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The Stories Behind "Miracle"

Wandering Stranger (Featuring Mike Garson, Grant & Victoria Hansen)

When we are in unfamiliar surroundings or going thru experiences that we don’t understand it can be frightening. We may not understand the culture or why something is happening. We may not like the smells or noises, and we may not like how we are affected. This song reminded me of a time when traveling to a country half way around the world that I am never alone. I realized home was not a house, but the relation that I had with my husband and God. Because of that there was meaning in being there, and I had protection and companionship.  God showed up in the kindness of many people I met, and the love story of my daughter was being written while we were there. I grew to love the kind people, their culture, traditions, foods, and beautiful surroundings.

 

My Angel's Back (Featuring Mike Garson, Austin Creek & Josh Cobb)

During a very sorrowful time in my life I had many sleepless nights, my mind was filled with concern during the day, and I felt so alone. I discovered thru this time that a number of seemingly small things began to remind me that God was there even though I did not feel it, and that he seemed to provide an angel that gave me small gifts that reminded me of the Giver. One of the most beautiful sunrises after a sleepless night, a family of raccoons strolling by my window, finding a Bible passage that spoke to my heart in that very moment, strangers saying encouraging things to me as though they knew me and they didn’t, and an unmistakable miraculous presence of comfort and safety, these were reminders that my angel was back. He was always there and had never left.

 

Miracle (Featuring Josh Cobb and Mike Garson)

One of the places I go to walk and rejuvenate is a local wilderness area. One day there was a young girl who began walking behind me who started to cry and in a desperate voice was quietly saying she needed a miracle. Very quickly another girl joined her who seemed to be her friend. That friend was her miracle in that moment as she was no longer alone, seemed to feel comforted and encouraged. This was a reminder to me how many miracles of love and life come thru our friendships, family, spouses, boyfriends, and girlfriends who in a moment transform darkness and loneliness into peace and hope. Most of all our God is ever present and uses these people who love us and we them to give miracles. If you listen closely you will hear the whispered words over the piano solo towards the end, "Save me Jesus."  We may say this in desperation, but His "saving" is available every minute.

 

Heart Note (Featuring Victoria & Grant Hansen, Mike Garson)

This is a really fun love song to have written. The music was inspired by an 1900s Russian romance folk song, "Dark Eyes." This is about the kind of unconditional love that is so deep. It is truly an indescribable gift to be known so well by someone that despite knowing all of our flaws, mistakes, and shortcomings, they see our heart and potential, and encourage us to be more. 

 

Rain (Featuring Grant & Victoria Hansen, Mike Garson)

This song developed during a time that I became acutely aware of the terrible price that Christ paid in horrible pain and death so that we might be free of guilt and shame, and in its place we are offered salvation, freedom, and forgiveness. What He did causes peace and love to rain down on us every day of our lives, even thru hardships.

 

Garden Walk (Featuring Mike Garson and Josh Cobb)

This song is inspired from one of my favorite hymns growing up. This is a reminder of how God loves to be with us, spend time with us, converse with us. There is delight in lingering in a garden with someone we love, where time slows, beauty surround, and there is that one special person’s full focus and they ours. God loves that kind of “Garden Walk” with us. 

 

The Throne (Featuring Marianne Haaland, Mike Garson)

This song was made as a combination of several Psalms and passages from Revelation which have been so comforting and assuring to me, especially in losses of loved ones. It is a reminder we are journeying toward a different country unlike the one that we live in. In the world that we are heading for Christ is on the throne and loss and sorrow will be absent.  Only gladness, worship, and gratefulness will exist for what He has done and what tremendous excitement there will be for what He has in store for us. Every race, gender, and culture that accepts Christ will join together to experience the love, peace, and belonging of God.

 

Reminiscing (Featuring Mike Garson)

This was a song without lyrics. It is a song about reminiscing. When we look back on seasons of our live we often feel not a singular emotion, but a variety of pain and joy, disappointment and pleasure, sadness and happiness, grand moments and mundane ones. Each time I listen to this song I think of something different in the past. While we may look back with regrets and lessons learned, reminiscing also helps us to look at the whole of our lives and extract the good, of giving love and being loved, growth and change, learning what we are capable of, and the ability to have a personal relationship with God. 

 

MIRACLES

 COME IN BOTH SMALL AND LARGE PACKAGES

 

The miracle of being in a foreign country and finding

family in another person.

 

The miracles God reveals to comfort in times of fear.

 

The miracle of walking alongside a friend or stranger when they need support or encouragement. We all have a need to be deeply known by another.

 

When we reach out to others we are giving a precious gift of wanting to find them and see them. I have also found when we give love away it returns in ways we can't imagine.

 

The greatest miracle of forgiveness offered by

the Prince of Peace who offered the ultimate price of peace.

 

The future miracle of hope for a “Heavenly Country” where there will be no more tears or sorrows.

 

“Be strong and courageous.  Do not tremble or be afraid.  For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”  Joshua 1:9

 

“For God so loved the WORLD that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”  John 3:16

 

“And He walks with me, and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own” (C. Austin Miles, 1912)

 

SPECIAL THANKS

 

To Mike Garson for working on each song with me from beginning to end to illuminate the musicality, inspiration and Spirituality of every note.  It was an extraordinary privilege to develop each piece by your side, and to have your passion and undeniable talent for the piano breathe life into this album.   

 

To Austin Creek for your engineering, recording and mixing expertise, as well as your wonderful vocal work.  Your skills are unmistakably evident and I am very grateful for the time and heart you put into this album.

 

It was a great pleasure to have a variety of talented vocalists share their voices in these songs—each unique and pertinent to the heart of Miracle. Thank you for your beautiful melodies.

 

To Stacey Stanley for interior album design and overall CD production. Torie Hamilton for design consultation, and Soren Iverson, for exterior album design. Kelsie and Daniel Salarda for inspiration for “Wandering Stranger.” Karin and Matthew Draper for continued support and inspiration. Mom and Dad, this would not be possible without you.

 

Dedicated to my husband, Larry:  The only place I want to be is where you are in the world.

 

Yes, support local businesses and friends!  "Undivided Heart" CD is available locally at Rejoice Bookstore at 27851 Via Fabricante in Mission Viejo, California.  Check out all my music and browse the beautiful new store. 

 

 

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