As one of the panelists for Inauguration Day’s Symposium on Faith and the Arts, Sara Groves confessed to having failed music theory while at college; for a time after that she despaired of being able to make a “high” calling of her love of music. But in time she began to “lean into the poetry and the words God gives me; I began to learn to make that ‘high,’ to make that excellent.” The ineffable can be, of course, ineffable—“When I come at things full on, I tend to destroy them; sort of like pinning a butterfly to a block of wood.”
Though a solo artist, she does not live a solo life. She and her husband are deeply involved with Art House, an organization that gives “creatives”—who often work alone—a place to gather and collaborate. They are currently investing in launching Art House in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Of the communal aspect of her music she says, “God has me living things out on a very personal level; then I can share that with others.”
Her ninth studio project, Fireflies and Songs, is her most candid yet (and also Christianity Today’s Album of the Year for 2009). “I wanted Fireflies and Songs to feel more like friends and I are talking at Don Pablo’s over nachos and cheese,” she says. “I’m trying to be more confessional, and I hope these songs encourage other people to live confessionally.”
Many admirers from the Gordon community turned out Friday night for her free concert in A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel, including the Lindsays. “It was great seeing so many students and community members at Sara’s concert,” Rebecca said. “Michael and I are honored that she would come. Her music knocks on the doors of our souls and compels us to think more deeply and to live more faithfully. It was evident from those around me that her music, indeed, did just that.”
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