Award-winning singer Natalie Grant pens a new book called, Finding Your Voice, and reveals that it was not until she lost her singing ability that she was able to see beyond the shallow desires of life and truly find her real voice.
According to Grant, Finding Your Voice is meant to help others "find their God-given voice" in this world filled with noise and compromise. The singer says she never anticipated to write a book until Zondervan approached her with the idea, and although Grant originally declined the offer, after a few days God began to give her an idea for something He wanted her to write about, leading to Finding Your Voice.
"So many people define themselves by what they do, they define themselves by their successes but really so many of us define ourselves by our struggles. I sing, that's what I do, but it's not who I am. It was losing my voice that actually helped me find my true voice," Grant told The Christian Post.
The Seattle, Washington native said many people mistaken the book for being about singing but she says it goes beyond that and is instead about finding one's voice of purpose.
"In everybody's life there comes a point where the surface will crash and burn, eventually something will happen that turns your world upside down. It even happened to me. I built my identity in my voice and I could say that I was using my platform for faith-based music but I got caught up in the chase of, 'Where am I on the chart? What's happening with my career,' and that's even worse when you do it under the guise of Christianity as your platform. It's nauseating honestly and it's hard to admit but it's the truth," Grant confessed.
In her book she talks about a time at the height of her success where she lost her singing voice and was forced to find her true calling in life. Grant admits that she was striving and watching her success and it was not until her left vocal cord ruptured and she was told she might never sing again, that her eyes were really opened.
"That's the thing that made me go, 'There has to be more.' It was losing my voice that helped me find it," she stated.
The popular gospel singer now runs an anti-trafficking organization named Abolition International. It was back when she lost her voice that she first learned about human trafficking. Despite having no voice, the mother of three girls decided to go on a trip to India and learn about the prevalent crime. It was that experience that changed her life and she did not only get her singing voice back but is now an advocate for sexual slavery. All she could do was listen and that helped her find her true purpose.
Grant went on to explain that it's very important to know the things you open yourself up to. She said social media can be a very tricky thing because so much in life is defined by outside influences.
"Sometimes it's so deep in your subconscious that you don't even realize. It takes you off course, it makes you focus and strive for things we didn't even know we needed. Even as Christians, we're listening to podcast, looking for messages and interpretations of the Bible, because it's all so accessible to us. But they begin to take the place of really leaning on God, learning how to hear His voice," she clarified.
The author admits that she never heard God speak to her audibly but getting to know Him and what His word says about her has helped her realize how explicable and relevant the word of God is to everyday life, right now. She highlighted that the inner circle of Jesus also struggled with a lot of the same things people struggle with today, such as insecurities and fears.
"We can find so much of ourselves on those pages. I think it's very important to understand that in order to find your voice you have to learn how to recognize His. First and foremost – silence the lies in your life, silence the lies of what culture is telling you. The only way to do that is to tell yourself the truth and the only way to learn the truth is to press into who He is and to who He says that you are," Grant said of reading the Bible.
She added,"That's so important for this generation because the generations to follow will get farther and farther away from knowing how to recognize the voice of their creator."
The Nashville resident went on to say that looking at the life of Jesus' disciples has also inspired her greatly because they were all misfits and unqualified but still God chose them.
"It puts a confidence in my life to know that in the midst of my brokenness that that's the kind of people He chooses to use," she noted.
As revealed in Finding Your Voice, Grant admits that she too has struggled with silencing negative voices. In the book she provides tips on how she has silenced them.
"Number one for me is you have to get honest with yourself. Honest about where you're at and what you're striving for. I've had to unfollow some stuff on my social media. Stuff that made me feel less than and brought out the worst in me, not the best. No one else can do that for you. That's something that you have to do," Grant shared with CP. "For so many people that means unfollowing the things that bring out the unhealthy and then finding things to follow that bring out the healthy. Replacing that with things that encourage us and strengthen us and build us up."
"No. 2 of course is spending time in God's word and more than that – I'm not a big believer that you have to spend a certain amount of time every day or that there's some hard written rule about having a specific quiet time in your life – [But] the point is, make time because if you don't you'll never get over the hurdles in your life. It's just really shutting everything out and being quiet, reading the word and just letting it speak to you," she continued.
The 44-year-old said she also surrounds herself with the Word of God by writing down scripture everywhere she can.
"I find in the word about what He says about me, what He thinks about me – cherished, valued, worthy, worth it, qualified. I write those things down and I stick them all over. I stick them on my mirror; I stick them on my car and I read them over my life."
Grant insisted that she's not a big believer in the power of thinking or any of that "hokus pokus" but she said there is something to be said about speaking the truth.
"When you write those things down and stick them everywhere, wherever you look, wherever you're living, and just speak them over your life, those things go from just a spoken word to going into your head and into your heart. So when things come you have a reservoir of truth to draw from," she concluded.
Finding Your Voice is now available everywhere books are sold. For more information visit nataliegrant.com