So how does a kid from Portland end up on the mound of the Major League Baseball All Star game looking across from the likes of Cal Ripken, Pudge Rodriguez , and Derek Jeter? How does that same guy end up after a near fatal heart condition become a national CCM recording artist? Having his record produced by renowned producer Michael Omartian. Kent Bottenfield, the guy who has actually lived this life, sums it up in one word- God.
To Kent there is no other explanation...no other possible answer. To Kent it is the hand and direction of God that has lead him down this path through both the triumphs and the failures; through the victories and defeats; through the pain and the joy, it has always been and will always be about God and his son Jesus Christ. He believes that this incredible journey has lead to this place and this time where he knows he is more in the center of God's purpose for his life than he has ever been. Kent says, "I just sit back in awe every time I hear how the music has affected someone or a single does well on the radio because I know I have nothing to do with it. I write about 90% of my music but the kicker is that I have almost no musical training. That is the reason I know God is in this. I have nothing to be prideful about. I have seen God work through an empty vessel, me."
Kent knows this because the music ministry he now has was not his idea, it wasn't his dream; it was God's plan. "Baseball was my dream," says Kent. "It was something I planned and hoped for from the age of 10. Music has been different. I did not dream of being a recording artist and I never planned on being in the spotlight; singing, speaking, and publicly ministering to people. Baseball was my dream. This music ministry is God's plan, specifically designed for me."
Although Kent has had almost no formal training, God continues to show His excellence through the songs He places on Kent's heart. Kent says that baseball came natural, but these songs seem supernatural. Kent's songs spring from a heart of worship and a desire to love and honor the father.
From the humble tone of the title track of his new album "Back In The Game" to the simple expressions of gratitude in "Saved" the listener can be assured that Kent knows what a blessed life he has; not because of baseball; not even because of music but simply because he is a dearly loved child of God. Kent knows this and wants everyone who hears his songs and his message to know that it is true of them as well.
Kent says, "I think the lyrics to Back In the Game reflect my journey from Portland to the present in a major way. I am amazed at what God has allowed me to be a part of since my youth. I was just your average little kid with a big dream. I don't know if I have ever felt worthy of the accomplishment of that dream."
Kent goes on, " Saved was written to be a song of recognition and celebration. I have nothing to do with my salvation. We as people tend to take pride in the things we accomplish. Even a mission trip to a third world country can leave us with a sense of pride about ourselves. We have recognize that salvation is not about us, what we have done or could ever do. It is all about God's gift to us and that is to be celebrated."
Though some might conclude that a man with Kent's life might not have a grasp on the realities of the common persons everyday struggles, Kent answers that with humble clarity. "I am no different than anyone else walking on the planet. I was not a child of privilege or special standing. I recognized early in life what my gift was and I worked my tail off at it. I had the opportunity that we all have to enter into a relationship with Christ and I jumped at it. I have, have had, and will have all of the same struggles, pains, joys and choices as everyone else. "
To paraphrase Billy Graham, Kent Bottenfield knows he is just a beggar trying to show other beggars where to get some bread.
Kent Bottenfield....Kid from Portland...Pro Athlete...Musician...
Man of Faith.