On Instagram last week, the musician posted a portrait of him and his mother, writing, “My sweet mom went to be with Jesus this morning.” He continued: “Thankful my brother and I were with her. Even more thankful she’s now with so many that have been cheering her on from Heaven. She’s now a bigger part of my future than of my past. I love you mom.”
The announcement came just days after MercyMe shared details of its upcoming “Live 2022” tour.
Bart Millard’s Relationship With His Mom Had Been Restored
As documented in the Erwin Brothers‘ 2018 movie “I Can Only Imagine,” Bart Millard grew up in Texas with an abusive father. When Millard was 8, his mom moved away with her third husband, straining the mother-son relationship for many years.
While speaking to The Christian Post about the biopic, Millard indicated he’d reconciled with his mom after realizing “how much of a victim she really was.” He added, “She feared for her life, and she had to get out.” Millard watched the movie with his mom, which made him nervous at first. But she agreed it was factual, though heartbreaking. “I’m so glad that we have each other now,” she told her son.
As revealed in the movie, Millard also reconciled with his father, who became a Christian. “If the Gospel can change that dude, the Gospel can change anybody,” the musician says. Millard’s parents also forgave one another and became friends before his father died.
In a memoir he wrote after the movie came out, Millard added more details, including his relationship with his brother. He described the writing process as exhausting but therapeutic, saying he learned important information about himself and his family members.
A Story of Redemption and Forgiveness
During a 2018 interview with Parade magazine, Millard elaborated on ways the movie is a “redemption story” of both his father and himself. “I lived most of my life thinking that I was unlovable, that I was broken goods,” admits Millard, now 49.
When asked what he wants viewers to take from the film, Millard responded: “I think everybody’s got someone in their life that they think is out of the reach of God, or unchangeable, unreachable, if you will, and maybe we think that way of ourselves sometimes. I want people to walk away realizing that as long as there’s breath in our lungs, our story’s still being written. Who are we to assume that something’s going to end one way or the other?”