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Atlanta's Chris Tomlin Went From Sports Medicine to Award Winning Musician

  Atlanta's Chris Tomlin is an award winning musician, once named by TIME as the "most sung artist anywhere." He's won multiple Billboard, Dove awards, as well as a GRAMMY, and most recently he's a best-selling children's book author. His book, "Good Good Father" debuted this month at #4 on the Christian Booksellers' Top 50 list. He just released a new book, "Holy Roar."
  Musically, his latest CD, "Never Lose Sight," had its first single, "Home" comfortably in the top 5 of Billboard's Contemporary Christian charts for months.

  However, Tomlin didn't begin there, in fact he once was a college student on a completely different path, studying to be in sports medicine. We caught up with Tomlin at the release of "Good Good Father," to chat more about his latest projects (one he calls the riskiest yet), dreams coming to fruition, and the power of faith along the journey.

You have won a Grammy award, multiple Billboard awards, Dove awards, but you once were a college student studying something different than music. I think a lot of kids in their twenties get stuck in, 'this is what I think I should study, this is what I think I should do, but I really have this vision or dream that God's calling me somewhere else. So, what really was the
turning point for you in deciding to
pursue music full time?

  Chris: There were lots of things. One was a prayer from the 8th grade, and I said "God, never let me forget this prayer, that I prayed one night. God, whatever you want me to do for the rest of my life, I want to follow you."
 I didn't know what that is. I never prayed to be a songwriter. I didn't pray any of those things. I just prayed God, I want to be available to follow you. And, so when I was in college, I would hear that prayer. It wasn't that I was going down a wrong path, it was just like God had given me this gift, and was opening up all these doors, making it obvious that I had this gift for playing music, and leading people to worship God. Yet, I didn't know how to do that.
 I thought I would be in sports medicine, and I was like "I know how to do that." I can go to college, get a degree, and get a job. I don't know how to do music. How do you 'go do music? I don't have anyone in my family that does that. I don't know anybody, how do you do that? But, all these opportunities kept coming. I remember being on the phone with a friend one night. He doesn't even remember saying this, but he said it. I was telling him what I was doing, 'I think I'm going to be in sports medicine or go to physical therapy school.'

 He said, "Isn't that interesting, Chris. We always have our plans, and we don't think God will show up?" I was just looking at the phone, and that was all I needed to hear. I thought, I am doing my own plan right now. So again, it was risky, scary, taking steps.

  There were no record companies beating down my door, there were no publishers, there was no album. I didn't have a band, there was none of that. It was me, an acoustic guitar, and my 4-runner.

  I would play churches, wherever.

  It's been small steps. It's A to B, B to C, C to D, not A to Z. It's just small steps, and being faithful in those steps. (Tweet That)

What made you want to jump into the children's book world?

  A: Well, I have two little girls, and every night is reading books, so I'm in that world. I'm already thinking that way. I love stories, and I love seeing what connects with my little girls.

  Being a part of this song "Good Good Father," what a privilege and an honor. It is one of the greatest songs of a generation. So, Pat (Barrett) who wrote this song, I went to him, when we were recording it. I said, "Pat, the opening line, 'I've heard a thousand stories of what they say you're like.' That very first lyric. I think that's an amazing story for kids. I think we could really take this idea."
  And, at that point, I had a little girl, and I said, "what if we take this little girl, and she wants to know what God's like? She keeps asking all these different people...and they're giving her different answers, 'I think He's a warrior, I think He's a farmer, I think he's this,' because everyone has a different opinion on God, but all those things are true. Because He's a Father, He protects, He provides, all this stuff started coming about, how could we teach kids that God is so many things? And, obviously, the little girl turned into Tucker the bear, and it took a lot of different formations. And, obviously, the king is the Father. It's been amazing. I love this story."

  Don't tell anybody, but I think I had more fun writing this book, than writing my music, because it was so different."

Do you think you'll write another book?

  A: I don't know about that. I already talked to my wife about it, and she said, "you think you're going to do this?" I don't know, I really, really loved it, so we'll see how this does!

Your eleventh studio album, "Never Lose Sight came out October 21st. What do you feel like God has been specifically teaching you that maybe is different than past works?

~ Go to our other Chris Tomlin feature page,
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See Chris Tomlin's official video of "Home" -

 
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 A: The album is titled, "Never Lose Sight," and it's probably that. I think it's a great reminder to never lose sight of what all this is really about. The lyric says, "and if I never, never lose sight of this place," talking about the cross, "then I will never, never lose sight of your grace." And I think it's encouraging people, encouraging myself, in times when, maybe you're in a hard place, there is more unseen, than there is seen.

  Never lose sight of the grace of God. Never lose sight that God is a good Father. Never lose sight that, with God, all things are possible, and, hopefully, people catch that. That none of this exists without the grace of God. There's no music, there's no worship music, there's no hope connection to God without the grace of what God has done through his son Jesus. So, it's really that's simple, to never lose sight of that. That's the whole reason any of this exists!

There was another project, in theaters one day only, a unity project, with multiple artists, speakers, Louie Giglio, Max Lucado..

  A: Worship night in America! The response has been overwhelming, for these one night things, they tell me for people who do these one night things, they haven't seen this type of response before, already from tickets that have been sold, and all the theaters that are going to. It's really a night that's bringing the church together, in unity. Obviously it was right before the election, and that's purposeful, because we wanted in a moment to say,
  "Prayer is greater than politics" (Tweet That)
  That's kind of what I wanted to say, we are at a place of unrest, uncertainty. Where are we headed as a nation? Where are we headed in the world? There's so much fear in the world, and I wanted to say, the church's place has always been to stand and gather, and be people of faith in the midst of all that. I'm just really grateful to be in these nights, and to have all these people, to see what happens. I wish I could be in every theatre! We'll be connected across the nation.
 (
The 2017 Worship Night In America tour, kicks off April 4. Featuring Chris, Big Daddy Weave, Phil Wickham, Zach Williams, Mosaic MSC and Jason Barton, the tour will make 23 stops, mostly across the western US, filling arenas with thousands of voices lifted in praise.)
  "It is powerful when all streams of the church come together in an act of unity to worship and pray...that's the heart behind Worship Night In America," Tomlin said. "I pray these nights are filled with revival and restoration as we all join together proclaiming one name."

I read that it was a dream, that really woke you up in the middle of the night, and one that you felt God gave you. I wanted to see what that dream looked like, and I think a lot of people get stuck after they get that vision from God, because of fear. So, what did that dream look like, and maybe the first step you did once you got that dream?

  A: Well, the vision was really, you know it comes about that fast (snaps fingers), and I just saw it. I saw this arena filled with people. Then, I saw all my friends who are worship leaders, leading together, and we're all, 'hey, what's the next song? What are we going to sing? Hey, let's just sing together!' In my world, it's this band plays, then this band plays, then the headliner plays. The vision I felt, the dream I felt God gave me, was all of us together, there are no openers, there are no headliners, we're all together, bringing the church together, and I just saw it. I could just see it! I could hear it! I could hear the sound, and I thought, 'this is going to be amazing.'

  The steps, I think, are to sit with it for a while, and see in about a month or two, if that's still something burning in you. And it was, it never left. It just kept burning, like I want to..."

Kind of like that gut, soul stirring feeling?

  A: Yes, this is something I feel like I need to.

  It (pursuing dreams) usually has great risk involved, and probably the riskiest thing I've ever done in my life.
   Because, I would go on tour, and it's just the way they work, they have all this marketing. It's a formula, and it just works, you go to town, to town, to town, in your buses, and this is like two or three nights, and you're going into these venues that are huge and expensive. 'Is anyone coming? Is this going to work?'

  I would lay in bed with my wife, and I'd be like, 'you know babe, if this doesn't work, this is not going to be good for us, this is going to be hard.' She's like, 'this is going to be great, we just need to have faith, and this is going to be amazing!'"

  Dreams and visions, the right ones, I think have risk

  It's been amazing to see, and to see two, three years later, it's now going to be in theaters is pretty incredible!

I know you get asked this question a lot.
What advice you would give a young songwriter, or artist. I want to flip the question on it's head a bit, and ask, now that you are at this point, what would you tell your younger self, before all this has happened. Maybe even something you didn't realize about the industry?

  A: Wow! I would say, and I feel like I have done this, so that's a good thing! Stay true, just really stay true to who you are, and your authentic self, and your gut self. Especially for music, people come along...and the next cool thing comes along, and you think I've got to be more like them, because that's cool. I think if you're like, "no, this is how God made me, this is the lane I'm in, and this is my lane."
  I think from time to time, you'll want to do this thing. That's what I would tell my younger self, 'don't get distracted.

  This is the best thing ever, don't get distracted with all the hype of who you are, and all the criticism you're getting. You can look at all the hype and all the press, and think "ah, you're doing great!" Or, you can just read Itunes reviews, and think everybody hates me. Don't! That has nothing to do with what you're doing.

  Just be true to God, this what You want me to do, this is the lane You've given me, this is who You've made me to be, I'm going to do this like this, so that's probably what I would tell my younger self.

Thanks Chris Tomlin for being so honest, truthful, and candid in telling more of your journey as a dreamer with God-sized dreams!

Watch the video interview here
~ from ifyoucandreamitdoit.com ~

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Chris Tomlin
"
Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship"

Amazon Discount Price
as of 10/13/2017

Kindle - $9.99
Hardcover - $13.05


What does it mean to praise God? In the ancient world something extraordinary happened when God s people gathered to worship him. It was more than just singing; it was a declaration, a proclamation, a time to fully embody praise to God for who he is and what he has done. In fact, in the Psalms, there are seven Hebrew words that are translated into the English word praise each of which represents a different aspect of what it means to truly praise God. In Holy Roar, Chris Tomlin and Darren Whitehead share a fresh perspective from the worship practices of the ancient world. Grow in your understanding of praise as Darren offers unique insights. Be inspired as Chris shares how those insights take shape in the stories behind some of your favorite worship songs, including How Great Is Our God, We Fall Down, and Good Good Father. Whether for your own personal use or for use in your church small group, Holy Roar provides insight and encouragement to deepen your practice of praise. Follow along as Chris and Darren lead you to the throne room of God. Join their invitation. Become a part of the Holy Roar.

Chris Tomlin
(Never Lose Sight)


Amazon Discount Price
as of 8/3/2017

Streaming - Unlimited
MP3 Album - $9.49
Audio CD - $
10.31

Catch a glimpse of Christ's heart as Chris's songs lead you into deeper praise & worship! Giving voice to your hopes and dreams, "Good, Good Father"; "Jesus"; "Impossible Things"; "Home"; "He Lives"; "Glory Be"; "Come, Thou Font"; "Yes and Amen"; "First Love"; and others will open your eyes to God's comforting presence. Deluxe edition.

CHRIS TOMLIN
"
Good Good Father"

Amazon Discount Price
as of 8/3/2017

Digital Book - $6.99
Hardcover - $12.51
Audio Book - $
1.95


In Good Good Father by Chris Tomlin and Pat Barrett, Tucker is a little bear whose town is in trouble. Tucker seeks help from the King, and plans to bring Him a perfect gift. Along the way he encounters a variety of delightful and funny animals who each know one great thing about the King, but each of the animals has a different view of what makes Him so great. The advice confuses Tucker and he is still unsure of what to give as a gift. What if the King doesn't have time for him and what if He won't help? Just as Tucker is about to give up, the King runs to him offering love, acceptance, and help. A wonderfully illustrated story for young children ages 4 to 8 years, assuring them that God truly is a good, good Father and that they are all loved by Him.

Chris Tomlin
(Love Ran Red)


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Influential songwriter and worship leader Chris Tomlin follows the bestselling Burning Lights album with a twelve song set of breathtaking original anthems of worship and powerful praise. Love Ran Red includes the hit singles "Waterfall" and "Jesus Loves Me" plus "The Roar," "Greater," and the title track.

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Adore: Christmas Songs of Worship


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Chris Tomlin's exceptional songwriting takes center stage on this brand new Christmas collection. Blending timeless classics with new compositions, Adore features guest performances from David Crowder, Lauren Daigle, All Sons & Daughters, and others.

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(Even So Come:
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