Saturday, April 10, 2010
Vijay Benedict in Mussoorie
First singer in the Bollywood films to gain a Gold Disc with a first song and had achieved the heights that every artist desires and dreams of. At a concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall the audience gave him a 15- minute Standing Ovation- a rare achievement for Hindi celebrities and especially for Indian audiences. At New York’s Madison Square Garden, he was performing with Mithun Chakraborty, Salma Agha and other singers. As he appeared on stage the people began to shout and sing so loudly that they drowned his voice. Unable to make out whether it was a favorable reception or not he stopped singing and asked the crowds if they didn’t like him. “No” they shouted back and said, “We are enjoying it. We want to sing with you”.
“Disco Dancer” was his dream debut, a virtual newcomer to the Hindi entertainment scene that catapulted him overnight to the heights of fame and glory. He had everything he wanted and more and there was no stopping. He was busy making money, enjoying the popularity and being invited to concerts in Dubai, the United Kingdom, the United States, Israel, Australia and New Zealand among other countries.
He had everything going perfectly well as a highly acclaimed singer; He was basking as a rising global star with millions of fans and followers. But his story is about how God touched him in the saddest time of his life. Vijay Benedict has been a Bollywood playback singer for over 35 Indian films. He focused on his best God given gift ‘singing’ and now sings for the Lord. He is committed to his vision of giving the best music for the Lord. But besides his very professional voice, he is available for God’s call on his life-committed to work for God’s plan of Salvation.
The brutal murder of his younger brother in Germany stopped him in his fast tracks to rethink about his life and its purpose. As he was toiling hard to become number one in Bollywood, when suddenly one day he got a telegram from the Indian consulate in Bonn that his younger brother who was doing well in the hotel industry in Germany, had been murdered and that he would have to go and collect his dead body. His brother had wanted to put a stop to some drug dealings that had been going on at the hotel where he worked. He refused to give in to death threats by those involved. They warned him not to interfere because it was dangerous. One night they killed him and threw his body in the lake, but later the killer was caught.
It was very sorrowful and devastating experience for him; he couldn’t help weeping openly as he stood looking at his brother’s house and all the material wealth he had acquired in Germany. He found that his brother had everything he wanted. Every kind of material item was there except his brother. That really hit him hard. It made him to realize that tomorrow he would also have to go and leave everything behind. He realized then that he had acquired so much wealth, popularity and fame but it was all going to be of no use if one day he too would leave everything behind and go. That was the turning point in his life that led him to search God and reality.
He returned to India with these troubling thoughts. It got to the point where he would roam in Bombay’s Juhu beach all night searching for an answer. And his search for answers led him to many places and philosophies, he still found no peace anywhere till he came to Jesus through the help of few born-again beleivers, and he was transformed by the love and power of Jesus Christ. He felt the joy of the Lord descending upon him and he accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior. His choice to make Jesus as his Lord and Savior is ultimate, there is no turning back. It was with a cost as Jesus said, “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world yet loses his soul?” He has lost his soul in Bollywood and found it back in Jesus Christ! He has found peace, joy and happiness.
The Lord has been using him as an instrument to extend his kingdom through music.
He was here for one day, as there was a live music concert in Dehradun on the April 10, 2010. He liked our guest house a lot, all the pastors of the Mussoorie city met him and we planned to organize a three days concert in 2011.