I grew up on the front row.  Not like Bob Uecker on the front row, I grew up on the front row of Ninnekah Baptist Church.

My mother played the organ – two keyboards and pedals at her feet. Anytime she had to be at the church, I had to be at the church.

Because she had to be out of her seat during much of the service, my seat was on the front pew where she could keep a close eye on me.

That background is why Zach Williams’ new song really hits home with me. Williams is a new Christian artist and his first album recently placed its second song on top of the Christian charts.

His newest single is “Old Church Choir.”

The chorus includes the lyrics:

“I got an Old Church Choir singing in my soul

I got a sweet salvation and it's beautiful

I've got a heart overflowing 'cause I've been restored

There ain't nothing gonna steal my joy.”

The sound of the song and the heart of the words ring so true to how I grew up. I’m still in church every Sunday, but I don’t have to sit on the front row anymore. But I will never forget those days and the feelings that Williams’ song brings back.

In November, everyone will have a chance to hear Williams at FireLake Arena. He will be opening for Christian music legends Casting Crowns.

FireLake Arena has hosted a lot of cool events since it opened in 2015, but none of those events is as fun to me as the Christian concerts. From Jordan Feliz and For King and Country to Jeremy Camp and Natalie Grant the venue is an ideal size for great Christian artists.

How good is it?

Williams is the opening act November 11. He was recently nominated in the categories of New Artist of the Year, Contemporary Artist of the Year, Song of the Year, Contemporary Album of the Year, and Songwriter of the Year in the 2017 Dove Awards. He was even invited to perform at the awards ceremony.

That performance will come about a month before the tour rolls into Shawnee.

Casting Crowns is also nominated as Contemporary Artist of the Year and Contemporary Album of the Year against tour mate Williams. That’s right, two of the top five contemporary Christian acts in 2017 will play the FireLake Arena in November. Casting Crowns has won 15 Dove Awards out of the 37 they have been nominated for since 2004. They have also won 4 Billboard awards and they won a Grammy in 2006.

November’s show will no doubt add to the list of great Christian concerts in Shawnee.

I hope people don’t take opportunities like this for granted.

If you act fast, you might get a seat on the front row.