Randomly out of the blue Allie text Zach a voice memo of her singing one of her favorite JohnnySwim songs. She said she just felt like she was suppose to send it to him. Zach was pleasantly surprised to hear how good it was and the raw potential she had. Ever since he has been so encouraging, just letting her know that he sees a true gift in her voice. It didn't take long for those comments to root in Allie's heart and start growing at a rapid pace. Within 2 months she had developed this huge passion for singing - even saying she wants to be a worship leader like Zach one day and attend the worship program at Liberty University for college. One of my prayers for Allie in 2015 was for her to express a deep passion and interest in something and I was shocked to see this come out of her so quickly.
In February, when she was attending student ministry at Perimeter (for the very first time I might add), we happened to walk in on her singing (in full voice) to her new small group in an effort to encourage another girl who suffered from stage fright too. We were BLOWN AWAY that she had the confidence to do this when just months before she would have never done that. Our hearts started filling with pride as this beautiful young lady was blossoming with confidence and boldness before our eyes.
And then came spring break and the magical night on the balcony (read about it here) and seriously it seemed like everything changed. We really are just beginning to see what amazing gifting God has given her and it is just so exciting, especially when we never dreamed it would be something she would share with Zach.
Fast forward to yesterday... and Allie sang on a stage - by herself - at a festival - for the very first time. This girl wastes no time! HAHA No joining a choir or singing a solo somewhere... she went from 0 to 60 and rocked THREE SONGS in front of a gathering of her local community in Alabama. And did I mention she is 14?! Who had this confidence and maturity and composure at 14?! She is one of a kind I tell ya. Wild horses could not have kept us from being there for this monumental event!
I had prayed and prayed and prayed that we would have good weather and not get rained out (we've had such a rainy spring). I am grateful to report that it was a PERFECT day - clear blue skies and a cool 70 degrees.
I also brought Allie a basket of goodies because... well, I couldn't miss an opportunity to make something special for her.
Gift basket included fresh flowers, some snobby singer water (Fiji haha), and some of her favorite brownies packaged individually so she could share with friends at the festival if she wanted or just take them home.
Zach, his mom, and I all included cards too. Zach's was adorable:
Zach got there early, coordinated with the folks running the event, and got everything set up for her so all she had to do was walk up and start singing. (Thank goodness for a Daddy who has done stuff like this for years!) I will admit (unashamedly) to taking tons of photos/video while Allie was singing. I felt like a crazy vulture circling it's prey lol, but I didn't care. I wasn't about to miss a second of this!
Getting ready to go, sound-checking with "the sound man"
Here's a little snippet of her singing! (I was terrified of running out of space on my phone so I tried to keep the video clips short.) Mind you she has never sung on a stage, on a mic, by herself and has no vocal training. Sky's the limit for this girl! :)
We could not have been more proud. Naturally we expect her to take baby steps, but she is taking LEAPS and we are just in awe of her - of who she is, of who she wants to be, and how each day we see more and more of who God is calling her to be. Gosh I love these two humans!
Oh - and I can't post about this event and not mention the lemonade. The straight from heaven, blessed by the spirit, nectar of the gods. HA! I mean.. this was THE BEST lemonade ever and only $2! I could not shut up about it because... well... LEMONADE. Ladies that made it - you are amazing!
We hung around for a little bit before needing to get back to Atlanta, but we could not leave without a proper family pic!
Even though it was a loooong day (an 8 hr drive round trip) we would not have missed it for the world! We'd travel a million miles if it meant showing Allie how much we love her, believe in her, and are always in her corner. I think all three of us are simply giddy about this upcoming summer together. We know it's gonna be a big one and I can't wait to post another video of her singing after weeks of working with Zach. It's gonna be nothing short of epic!