Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Banana really likes Nicole C. Mullen's...

Banana is a big fan of Nicole C. Mullen's. I bought her Nicole's Christmas CD last week when I was at the Leadership Summit. Banana and I have seen her a number of times together. Once at the Target Center after a Minnesota Lynx game, once in Sioux Falls at Life Light Festival, and once at the Minneapolis Convention Center. I had to leave early for work from another music festival at the State Fairgrounds a few years ago, and missed seeing her a 4th time. Banana likes her especially because of her dancing and dancers. To state that my beloved Banana is into dance would not do her passion justice. So when I saw this article, I thought I would repost it just for her! Nicole C. Mullen's always puts on a good show, and is a really talented dancer. If she's touring in your area, check her out (and if you have children, especially daughters, take them too!)

Let all creation testify
Let this life within me cry
I know my Redeemer, He lives

One day Nicole C. Mullen was sitting in her music room, with her burgundy-colored Bible opened to the book of Job. She read about all the trials that befell him and how he was faithful nonetheless. And then she saw a familiar phrase that jumped out at her in a new way: "I know that my Redeemer lives" (Job 19:25).

"What a statement of faith," Mullen said to herself. At the time, she was struggling with personal trials of her own, but they paled in comparison to what Job faced. "If he could still proclaim his faith in the midst of misery," she thought, "then I should be proclaiming it, too." And that was the beginning of her song "Redeemer."

When she recorded her self-titled debut album, she included the song, which quickly went to the top of the Christian music charts. Its thoughtful lyrics, which celebrate the glory of God as revealed in creation and in the empty grave of Christ, won her Dove Awards for both Song of the Year and Song-writer of the Year in 2001. Mullen has since won many other honors (including Female Artist of the Year at this year's Dove Awards), released other hits, and sold more than 1 million albums. But it's still her heartfelt ode to God, "Redeemer," that moves concertgoers to tears when she sings it.

"If the Lord doesn't anoint it, it's just words," she says about the song. "I give Him the credit."

In spite of the accolades, though, Mullen is in an ongoing struggle to get her singles aired on Christian radio stations that, for whatever reason, tend not to regularly play music by nonwhite artists.

But she refuses to become bitter. "No matter what I'm going through, no matter what the issue, I know the Lord is there to see me through," she says. And she hopes everyone who hears "Redeemer" and her other songs experiences that reality, too.

Many people have told the singer that they've found hope through the message of "Redeemer." "We live in a hurting world," she says. "All of us struggle with health, money, natural disasters, and personal problems. I want people who hear my songs to know that Christ, though He is high above us, lowers Himself to be with us and in us."

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