Natalie Grant's debut self-titled album "Natalie Grant" turns 20 this year! The album released via Benson Records in 1999 featured songs such as "I Am Not Alone," "There's a God" and "At Your Feet." Grant recalls: "Twenty years ago today, my first ever album was released into the world."
Grant first started in contemporary Christian music when she auditioned for the traveling music group Truth. Later she moved to Nashville, Tennessee to pursue her solo career. There she signed with Benson Records in 1997 and began working on her self-titled debut which was released in 1999. The album did not produce any charted hits or charted. It was more the creation of Grant's recording company. Grant confesses: "At that time, many other people had control of most of the creative process, from songs to imaging. I was just happy for the opportunity."
Not long after the album's release, the label, Benson Records, folded. Grant continues: "But when that record company went out of business and I was confused and broken-hearted, I had a choice to make. Quit, or allow God to develop in me the fortitude, strength, resilience and perseverance it takes to walk out His call. He's been faithfully developing those things in me over the last 20 years."
"Here are a few other things I've learned along the way: People's opinions will change, and change often. One moment, I was "over before I started". The next moment I was an "overnight success" (haha yeah right.) I've learned that chasing people's approval is always a dead end."
Despite the setbacks, this season was rife with life-transforming lessons for Grant. "I've learned that faithfulness isn't easy, but it's always fruitful. I've learned that the call of God on your life won't always make sense to others. I've learned that it is possible to be a fully devoted and committed mother, and also unashamedly committed to a career/ministry "outside the home." I've learned that vulnerability is worth the risk. I've learned that the spotlight will never be easy to manage - that I must continually surrender myself, my ego and my agenda at the feet of Jesus. I've learned most of all, that Jesus is the greatest prize. Using the voice He gave me to lead people in to His presence is the greatest privilege of my life."
She concludes: "PS: 20 years is nothing on God's timeline. I'm just getting started. Also big shout-out to my manager since day one @mitchellsolarek. After this first record many people moved on. You did not."