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Glorifying God and Encouraging Others.
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Hannah Schaefer Interview
When Hannah contacted us a little while ago about an interview, I was really excited! At nineteen, Hannah is pursuing a career in the Christian music industry. Her testimony is about trusting God and following His plan, even when it’s different from ours. Hannah’s pop sound is reminiscent of Britt Nicole, with a deep, catchy sound. You’ll fall in love with her heart for God, her rich vocals, and her message of faith in tough times.
When did you first discover an interest in Christian music?
I have always been very faith-filled. I recognized my identity in Christ at a very young age and have been growing ever since. As a young girl, I always knew that Jesus had my heart and the stage was where I belonged. It only made sense to combine the two together! I grew up singing and leading my church in song, but my career didn’t become a reality until about two weeks after my high school graduation party. That was when it really hit me that my calling was to pursue becoming a Christian artist. I just knew that was what I was supposed to do.
Lately, God has been working in your life in ways you haven’t really expected! What is your testimony about trusting God, even when His plan is different from ours?
Both of my singles, “All the Way” and “Go,” have an underlying theme of trust. I am so passionate about trusting our Lord because trust is what made me into who I am and brought me where I stand today. After high school, I was prepared to attend Indiana University to study Vocal Performance with a scholarship. It wasn’t until after my graduation party that I realized the Lord had completely different plans for me. I knew He was calling me to become a Christian artist, so how could I say no? I made a difficult decision and gave up my plans and scholarship at IU. Then I leapt into an unknown future with God. I just have to say it was the best decision of my life! I’m not trying to deter anyone from going to college; that’s not my point. My point is this: I trusted Him and put all my faith into Him, and He has never failed me—just like He will never fail you. I am passionate about trusting God and wrote about it because so many people are hesitant to let it all go. I want everyone who listens to be touched and encouraged by the message of the songs. Trust Him in all you do! You just never know what blessing is waiting for you once you give it all up to Him!
What advice would you give to teen and tween girls trying to pursue Christ’s plan in their everyday lives? What is something you wish you had known when you were younger?
I advise them to make time for God. In the car while you’re going to school, pray and thank Him for the day and for strength to stand strong for Him. Just confide yourselves in Him, girls. Read books that will challenge you to grow spiritually and take a stance on important moral issues. Seek the truth in all you do and become a beautiful warrior for the Lord! I wish teen/tween girls would know just how beautiful and precious they are in the eyes of God. It took me too long to realize that I was beautiful and worth more than what society told me I was. Find solace in Him, not other distractions (like the number of likes you get on Instagram or a boyfriend). “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desire of your heart.” -Psalm 37:4 I love that verse because it is so true. When you completely encompass yourself in Him, girls, you will find unexplainable joy!
When did you decide to pursue a full-time career in the music industry? What was the hardest part of making that decision?
I decided to pursue this career full-time about two weeks after my graduation party in 2014. The hardest part of making that decision was giving up a scholarship, as well as diving into an unknown future.
What is one of the most challenging aspects of your job? What is your favorite part?
I would say that it has been a wonderful challenge to balance downtime and work time. I have such a desire to become a great artist that sometimes I forget to feed my soul and relax. I am challenged to grow spiritually as well as skillfully. The scales tip both ways every now and then, but with every challenge, I grow stronger in Him and continue my journey.
Your first single, “All The Way,” has a bold message about trusting God in the hard times. In what other ways has God been with you through your struggles?
In high school, I struggled with the loss of friends as well as self-worth. I was often called a “goody-too-shoes” or “fun-sucker” just because I chose not to participate in harmful activities others found enjoyable. I clung to the Lord and had to trust Him during those hard times. Because I did, He made me a strong and passionate individual. “All the Way” came to life when I was trying to decide on a college to attend. I wasn’t sure where God was trying to lead me and all I wanted was to follow His will. As I casually expressed my feelings of confusion and frustration with my co-writer and producer, Jeff Pardo, he quickly reminded me how important it is to trust in the Lord with all your heart. I had gotten so caught up in the world that I had forgotten to relax and trust my God. Within the next few minutes, the first verse of “All the Way” was born and we were able to capture my moment of revelation: You’re with me all the way, all the way, all the way. No matter what I was going through, God would never abandon me, or anyone else. I hope that this song gives listeners a peace of mind and enlightens their hearts. I hope they know that they don’t need to worry about whatever situation they’re in because our God will be with them all the way!
Your latest single, “Go,” talks about following God’s calling and walking in faith out on the waters. What inspired you to write that song?
I co-wrote “Go” with Jeff Pardo shortly after I gave up my scholarship to attend Indiana University. I was ready to put the past behind me and leap into the unknown. I was tired of being afraid of the future and I was ready to trust God. I was ready to walk upon waters I had never been on before and go. “Go” was written as my anthem song, but it was also written for anybody who is afraid to follow what the Lord is calling him or her to do. It was written with the intention of encouraging everyone to not be afraid of the unknown. It was meant to inspire him or her to have faith!
What is your main message and testimony to your listeners? What would you want them to take away from your music?
If there is one thing I want them to take away from my music it is to trust the Lord with all your heart. Find comfort in Him. I have done this, and I have unexplainable joy and peace. I want my music to inspire others and give them a sensation of faith, hope and love! I want to be a vessel for the Lord and change lives.
How do you see God working in your life right now and in the near future?
His mercies are new every morning! Every day is such a gift and filled with endless blessings! God continues to work in my life in many ways, but the way I am noticing Him working the most is when I am at a concert/show. I meet new friends and bands and can see how the Lord is using my music to touch their hearts. That is what this whole career is about for me: bringing people closer to God through my passion with music.
Thank you for joining us! Do you have any closing advice for girls wanting to honor God and go where He leads?
Girls, you are beautiful. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise. Continue to strive for a humble heart and clear mind. Don’t let the sickness of the world cloud your mind with lies and wickedness. Fill your hearts with love and get rid of all envy. Jealousy is ugly and righteousness is beautiful. You are a daughter of God. You have power in Him! He loves you more than anything else, so don’t hesitate to share all that you are with Him. He listens and will give you strength. I want to say thank you to anyone who is reading this and I hope you enjoy my music and share it with your friends. I am looking forward to releasing a new single for you soon as well as finishing up my EP before the end of the year, so be on the lookout for new music! God bless you and never forget that He is with you ALL THE WAY!
You can connect with Hannah and learn more about her music on her website, www.hannahschaeferofficial.com. Be sure to check out her music video for “All the Way” on YouTube! You can also connect with her on Facebook at “Hannah Schaefer” and on Twitter @hannahschaefera.
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