One week from tomorrow you will be in Eureka, IL, performing with Audrey Assad. Yay! A group of my friends and I will also be there, so eager to see you both perform.
Your songs have meant a lot to me but there is one that has been especially meaningful in my life, My Savior's Love Endures. I know that it's not on the album you're promoting with this tour, and I know that it's not one of your hits, but that was the song I sang every day to my son, James, when he was in the NICU for seven weeks. Mary's prayer put to music - it helped me pray over and for my son when I was otherwise at a loss for words.
I know you're a mom, too, and so I am sure you can appreciate how heartbreaking and scary it was for me to be in the intensive care unit, holding my newborn, and not knowing if he would die or live a life of severe disability as my friends, family, and I prayed for a miracle.
I'm not sure if you take requests, but if you do I would *love* to hear you sing My Savior's Love Endures when you're in Eureka on April 20th.
Just think about it. And then decide that you will. ;)
Thanks and many blessings,
PS. Here's a post I wrote almost a year ago about what the song means to me.
JJ Heller's My Savior's Love Endures. I hear the song and I remember sitting in that blue rocker in James' NICU room, patting his back, and singing the song to him.
My soul does magnify the greatness of the Lord. In me His favor lights. In my Savior I rejoice...
I did not feel like glorifying God or rejoicing in Him. I did not feel favored. I felt scared. I felt tired. I felt alone. But when I sang those words I meant them. I chose to mean them. I had to believe in something so I chose to believe in Hope. I chose to have some One to believe in. I chose to praise.
He has done mighty things, Holy is His Name...
"Yes," I would think, "He has done mighty things and He could do another." I was not wrong or foolish or childish to hope that He would. If God would have left James as a boy with severe disabilities that wouldn't have changed the fact that God has done mighty things. Even if God would have let James die His Name would still be holy. And so I could trust in Him. If He's holy then what He wants is Right and Good. And so if He wanted James to be dead, disabled, or normal then the outcome - whichever one - would be Right and Good. I'm not saying it was (or is) easy to believe these things, but then again it really, truly was. I think it's all about picking up a cross but having an easy yoke, a light burden. I was still carrying a cross - big, heavy, hard - and if we stood back and looked at it we would all agree that it was too much for me to bear. But when I got under it and hoisted it up I found that I could do it. I discovered that it fit me well. It was very, very hard but at the same time it wasn't.
Oh Israel find your help solely in the Lord.
I have heard mothers of other sick children beg their kids to fight. And I, too, would ask James to concentrate on breathing or swallowing safely or whatever other hurdle he had to surmount. But I didn't ask him to fight. I asked God to fight for him and I asked James to use the strength he was given to get better. If we put our trust in ourselves we cannot be miraculously healed.
His mercy's without end, His promise will endure.
I had to remember these things and I had to teach them to my son:
God's mercy is infinite - He is loving and good. He looks on NICU babies and parents with great tenderness. He holds us in His righteous right hand. He places us in His heart.
And his promise will endure. His promise that He is with us, even unto the ending of the world. His promise that He will never give us something we cannot handle. His promise that suffering is redemptive. His promise that He makes all things new. His promise that those who hope in the Lord will not be disappointed.
When the Blessed Virgin Mary first sang those words she was rejoicing in having been chosen to bear a son. How beautifully humbling to sing them with her.
Glory be to the Father and the Son. Glory be to the Spirit, three in one. Glory be in the beginning and the end. Glory forever, Amen
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