Former Of Mice & Men frontman Austin Carlile became a new man after a supernatural healing experience with a group of traveling missionaries. After his mom’s sudden passing when he was 17, Austin turned his back to God. Even though he had found great success in his music career later on, nothing can fill his heart until the day he returns.
The day that his mom passed, Austin recalled “cursing God for the first time in his life”. Soon after that, he started his own bands such as Attack Attack and Of Mice & Men. He played musical genres such as electronicore, post-hardcore, nu-metal, and metalcore.
Austin said that music was his God, and it was his way to express his hatred. He wrote lyrics about depression, being alone, divorce, and losing beloved ones. He intoxicated himself with alcohol and marijuana, especially on tours.
One day, Austin found out the reason of his mom’s sudden death – it was not because of cardiac arrest as the doctor first thought – but Marfan Syndrome, a genetic disorder, and he has inherited it too. He had to undergo an open-heart surgery as a precaution to heart failure like his mom. But even though he did that, his health kept declining to a point that he felt pain every time he sang.
Despite the disease, Austin fought hard to stay on the band. There’s this one gig where he crawled up on the top of their tour bus and called his dad about the purpose of life. His band was having so much success, but he’s depressed due to his back problems. Even when thousands of fans were cheering for him, he was still empty and lonely in his heart. His dad asked him one question over the call: “Where is God in your life?” He couldn’t remember anything from the rest of the call, but that question kept popping up in his mind afterwards.
Since then, Austin went on a journey of searching and prayer. He tried to change his way of writing songs and asked God to use him in His ways. As his health further deteriorated, his doctors told him that he couldn’t continue anymore.
“Everything that I was was that band, and I walked away. I knew God was calling me to do something different, but I was so confused as to what it was,” Austin said.
Austin left his band and moved to Costa Rica where he taught music. He coached a baseball team and became part of the music ministry of his father’s church. And that is where one amazing thing happened that has fundamentally changed his life and made him a new man.
One day, Austin met a group of missionaries at the back of a church. One person from the group told him that the spirit asked to pray for his back. The group laid hands on him and began to pray for him. Austin went from standing to falling on his knees because the power of the Holy Spirit was so strong. After the praying session, Austin could touch his toes without feeling pain for the very first time in the last two months.
People in Austin’s circle were at awe to see his complete recovery and glowing. They asked him if he had surgery or did anything. But Austin told them “it was God who healed him.”
Austin said, “God is so is important for me because I don’t have anything else. I literally have nothing else, but my heart is more full than it’s ever been in my entire life.”
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Getting to speak with @greglaurie at @harvestoc on Thursday night was such a blessing. Also, @jonerwin1982 happened to be there, so we brought him up because of his knack for translating story through film… The movie he directed "I Can Only Imagine" was the first that @maudionfire and myself ever watched together when we met in the hospital. God speaks and works through people and through their stories, no matter how eventful. The entire Bible is full of stories about how God can and will transform the lives and hearts of those who follow Him… Never underestimate the power of your own personal testimony or being transparent about the obstacles you overcame to get where you are today. You never know who is going to relate with something you have been through… God was moving then, just as He still is today. Where is God in your life now? Where is God in your story? Making a decision to follow Him is the most important chapter, the most important page. Dont skip over it… "I have come to give you life and life more abundantly…" 🕊
Austin’s story is moving and like the title of the video; he’s only second to God because we should always put God first in all of our endeavors.