Christian rock vocalist Lacey Sturm spoke to BreatheCast about her autobiography 'The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living', and in part one of this interview she speaks about her depression and desire to commit suicide. In this article Sturm opens up about discovering Jesus just as she was ready to end her life.
Sturm came home from school and was set in her mind to end it all, but her grandmother was unexpectedly home. After a huge argument with her grandmother, she was sent to church. It was at that service her life was transformed forever. A man laid his hands on her, prayed, and spoke life into this broken girl. She went home convicted and knew her purpose.
The first thing to do was to change her day to day habits. Sturm worked on sobering up off of drugs and drinking, slowly weened off the cigarettes, and broke up with her girlfriend.
"The way that we live life for only now that there is nothing outside of this life. That was put in perspective for her and for me," she said of her girlfriend, "That's why she understood that if I believe there's a God outside of this life that cares about my life that wants me to live, I want to give Him my life to do what He wanted with it."
Sturm continued, "He could take my life later that day, or He could take it in 50 years. I was like, there is a God, I've experienced him, if there wasn't, then whatever, we do whatever. I wouldn't be here. There is, and He has won my heart."
Sturm addressed other religions who serve a god because of fear for their lives. There is no love or relationship, just sacrifice or death.
"It is funny to me that there are religions that believe in God and they don't have a good reason. They don't need him to be good. They just fear him, and they sacrifice their babies to river gods because they're worried that their whole family is going to die," she said, "To know that there are religions that people are so in fear of god, and yet here in America we're worried that someone is going to hear something that they don't understand about our Father and reject Him."
The singer said once an encounter with God is had, it is indistinguishable and real, and there is nothing that can change it. "Whether you agree or not, there is a God. Whether I like it or not, there is a God outside of me, that's bigger than me. And yet he gives me freedom to live my life either to love Him or to reject."
Sturm explained that after living through so much rejection, God holding her is all she needs. This is something unfathomable and beautiful to her.
Another thing she had to learn to live with was giving up some of her old music. While music in itself could not be all inherently bad, in her fragile state almost anyone could have set her back. Listening to rock such as Nirvana and Pantera had negative angst built into them. This could spiral her back into depression.
"When I first became a Christian I was very much drawn back into those old ways of thinking and those old ways of feeling by certain music. It was a trigger for me. I was withheld with some of those feelings, so I couldn't listen to that music that I used to because I would desire that fullness of life that I was feeling outside of that place," she shared.
Sturm admitted it was tough to find bands that were as honest in their music as she would have liked. Some of the groups she began listening to were P.O.D., Beanbag, and Benjamin Gate. She was also fond of Jennifer Knapp, Third Day, and worship music.
'The Reason' is a tale of two stories. The first half covers the darkness of her life while the second half is the light. They are complete opposite spirals for life – one out of control and one on fire for God.
"I think filtering your life through unbelief, filtering your life to thinking there is not a God will always go to a dark place. I feel like outside of God we end up in dark place," she said, "If we're not created with a purpose. If we're not created in love with a loving creator behind us, then I feel like if we really dig deep into why we're here and what our purpose is and where we're headed and what the meaning of life is, it always takes to a dark place if life can't make you happy."
She then explained something very profound. If we are to live without having a purpose, what is the point? Suicide would not even be a problem because we exist in pure nothingness.
"You are the God of your own life. The problem is, we are bad Gods, and we will fail ourselves," said Sturm, "When we realize that enough times it makes for a really dark place to go to within yourself. So to filter life through there is a God who loves and created us through a purpose and wants to spread His love to others and to the world through our lives."
She explained we are "like a seed that dies and is born again and becomes a flower." Something great always seems to find its way even through the worst of times. "You can't conceive of what's coming out of that seed, but when you die and come to life, it's just completely new."
Check back in with BreatheCast tomorrow to hear more about Sturm's amazing testimony. In the final installment Sturm discusses being a mother, how Flyleaf helped her cope with life, and the three stages of struggle in her life.
Read yesterday's interview here.
Read our book review here.