The Confessions of Scott Stapp
That must have really messed up your image of God as Father.
Absolutely. To me, God was the god of fear and judgment and persecution. I was habitually disciplined, if you want to call it that—and in my mind, that was God. I was very afraid, but I didn't want to go to hell, so I went with the program.
Did you ever ask your mom why she wasn't protecting you from this guy?
Definitely, but she was under the same umbrella and was often treated exactly the same, so she was living in fear too.
When your book releases, what will Steve Stapp think about these revelations?
I don't know. We haven't spoken in years. My wife and I reached out to him, trying to forgive and move forward when we got married, and they elected not to respond and not attend the wedding. But one day, God will heal this. The irony is that I love Steve, and he did implant in me a love of Scripture, whether his mode of delivery was wrong or not. But I pray that my book will be a catalyst to healing.
Let's talk about Creed. Even when you guys were hugely popular, your bandmates blamed you that the group was being pigeonholed as a "Christian band."
Was that one of the biggest sources of conflict within the band?
Most definitely, and it remains one today.
Even now that you're back together?
Yeah. Those guys have openly confessed their atheism and tried to distance themselves as far from God as possible. But I'm continuing to pray and believe in my heart that God put me with these guys for a reason. I hope my life and testimony will speak to them, that God is real. I'm praying for that.
Other bands have gone through the same thing: "We're not a Christian band, we just happen to be Christians." U2 is a prime example, and they've survived 35 years without that kind of conflict. But then, 3 out of 4 of them are Christians.
Yes, and that's the difference. Every band goes through different difficulties. I met Bono and the Edge, and those guys are brothers to the core. They love each other, and they stand by each other publicly whether they agree in private or not. Our band has a different makeup and different issues, very common issues to mainstream rock and roll bands—singer vs. guitar player stuff. I think we fit more in that traditional mode. But you know, it's all God's plan. I've learned to let go and let God and stop trying to control things.
Is your maturing in recent years one reason that Creed is able to tour together today? Because you're not a control freak anymore?
Absolutely. In my early professional life, running everything was my passion, and the guys never communicated to me that that was a problem. I think one issue was one that Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones, and Lennon and McCartney shared—I wasn't reliable. I began to become publicly intoxicated at shows and was compromising my bandmates, putting them in bad situations. There's two things you can do with someone who suffers from addiction: You can either be a part of the recovery, or you can make the decision to say, "I don't want anything to do with this." And either one is right. So I don't have resentment for their decision. It is what it is, and it was God's will. And if it didn't happen the way it did, I don't think I'd have gotten to the place I am today.