Thursday, June 25, 2009

There's No Such Thing as Perfect People

This is one of my favorite songs by my favorite artist, Natalie Grant. I saw her in concert last summer at the Utah State Fair and took this sideways video. I've looked back on it in moments for the beautiful reminder it gives me and that I often need. It's called "Perfect People." I love these lyrics:

There's no such thing as perfect people
There's no such thing as a perfect life
So come as you are, broken and scarred
Lift up your heart
And be amazed and be changed by a perfect God.

I'm learning more and more how imperfect I am. Sometimes seeing your imperfections, especially on those days when they seem to be completely up in your face, is scary and not fun. But that is why God is perfect. That is why He sent His Son to make a way.

We don't have to be perfect. God is and His love is unconditional. But we must learn to trust God and let Him change our hearts. I know He can and He will. No matter what mistakes we've made in the past or will make today or tomorrow, He can change us to be more like Him.

I have felt Him change me. I know it is not wishful thinking. It's real. We are never stuck the way we are. We were created to be something better, something more than who we naturally are. It is only through our Savior. I know it can't be done on our own.

There was a time in my life where I did feel stuck. But that was a complete lie and deep down, I knew there was a way. It just takes giving your heart. Since then, I have learned that no matter where I am, God can take the broken pieces and heal. Not just part way or temporarily, but can completely heal.

So come just as you are. If you're hurting, if you're broken, if you need healing, if you need forgiveness, if you need grace, if you need redemption, He is the perfect, the perfect God.

Listen to the entire song, "Perfect People" and other beautiful songs by Natalie Grant here.

Learn more about our Savior, Jesus Christ here.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day, Dad!

My Dad is AWESOME. He has taught me so much about working hard and being diligent. In high school, I would go to him all the time with questions and we'd spend hours working on math and physics problems together. He is such a hard worker and SO smart. He's a nuclear engineer and right now is away working in Florida on a project and often works 10-12 hour days! He is amazing. My Dad has always been so supportive of me following my dreams. I know I wouldn't be where I am without all of his incredible support and love.

One of my favorite memories with my Dad is when I broke my ankle in high school playing soccer. Our team went to state and so my Dad drove me all the way to State Championships. And in Montana, where everywhere you go is at least three hours away, it was a long drive. But it was so much fun to just be with my Dad. He is wonderful.

Here's a little tribute video we made for you. Wish we all could be together today but know we all love you so much. Mom, Whit, Brian, Scott and I are so grateful for you, your love, and all you do for us. Happy Father's Day, Dad!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Brand New Song - "Crush"

At the Hammer Hands Live Playlist Concert @ the Tahitian Noni 6/9/09. Featuring Ryan Innes and Jordan Rose on djembe.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

If You've Never Failed, You've Never Lived

I remember when I opened my letter from the School of Music in March 2007 after waiting weeks to hear back after auditions. I didn't get in. I was full of all kinds of emotions. I was bummed, I was confused, I was unsure about what to do next...but I remember getting down on my knees and praying. And that was where I found the strength to turn this "failure" into something.

After that prayer, I read Mormon 5:23 in the Book of Mormon: "Know ye not that ye are in the hands of God? Know ye not that he hath all power, and at his great command the earth shall be rolled together as a scroll?" I remember feeling this incredible peace come over me that was definitely a gift and answer from God. That was when I started writing the song, "In Your Hands" that's on my album. Not getting in made me dig deeper and realize that writing and creating music is my passion. And if it meant auditioning again the next year or doing it some other way, then so be it.

As you may know, the director of the Media Music program, Ron Simpson, called me in about three weeks after that. He told me a spot had opened and they wanted me in! I felt that same peace from God and I know that it needed to happen that way. I learned way more from failing than I would have learned if I made it in in the first place. So when I stumbled on this beautiful video, it reminded me not only of that experience, but just that life is about failing and succeeding. We learn from both. Failure is nothing to be afraid of. It's part of life and part of really living. It means we are taking risks; it means not being satisfied with being mediocre; it means trying something new that stretches us; and it means recognizing even more that we are in God's hands. He is shaping us as we give everything we have. Those experiences are what mold us and help us to be the kind of people that can make a difference in this world and help lift other people.

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~Mark Twain

Monday, June 1, 2009

What makes you alive?

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."
~ Harold Thurman Whitman

Things that make me alive:
1) Following my dreams no matter what people say - giving it my all even if I fail. And then learning to get back up again.
2) Having deep conversations with people that open my eyes and inspire me.
3) Being around people who make you want to be better.
4) Discovering new things about the world. Traveling, meeting amazing and unique people everywhere you go.
5) Living the gospel and learning to rely on my Savior more each day. Feeling and allowing the change that Christ can make in my heart makes me feel alive. I realize that He loves me despite all my weaknesses and imperfections. And He helps me find who I really am and become more of who He made me to be.
6) Writing songs and digging down deep to express something and being completely honest with how I feel. And then being able to share it and connect with other people through music.
7) Listening to music that touches my soul. Like the first time I heard Natalie Grant's song, "In Better Hands" and Mandisa's song, "God Speaking."
8) Eating French food (specifically, crepes. Yum!). :)
9) And as you can probably tell, bright colors. And finding the good in everything that I can and noticing God's hand in my life breathes life into me. I'm not always the best at it, but I'm trying and learning.

"My father says almost the whole world's asleep. Everybody you know, everybody you see, everybody you talk to. He says only a few people are awake. And they live in a state of constant total amazement."
~Joe Vs. The Volcano

What makes you alive? Comment and let me know!