I was single for much longer than I’ve been married. And when l was single, there was a certain part of my job that was harder than anything else. I have always loved being onstage. It’s exciting when hundreds or even thousands of people are singing along and having a good time.
In the early days of my career, I had moments when being onstage was where I felt the most conﬁdent. I felt important and like I mattered, and when I walked offstage to go sign autographs, I felt as though people cared about me and liked me.
Those experiences were amazing—and they still are! They’re not the source of my hope or joy, but I can truly say that starting out as a full-time artist, I did ﬁnd my hope in the loud moments of feeling loved and appreciated.
But then I would get in the car or the tour bus and go to the hotel. My ears would still be ringing from all of the noise, so I would shower with no music playing, or even a podcast, and then I would sit, with no makeup on and my hair all over the place, in sweatpants, alone. I would be in a hotel room by myself in absolute silence.
By the time I get off work it’s usually one or two o’clock in the morning. Most of my friends are asleep, soon to be getting ready for their normal jobs. And while I know I could call my parents anytime, they’re still not going to be on the phone with me 24/7. In those moments, it was just me. And the quiet.
I want to make sure that I note that in my singlehood, and even now, the idea of messy hair, sweatpants, and a quiet room after a productive and enjoyable evening at work sounds incredible. And one of my favorite things about my husband is that he loves date nights with sweatpants and pizza just as much as I do. There’s nothing wrong with a quieter evening. It’s actually beautiful. But the issue is when the noise is put on a pedestal, and the quiet begins to feel like a downgrade.
What are you ﬁghting for?
What is your purpose?
When I was too captivated by crowds, my answer would have been “people.” I was beginning to ﬁnd my purpose in bringing joy to other people’s lives. And when I was in a quiet room and couldn’t see that joy on people’s faces, I felt like I had lost my sense of purpose.
I had to start being intentional about focusing on the answer to the question, “Jamie Grace, what are you ﬁghting for? What is your purpose?”
I started to realize that it wasn’t my purpose to bring people joy. Instead, it was my purpose to live a life full of God’s joy, in hopes of directing people to the Source.
If life were a screenplay, we’re the director. God is the Source—the Writer. He speaks ﬁrst, then we can work. Navigating through every day, bringing His message to life as we tell the stories He’s written. Then He follows through as the Editor and Producer, correcting us along the way and making the ﬁnal calls about every moment, as He has the ﬁnal say.
There’s a signiﬁcant difference in living a life to give to others and living a life that directs people to the One who is the greatest at giving all things. Our goal should be to direct. Not to create. Because there is a Creator available to all of us, who creates in a way much greater than we ever could. And when He gives us the privilege to be a part of those designs, we know that we have found our purpose.
What are you ﬁghting for?
The more I surround myself with the real answer to that question, the less those quiet moments have a negative effect on me. I still have an incredible time onstage and signing autographs, and I hope I get to have this job for a really long time! But now when I step away from the sound and the lights, I know that my purpose remains—l haven’t left it on the stage.
There is so much joy in performing in a coffee shop, a church, a theater, or even an arena. But please, take no offense to this if you’ve ever been in the audience—my purpose can’t be for the crowd. Because when they are gone, what am I living for then? I had to learn that my purpose in the arena had to be the same as my purpose outside of the arena, so that once I left it, I still had joy and felt complete.
Hear more of Jamie’s journey this Tuesday on LIFE TODAY. This is an excerpt from Finding Quiet by Jamie Grace. Copyright ©2020 by Jamie Grace. Published by Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Used by permission.