.99
2. The Colt
5:00 $0.99
3. Presence of This Child
4:27 $0.99
4. Hold On
3:33 $0.99
5. The Waiting Room
5:15 $0.99
6. Deep Cries Out
3:36 $0.99
7. Trust
2:47 $0.99
8. O the Deep Deep Love of Jesus
5:53 $0.99
9. She Likes to Dance
4:54 $0.99
10. Love Is Silent
3:37 $0.99
11. Peace That Passes Understanding
4:57 $0.99
12. On Gold Street
5:56 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Singing Songs About Heaven
Words and Music by James Achilles (ASCAP)
The worship times at Joni and Friends Family Retreat—the disability ministry that originally brought the Dads together—are something to experience. They are loud and boisterous and nothing like normal church. The participants never have to worry about how they sound or look. Everyone is accepted, and everyone is encouraged to join in. Can’t sing? No problem. We’ll hand you a tambourine or drum. Immobile? We’ll push you around the perimeter of the seats so you can wave a streamer as you contribute to the music with your voice in whatever way you can.
Our second time at Family Retreat stands out in my memory. The weight of our daughter’s condition was heavy on our hearts as we took our seats for the worship time. But God began to minister His comfort to us from the first notes we started to sing. We were hearing songs that focused on our future with Jesus—songs about heaven. Here was a whole crew of people who held no expectations for healing in this life, yet all were rejoicing in the life that is promised to us in eternity because of Jesus, and there was genuine happiness in the moment. I wish every Christian could have the privilege I had that night, and many nights since, to humbly sit with suffering people and listen to them recount the promises of God with earnest longing to be home with Jesus. That display of faith and confidence in Him prompted the writing of this song.

The Colt
Music by Bart Libby
The Colt is a melody that I had been experimenting with in various forms for many years. I never really had a name for it because it was never complete. It was just melodic ideas that I would improvise when I played it.
One night, while playing it in a restaurant, a vision came to my mind. I saw a lush pasture. I imagined it must be in Kentucky as I always had heard of the beautiful, pristine grass in Kentucky. The green of the grass was brilliantly electric. Surrounding the pasture was a shiny, freshly painted, white rail fence, the kind you would expect to find at a high-end horse ranch.
Into the pasture steps a newly born white colt who can barely walk. His legs shake as he struggles to find his balance and stability, unconvinced he will remain standing. He gingerly takes a step, then, when confident he won’t fall, he takes another. This goes on for a while until he is no longer shaking, completely confident he’ll not stumble. He increases his gait. Soon he tries a slow trot. Then a faster trot until finally he is running, experiencing the freedom of being able to run and jump at will. He feels free of the constraints of any law of science and demonstrates it by kicking his back hooves into the air. As I’m watching this scene, I’m asking God, "What is this about?"
Suddenly I am reliving a conversation with my son Evan from many years previously. I was helping him get dressed for school. He was 6 or 7 years old and hadn't started walking until four years of age. Walking was still a challenge for him, falling many times, always getting back up to keep moving. He was becoming aware that the other kids could run and rarely fell. But not him. He turned to me and asked me something he must have been wondering to himself for a while. He said, “Dad, will my legs work in heaven?” My heart broke that my beautiful son knew that he was different than the other kids, that he couldn’t do what they did at recess, playing their schoolyard games at breakneck speed, running and jumping, expending all of their pent up energy. I said, "Yes, everything works in heaven. You’ll be able to run and jump and move freely, just like the other kids."
The Lord then quietly said, "Evan is the colt." I now understood the dream and the direction I had sought for the song. His legs will work in heaven and he’ll be able to run fast forever. And I can’t wait to see it.

The Presence of this Child
Lyrics by Diana Hancock
Music by Brent Olstad (ASCAP)
A month before my son, Bryce, was born, a friend, Diana Hancock, wrote this poem knowing that Bryce would be born with spina bifida. However, many questions still lingered as Bryce was our first born and we were thrust into this bewildering world of disability without a clue about spina bifida and its many facets.
Diana, however, did not give us the poem until after Bryce was born, because we did not know if Bryce would live or in what condition he would be if he did live. After it seemed Bryce was finding his way out of the woods, Diana gave this gift to us, and it has remained a treasured poem that speaks of God’s design and purpose for one who outwardly seems “troubled,” but inwardly is exactly who God intended.
Indeed, we have shed tears over Bryce’s health, his angst over his physical inabilities, and his scary near-death experiences. Yet, smiles thrive as we’ve seen him grow up to be a loving and encouraging young man, full of talents in music, art, and Native American history. And, the bond of love abounds as Bryce’s circle of friends ever increases through church, community activities, and Joni and Friends.
I am so ever grateful for the presence of this child. Bryce is my joy and inspiration, and he reminds me daily, not through his words, but by his demeanor, to be content and thankful. 1 Corinthians 1:4-5

Hold On
Words and Music by Sean Peifer
Disabilities are something that we all have, in one form or another. They are obstacles, or at least hurdles, that get in the way of living life to its fullest. I often imagine my son's disabilities are a trap of sorts for his soul. It must be frustrating to not be able to fully express yourself. But as Christians we believe that this fallen condition won't last forever. This body is a "tent," which is temporary. It is meant to be taken down. But the Lord promises us a permanent "building," that will last forever when we are with Him in heaven. Then there will be no hurdles. We will live life far more abundantly than we can imagine in this place. This promise enables us to "hold on," to persevere, for the joy that is ahead. (2 Cor. 5:1-10; Heb. 12:1-2).

The Waiting Room
Music by Brent Olstad (ASCAP)
The Waiting Room describes life affected by disability as a waiting room in which you experience sorrow and joy, ask questions, receive comfort, and ultimately find peace. The full essay can be read at https://www.thedadsbandproject.com/the-waiting-room

Deep Cries Out
Music by Bart Libby
Deep Cries Out (to Deep) refers to Psalm 42. The writer is struggling with sadness and loss. He reminds himself of his times of deep fellowship with the Lord, times of great joy and thanksgiving, intimate worship, great times of communion and faith. Yet, they all now seem distant as he feels lost, forgotten, and mourning.
In many ways, our initial experience with disability was much like the psalmist’s description. Our only child came into our lives after 17 years of marriage. Nancy was pregnant for the first time! God had answered our many years of prayer. Our friends and family rejoiced with us as we awaited our son’s birth. Because of our age, our church family lovingly referred to us as Abraham and Sarah. All celebrated the miracle that God had performed. We had no indication that there was anything amiss in the pregnancy. When Evan was 5 months old, Nancy began to suspect his development was not what it should be. This began our long excursion with seemingly endless doctor visits, testings, various diagnosis, therapies, specialists, state agencies, and school authorities.
Everything seemed a struggle. Doing the simple things of life was no longer a simple act. The time my son’s needs required came out of any time we had for ourselves or each other. Our friends didn’t know what to do or how to help us, and neither did we. We were numb, isolated, and lonely. Our lives were no longer ours. We loved Evan deeply and knew he was no accident. We were going to do everything possible to help him but the journey was turning us inside out.
Our faith was the only thing that kept us going, even though we had no idea what God was doing. We stood on His word, quoted it to each other, recounted His promises, even though nothing provided comfort. Our spirits were groaning, crying out for rescue from deep within. We understood Job when he said, "Though He slay me, yet will I hope in Him” (Job 13:15). We had no answers. We only knew that the Lord was the only one who had the words of life (John 6:68) that we desperately needed when we felt none in us. We were seeing through a glass very, very darkly (1Cor. 13:12). As the Psalmist wrote, we felt forgotten.
Looking back, we see God had not abandoned us. He was with us all along. When we had no strength, He did. He carried us through those difficult years. They were real. This melody recounts that period of time. And, as the dark days of Joseph were followed by blessing, so have those days been replaced by rich blessing in who God has made our son to be and who we are because of it.

Words and Music by Sean Peifer
The idea for the lyrics of this song came through nice sounding things that well-meaning people say. I was once told that I was the parent of a special-needs child because I am "special." Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, this experience constantly brings me face-to-face with my weaknesses. It has taught me how special God is, and how much I need Him.
I've also heard others say that "God doesn't give you what you can't handle." Again, not true. The Apostle Paul teaches instead that God gives us the ability to handle what we simply can't do alone. Paul wasn't automatically content in his situation. He had to learn the secret—Christ gave him strength to be content whether he had plenty or was in need. In all the difficulties of life, I need to trust Him because I can't handle it alone. (Phil. 4:13).

O The Deep Deep Love of Jesus
Traditional Hymn (Lyrics by Samuel Trevor Franics/Music by Thomas J. Williams) arranged by Brent Olstad (ASCAP)
This hymn has always been a favorite of mine because of its beautiful and flowing melody, the haunting harmonies, and above all, because the hope-giving lyrics reminds me of Romans 8:3:35-37. “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written: ‘For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.’ Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” This version of the hymn is probably different than any others you’ve heard, but to me the arrangement speaks of joy and celebration, something we can have in abundance because of God’s deep love. “‘Tis an ocean vast of blessing, ‘tis a haven sweet of rest.”
Editor's note: This has long been a favorite hymn of Dads Band member Jim Achilles and his wife Deanna. It was performed at their wedding, and Jim's Jazz Band Idle Fret plays a snappy jazz waltz version in concert.

She Likes to Dance
Words and Music by James Achilles (ASCAP)
Cathryn always loved to dance. Before her disease landed her in a wheel chair, she took ballet classes. We would watch her wobble her way through each session as she fought the ataxia that governed her body. She looked so different than every other dancer—a mix of inborn grace coupled with a growing loss of control over her body. Yet she was determined, and we were blessed by her perseverance. She had no concern for what others thought; she just loved to be there dancing.
After she became dependent on her wheel chair, she saw some others with disabilities dancing at camp, and that was all the encouragement she needed. She sought out opportunities to dance even though confined to her chair—at one point at the camp talent show, she had a strong male volunteer hoist her up and set her on his shoulder. She lifted her arms in triumph as we sat in our seats shocked by her recklessness, frightened for her safety, and amazed at her bravery. She didn’t fall, and her routine brought the house down.
In short order, she and I were dancing together, planning out choreography for the camps talent show or jumping into an open dance floor at events and weddings. We have so far avoided injuring others and only once did Cathryn start to fly out of her chair. I was spinning her a little too fast! But it is a cherished activity between the two of us, and has been the source of so many rich father/daughter memories more valuable to me than I can describe.

Love is Silent
Words and Music by Sean Peifer
My son, Andrew, is autistic and nonverbal. One of his ongoing frustrations seems to be his inability to communicate. And I, as his Dad, naturally want to communicate freely with him. In the midst of this frustrating "silence" is the reality of love, which has the ability to overcome the silence and find expression in spite of it. Actions are truly louder than words. Love is evident without words. (1 Cor. 13)

Peace that Passes Understanding
Words and Music by James Achilles (ASCAP)
Life is so different than what I expected—I’ve lost count of the ways. It seems God takes a consistent pleasure in directing our paths to places we would never plan. I’ve stopped saying, “Oh, I could never live there!” for fear that the Lord will move us in that direction.
I know His intention: that I will learn to not rely on myself, but to constantly look to Him for guidance and comfort. And what do I get here and now? In the middle of all the redirections, I get His peace. It’s a promise that comes to me as a response to prayer (Phil 4:6-7).
I find it a daily exercise of faith to tap into that peace. My first response to crisis is worry and frustration, not calm and self-control. I wrote this song to remind myself of what I know I can possess in light of all the other things outside my control. I take God at His Word, thank Him for His peace, and expect Him to minister the comfort of His presence to my heart. And He does.

On Gold Street
Words and Music by Bart Libby
On Gold Street is a song of celebration. It is the soundtrack for a heavenly parade like none have ever seen. It takes place on streets of gold, with people jumping and dancing, singing and shouting. The air is filled with rejoicing and laughter.
The participants in this parade are those saints who are no longer hindered by disability of any kind. They have been set free. No more are they captives of their broken bodies. Those of us that have loved ones in the parade are filled with awe and wonder as we watch them move and do things we could only imagine ever seeing.
We dads are standing there with huge smiles on our faces. We locate our kids in this incredible parade and point them out to each other. We shout with joy as we share the fulfillment of our dreams with each leap, dance step, movement and jump. Our hearts are bursting with thankfulness to our God for setting our kids free. It is awesome!!



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