In a new video released on Jan. 17, 2019, Michael McLean — a well-known songwriter and playwright among The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint community — detailed a nine-year faith crisis where he learned to trust in God. Recounting this journey, McLean shared how his son had come out as gay and how as a father, he was trying to find a way to best support him.
In the video McLean says, "I started praying like I'd never prayed before ... I just begged God to talk to me. It was the first time in my life where I felt like heaven was shut. I couldn't get past the ceiling."
In an LDS Living feature about McLean's faith crisis, he said: "I kept thinking this would end—that there would be some peace that would come or some answers that would start trickling down. But they didn’t. I couldn’t believe I was saying it out loud, but I was thinking about an exit strategy. It was so painful.”
After nine years of waiting for peace and honestly questioning if God knew him and heard his prayers, McLean recounted in the video: "I went into my study and for 10 days it was like I got downloads of songs (into my head) ... I realized that when I reviewed the 10 or 12 songs ... that my answer about who Jesus was and how He felt about me ... came in songs."
"And that's when this revelation that kind of changed my life happened — that the Lord loved me so personally and so individually and so completely, that He would send an answer that I would recognize could have only come from Him ... I was overwhelmed with grace."
McLean realized that there were times in those years of trial when God's hand was in his life, but he hadn't recognized it before.
"I listed 25 things that had happened where the Lord was reaching out to me," he said. "It was a discovery of the fact that for nine years, the Lord hadn't been punishing me ... He was trying to teach me that even when I didn't see it, His grace was trying to save me."