Before she was writing songs and singing for an ever-increasing fan base, Brooke Robertson's plan was to become an occupational therapist.
Although God had other ideas for her life, Brooke did receive her Bachelor's in Kinesiology, which, when you look at her life, is pretty perfect for the 23-year-old independent singer.
Kinesiology, by definition, is the study of body movement. Robertson's unexpected path is a case study in how God moves His body right where He wants them, and her newly released Have My Heart EP was made to move others with truths about God's love and faithfulness.
On the verge of what is shaping up to be a watershed 2018 for Robertson, I tossed some questions at her, to get to know a voice we'll be hearing a lot from soon.
When did you first start singing? Where were some places you'd shared your talent growing up?
When I was 12 years old, I started singing for our youth group at my home church. That was a huge step for me. Every fifth Sunday of the month, our church got together to share their talents. I was asked to sing one song at fifth Sunday. This was the first time I sang in front of the entire church. Shaking with nerves, I sang. I can remember the feeling after I finished the song. It was a feeling of relief and confidence as I received my first standing ovation. From there, I was asked to join the worship team. Being so young and timid, I didn't sing anywhere except my church, but it was a start.
Your story is one of divine intervention. Talk about the plans you had before God intervened and got you on your current path.
For years I had my mind set on graduate school for occupational therapy. I went to college at Southeastern Louisiana University and received my bachelors in Kinesiology. The job I was at gave me great letters of recommendations for school. My GPA met the requirements. I struggled with a test that was required, but I was encouraged to keep trying to apply to schools.
I felt like this is what I should be doing, so I tried and tried. I didn't want to give up what I thought I was meant to do. That's what I thought I wanted at the time, and that is what seemed the most logical. As I continued to be persistent in what I wanted, it seemed as though nothing was working out the way I planned. All schools that I applied to denied me.
When your friend asked you to record in his studio, your initial thought was: "I'm not good enough." Why'd you feel that way, and how important was it that these other people spoke into your talent?
At the time when I was first asked to record at my friend's home studio, I was only involved in the worship team. It was something I did because I had been doing it for years. I loved singing, but I did not think anything else about it. Still having my mind set on school, I didn't think I was good enough to record in a studio. It seemed like a very big deal for me. I didn't believe in myself. If it wasn't for my friend who believed in me, I wouldn't have recorded. I wouldn't be where I am with music today. I wouldn't have been able to walk through the doors God has opened.
Then a producer, Jeremy Holderfield (of Seventh Day Slumber) happened to discover you and want to write some songs with you. How shocking was that, and what did you hear from God in that process?
When I was connected with Jeremy Holderfield, I was taken back a little. It almost didn't seem real. I needed time to pray about this. At that time, I was only doing cover videos, which was a huge step for me there. After a lot of praying, God spoke to me. I needed to surrender everything over and trust that he has something great in store for my life! I needed to stop trying to control everything.
Then what happened? What were some big decisions you had to make?
I had to make that decision to abandon my plans and trust in God's. That meant taking the risk to go to Nashville and write songs. To many it seemed like an out of the box decision. To me, it was my first step of faith to what God has planned. I took that risk, but I knew that God wouldn't set me up for failure. This opportunity was for a reason. When we get so caught up in our plans, we miss out on what God has. I trusted that these were steps God was allowing me to take so he could open up even bigger opportunities.
Now here we are, getting to know you with your new EP. How many of these themes found their way into these four songs?
My experiences that I went through made their way in my songs. The point in my life where I realized I had to surrender and give my whole heart to God. Not forgetting what I had went through because it showed me where God was leading me. Knowing that you are loved even through your biggest struggle. Knowing that God isn't going to let us fall. He is what we can hold on to. All four of these songs are part of my story!
How did you pick these four songs? What are they trying to say?
When I went to write last January, I wanted these songs to reflect on what I had been through. Through my experiences, I wanted to encourage others who are going through struggles and situations. I wanted to share my story and testimony through my lyrics. To sum up the EP, whether you are struggling with being confident, going through a tough situation, or struggling with trusting God, know that God is going to give you the strength and confidence to overcome. He knows what you need, when you need it, but you have to trust His direction.
How often are you performing these days?
Since I started this process, I've been getting invites to sing at a lot of churches, festivals, and places I never dreamed God would take me. I'm looking forward to everything God has in store for me in 2018.
What are your dreams and goals now?
I'm wanting to walk through every door that God opens for me: touring, writing, recording, ministering to people through this platform.
What is your mission as best you can tell?
My mission is to show everyone the love of God the way I have experienced. Through my music and my ministry, I want to be able to lead others to know Jesus. That is what it's all about to me. To be a Joshua for Jesus.
Any new year's resolutions?
I want to see God in a whole new way this year. I also would like to beat my record of road trips I took to Tennessee last year. This year will be a busy year with songwriting for me, so I think I have a chance!
What's next for you? How can people be praying for you?
This year will be a very exciting year! A year ago, if someone would have asked me where I would be, I would have never imagined where I am today. He has proved to me that surrender and trust opens doors.
I've been talking to a label about putting out a full-length album this year or next year. I will be taking a lot of trips to Nashville to write new music! We are planning an acoustic tour for early this year. Also, Jeremy Holderfield is helping me look at different tours. I am excited to see what God has in store!
Prayers for growth as I grow in faith and as an artist!
Marcus Hathcock is the Executive Editor of NewReleaseToday.com, a husband to Savannah, father of three and a worship leader living in Boise. He has released an EP, Songs For Tomorrow, and occasionally blogs at mheternal.com.
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