The 700 Club | CBN News | Spiritual | Family | Health | Finance | Entertainment | TV | International | ShopCBN

Randy Travis: Road to Redemption

By Sandy Engel and Lisa Ryan
The 700 Club Randy Travis was the first Country artist to break the multi-platinum sales barrier. Now he ‘s setting records with his gospel recordings. Randy’s Rise and Shine album just hit gold status, and his single, "Three Wooden Crosses," has been nominated for Single of the Year and Song of the Year by the Country Music Association. But no award compares to the value of his newfound music ministry. That’s what he talked with Lisa Ryan about from his home in Santa Fe.

a view inside Randy's Santa Fe homeLISA RYAN (reporting): In Randy’s amazing Santa Fe home, crosses abound. But Randy gives the credit for these crosses—and a whole lot more— to the woman who began as his manager and became his wife, Liv.

RANDY TRAVIS: After you’ve been married quite a few years, you learn to take orders; it just comes easy.

LISA RYAN (reporting): That may be all that’s come easy to Randy. For over a decade, he was turned down by every record label in town.

RANDY TRAVIS: When Storms of Life, that first album, was released, to have a platinum album that was a million selling album in less than a year—the first time it had ever happened on a debut Country album—that was a surprise!

LISA RYAN (reporting): But in the small town where he and his brother Ricky grew up, Randy was no stranger to fame.

RANDY TRAVIS: We were well known in that area, not in a good way, for sure. I got into the drug thing, I totaled two motorcycles, and I got in at least 30 fights. The verse in the Bible that says, 'He’ll give His angels charge over you to protect you'—that in itself tells me that verse is very true because I should have been killed a long time ago.

LISA RYAN (reporting): Things went from bad to worse when Randy was arrested for stealing cars and breaking and entering. He also started singing in the club Liv managed.

RANDY TRAVIS: Having her in court the last time, saying that I was not drinking, not using drugs, not running with the same people anymore—that kept me from going to prison.

LISA RYAN: Did you have any kind of religious upbringing when you were a kid?

RANDY TRAVIS: No. I was in church a little bit as a very young kid, but, as they say in the South, 'it didn’t take.' None of it took with me. My Mom and Dad had six kids, and four of the six were going down the same road I was.

LISA RYAN: When did your personal spiritual journey and search for peace of mind start?

Randy Travis cuts the roast beef at their home in Santa Fe, New Mexico, while wife Liv looks onRANDY TRAVIS: Again, I have to look to my wife. When I got into my early 20s, I was going to bed one night—I was still drinking, still using drugs, and probably was drunk or high or both—when I just picked up the Bible and started reading to go to sleep. I was amazed at how well I slept, but even beyond that, the next day, there was this peace of mind that was still there that I wasn’t used to. I never had peace of mind. I never felt at peace with anything or anybody.

LISA RYAN (reporting): Randy continued to read his Bible, but it was 10 years before he surrendered his life to the Lord and was baptized along with Liv.

RANDY TRAVIS: I know I’m forgiven for those things, as bad as they were, in the past. There’s forgiveness if you ask forgiveness, you truly repent, and you do make an honest effort not to do that anymore.

LISA RYAN: The last time I interviewed you, your first gospel album, Inspirational Journey, had just come out. You were just beginning to play churches and Christian venues and giving your testimony. How is that different from the concert halls and the Country shows?

RANDY TRAVIS: I didn’t know what I was getting into. I never even heard the term 'music ministry.' I didn’t even know I had one, you know?

LISA RYAN: What’s a testimony?

RANDY TRAVIS: Yeah. What is a testimony? I’m singing. I’m a singer! It has turned into literally a music ministry because people coming in who didn’t normally go to church, some cases never went to church, some of them had drifted away from the Lord, coming to hear us because of Country hits, and then coming and getting saved, altar calls. You’ll see 100 people, 125, and one night 150 people coming to accept Christ. It’s just unbelievable.

LISA RYAN (reporting): Randy has just released his third gospel album, Worship & Faith, which includes…

RANDY TRAVIS: Some pretty unusual versions of songs like "Just a Closer Walk with Thee;" "Turn Your Radio On," and "Peace in the Valley."

LISA RYAN: Is there a greater satisfaction in that than even on all the record sales you’ve had, all the people that have come to your concerts, when you see people come up and receive the Lord as Savior?

Randy, Liv, and Lisa Ryan outside the Travis homeRANDY TRAVIS: Oh yeah, it's a totally different thing. We hear about people changing their lives, getting baptized, stopping the drugs, the alcohol. I mean it’s all kinds of thing. I never thought I’d be a good influence on anybody with anything I did or said or sang.

LISA RYAN (reporting): Today Randy Travis continues to make a positive impact. Like the music he loves most, Randy’s life has become his personal story song with a powerful gospel message.

RANDY TRAVIS: It’s not what you take when you leave this world behind you. It’s what you leave behind you when you go.

  • Translate
  • Print Page

Are you seeking answers in life? Are you hurting?
Are you facing a difficult situation?

A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.