Interview featured in Grace Church's January E-newsletter


Question 1: Anna, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, and your background?

Absolutely! Well, I was born and raised in Georgia. Although, my family did live in Pennsylvania for about two years when I was in kindergarten. Our family moved to Minnesota in late 2008, right before I started my freshman year at Eden Prairie High School. We moved here due to a huge career opportunity for my dad who works for Starkey Laboratories, a hearing aid company based in Eden Prairie. I live at home with my parents (Jeff and Karen), my brother (Mike, 17 y.o.), and our 2 dogs, cat, and three rabbits in Eden Prairie, while I complete my degree in Elementary Education at Normandale Community College in Bloomington. Throughout my 22 years of life, music and Jesus have always had a huge presence. God has sustained our family through all things and is forever at work in our hearts.

Question 2: Do you remember when you first started becoming passionate about worship?

Worship has always been present in our home. I remember as a little girl just opening up the Psalms in Mama’s well-loved Bible and singing them as I paced around the house. As I grew into a young adult, worship was one of my favorite parts of youth group and “big” service. It had this way of penetrating my heart and breaking down any hardness that had developed throughout the week. It allowed me to listen and study the Word with a tender and soft spirit. I think each of us has a passion for worship already in our hearts, for worship is praising and adoring our Father, with or without music. I think it was when I started my involvement in college ministry about a year and a half ago that God really began to reveal to me a hunger for Music Ministry and has used it to deepen my relationship with Him and His church Body.

Question 3: What is it about worship that excites you?

We have been called to show obedience in worship, to sing praises to the Lord our God, to show extravagant love and adoration because He loved us first and He is God. I love to worship because the God I love delights in it and He uses our worship and submission to refocus our hearts on His goodness. But it isn’t just our flesh that has to sing, it’s our hearts too. Sometimes we enter into song with rigidity and out of mindless motion, fatigued by the world, but as our flesh continues to sing praises, those praises begin to call to mind God’s goodness and soon our heart softens and begins to fall back into Truth and surrender. God uses worship to soften, revive, and recall Truth and that is exciting and sustaining.

Question 4: Do you have any favorite scriptures that are really speaking to you right now?

This past year has been one of the toughest seasons of my life. The Spirit has continually and continues to call John 15 “The Vine and the Branches” to my mind. God prunes us to be more fruitful. He works everything to the good of those who seek Him. Even when the world seems dark, He is working. We have such a good Father. No one loves us like He loves us. There is no love like His love.

Question 5: What do you feel is the role of the Holy Spirit in worship?

Luke 14 tells us that the Holy Spirit is our Helper and teacher. He is our Comforter and helps to recall Truth (John 14) and He reveals sin (John 16). He is our Counselor who helps guide us (John 16) and helps us to live a life pleasing to God (Romans 8). He helps us to pray when we’re at a loss for words (Romans 8). Galatians 5:22-23 says, “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Without the Holy Spirit, worship has no authenticity.

Question 6: Which worship albums, artists, and or songs do you really respond to?

Lately, live worship albums like Hillsong United, Bethel Music, and John Mark McMillan have really been resonating with me. Live albums capture the atmosphere, the emotion, the moment. And I love finding secular songs that can be used for worship. John Mark McMillan did a medley of his “Heart Won’t Stop” and Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me” and it’s perfect.

Question 7: What is your hope and prayer for our church family as we worship together?

A mentor of mine once said that the Body is not meant to be marbles that are poured into a jar on Sunday morning and poured out after service is over, scattering and continuing to separate. The Body is meant to be a body, fused together, each part depending on the other and incapable of doing anything alone. My hope for our Church is that through worship, we can continue to grow deeper in our love for Christ and our relationship with Him. My hope is that every Sunday we will be reminded of the fact that it is all about and for God, what Jesus has done and who He is; it’s not about us, how smoothly the service went, or who had the nicest voice in the room. My hope is that we can learn to be vulnerable, both in our relationship with Father and with His Body.

***If you have a question or an encouraging word for Anna please feel free to email her at