One Final Push – One More Way of Giving Back to My Supporters

As I sit and write this post, I have a little over one month until I move to Austin, TX as a Worship Resident at the Austin Stone Church. As I reflect on the story of how God brought me to this place and the huge things He’s done in my life over the past year, my mind goes back to a particular time and place.

Every story has a beginning…

I was driving home from Dubuque, Iowa on a cold winter afternoon in 2013. It was a trip that I had made frequently. My friend Adam and his wife Jess lived there, and I’d often pack up and hop over to their place for a weekend getaway. The drive was always 3 hours of mindless driving over flat, featureless land. I never looked forward to making that trip home. But this particular drive was different – in fact it felt strange. I had lost track of time completely. My mind was spinning with excitement. I sat wondering if I was steering my car over miles of flat interstate, or if my little Ford Escort had suddenly sprouted wings and was flying me the remaining distance home. What would have the power to transport me so powerfully?

The answer might not be what you expect — on this particular drive home I was absolutely entranced by the music pumping out of the speakers of my little Ford Escort. I was used to listening to music during my long drives home, but this music was different. It was different because it was music that I had written. It felt like I was listening to my own heart, my own soul, pushing itself out of the speakers and swimming around in the confines of my car. The songs were my own thoughts, my own lyrics, my own stories. I had written them. I had prayed over them. And on this past trip to Dubuque, my friend Adam and I had locked ourselves away in a small room at his house to make our very first homemade EP. We combined Adams skill as a musician and my skill as a songwriter to create something special. Neither of us had ever done anything like it before. It was home-grown, humble, and honest. It wasn’t polished, but we knew it was powerful. We were confident that God would use our music. We were ready to release our songs to the world – with the prayer that God would use them for His glory to bless the lives of many, many people.

original recording singing
recording vocals at my friend Adams house!

Little did I know on my drive home from Dubuque that day in the winter of 2013 – God would do far more than we could have ever asked or imagined. Way more than that. A few months later a producer in Nashville, a musician whose music greatly influenced us throughout high school and college, listened to our little home-grown EP, and he loved it as much as we did! And so an amazing journey began – a trip to Nashville, the development of a band called Harbor at Sea, and a professionally recorded album a few months later. God would use that process powerfully in my life to call me to pursue worship ministry full-time. But here’s what most people don’t know –  it all began with one little homemade EP.

As I pursue my calling into worship ministry, I’m raising support to be a Worship Resident at the Austin Stone Church in Austin, TX. You can read more about the residency hereI must be fully supported for my residency by August 5th. I currently have 85% of my total support pledged, but I need one final push of giving to raise the remaining 15% and reach my 100% support mark. To those of you who have already given – I am so grateful, so thankful, and so humbled that you have chosen to join my team. You are forever rock stars in my heart! Thank you for being a part of the story God is writing for my life. 

But the story isn’t finished yet…

As a gesture of my gratefulness, I’m thanking the people who will be a part of my one final push in raising the remaining 15% of support needed for my residency! I’m giving the next 10 people who support me at any amount – or who add any amount to their current giving a copy of my friend Adam & I’s homemade EP from 2013*. This is the original EP that first caught the eye of our producer in Nashville and started our journey of recording professionally the following year. In other words, it’s the EP that started it all for myself and my band Harbor at Sea! God used the creation of this homemade EP as a starting point in the process of powerfully calling me into worship ministry. These home-grown, humble originals are very near & dear to my heart, and I’m giving away the final 10 copies that we have left. It’s my way of saying thank you to those people who will be a part of the one final push in getting me to my 100% support mark!

You can get your homemade EP by signing up to give any amount, or by adding any amount to your current giving here.

Here’s the list of 10 people who are a part of my One Final Push:

  1. Luke & Amy Roth
  2. Rachel St. Clair
  3. Paul & Susan Laiming
  4. Derek & Amanda High
  5. Dee Kitchell
  6. Brian & Katie Kurz
  7. Cory & Stephenie Deckard
  8. Kevin & Deb Monge
  9. Steve & Kathy Aurbeck
  10. McKenna Monge


*If you purchased an EP at the Blend show in 2014, this is the same one!