With P.O.D.’s latest album, The Awakening, following a character’s personal journey through sin to forgiveness and redemption, we asked Sonny Sandoval what advice he might give to someone struggling to find their way. This was his passionate response.

“I can only speak from what I know and my own experiences. So many people have their hang-ups with faith, God and Christianity. But if you’ve never sat down and had a conversation with God and never sat down and told Him your heart and never expressed yourself, how do you know? You’re basing that off of what you think, or what you’ve seen Christianity to be or religion to be. Because at the end of the day it is the only answer—the only answer is Jesus.

P.O.D., Sonny Sandoval, CCM Magazine - image“I came to God broken. So when I’m talking to somebody, I can relate and say ‘Hey, I understand brokenness. And the only person who can fix that is Jesus. The only thing that can fix that is God.’ Because you’re not broken necessarily physically; this is about your soul. And God is the creator of our souls. God knows our souls intimately. So He’s the one that knows what we’re going through.

“There’s no one [else] you can go to, there’s nothing you can take. There’s no amount of success had that can fix that. Your soul is broken. Now whether they believe that or not, well that’s when you have to give God the chance. You can either sit there and hate God for something you don’t understand because you’re depressed, because you’re broken, but if you’re not going to the main source, then how do you expect to be healed or fixed?

“And I know that’s tough if you don’t believe, but I challenge people to just do it. Challenge God. You don’t have to come to God because you have a bubbly feeling inside your heart, you know? You can be pissed. You can be angry. Come to God. Come to God angry. Tell Him how angry you are. Tell Him how broken you are. Tell Him how everything sucks! Tell Him! Tell Him you demand answers! Tell the God of heaven and earth that you demand answers, because until you do that, nothing is going to change.

“But I believe, if you’re asking my opinion and my advice, I’m willing to bet everything that if you do that and you are sincere and real, you’re in for a rude awakening, because God will answer you. He will speak to your heart; He will start to do things. And sometimes it might not be what you want, it might not feel good. It might not be the answer you were waiting for. But at the end of it, once we have a better knowledge and understanding of God, we’ll see that God knows what He’s doing and He loves us enough to take us through that.

“So I like to challenge people all the time. Not everybody’s going to accept it. I mean, I’m sure they’ve tried every other way to feel better, but it doesn’t last because you’re dealing with a broken soul. Me personally, every time I go through stuff, I find myself with my faith on my knees asking God to save me if He can, and change my heart if He needs to change it. Because it has to be with Him to heal it.”

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