10 Questions with ... Ryan Stevenson
June 27, 2016
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- 2007 Running To You
- 2010 The Undiscovered
- 2011 Yesterday, Today, Forever
- 2012 Champion Of The World
- 2013 Holding Nothing Back
- 2015 Fresh Start
1. Introduction / Synopsis
Born and raised in Bonanza, OR (population 300) Went K-12th grade at Bonanza school! College w/ BA, Ed from NCC Eugene, OR. Worked as a teacher for 2 years (Kindergarten & HS Spanish), then went on to work as a paramedic for 8 years. Moved to Boise, ID in 2003; currently reside in Boise.
2. What does a normal day at home look like for you?
I wake up, and brew a pot of Seattle's Best coffee! Have my morning devotion time with the Lord while it's still quiet. My 2 little boys get up, and we have "cookies & coffee". They drink their milk, and I dip their cookies in my coffee. I attend Hot Yoga everyday at noon (80 min class) Then I'll come home and work on projects around our house. I do lots of yard work; help my wife with her furniture business. Take my boys on a bike ride by the river. We have dinner together as a family as much as possible. We might go out for frozen yogurt; then come home and watch a movie together.
3. What's the song that you just can't get out of your head right now?
"Life is Worth Living" by Justin Bieber. I love the melodies and the storytelling aspect. I relate to the honest heart, and the desperate tension within. I love the "living in the tension" element!
4. How much do you travel, what are the challenges? How do you juggle life on the road with wanting to be home?
I am on the road approximately 200 days per year. There are always challenges; for me, the biggest is missing my wife and boys. I also get physically and emotionally worn down after weeks of "being on". As a family, we have learned to be very intentional & deliberate about protecting our time together when we have it. We don't make tons of plans, and spread ourselves thin. We find the balance of maintaining healthy community & relationships with our friends and family, as well as focusing on just the four of us.
5. What Artist or Pastor has had the greatest impact on you?
A spiritual mentor to me is a gentleman named Paul Young. He's the author of a book called "The Shack." His book profoundly impacted me at a very pivotal time in my life. His book introduced me to the God that I'd always hoped he'd be; however I'd learned some very unhealthy, legalistic routines having grown up in the church. Reading Paul's book was a huge spiritual shift for me. But when I met him, I started spending time with him; and he began to minister to me as a spiritual father. His revelation and wisdom began to unlock pieces of my heart that had been hard & stagnate for years! He helped me begin to know a "papa" God; a daddy God who's not disappointed and withdrawn, but a daddy who's involved in every detail of my life.
6. What's the last book you read?
It's called "The Ragamuffin Gospel" by Brennan Manning. It's all about GRACE! Brennan's main point is that "God loves you just as you are, not as you should be; because NONE of us are as we should be". The book simply drove home the fact that God loves us, and there's nothing we can do about it. "Grace" was not what I learned in church, so to have this revelation at this point in my life, was extremely freeing!
7. Funniest or most embarrassing moment on the road?
This one's easy. I was on tour with Audio Adrenaline, Disciple & Stellar Kart. We were playing a friendly game of baseball one afternoon, at a field near the venue. My team was getting destroyed; and I'm very competitive! As we continued to fall deeper into defeat, my team continued to make errors; we couldn't even get an out!
Finally, after about 40 mins on the field, we had 2 outs, and only needed one more to close the inning. I was playing shortstop, and Nick was playing second base. Jason (from Disciple) hit a infield pop fly; I yelled and called out "I got it, I got it, I got"! All I had to do was catch it, and the inning was over. Out of nowhere, Nick (2nd base) ran over, and smashed into me; trying to catch the ball as well. Neither of us caught it; and the ball fell to the ground.
I COMPLETELY lost my temper, and yelled at Nick with some very colorful words stating, "I said I had it!" It was as if time had frozen; the entire field became silent and just stared at us. Then everyone hit the ground, sobbing with laughter. This day went down in history!
8. Take us through a couple songs on your latest project, FRESH START.
The title track "Fresh Start" is a song about new beginnings; it's a personal prayer in the midst of feeling caught in the tension of spirit & flesh. We get pushed and pulled daily by our flesh and at times we succumb to sin and struggles. Fresh Start is a prayer of thanksgiving that his mercies are new every morning; while asking to maintain a postured heart toward him!
Another song is called "EYE OF THE STORM" which is my current single at Christian radio. I wrote this song because I wanted to address aspects of life that people are actually dealing with on a REAL human level! After spending all those years as a paramedic; working on the streets; seeing people in the midst of true tragedy, my eyes were opened to the raw fact that we all are broken, fragile creatures. We all have storms that move into our lives, and leave us disillusioned! My heart for this song, is that it would awaken people to turn towards Jesus when we the storms of life come! Jesus is the ONLY source of hope, and I want to always point people to Him.
The thing that makes this song so special to me, is that I didn't write it because I felt that it would be a huge radio success; in fact, I wrote it with the opposite mindset. I knew it would never be a single; so I wrote a "Hymnal Style" song, that talks about the jagged aspects of our human condition. To see it striking a serious chord with millions of people is very encouraging, and continues to remind me that God is in the business of making beauty from ashes! I love that he uses the things that the world sees as foolish to confound the minds of wise people.
9. Person you'd most like to have a discussion with, living or dead.....Deities are excused from this question
I've always wanted to sit down with David (king David) and just get a first hand view of "the man after God's own heart" I've always wanted to experience him, and see what he was actually like; why the Bible named this. He just seems like a guy that I'd want to be around.
10. What's the biggest "God moment" you've ever experienced? Personally or professionally, when has God shown up in a powerful way?
I was in a small group with several worshipers; we were sitting in a circle, praying and singing together. A man stood up, and walked over to me. He laId his hands on me and began to prophesy over my life. It was as if he was reading my mail; he was confirming and speaking out things that I had sensed my entire life. It was a true watershed moment for me; it was the night where I had a real LOVE encounter with Holy Spirit, and have never been the same since.
1. Favorite Bible Verse....life verse. Why?
Proverbs 3:5&6, because it's my reminder to TRUST when I get consumed with anxiety about the future!
2. How & When did you become a believer?
I asked Jesus into my heart when I was seven. I prayed with my mom. However, it was in 2008 when the Lord began to seriously encounter my life!