Laura Story sees 'Blessings' beyond awards
Story's song came from her own personal struggle understanding God's plan after learning that her husband had a brain tumor early in their marriage. "Blessings," which she wrote about two years ago, was her way of working through the difficulties in her life and learning that God does not always immediately come to the rescue.
"It really was just my own process of coming to terms with the fact that sometimes God allows things in this life that we don't understand," Story told Baptist Press. "They may look like roadblocks in our lives but when we step back, trying to find the perspective, [we] see them as possible means for us growing in our faith, possible means for God showing us something about Himself or something about ourselves that we wouldn't see any other way."
The honors Story received in recent months for her song Blessings and her album of the same name include:
-- Top Christian song at the Billboard Music Awards
-- A Grammy for Best Contemporary Christian Song
--Song of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Song of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year and Songwriter of the Year at the Dove Awards
In addition to her current album, Story wrote the popular song "Indescribable" sung by Chris Tomlin.
Although Story said she -- like most other Christian artists -- does not do her work for awards, she noted that she is glad her story of struggle was shared with others through several notable venues.
"As far as the awards of this world, it has been helpful as far as getting the message out about God's work in my life," she said. "So we celebrate that more than we do any metallic object I might be handed on a stage. It's certainly so much more about wanting God to take the platform and His message being known in our lives."
The song's message is not just a positive spin on life's hardships, however. Story said Blessings delves into the idea that sometimes health, wealth or prosperity is not what God wants for His followers. She poses this question: "What if there are character things that He wants to do in our hearts that are more valuable than any of the riches that this life can offer us?"
In addition to being a singer-songwriter, Story is a worship leader at Perimeter Church in Atlanta. Most Sundays, Story leads worship there, but she said she is thankful Perimeter also allows her to minister at other churches and get a sense of the atmosphere of the larger church.
"I definitely think the local church is still God's plan A," she said. "Anything I can do to encourage my local church and pour in here but also encourage other people in their local churches, that's what I really feel called to do." Story is doing just that, investing in her local church while also going on the road with her husband and band once or twice a week to encourage other believers across the nation.
Story published a 30-day devotional -- also titled "Blessings" -- based on the award-winning song. She also is planning to record a new CD this fall and join a tour in December called 12 Gifts.
But those are not the biggest of her upcoming plans. Story and her husband are expecting their first child later this year.
"We're excited and just grateful that God gives us so many opportunities just to minister and grateful He's blessing us with a baby to add to our dream, add to our story," she said.
Whitney Jones is a writer for Baptist Press. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress), Facebook (Facebook.com/BaptistPress ) and in your email ( baptistpress.com/SubscribeBP.asp).