To the world, I’m ordinary. Nothing too special, just another person out there, living and breathing the same air as everyone else. But God thinks otherwise. He calls me His; I am His child. I mean the world to Him. That’s nothing I’ll ever be able to wrap my mind around… It’s mind baffling! Now you’re probably asking, “What does that have to do with Christian Music?” Well, let me tell you.

When I was little, my parents listened to worship music, we went to church every Sunday, and we prayed every night before bed. Then, I got older. I had to go to school. Things at home stayed the same, but my other things around me didn’t. It grew. I have always been different. I’ve always been the “Jesus Freak” – no, really. The kids at school called me Jesus Freak when they passed me by in the halls. It used to really bother me. But that was before my life changed, I was introduced to DC Talk’s ‘Jesus Freak’, and I finally grasped the concept of Christian Music.

I obviously can’t thank just one person for helping me see from a new perspective. Every time I go through this whole story in my head I realize at least five more people took part in changing my life. It was a whole string of amazing events – events that rocked my world. There were the bullies, the adults, the musicians. A lot of people, guys.

I won’t bore you with the details. (But if you ever want to know, just ask!) Pretty much, I got bullied everyday, developed anxiety about going to school, and had this divine turning point in my life where I basically had the opportunity to see a glimpse into how my life was gonna end up if I went the easy way out – giving in to the many pressures of the world. I chose to stay on the hard path, the one that would be slim and where Jesus was. It was anything but easy. I lost all of my friends. (But what’s the point in having “friends” who don’t have your back?) I stopped hanging out with a lot of people. The boy I liked turned his back on me.

But then I got a few friends. I got to start hanging out with cool people again – people so cool I never would have dreamt I’d get to hang out with them. I realized there is SO much more to life than chasing after middle school crushes. Things got better. They’re still getting better. A lot better than they ever were. But you wanna know where the whole “Christian Music” part comes in?

It was there all along. It was when TobyMac and Toddie Funk (Toby’s bass guitar player) came out and talked to third grade Maddy about how they cared about me and told me about Camp Electric. It was when KJ – 52 rapped about forgiveness through my headphones. It was when I would come home from a day of being ridiculed at school and TobyMac would be on the radio singing “Hold On.” It was when Britt Nicole sang “Headphones” live and afterwards prayed over me. It was a lot of little things that have shaped my whole life. Christian Music is still there for me.

I know it’s a constant war in the music business that Christian Music is just music; it’s the people behind the songs that are Christian. I understand that. I really do. But I think that Christian Music is really what it sounds like – people showing Christ through music. Why would you call it anything else?

I want to make music that inspires people the way that all of these artists inspired me. I want to be used by God to change lives through music. I don’t want God to feel like He gave me these gifts and talents and this story of mine for me to just tuck it in the corner. I feel like everyone needs to be aware of their talents and use them. Even if we fail, we need to be a light to people. Maybe that’s just shining for one person, I don’t know, but I believe in Christian Music and letting it shape lives. I will always believe in it. I am who I am today because God showed Himself to me through music and people and a great big story He wrote for me before I was born.

Maddy

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