24 CCM 24 CCM Transparency is a word that’s tossed around in a lot of Christian circles. We all say we want it from others, from ourselves, from God…But when push comes to shove, true transparency is hard. It’s painful, sometimes embarrassing and often creates a vulnerability that most people are uncomfortable with. Matt Hammitt of Sanctus Real is embracing that vulnerability, and despite the pain and discomfort, he has chosen to be utterly transparent with his marriage, his journey as a father and (fortunately for everyone else) with his music. “Lead Me” is an undeniable radio hit. It speaks into the lives of nearly everyone listening…everyone who has ever had a father and mother, everyone who is a husband or wife… everyone. But the song didn’t come from a place of comfort. “After nine years of marriage, my wife and I are where we’ve always wanted to be in our relationship; but it wasn’t easy getting here. A couple of years ago, we were caught in what Emerson Eggerich in his book Love and Respect calls “the crazy cycle.” We had to make the decision to stop fighting each other and instead fight our own selfishness and pride. We began to give the things we couldn’t fix to the One who could, God. Not long after we began working on our relationship, my wife implored me to be a better spiritual leader in our home. In that moment, I realized my intentions meant nothing. It was the day I stopped making excuses and started putting my intentions into action.” The action has continued. Today, Matt and his family are facing another challenge that no parent should ever have to face: Their unborn baby, now at 27 weeks, has a very rare and serious heart defect, hypoplastic left heart (HLHS). “Knowing our son Bowen is sick really has caused me to pursue the things I’m passionate about like there’s no tomorrow,” says Matt. “I’m fighting to make every moment count. Right now, I’m more focused on quality time with my wife and two girls than ever before.” And in the Hammitt home, quality goes deeper than creating earthly memories. It’s about creating the kind of home that has eternal impressions. “It’s not just having the desire to put God and family at the top of your daily priority list, but having the discipline to live it out,” explains Matt. “One of the most practical ways to start being a good spiritual leader is to spend time praying with your family everyday —I don’t just mean before a meal.” Now, they are casting that web of prayer even wider, asking people to pray very specifically about where they are right now. “For fans and friends of Sanctus Real, pray that songs like ‘Lead Me’ continue to find their way to people who need them,” says Matt. “As far as my family, Sarah and I want people to pray that God would heal our son’s heart. Also, we want people to pray that God gives us grace to live every day with purpose as we walk through whatever He has planned for us.” CCM extends its deepest concern and prayers to the Hammitts and to Bowen and we thank Matt and Sanctus Real for the courage to be transparent and the integrity to take steps to lead the body to the feet of our Lord. To keep up with the Hammits and Bowen’s progress and to join hands with them, log onto http://bowensheart.com. more