alliknowcoversmallI wrote the song “Heal Me” with my good friends and songwriting partners Ben Bauman and Randy Thomas. When I was putting out my first solo project, an industry insider advised me to not include the song on my CD; he believed it was too “dark” and that nobody wanted to hear a song that admitted such brokenness.

But I believed in the message of “Heal Me” so I chose to record it anyway. I’m glad I did, because (much to my surprise and gratitude) I’ve seen God use it to encourage a lot of people.

For example, I once met a lady who believed God used the song to save her life. After losing her husband to cancer, she had been deeply depressed and was going to kill herself.  While pacing her house trying to decide what method to use, for some reason she put my CD on. She heard the opening lines of “Heal Me” (“this is the way that You find me / broken in pieces on my knees”) and sat down in front of her stereo. For hours she just kept hitting “repeat.” Listening to “Heal Me” over and over that day, she found the courage to get help. Eventually, she became a counselor helping hurting people just like herself.

We all know shame and brokenness – and none of us will get through life without becoming acquainted with loss and grief. Thank God for our Savior and healer, Jesus.

Please share this video with your friends – via email, Facebook, Twitter, whatever.

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I’ve had a nice long break from shows (and blogging and basically everything that has to do with being a “working artist”) . . . but it’s time to get the ball rolling again!

Back-2-work-imageI’m an independent artist, and the days are long past when I had management and a booking agent and publicity people, so I do it all. Not all of this is exactly enjoyable, but I only get to do the stuff I love (songwriting, recording records, touring) if I do the work of booking shows, etc.

So I’m looking out over 2015 and thinking about where to start. Got any suggestions? I would love to hear them!

I definitely plan to have some full-band shows and some smaller, acoustic gigs. There will also be a Christmas tour later in the year.

So what do y’all think? Want me to come to your town?

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The good folks at New Release Tuesday (which is an amazing website for fans of Christian music) invited me to participate in a Christmas music giveaway! Along with songs from artists like Jason Gray, Aaron Shust and John Schlitt (of Petra fame), get a free copy of my recording of “Hark The Herald Angels Sing” by clicking below and following the prompts. Super easy, and free!

UPDATE: (These free downloads are no longer available. Christmas is over y’all!)

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iTunesLogoPre-order my new Christmas CD Peace On Earth from iTunes and get a download of “Hark The Herald Angels Sing” RIGHT NOW!

And while you’re there . . . feel free to click on “ratings and reviews” and click all 5 stars to show some love! Then “write a review” to tell the world about my music. It’s easy! And it’s a big, big help.

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CyberHoboMy Kickstarter campaign will end on Tuesday, November 11 at 4:00 pm (mountain time), so if you want to get in on some of the sweet (and exclusive) rewards . . . well, you’d better hustle! You know the basics:

– My new CD Peace On Earth is almost done
– I need YOUR HELP to cover the costs
– You can get cool stuff for helping out (starting at $10 for the early download)
– The fundraiser DEADLINE is TUES Nov 11 at 4:00 pm (mountain)

If you want to help (you do, right?), please don’t hesitate. Go to my Kickstarter page right now, before you miss Tuesday’s deadline!

I can’t wait for you all to hear this record – I love it and I believe you will too. In fact, just click HERE to hear a quick pre-release sampler of songs from the CD!

Thanks again for your help – don’t forget to visit Kickstarter now!

Grace, peace and good vibes,

Posted in CDs, Christmas, Music, Special Offers | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments


2014-11-02 20.40.57Julie: “Can you pick up some cream cheese for my Alfredo sauce recipe?”

Me: “Sure. Need anything else?”

Julie: “Well . . . we could use some salad veggies. And fruit. Maybe ice cream?”

Me: “Okay, I’d better make a note.”

(. . . 30 minutes later . . .)

Me: “Honey, I’m home.”

Julie: “Where’s the cream cheese?”

Me: “Uhhhhhh . . . I didn’t write that down.”

And that’s why I always write everything down.

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FallRigganRanchI love fall. The cool temperatures, the autumn colors, the rain (yes, I actually enjoy being outside in the rain). But in truth, I have a love-hate relationship with this time of year.

I was in my yard on Friday and snapped this picture. You can see a red leaf maple, some poplars, one of our sheep and the horse corral in the background. What you can’t see is about 17 other trees – all of which are dropping leaves like crazy.

Raking leaves. This is the part about fall I hate. It’s also an excellent reason to have children.

It’s possible to simultaneously experience two distinctly different feelings about something. I love fall, but hate the hours spent raking leaves. And I love ice cream, but hate stepping on the scale the next morning.

So when I think about the cross, it’s heartbreaking to remember what Jesus had to endure. And yet . . . I also experience joy. And gratitude. I’ve been forgiven.

Last year, I recorded the classic hymn “O Sacred Head Now Wounded” and wrote an additional chorus called “How Can I Thank You.” I’ve always been moved by the lines “What language shall I borrow / to thank Thee, dearest Friend.” In the context of a song about His suffering and death, that line leaps out at me; there are no words sufficient to express our mixed feelings – regret, sorrow, joy, relief . . . and gratitude.

The cross is both terrible and strangely beautiful.

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Well, it’s official. If you’ve heard rumors that I’m recording a new Christmas CD, I can confirm that, yes, my tenth solo project will be entitled PEACE ON EARTH.

I’m really happy with how the record is turning out, and I need your support now to get it finished! Visit my Kickstarter Page right now and see how you can help!

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One of my favorites from the new “Deep Roots” CD is the simple hymn “My Jesus I Love Thee.” It was written by a 16 year old young man shortly after he found Christ, and there’s something so beautiful about these simple and sincere lyrics:

I love Thee because Thou has first loved me
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus ‘tis now

For my arrangement, I wanted the music to reflect the simplicity of the lyric, so it’s not a busy track. In the second verse, I decided to use some minor chord substitutions, which I think darkened things appropriately for those more somber words. And of course, the lovely harmonies provided by Rachel Lampa added something special. This may be my favorite track from the record, to be honest.

We love because he first loved us.
1 John 4:19 (ESV)

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In addition to my singer/songwriter gig, I’m also a worship pastor at Eagle Christian Church in the Boise, Idaho area. Periodically we host “Night of Worship” events, and the next one will take place on Sunday September 14 at 6:30 pm. If you’re nearby, please join us! And if you can’t make it, you can stream it at the ECC website.

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