You’re forced to be shoulder to shoulder with someone that views the world totally differently from you, who may come from a totally different religious or ethnic background. And the diversity helps make healthy tension so there can be growth. No pressure, no diamonds, right? The pressure of New York brings out the best of our art.

CCM: And you lead worship at Trinity Grace Church?
DG:
Yes.

CCM: What’s challenging and encouraging about doing ministry there?
DG:
Well, it’s a very transient city, so people come in all the time trying to conquer their dreams, but New York doesn’t need anybody. It’ll chew you up and spit you out, so you have to be willing to get back in its mouth. [Laugh] Winters will hit you hard, the cost of living will hit you hard, there’s so many different obstacles that make it tough to live in New York. But for me it works. I get my own sense of wanderlust and anxiety all the time, and the city scratches that itch of wonder because you can always do something new.

The Brilliance, CCM Magazine - image
Doing ministry in that can be hard, though. People are struggling with different aspects of living in the city, and you’re doing life with people who are in such different places. But for me, I love it. Just in our parish alone, there are people doing things so inspiring that I feel like I’m doing nothing, but it makes me want to be better at creating things. There’s pain and challenge in that, for sure, but our church is such a gift, such a wonderful community that my wife and I love.

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