Saturday, August 10, 2013

Moving Forward, Big Things Ahead.

People ask me all the time why I haven't tried out for the Voice or American Idol. I take that as a compliment, that they like my voice and they think I could be on the show. But I see my purpose as being much more than being famous. I would actually be quite content if I'm never world famous, because that's not where I put my hope. If I trusted in music or money or stuff to make me happy, I might as well quit now. The only solid thing I can put my hope in is Jesus Christ, and He is the one who gives and takes away, opens and closes doors.

It's been awhile since I posted an update about my goals and the future of my music. Frankly because I've been trying to figure that out myself. Last year, I launched my own radio show which airs twice a week, and preparing those shows has taken a lot of time. I have learned so much from that experience, and have heard many testimonies through the interviews that have encouraged me along the way. God has such a creative plan that we can't always see coming. His bigger picture is way better than anything I could dream up.

That's where I'm at. I'm in awe at where I've been placed in my life, and I see how things in the past have shaped who I am. I have had so many de ja vu moments, where I feel like I've been in places or situations before. It almost feels familiar. I take that as a confirmation that God has gone before me and He is never surprised by what happens. He is not confined by time and is always working towards the good and towards His glory.

I'm 21, and it has almost been 10 years since I began writing music. All through middle school and high school I wrote songs, practiced and learned about the music business. I have been willing to work hard, to do something every day, and to always try my best. Music is an expression for me to share what I'm going through and what I'm feeling. It's been a great outlet that helps me process my own thoughts. I have played these songs hundreds of times and met many amazing people along the way who have encouraged me and supported me. I try to pay it forward and invest in other people's lives, like so many do for me.

By the time I graduated high school, I knew I wanted to play music full time. For the past 3 years, I have been playing around 200 gigs a year, at weddings, coffee shops, restaurants, churches, colleges, community events and festivals. I have been songwriting, recording, traveling, marketing, designing, printing, booking, and learning how each piece of the process works. As an independent self-employed musician, I've had to do a little bit of everything. As momentum builds in my music career, I realize I can't do everything myself. I am currently praying that God will help build a team of people around me to help and organize the business side of the music, so that it can continue to grow and thrive. Please pray with me in that! He knows what I need.

There are some big opportunities coming up that could potentially take my music career to the next level. I am working with a different producer to begin recording a new album! I am very excited to experiment and create the sound and style that I hear in my head. It's going to be an indie folk sound, with lots of acoustic instruments, strong vocals and creative harmonies. We are going to release the first song as a single soon, to give everyone an idea of the new direction. The first song is called "Troublesome Heart". The message goes against the popular opinion of following your heart, and it is about choosing to do what is right, no matter what it feels like. We are at the beginning stages of writing the rest of the songs for the album, but I will keep you updated on the progress.  I'm planning to set up a crowd funding campaign where fans can be a part of creating the album and helping me fund it while getting some awesome rewards! That will probably happen this fall. Let me know any ideas that you have for rewards!

This year I have also had many opportunities to record background vocals on country albums. Several of those artists have cut songs from my last CD, "Beloved". I love being in the studio and gaining experience. It is the biggest compliment for someone else to sing my songs, and to know that it relates to them.

We have released several professional music videos to songs from my last CD, and I plan to make several more videos before the end of the year. Never underestimate the power of YouTube. This past week, a company called me that found a live video of one of my songs on YouTube, and they asked about licensing it for a new commercial! We are in talks now to work out the details, but I'm very excited about the opportunity for my music to reach a whole new audience, possibly on a national level.

We will be re-designing and re-launching my website in the next month or so, with a more professional presentation and easier navigation. I am willing to invest in taking things to the next level, one step at a time. I feel peace and motivation at the same time, to be a good steward of the time and resources that I have. I want to do the right thing, and try to have discernment about what to say no to and what to move forward with. I feel like this is perfect timing to work on defining my image, to be ready when the world wonders what I'm all about.

With so much going on, it's hard to keep everyone updated through Facebook. I try to let everyone know what's going on, but it's difficult to get through all the clutter and "noise". With the re-launch of my website, I will be setting up an email list to keep you in the loop and get new music to you first!

If you read through this whole post, I just wanna say WOW, and THANK YOU. I know it's a long one and the fact that you took the time to read it shows that you care.  I appreciate your support of my music and ministry. Please pray for me to continue to have direction about the decisions that I need to make that will honor God and give Him the most glory. I would love to hear what you think and any ideas you may have. Don't be a stranger!

Email me at, call me at 866-672-9034, or comment below!


Monday, April 15, 2013

Life is Short - Make it Count.

Someday, we'll wake up and it will be our last day.

Life is so short.

What impact will we leave before our time is up?

Every day is full of opportunity.

Life is about relationships, and showing the love of Christ through our words and deeds.

The world is full of broken people who are waiting for someone to show them how to heal.

We don't need more medicines, rules, money or stuff.

Trusting God is our only hope in this ever changing world.

Each of us just longs to be loved and to know that someone cares.

What if we made a point to share the love of God with just one person a day?

What if the way we lived spoke even louder than the things we say?

Smile at someone today. You never know what they might be going through.

If now is the only time we have, let's make it count.

Every day is a miracle, and a gift.

"Life is more than money in your pocket
Your worth is far above your tax bracket
And who you are is not defined by what you do
You're already successfully you."

- My song, "Successfully You"

Friday, March 15, 2013

Smelling the roses...

Most days, in the busyness of life, we don't think past the here and now. With friends, family, work and crazy schedules, there's hardly time to take a breath. We crowd our days trying to do everything, and are actually proud of ourselves for being "multi-taskers" and "always doing something". I'm as guilty of this as anyone.

But then there are moments of clarity where we glimpse a piece of the bigger picture. When our life is frozen for a minute and we see in slow motion. When suddenly a feeling of a bigger purpose and almost an out-of-body experience shows us that we are part of a bigger plan. I am grateful for moments when I realize I am right where I'm supposed to be.

For me, sometimes I look up at the stars, feel the wind in my face, or see someone laughing, and it triggers a moment of thought. Stopping to thank God for the opportunities he's given me, and realizing that He is in control.

The old saying to "stop and smell the roses" can apply to pausing and being thankful for where we are. In spite of us, the world spins on, with roses blooming and fading. Will we stop to smell them and be glad we did? Take a moment to be still and take a breath, thanking God for the blessings of today.

"Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand."
-Proverbs 19:21, ESV

Check out my latest video, featuring Manna Cafe

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Passion: Everything's the Same, but I'm Different

It's a crazy feeling to come home and everything's the same, but you're different. 

On January 1st, I boarded a church bus at 6am to ride to Atlanta, Georgia to be a part of the Passion Conference in the Georgia Dome. The conference consisted of worship sessions with writers of songs I have grown up singing, teaching from the Bible by some of the biggest names in the modern Christian circle, and family groups of complete strangers who share their hearts and become good friends.

Being one person in a crowd of 60,000 college age students who are all singing the name of Jesus at the top of their lungs changes your life. Separating yourself from the normal routine, and absorbing the Word of God for 4 days helps you feel the presence of God in a new way. When you take a breather from the stress of life and realize that God has a greater purpose for you than you could ever plan... it opens your eyes.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. -Ephesians 3:20-21

Louie Giglio, founder of Passion and, focused on this verse in Ephesians throughout the conference. He spoke of the valley of dry bones in Ezekiel 37, and compared it to our generation. Louie reminded us that God has the power to bring life, and He wants to replace our heart of stone with a heart of flesh. Can these bones live? Can we reach this generation? If you hear the Word of God, then breath will come into you. God will restore and repair what what broken. You will come to life and know that He is God.

Another thing that Louie said really caught my attention. He talked about the things that we think are impossible, that we wait on and only dream of them happening. When Jesus comes into our hearts and lives, anything is possible. He is alive and powerful. In our own power, we have so many limitations. But with Jesus, those dreams can live!

Francis Chan reminded us that God is the only person you can trust 100%. If we endure, we will reign with Him. If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.

It was my 3rd year at Passion, and I knew that I would get something out of it. I found myself asking, What did I come here for? I think there was a deeper longing that I didn't even know how to express. And in that crowd of 60,000 people, I had a personal, one-on-one connection with God. He started stirring my heart and showing me deep desires that I didn't even know to ask for. I realized I was there because I wanted to hear His voice in a new way - to put myself in a position where I could hear clearly from Him. I wanted to break away from selfish habits that I had allowed in my heart. This was a desperate attempt to feel alive again.

God was waiting for me with open arms. In fact, He's been there for me all along, calling me to Himself. I was afraid that if I gave everything in my life to God, that I couldn't keep my end of the bargain. Knowing that I would mess up, and that I would let Him down kept me from going all in. But that's just the point. The verse that Francis Chan quoted about God remaining faithful because that is His character, really connected the dots for me. He knows we can't measure up to His standard of holiness, yet He loves us anyway and continues to call us to Himself every day.

Starting the new year on a new page with God is so refreshing. He spoke to me through the Word, and through the music, and He placed a desire in my heart to focus more on worship leading and not as much on performance. He also gave me a new desire to prepare to be used in more girls ministry and women's ministry. That's something I hadn't been focused on but now I am starting to see how that may unfold. I'm very excited to see what this new year holds, and what God has planned for me.

On January 4th, around 8pm, I stepped off the church bus with a sleepy grin. My hometown, family, sleeping in my own bed... everything was the same as when I left. But my heart will be forever changed. Praise Jesus!

P.S. Passion raised over $3 million dollars to help end modern day slavery. I am excited to be a part of the movement! Learn how you can help at!

Watch my latest music video for my song, "Butterfly". Share and help us reach 5,000 views!