Tomorrow I'll be releasing new music for the first time in over 5 years! On one hand, I am SO excited about letting these songs live a life outside of the walls of my own home. But, on the other hand, I'm a little nervous about it. Writing music is such a personal and healing thing for me. It kinda feels like sending your child to school for the first time (shoutout to all my mama friends who have been doing that these past couple weeks!) You hope you've done everything you can to prepare them for the world. And you really hope the world loves them as much as you do.
One question that many people have asked me lately is, "How long have you been working on this album?" While the actual recording part was done rather quickly - we spent a weekend laying all the parts down and a couple weeks on mixing and mastering - there are years of prayers and preparation that have gone before it.
To give a little back story, four years ago (right after my son, Micah, was born), I had this vision of making an album that centered around the theme of hope. My family has not been void of the pain and trials that this life can bring. As I'm sure yours hasn't either. There is no scale or measure for the weight of what makes a heavy burden. If it's heavy to you, then it's heavy. And it needs to be laid at the feet of Jesus. Writing songs has been a tangible way for me to lay my burdens down.
At one point, I really did start to question why it seemed like one thing after another would plague our family. Whether it was divorce, addictions, death of a loved one, infertility, cancer... we've been through it. And I most likely have written a song about it. Only four songs made it onto this EP... but these four sum up perfectly the faithful, everlasting love of God that I so desperately crave more of each and every day. These are the songs I want to sing over myself, just as much as I want to sing them over you.
So four years ago I had this vision but, as I know too well, every good thing is worth the wait. I've been so blessed to have spent the last four years pouring all of my time and energy into raising babies and serving in ministry. Still, the dream to record Storms never went away.
My husband and I would go out on dates and talk about our dreams, our goals and ways we believed God was calling us to live out the purpose He has put us on earth for - to make the gospel known to the world. I am so thankful I married a man like this. One who never sees "settling" as the goal. And not only believes in the calling that God has for him, but also the calling that God has for me too. It was on one of our dates when he told me that I just needed to do it (he's a real "putting-feet-to-your-words" kinda guy), so for Christmas, Valentine's Day and my birthday he would put money aside and say, "This is for your album."
Once we had saved up enough money earlier this year, I began preparing for this project. And let me tell you, trying to plan and prepare to record with two toddlers running around the house is NO JOKE. I almost quit before I started. Practice time was limited, between naps and snacks, but I was determined to get it done. Because more than ever, I believe what the world desperately needs is the hope of Jesus.
Once we moved to Jacksonville, things fell into place fairly quickly. After a random encounter with Eddy Foye in Bold Bean coffee the first week we moved, I contacted him about recording and he was more than happy to work with me! Within two weeks of moving to Jacksonville, I had found an engineer and musicians for the album. Everything seemed to be going smoothly...
And then the storms hit.
Once you've been through it a few times, you start to recognize the pattern of spiritual warfare. There was road block after road block trying to stop this EP from happening. Circumstances that were too random and too coincidental not to question the source.
The devil isn't to blame for everything. And I'm nobody that important. But you can recognize spiritual warfare by one crucial thing - timing. Satan tempted Jesus when he was fasting in the wilderness for 40 days - a time when he knew Jesus would be at his weakest, physically. He is clever and crafty, but painfully predictable.
The joke amongst our family right now is, "What did you expect when you named an album, Storms?"
And I guess that's the truth.
I share all that, to let you know that it hasn't been an easy journey for me to press publish on this post. But these songs have come alive and ministered to my heart in my current season, just as much as they did in the season I wrote them.
If you are reading this, I really hope you listen to the music tomorrow. But even if you don't and you never hear a song of mine, I pray that you close this page knowing that you are not alone in your struggles. That this life we have been created to live is rich with pain and suffering. And there is a reason for that - our world is broken.
But there is a Healer that I have found comfort in every time.
The one who restores and mends.
The one who brings dead minds, bodies, and souls to life.
And the one I will spend the rest of my days singing and writing about.
Tomorrow. It's only a day away.