AlongTheWay

“Captivated by the Image of Love” - David Zach AlongTheWay 94

June 28, 2021 John Matarazzo / David Zach Season 1 Episode 94
AlongTheWay
“Captivated by the Image of Love” - David Zach AlongTheWay 94
Show Notes Transcript

David Zach is the lead singer of Remedy Drive and Abolitionist with The Exodus Road. His journey led him to a crossroads where his heart burned to proclaim liberty to the captives and set the slaves free. David sculpts his passion for justice into song and goes beyond awareness… By risking his own life, he goes undercover to help set prisoners of human sex trafficking free.

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Remedy Drive Website

https://remedydrive.com/

Exodus Road

https://theexodusroad.com/


Text “Remedy” to 51555


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John Matarazzo:

Well, David Zoc, it's good to have you on along the way. Thanks so much for being here. It's a pleasure to finally have you, we connected, but a week or so ago from when we're recording this because you were a guest on the hope today program. But I've been following you, you and your band for for quite a while some of your songs have have really ministered to me and kind of been an anthem for me and going back to my radio school days. But God's taking you on quite a journey. And I'm excited that we get to share that story with this audience today. So David, thank you so much for being here. Thanks for having me on the show, john. It's good to be here. Yeah. So David, you're the lead singer of the group remedy drive. And I, as I said in just the introduction there that when I was in my radio school in 2009, and there was a song called daylight, and it really was one of those songs that I listened to pretty much every single day just to kind of get through the, the difficult times of the school with all the assignments that I had, and just how I really held on to that daylight, because I knew that that was coming. I knew that God had a bigger plan for me. And so thank you so much for writing that song. But I want to hear about your journey from starting music into doing it as a profession into what God has done with you now with the exodus road. And so I kind of want to cover a lot. But I want to hear you just share your story of how God has brought you to where you are. How far back You want me to go all the way to the to high school. Yeah. Where did you start playing music? Where was that such a such a thing in your life that you're like, I want to do this forever.

David Zach:

I think that when I started I had to sneak any rock and roll that I listened to early on because it wasn't allowed in the house. Had a Walkman with a cassette player in it. At Burnett. I record songs off the radio a little bit too. I don't know if you ever did okay those days. Oh, yeah. If you know. Well, you were still in college in oh nine. So I was I was graduating high school in 98. Smashing Pumpkins were my favorite band at the time. Okay, I played a pumpkin song on acoustic guitar for my freshman high school year talent show. And that's where I was like, Man, this there's something awesome about this. And I had been writing on the piano for several years. And then my sophomore year, we started, my brother started playing, playing music with us. So that's how it all started. That was the beginning. Oh, wow.

John Matarazzo:

So how well was that received? Especially because you said that you kind of had to sneak that music in. When you're when your family I guess realized what it was? How was that received?

David Zach:

It was a it was a it was a road. For my parents, they had come out of the hippie movement. So for them, sex and drugs, and rock and roll were all combined into one thing, right. And so it was hard for them to separate out the fact that this beautiful thing that had been such an important part of their life for so long, could be harnessed and used, as it always has been used. melodies have always been used for justice and and for, you know, hope, like daylight for you in college. Yeah. So they know they they became our biggest supporters and our biggest fans for sure.

John Matarazzo:

So it didn't take them too long. They grabbed a hold of that. That's good.

David Zach:

Yeah, my dad was never comfortable with the stones for you know, when when I started listening to this stone, he's like that through that music out. And I was like, Wow, it's great song. He came around towards the end, that was my one big regret that I never was able to go to a Stones concert with him while he was still around.

John Matarazzo:

So you went from just playing this playing music as kind of a fun thing. And how did you realize that? Oh, I've got some more talent than that I should do something with this professionally. How did God open up those doors and lead you in that path?

David Zach:

There is a guy that lent me a guitar for, you know, five or 10 years ago named Danny Edwards. And he pushed me a little bit in that direction. He nudged me, he said, you have something you remind me of Dylan a little bit, which I didn't realize how high of a compliment that was at the time. And so we kept on playing throughout college, we would invite all our friends and we'd put on shows like The Student Union free concerts. And around that time, I had a matt, you know, I was going for a math degree. I was getting done with a math degree. Phil was going to school for art. And our little his brother Paul will come up play the drums with the two of us. And it just I just started to think maybe this is something we could actually do. But it wasn't really Oh, it's almost like I wasn't allowing myself to dream. And I'm so glad that we push through and went for it.

John Matarazzo:

So Has it always been with your brothers?

David Zach:

It started with Phil and Dan played the drums for a bit, then he left for college. And then Paul filled in. And then when Dan came home was the four of us for seven years there, then Wow. right around the time that you started listening was the time we all started having kids. And the brothers kind of fell apart in 2010, which was devastating for me, you know, I'd sure spent a decade playing music with my brothers and but they gave me my, their blessing to keep on going. Okay. And that was what led up to me and Phil reconciling and the beginning of the three counter trafficking albums, that that have been part of this last decade. Oh, wow.

John Matarazzo:

So I definitely want to hear about that whole reconciliation thing. But before we go any further, I want to, I want to hear how your faith became your own. It seems like you grew up in a Christian home, you know, your parents kind of rejected that whole hippie lifestyle. So it seems like faith was something that you kind of grew up in, but when did your faith become your own, because that kind of launches into the type of music that you do, because you could have chosen to do something different. And then you could have done any type of music that you wanted to? How did your faith become your own, and then lead you into saying, I'm going to write songs that are going to be inspirational.

David Zach:

I don't know how my faith became my own. I feel like I'm still on a pretty significant. I mean, even a year ago, the things that I think and the things I pay attention to are a lot different than even a year ago, and I'm on on a journey, especially having kids of my own, ya know, trying to guide them through what's true. Pilate said, What is truth? And I never really understood that question until the last few years. What's true, what's real? What's there's so much misinformation, and this information about screaming scripture. And even in the way I understood scripture as a kid. And which which means the way I understand God as a kid, I think it's very different than the way I understand God. Now, I remember this line from Les Miserables relates to live up, no person has to see the face of God. And as an eighth grader, we're singing that choir and I had no idea what that meant. And yet, like it's it's the core of what I believe now. It's like everything I believe now to love another person is to see the face of God, it wraps up the summation of all the all the all of Scripture from Jesus perspective, when he said, When I asked him what's really important, he says, Love the Lord God with all your heart. So in mind, I love your neighbors yourself, which echoes the word the tribute of God by Jeremiah the prophet when he said he took the cause of the oppressed. Isn't that what it means to know me, says the Lord God Almighty. So I think the biggest shift in my faith, when I was a kid, I was always bummed out, when mom would say, Are you excited about heaven? Because it's worship, but not just for an hour? It's forever. And that really, really bummed me out.

John Matarazzo:

I know what you mean, I know. I thought the same things too. But

David Zach:

I do feel bad for feeling that way. Right? Yeah. But I read CS Lewis is the weight of glory. And you'll hear lines from that book, in almost every single one of my songs, really, it is influenced me So, so deeply and so profoundly?

John Matarazzo:

what's an example of that?

David Zach:

Well, I wrote a song called Clive staples in like, two or three after CES, he talked about how we're on the outside of this inconsolable secret. And the one of the lyric I wrote was, can you can you hear the news from a nation you've never been to the scent of a flower that hasn't been found the echo tune that hasn't been heard. And that came straight out of that book. And that idea, that longing for something that we can't quite put our finger on what it is, than the idea that it's not harps, or crowns, or castles or mansions. That's just the best that language has to offer to describe what it is that we're longing for. And so he wrapped that all up in the idea of this weight, the weight of glory. Lich, you just talking about it, I just get. It's so comforting to talk about because I can lose my way. You know, and I can be like, Man, what is and then to just remember the way I first felt when I read that book.

John Matarazzo:

Wow. You know, as you're, as you're talking about that, you know, those are some of the you said about mansions and some of those other things. Those are just some of the best words that we could use to describe what's really going on. Yeah, that's great. Reminds me of a time I was on the mission field of actually in in Bethlehem on Christmas Eve preaching the gospel. But Wow, we were preaching the gospel to these Palestinian Arabs. And they didn't speak any English, we didn't speak any Arabic. And after the gospel was preached this one guy grabbed my hands and just with this look in his eyes of pure love, he just said, Thank you, thank you beautiful, beautiful. And I heard in my spirit, God said to me, that's the best words in English that they know. Because probably most of the other words are curse words against the United States or something of that nature, you know, that's, but to save those words, it's just like, that's the best words that he could describe what he was feeling. And you could see that you could see something in his eyes that wasn't there before. So when you said that, I'm just like, I'm taken to that place, and there's a weight on my heart because of that, and how God takes takes things and to heal people, we're at a loss for words for what God really has for us. So Wow, I'm definitely gonna have to read the weight of glory. I've read some of the other some other books that that CS Lewis has done, but I haven't done that one yet.

David Zach:

I can't recommend it enough. There's two, there's two essays in it that I love. There's about 10 or 15 essays. And they only take like 40 minutes to read. And the weight of glory, the title track, and then a deep album track transposition, those two, like read those, those both are just incredible.

John Matarazzo:

That's really cool that that has had such an impact in your life on so many different levels. And, Wow, that's really cool.

David Zach:

He says this. I like I like your example of talking to the Palestinian man, under apartheid, in Jesus's hometown, right, what a tragedy, that there's this violence, and there's this oppression of the Palestinian people in the very place where Jesus Christ was born. And who knows when in his timeline, he fled to Egypt, and all of that, so I'm envious of you that you have to go there. Because I met I met a Palestinian girl from from from Bethlehem and she that was the first time I realized how miserable all the events that have led up to today have made made existence for a good number of people there but but there he is, he's Is it love? What did he recognize he he recognized something even if he doesn't understand it, recognize it. Now this person cares for me. And all I know, beautiful and, and language is just so bankrupt. But what isn't bankrupt it still is it still is a shadow? Like that's what CS Lewis does. So good. He says all of this is just a shadow. It's not the cathedral. It's just the blueprint, right? We make the mistake of thinking it's the cathedral. No, it's just the blueprint. It's just the pencil sketch. The lines aren't even colored in it's two dimensional. It's the difference like this life here is that is the difference between a two dimensional drawing on a piece of paper and, and 3d. But how do you describe 3d to somebody that lives on a piece of paper, it's just no way to describe three dimensions to it to a stick figure. And that's what we're trying to do with words and theology and all of that. But when you bring in poetry, when you bring in music, then it starts to just take shape a little bit, and Chesterton said, that great song or that moment, and this is a paraphrase of his he didn't mention a moment and move with that crescendo, that, that that where it feels like it's just overflowing, that we realized for a moment that we've forgotten, but we're not quite sure what it is we forgot. I just love that idea. We realized for a moment, I've forgotten I was part I belonged. But I've been banished. I'm on the outside, and I can only look in from my state of exile. And I don't even know what I'm looking into. It's just bright. It's just luminous. And I want to be part of that luminosity. But I'm stuck out here. And then, and then a melody can whisper and hint, and say maybe it's possible that we will be reunited someday. Oh, man,

John Matarazzo:

this is a good deep stuff, deep conversation right here. You know, as we're talking about the things of God. I mean, at some point in this conversation, I do want to ask you to sing and play and perform the song of the imago more the image of love. Because that's obviously I can see that that's bubbling over on your heart right now to notice that it's the image of the true goddess the image of who he really is. We'll get to that in just a moment. So that's a teaser for everybody that's listening. But earlier, you were talking about reconciliation with your with your brother, and how that led into really this last decade of how God has led you on your along the way journey because your music is has taken a direction that is not something that people often like to talk about because it's a tricky subject. But it's something that everybody needs to hear about, and everybody needs to address. And that's human trafficking. And I want to kind of use this as a transition to kind of get into into that part of your story if that's okay. Yeah. Yeah. So how did that conversation and that reconciliation with your brother lead you down that path?

David Zach:

Well, it started. When I moved to Nashville from Nebraska, Phil came over and helped finish packing up the moving truck. And I drove by myself 13 hours, but right before I left, he said, I'm sorry. And I immediately said, I'm sorry. I mess this up. We broke this. There's no way to fix it. And I'm thankful for that moment. Because it it led to the couple years later, my son listen to Phil's music, to has an incredible solar project called the silver paid. Well, he has the silver pages with my brother Paul, but he has to cold. I'll think of it as a solar project. And jack would be like dead. Can we listen on fullfills music. And that continued to soften my heart because we work together so good when we were younger, but then we just got so busy, and we lost our way. And so when I left the record label to do an independent album, I left because they weren't interested. Like you said, it's a difficult thing to talk about. It's complicated. It it's, it puts puts into question everything you believed in, it calls it you know, because slavery or human trafficking, it's, it's never condemned in Scripture. You know, it's never it's, it's a hard thing to talk about. It was just put it that way, right. And yeah, and then in 2021, to know, there's more people enslaved are impacted by slavery than any other time in human history. There's around 10 million people at the time, you know, during the days of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman when they, when they forced by persistently pushing and putting pressure, they change people's minds about slavery here in the United States, as an economy was building being built on the back of free labor. So all of that I was reading went to the people in the in the in charge of the record label, and they're like, no, that's not going to sell records. Yeah. No one wants to hear about police soldiers or sex trafficking or slavery. They just want to be heard everything's gonna be okay. Right? They want something positive, they want something happy and safe for the family.

John Matarazzo:

So what was it that you were reading or that gave you your first glimpse of, Oh, this this thing is out there and I need to do something about it.

David Zach:

Well, Invisible Children did an incredible job waking A lot of us up to the, to the way the world is. Some some kids from San Diego, flew to Uganda and exposed a warlord who was kidnapping boys and enslaving them. That was the beginning for me. And then Banos prayer breakfast speech, to George W. Bush. Lim as a robably was deep, deep in there for me to like that story. This is the story of, of Les Moonves. It really is if you if you watch it again, if you listen to the soundtrack, Martin Luther King Jr. His last speech when he said now is a time for us to develop a kind of dangerous and selfishness. There's just this real restless feeling I got in all when I came across all this different media when when I watched the movie, 12 years of slave, I just looked and saw people that responded. And every time I saw somebody that responded to an issue, I got the same feeling like a real empty, real restless, feeling like what if I didn't have to play music for a living, maybe I could do something else. And then I had the idea. I can use music to shine a light on slavery. So that's kind of how it started.

John Matarazzo:

That's cool. So it was all these different things that it was like God was just highlighting this, this story of this person. And it was this, like God was using all these things to get your attention to take you to the next level of your purpose.

David Zach:

I think so. And I think that's how it works for everybody. Yeah, I maybe would be so bold to say I know. So. The poor and the oppressed and the marginalized are referenced are my responsibility to the poor and the marginalized. That's the overwhelming theme of Scripture 2100 times the lot of airspace space for our responsibility to the poor in the powerless if we claim to follow Jesus, so following Jesus means following him, he came and said, I have good news for poor people. And somehow we came up with this whole other version of what we think that means, but he said no, I have good news for poor people to proclaim freedom to the captives, right liberty to the prisoners in a restaurant. of dignity to the oppressed. Healthcare, recovery of sight to the blind, all these amazing promises that he, I believe could could promise and say that there will be people that are known by selfless love, then those are people that follow me. If they're not known by love, then they're not following me. All of that was like, woven into my heart. And I think it took these other things to just wake it up and push it to the surface. These examples, Amy Carmichael, who had dire skin with coffee, and go into has an incredible story. And she, she disguise herself and rescue young girls out of forced ritual prostitution. Yeah.

John Matarazzo:

So you said earlier that your record label wanted nothing to do with that they just wanted you to do just positive and encouraging music. So how did you make that shift? How did you move forward with that? Because you obviously did.

David Zach:

Alright, as kept on. I mean, I talked to everybody, all the executives of the label, and they said some awful things, like truly awful things. The one guy said, Isn't worship, singing? and all that other justice stuff, you know? And I'm like, Man, what, uh, what are you talking about? I just read Amos five, Isaiah 58, Isaiah, Isaiah one, where those prophets make the claim that the God of the universe is saying, I hate your your songs right now. I hate your worship songs. I'm tired of your festivals, I'm tired of your, your gatherings and you're assembling together. Just stop doing all that. stop praying. I'm gonna plug my ears when you pray, go and do justice and then come back to me and sing again. And then. So for him to say that it was just such a weird thing for someone with that position on that power to really believe it seems like he really believes that. Then I had read also the road from Jericho to Jerusalem. The the guys that had to go sing and pray. Right, and they didn't they didn't stop to help a man that was beat up. And this other guy did. Right. And that was it was that was a story Jesus told in response to those guys saying, well, who's my neighbor? After he said, Here's what's important. Love me with all your hearts on mine and love your neighbors yourself. That's that's the one thing I want you to do. And those things are the same. According to Jeremiah, like I said earlier, and another guy who said to me, he knew that I wanted to sing about trafficking, specifically, I couldn't believe he said it. He said, David, I'm a whore, I need you to give me something I can sell. And he uses a word I never use to describe himself to describe me. And that's what I wrote down. I'm not a commodity, you can't shrink wrap my soul anymore. You can't reduce my beliefs and my thoughts and my passion to the lowest common denominator and try to sell it to middle aged women and minivans. I'm not doing that anymore. Wow. That's so that's how I never said that out loud. I've said it in lyric sense. But I never said it out loud.

John Matarazzo:

That's deep, though I'm not a commodity. Yeah, that's, that's so true. And that's unfortunately, how people look at other people. And that's where this whole sex trafficking thing really takes off is because people buy and sell other people. And that's just, that's horrible. But I was in South Africa for my radio school, back in 2009. That was my first understanding of human trafficking. Because the the youth of the mission center that I was in the media village center, they had such a heart for dealing with human trafficking. And they would run training seminars for people that were at risk. And they were using their media gifting to create public service announcements and other short films to bring awareness to this. And they actually had permission to take their films that they were there, their short public service announcements to actually play on the outside screens during the World Cup, which is going to happen that next year. And so everything starts doing was to try to make those those visions come to reality. And it was it was really cool to be a part of doing something to bring awareness to human trafficking, and it is real. And you've gone a step further than just talking about human trafficking. And just talking about people need to be aware of this, you you actually involved in going and rescuing people. And I'd love to talk about that and kind of connect the gaps of where we left off the story. And then we'll get to that as well. But yeah, so we were talking with the record executives, and obviously that's that wasn't going to go anywhere. So you've done a series of three albums about about human trafficking. Is that correct?

David Zach:

Yeah, so maga Mora is a third one, the North Star named referred to Dallas this newspaper was a second one and then commodity was The first one. And the amazing part of the story is Matt Parker, who founded the exodus road. But his wife, Laura, had no idea that I was writing commodity when we met. He was just looking for a band to talk about his work, and then try to help fund the work. And I'm like, Man, I'm, I'm already writing an album. Can you take me with you? So that's how it started.

John Matarazzo:

And when you say Take me with you, what does that mean?

David Zach:

So we go into places where trafficking is happening. And we use covert gear to find evidence of trafficking. That's spying on mafias or cartels, criminal networks, crime syndicates, embedding ourselves with law enforcement, sometimes doing sting operations, doing raids, sometimes, using trying to use the evidence that we've gathered to put pressure on certain government or certain authorities to do something about an issue in a certain part of a city or in the countryside, or by the beach in Latin America, wherever it is, we're participating, hopefully, in somebody else's freedom, empowering them to escape slavery, and helping to dismantle the criminal networks responsible for this misery. Wow.

John Matarazzo:

So what are some of the ways that you do that? It's Do you go in with guns blazing? I mean, you said that you have some, like spy gear, can you kind of explain a little bit about what some of those things are, without going into too much detail, I don't want you to say something that would get yourself in trouble. But I do want to kind of paint that picture for people that really don't understand what it is that's going on.

David Zach:

So we use hidden cameras to find evidence of trafficking. And our goal is to prove that this girl's a minor, or that there's fraud, or force or coercion involved when someone's selling someone else for sex. That's what constitutes sex trafficking, which sex trafficking falls under the umbrella of human trafficking. Well, there's like 40 million people impacted by trafficking. Sex Trafficking makes up the bulk of the money that's coming in, right traffickers. And so we're just trying to put a dent in it, not, we're not going to stop it, not in my lifetime. That's it. But we can do a little bit we can keep the darkness at bay without few people going in to these places. Pretending to be customers sometimes is the is the play, or sometimes just surveilling the street, which is boring. But we've found evidence of pedophile rings, or sometimes guys that are selling synthetic drugs, and also selling girls. That's what we're there to find that evidence and, and it's helpful to our teams, I always want to make sure people know that the the main people doing this work are the Indian women and men in India, or the Thai women and men in Thailand, they're doing this work, and or my Latin American friends in Latin America, and we're invited in on a temporary basis to help support and lift up and empower their work. And sometimes they need a Westerner to come in to pretend to be a rich American jerk, taking advantage of the girls of their country so that we can get some of these dodgy traffickers to come out of hiding and, and put themselves in harm's way.

John Matarazzo:

So you've had to go undercover as a client of these are these prostitution rings. And how difficult was that for you?

David Zach:

It's It's sad. It's very sad. It's sad to see girls that are 15 years old being sold for sex. shy. First night, sometimes she's wearing flip flops, or midriff or sometimes high heels, depending on the scenario. And hear her story a little bit. I use Google Translate. If I don't know her language and Latin America get by with Spanish, but it's really sad. She should be playing in the countryside barefoot with her other sister. And eaten dinner with her mom and said she's grabbing some noodles off the street. On a short break. Drink intense out to the killer night at least I've seen a girl drink three or four shots just in an hour. I've been there.

John Matarazzo:

Oh my gosh. And that's just so that she can survive or mentally deal with what she's being forced to do, is that why she does that?

David Zach:

Well apart part of the way that, you know, when a customer comes into some of these dance clubs, you can pick a girl by him, sometimes it's just a number on her bikini top. And you can offer the buyer a drink. And supposedly, a percentage of the drink that you buy her is going to pay off her debt, she's in some sort of indentured service, or she's paying off her family's debt. And so there there is a way the clubs make a lot of money is by having Western Westerners and foreigners buy drinks for teenage girls, it's crazy, it's insane. And then then, they're then during that time, that conversation, they're, they're, you know, pressured to sell sex as well. And sometimes that can happen right upstairs or at a hotel nearby. Or sometimes you're just in an alley. Or there's cocaine, a lot of cocaine and ecstasy type drugs in Latin America to that, or there's delivery services, you know, traffickers have delivery services, where the deliver girls to parties are,

John Matarazzo:

yeah, that's Oh, but by the grace of God, I'm grateful that, you know, I'm not one of those guys, that's, that's there, you know, and then, but we could all be there, we're just one step away from being one of those clients from being in that situation, but by the grace of God, and that's why we, as people that have been redeemed need to really stand up and fight for the oppressed, just like Jesus said, that he's here to bring freedom to the captives. And because I don't want anybody to think that, oh, that'll never happen to me, or that that's, you know, I'm too good for that. No, no, we're not, you know, we're all just broken people that are redeemed by God. And if we're not careful, we can find ourselves in those situations as well. And

David Zach:

wow, or trafficking? Yeah, you know, and that's part of what's shaken me in recent years is how kind some of the traffickers are. But if you think about it, you know, who was it was five Lehman's Master, right, he was a trafficker. Not only SMS, but something like that, right. And some of the guys that wrote amazing things, you can write about freedom and how people are created equal and still own people, and accelerate how many people you own later on in life. You know, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington. A lot of people have partaken in this over the years, you know, my namesake, David. There's not really any other way to describe what he partook in when they would go in and wipe out a whole city except for the virgin girls. Like just stories and old story. And people somehow have had a blind spot to it. And people go and defend. It's indefensible. Whether it's whether it's Thomas Jefferson, or, honestly, he did so much more damage to humans than any trafficker I've ever met, or been responsible for helping to put behind bars, you know, the scale of his operation was so huge. And so it's interesting that you said any of us could even redeemed people could. That's that's part of why this isn't easy to talk about, right, harder to talk about for me.

John Matarazzo:

Like I said, whenever I was in South Africa, that was my first experience of really coming to some sort of an understanding of that this exists. But one of the things that I really did enjoy hearing was that people do get rescued from this. Yeah, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. And we got to keep helping provide that that light. But you have a great way with the exodus road of celebrating whenever somebody is is rescued. Can you tell me a little bit about that.

David Zach:

So I just got to partake in this. And I haven't been there for many of these moments. But over the last several months, the exodus road has assisted in the freedom 40 or 51 survivors of trafficking, a lot of those were cross border traffic from Nepal into India. Or it was kids being sold on Facebook or Twitter, in Thailand, or down in Latin America. A lot of it's happening online right now. As things are opening up from COVID. But so we all wrote a name of one of those survivors on a rock in the office, I wrote three celebrating the work of my my friends in Latin America, my friends in India, my friends in Thailand that are really doing this work nationals from those countries. And we write a representative name on the rocks. I'm not gonna use rolling names. And I love the names we pick in the languages of the people that have been that have been empowered on their journey towards freedom. And then we just have 1500 or more of those rocks in the office now, which is really cool. 1500 rocks was 1500 names representing 1500 real stories of people that have escaped slavery. Yeah.

John Matarazzo:

So, you said that you love the names that you get to that you pick to write on that? What, what's so significant for you about that? Because these are representative names?

David Zach:

Yeah. Well, I just like it, that they're just not random names, like they, they, I can't think of any of them off the top of my head. But sure, when you read the, the couple paragraphs about the rescue, then then you get to pair it up with a name that that's been given to represent this person's freedom, you know, whether it's joy or mercy, or forgets what some of the names are, it's just, it's cool that we take that level of care, even with us with the store, you know, I mean, like, it's easy, it's just the name, but it's, it's, it's so beautiful, that there's so much thought that goes into these names.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, that, that really is the image of love. You know, God's love for us is vast, and it's huge. And it covers everybody, it's it's expansive, but it's also personal and individual. And the fact that you guys write the names of somebody, and you is representative, so you had to actually create that name. And you had to decide this, this rock with this name is representing this person. And that's what God does with us. He really, whenever he writes a new name on our hearts, you know, whenever we, whenever we come into, into his love, and His grace and forgiveness and our purpose for him, and that name that's on our hearts, he knows our true names more than anything. You know, I'm known by john, you're known by David but God has a name that he calls us that's above any other name that's called for us. And we are his own it, to me, that's part of the image of love. And that's really cool that you get to be part of creating that for that person as much like God would.

David Zach:

And they'll never understand, you know, they'll never know that they might not even know there was an NGO involved. Right and non government organization like the exodus road, all they know is because of somebody that they are aren't are now one of the few the very small percentage of Central people that have escaped this misery. And I like that I like it that I don't need to ever meet any of these people. They won't they might not even know the name of the Exodus road because we we keep everything anonymous, right? So you have to lift up the work of the of the law enforcement and celebrate what they're doing. But I still get to play a role. And I and a lot of that, you know, I wonder in another life, and you'll hear it in the lyric that will was one of these girls that I hung out with. We remember each other you know, on the other side.

John Matarazzo:

Wow. So I think that might be I think this might be a good time to share that song.

David Zach:

So a Mago more is Latin and Spanish. For the phrase the image of love.

Unknown:

strangers and neighbors and wonder are captivated acts out on the same stars tonight. Before we learned the fine grain of sand in the first marriage in the image of love Hello. Can you feel pain? More it seems or lose and we believe the same. foreign to me. braven came with that warranty. Mistake corrente from dust for each other, you and me, made bar each show for love. Kiss me like me. On the other side, remember me, we live, we live so fearfully and wonderfully designed for this, to carry through such plays inside we will need the image shop, you may follow each other. So kiss me love me, proves me like a friend. Remember me

John Matarazzo:

there's a, there's quite a bit of imagery in that song, David that I'm going to have to ponder and really let that sink in, as we talked about earlier, how you can have just words and they mean something, then you turn it into poetry. And it means something deeper on another level and you add melody, and it adds that emotion that wasn't there whenever you just see that written word. And as you're talking about the kiss me like an enemy but and blue bruise me like a friend. Like those wounds of a friend are of a faithful friend are a good thing knew when we see in Scripture, and in my life, I've experienced that, even though it hurts in a moment. But it brings healing and it brings it brings life but the word the phrase that you ended that song with? Is it. Was that your reference to that to thinking about that girl that you would maybe know in paradise?

David Zach:

Well, I mean, it's it's I've never told this story on on air before. But I mean, it's it's obviously the the the request of one of the two thieves on the cross next to Jesus Christ when they when they executed him, right. And there was a time in Latin America where we spent an extended amount of time doing undercover work. And so there's a lot more conversation. And one of the girls that sat with one of my friends had a cross on and she was talking to him via Google Translate. And his she's like, yeah, I'm a Christian. And then she wrote into her phone, may He who knows my sin remember me Sunday. And I mean, that was just is one of the more profound things I've ever heard in my life. And another one of her friends had a tattoo of her daughter's name on it and a bird. And she said, that bird represents freedom. I want my daughter to be free because I'm not free. So the next day I got this tattoo, which was my, my, my daughter when she was four or five, just kind of whimsically painted something and it looks like a bird to me. So I got that tattoo in the country where my friend got me He who knows my son remember me someday tattooed on his arm as well. Wow.

John Matarazzo:

That is that is very convicting. You're leaving me a little bit speechless. David. Oh, man.

David Zach:

It's hard to describe like everything I'm wanting to say at the beginning. It's hard to describe, to answer a lot of your questions without telling some of these stories, because I don't know how that impacts me. And thankfully, I can put it into a song put it into lyric, and it'll stay with me the rest of my life. But I don't know quite what I'm saying. To be honest with you. Yeah, like that is such a, you know, I had a girl say goodbye to me in Latin America last year. And I told her to be safe. You know, I tried to say nice things. I can't come out of character. Right. And she says God's gonna protect me. God has a plan for me. You know, she said that in Spanish to me. Wow. And it's remarkable.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, you know, David, as we're kind of coming to the close of this podcast, I'm, I'm really moved by the weight of the glory of the things that we're talking about, you know, the weight of God's glory. But there's the weight of the, the reality of this fallen world that we're in, and only God can redeem these situations. But he uses broken people like you and me to help people along the way in their lives. And the whole premise of this podcast is based around the amaze road story of how the disciples were walking with Jesus, but had no clue that it was him. Until they sit down at the table, Jesus blesses the food and breaks the bread, then their eyes are opened, they realize that it's him. But poof, he's gone. And in Luke 2432, they turn to each other and say, weren't our hearts burning within us along the way, as he was revealing the scriptures to us? So I love asking people, where when you look back at your life, where do you realize that Jesus was walking with you? You didn't notice it in that moment, but you recognize it now? Because I want to learn from those moments.

David Zach:

Even then, I don't know how that works. You know, I don't. And I don't like it when people are flippant with that kind of language. Like, for instance, that guy that bought two guitars instead of one. And they're both like three or $4,000, because they're on sale. And he's like, it's a total God thing. Like, no, those guitars are on sale, man. I mean, like, I'm very careful. And I've always been very careful. Because I don't, I don't talk that way very often. But I will say this, I could never have orchestrated, or even dreamed of the last eight years of my life, I never knew that all that influence all that nudging in that direction that we talked about, would result in me leaving the music business that I worked so hard to get into, you know, leaving the record label leaving the safety and the money that goes with those deals. And then meeting Matt Parker, in this moment of convergence, we didn't orchestrate it, he didn't know that this is what I are, you know, he heard all along on the radio in oh eight or oh nine when you were listening to daylight in college. So he didn't even know that I was writing this music. And even then I didn't know that we ended up buying all our shirts from now on by organizations that helped rehabilitate survivors of trafficking. So I see, I see. And I, because I grew up with the with the mindset that if you're going to do anything, whether it's moving to college, getting married, buying a house, even even buying a car, that you need some sort of confirmation from Scripture, or from God. And I don't understand that mindset, I don't understand it, because I never have experienced that. But what I do know, based on scripture, it says, In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths. And I have this confidence that my path has been directed by, by an invisible hand in a way that I couldn't have planned or, and I and it gives me confidence that anybody that leans into justice and mercy and compassion work, whether it's fighting, trafficking, or adopting or whatever it is, that the path will pave itself before your feet. And when there is a situation where we're up against a sea in front of us, army burned down behind us, mountains surrounding us, and we're trapped. I know that the water will part for you, as it is partying for me, as it did for Moses evolved, and he walked through and let a million people to their freedom on dry ground. Like I have that confidence. But I don't know how it works man with the theologians to argue about

John Matarazzo:

I don't know how it works, either. I just want to be more aware when God is working in the process in my life, because I feel like I'm, I'm a goof. And there's times where I'm just going along in the journey of my life and God's doing things. I'm just not aware that he's right there. And so that's one of the reasons I have this podcast. And I like having these conversations is it makes me more sensitive to what God is doing in the moment. So that I don't miss that.

David Zach:

Take it to your story example on the Rodimus those guys didn't know it in the moment. Right, but looking back and that's kind of how it is for me looking back I can see. Man that feels like it was it was it was directed somehow. So that might be a better answer your question. I never never the moment of that. Did I sense the magnitude of what was going on?

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, but we can appreciate as we look back You know, David, as kind of a follow up question for that, as always, if you yourself could get in a time machine and go back in time and give yourself a younger version of yourself some piece of advice or some words of wisdom, what version of yourself? Or what time period of life? Would you want to go and intersect your timeline with? And what would you say?

David Zach:

It's hard because I just did watch endgame last night, or the one that came after it. Yeah, spoiler alert with Captain America, he did go back. And I've been thinking ever since like, What? What did he do? Can he cheat? You know, did he did he know when to go and hide out when fanus was coming to just ruin everything. And part of me would want to go back, and I'd want to make sure I did things right, with my brothers the first time around, you know, wish I wouldn't have been such. So egotistical and so mean, and, and, but would this have happened without that? You know, that's what I always wonder, in the time space continuum, if I missed that thing up. I know, I know, that's not the answer. You

John Matarazzo:

know, it's a real one. But I mean, I'm glad that you were just watching the Avengers end game. Because, you know, like, that gets that got your brain prepped for that. But, you know, I mean, we can't go back in time. But, you know, I, I'm grateful that God can redeem our timeline, he can, you know, save things and redirect us, as you've so eloquently said, In this episode, as well. But

David Zach:

it's just so it's so frustrating that there's this gray hair now, right? And this 41 and a half year old. I, I know things and I don't know how to put them in words that I could never have understood or cared about, or known at 23 or 24. And we just have such a short window. And now I have kids. Right? And, and, you know, I know, I still have a lot of life ahead of me, but hopefully, but it just goes so fast. And it doesn't line up the way I'd want it to in terms of my my youth, men my knowledge and my life life skills, right? Yeah. But that's just part of what it is, I guess. Yeah. Oh,

John Matarazzo:

man, David, I've really enjoyed our conversation here today and connecting with you and hearing your heart and the things that you've said in this episode has really made my heart more sensitive right now. And so as we're, after we finished this conversation, I'm pretty sure I'm going to go spend some time with the Lord, just to kind of take advantage of the sensitivity that I have right now. And so I'm going to thank you for that for sure. But, David, I don't want to miss an opportunity to have you just kind of give an opportunity for somebody to how would they if they if they are moved by what you've been talking about? What can somebody actually do? How can they get in touch with you the band Exodus road? How can somebody actually go to action because I don't want to just say, Oh, we've felt a certain way after listening to David talk, what is the next action step that somebody can do?

David Zach:

The simplest thing is to text remedy to 51555. And that'll that'll give you a chance to get text every time we make or contribute to somebody's freedom. But it also gives you a chance if you wanted to do a monthly financial contribution to support some some of our operatives doing undercover work tonight. You can do that you could do a 5k and stiletto high heels if you want to. That's That's what a girl did an Iowa you can some girls in Minnesota planted some seeds. those seeds produce some peppers, that they made those peppers into jam and sold it and send all the proceeds to the exodus road. In April 28 there's a bunch of online Tiktok influencers that are doing a gaming day 24 hours gaming where somehow I don't know how to work through Twitch, they're going to use their gaming stream to raise funds for the exodus road. So I love not having a great answer for you in an awesome

John Matarazzo:

Super Soaker creative.

David Zach:

Yeah, and I give you several examples because I know that everybody has something like that. It's gonna be different than mine, your your, your fingerprints and your voice is different. But you have five loaves of bread and two fish. And that's what that's all that's required. If you bring that you could say it's just my lunch like the kids just my lunch but no, you have something to contribute that nobody else has ever have. And if you're moved by the story of freedom, you're moved for a reason. There's some role that you have to play.

John Matarazzo:

Amen. Amen. You are moved. If you're are moved, you do have a role in that. And so, David, what is the websites that people can go and check out your information and next just rode

David Zach:

the exodus road COMM And remedy drive calm.

John Matarazzo:

And I'll make sure to put the link for those, as well as the just remedy. If you text remedy to 51555. You can you can get all that information as well and get those updates. And that's exciting to be a part of that as things are happening as things are unfolding. Yeah, you can be a part of it. You can pray you can donate, you can run a 5k in high heels. I'm not sure if I'm going to do that one 5k a couple years ago, and that was not good on my knees. But I'm working on and working on that. I don't think I could do the high heels thing though. But well, it was a girl that that was you know, as a ladies idea. Yeah. But David, I just want to thank you so much for allowing me to come and join you along your way. Thank you, john. Thanks for having me on.