Luke Putney testifies to the healing power of music, helping others

Religion News Service | 8/19/2019 | Bob Smietana
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (RNS) — Luke Putney’s prayers are simple these days. He prays for healing in his left hand so he can play guitar and bass again. He asks God to strengthen his body so he can be a blessing to other people.

Thanks - Bathroom

And he gives thanks for being able to use the bathroom.

“Praise God from whom all blessings flow,” said Putney, while getting up to take a break from an interview in the living room of the East Nashville home he shares with his mom and his dog, Jacob.

Life - Challenge - Putney - Aspiring - Musician

Life’s been a challenge for Putney, a 25-year-old aspiring musician and the founder of Instrumental Horizons, a Nashville-based nonprofit that raises funds to provide music therapy and musical instruments to children in hospitals and in underserved communities.

In 2017, Putney graduated from Belmont University, then took his first international trip for Instrumental Horizons, delivering donated violins, cellos, trumpets, timbales and other instruments to a school in Colombia.

Nashville - Putney - Headache - Trip - Hospital

When he returned to Nashville, Putney had what he thought was a bad headache. A trip to the hospital revealed he had brain cancer.

“It was a brain tumor, the size of the surgeon’s fist, inside of my head,” said Putney.

Time - Putney - News - Decade - Brain

This was not the first time Putney had faced such news. About a decade earlier, he had undergone brain surgery for a previous tumor. The surgery had gone well, but the cancer had cost the teenage Putney his sight.

Going blind didn't slow Putney down. He went on to become a successful high school wrestler, a star student, a nonprofit volunteer and a member of Skittle Biscuit, a band he started with friends in his home state of Georgia. He and Jacob, Putney's guide dog, had then headed off to Belmont, even taking time to study abroad together in Spain.

Tumor - Putney

After finding out about the second tumor, Putney remained...
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