This is a guest post by Grammy, Dove, and Stellar Award winning musician Billy Dorsey. Here he shares his testimony.
“Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” (Psalms 30:5). This single Bible verse carried me through yet another sleepless night as I lay wrapped up in my sleeping bag so that my body heat could keep me from freezing to death in the night. I’d finally just eaten after going hungry for so long that my entire body had shuddered with pain each time my stomach growled, trapped inside the stone building that initially was seen as a safe haven but quickly became a prison of sorts.
I had cried myself to sleep on many nights, having lost count of the number of days it had been since last I had eaten, or even how long it had been since I became homeless. It seemed sleep, when I could find it, was the only escape from days filled with music (I wrote songs every single day during this ordeal), hunger and loneliness. As the Word says in 2 Corinthians 11:27, “I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.”
Billy Dorsey was homeless, locked up inside a music studio for days by a drug addicted producer.
Yet this night, as sleep’s embrace finally enveloped me, I felt hope because my dear friends Lameka and Courtney had brought me a lifeline in the form of groceries from Fiesta: sandwich meat, bread, my beloved caramel popcorn, and juice. For the first time in a long time I went to sleep believing that maybe, just maybe, joy was truly coming, as the Word of God said. I hid my stash of food near me and dozed off in relative peace.
Until, around 3am, in the darkness of the night, I awoke to a scratching and keening sound, that I couldn’t immediately place. As I unzipped my sleeping bag in the dark, I realized with a very real horror where the sound was coming from: my stash of food! I grabbed in the dark for my flashlight, and shone it at the place where what I thought was my salvation lay…and saw rats, red-eyed in the reflection of light from the flashlight, furry, gnawing and slashing rats. They were ravaging the food I believed would keep me alive for a week, if not more, not two feet away from me. They crawled and nibbled and squealed as they gorged themselves on my supplies, and I watched, with tears streaming afresh down my face, not even bothering to shoo them away, because now none of the food they’d defiled was edible.
I wanted it all to end but God spoke back to me
I was done. I felt like God was either laughing at me or shaking His finger at me, as if to say, “What are you going to do now, Billy?” I lay down on that cold floor with the rats still eating next to me, and I decided that I didn’t want to live anymore. I wanted it all to end. I didn’t think about my parents in that moment, or my siblings, or my dreams. I thought about how I had failed to make anything of myself, and how I was slowly starving to death, locked in this stone building alone.
I curled into a ball on the floor with tears streaming down my face, and I asked God one question, over and over, “WHY? Why am I going through this? What did I ever do to deserve this?” And then, the most beautiful thing, something that overwhelms me with love every single time I think about it or tell the story, happened: God spoke back to me.
God said to me: “it will not be for your glory; it will be for MY glory.”
It was silent in that room except for the rats eating, and there was no mistaking that this had to be the same still small voice that spoke to the Prophet Elijah in 1 Kings 19:11-13. God said to me, very clearly, “I want you to pay attention to every detail of what you are going through because I am going to take these trials and make them your testimony. You will win Stellar Awards, you will win Dove Awards, you will win Grammy Awards, you will have number one albums, and one day, the world will know your name, but it will not be for your glory; it will be for MY glory.” Then His voice was gone, and I was alone again, with the rats. But I knew that I would never be alone again and that, truly, I never had been.
God delivered me from being trapped in that building, now more than a decade ago. And He has kept every single promise He made to me that cold night. In January 2012 I won my first Stellar Award. I won my first Dove Award in April that same year. February 2013 saw me win my first Grammy Award, with another Stellar and Dove win that year as well. I now have 4 billboard chart topping #1 albums with more to come, and am embarking upon my second world tour as a singer and a preacher, heading first to Australia, then London, Tokyo, Brazil, and South Africa, sharing at every single stop what God has done in my life.
He spared a broken life
I have seen God do the impossible, time and again. Now that my ordeal is but a painful memory and beautiful reminder of God’s majesty, some Scriptures that sustain me daily in this place of tremendous success and Divine favor are: “For the race is not given to the swift, nor the battle to the strong… (Ecclesiastes 9:11) “…but to the one that endureth until the end.” (Matthew 24:13) Another one is Matthew 16:15-16, where Jesus asks the disciples who they say that He is, and the apostle Peter says, with Holy Ghost conviction and God given insight, that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.
I wear an ‘M’ on my clothing, in my hair, on my car, and on my arm, to remind me at all times of this beautiful Messiah, whose love for me was so matchless that He spared a broken life and delivered me to tell the world of His glory, and to showcase to all the world that I am His and He is mine.
“What about you?” he asked them. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
He is faithful. I pledged to Him, after He spoke to me that night so long ago, that if He did for me what He promised, I would share with everyone who will listen the incredible things that He has done and continues to do in my life to inspire others to seek Him for His plan for their lives as well.
God is real, and His Word is true. As you seek Digital Bible and beyond, know that you are seeking the very heart of God and that He “rewards those who diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6) be blessed!