August 24

Randy Travis’ “When Mama Prayed” Is A Powerful, Emotional Gospel Song

Being a reinvented Christian gospel singer was not easy for Randy Travis, but “When Mama Prayed” showed how much he had grown. From a country singer with a quivering voice and shaking hands, he became a Gospel-empowered man. For four minutes and forty-two seconds, he spoke volumes about the power of prayer and the touching unconditional love of a mother to her child. 

“When Mama Prayed” was written by Paul Overstreet and Rory Lee Feek as part of his album ‘Rise and Shine’. Not many are familiar with this song as it was not released as a single and had no commercial success. But this song deserved every bit of attention and spotlight, and that’s what we’re giving to it now. 

Randy Travis opened the song describing a father who is kind of an agnostic atheist and a mother who is a faithful Christian, hoping that one day her whole family would be in the same church together. And how the mother’s calm, soft, persevering voice whispering sincere prayers to God brought a miracle – the skeptic father making his first steps into the church. It was a powerful image of prayer that mirrored Matthew 17:20, “So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

And the power of prayer was once again proved at the second verse of the song with the teenage son, a fearless seventeen year old who thinks he could take on the world, who does things only to fulfill his own desires and to please only his own self and an alcoholic who rushes into everything without even thinking twice. Nevertheless, his mother never stopped praying, and with burning candles on her knees, she prayed with the same passion as she did for the boy’s father. Coming half sober and seeing his mother kneeling and praying while talking to Jesus, the son came into a realization that his life would come to a new era and his exhausting haunted days would come to an end.

He knew that not every prayer would get an answer nonetheless, there are few moments when those sincere prayers would not be heard upon. Truly proving Jeremiah 29:12 that the Lord would hear anyone who calls unto him. 

This Randy Travis’ original song may not be as popular as his others, but it is still great to listen to. The intro used a usual country song riff that would easily draw listeners to the song and a basic chord progression that made it simple to follow. But what made the song stand out was Randy’s low tone that was filled with emotions. You can really note how much the song meant to him and how much he wanted to convey its message as if it was a testimony, a tale that everyone should be listening to. 

Randy Travis’ “When Mama Prayed” is definitely an underrated song that deserves to be heard, just like any other Randy Travis songs. Listen to the song in the video below. 


Randy Travis

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