Today is the 9th anniversary of the release of BarlowGirl’s first, self-titled album, BarlowGirl. I was ten years old when 18-year-old Lauren, 22-year-old Alyssa, and 24-year-old Rebecca Barlow released their first album as BarlowGirl. When their second album, “Another Journal Entry” was released on September 27, 2005, I was eleven years old. Then when their third album, “How Can We Be Silent,” was released on July 24, 2007, I was thirteen.
In early to mid-2008, I was looking through the family CD collection in hopes of finding some music, and my mission was a success. I picked up the self-titled BarlowGirl CD, placed it in my CD player, and for the first time ever, listened to a whole CD from beginning to end without skipping a single track. If you had told me then that one album, that album, could leave a life-changing impact in my personal world, I would have laughed and said, “Yeah, right!”
Now, at 19 years old, I sit here as a young woman who is slowly, but steadily, growing, rather slowly diminishing as I would have been had God never led me to pick up their CD in 2008. Since the day I first picked up their CD, they have released three more CDs, including the September 23, 2008 release of their Christmas album “Home for Christmas,” the September 8, 2009 release of their final album, “Love and War,” and the September 14, 2010 release of their best of album, “Our Journey…So Far.” Lauren is now 27, Alyssa is 31, and Becca is 33, and on October 29, 2012, they announced that God had called them to let go of their 10-year calling in order to follow a new calling, which He would share with them in His own timing. To the best of the fans’ knowledge, all we know about their new calling is that they are to relax and enjoy life.
After the announcement of BarlowGirl’s disbandment, I cried several times, and sometimes I still feel like crying. Most people think I am obsessed with BarlowGirl, because I own several things with their names on them, including a silicon bracelet, a “Hope Will Lead Us On” t-shirt, a poster, a journal, all of their CD’s, a signed lanyard, two pins, and a songbook, but that’s not true. I own all of those things because they are pleasant reminders that God used BarlowGirl to change me for the better. I cry, not because I’m obsessed, but because I am still growing, and it would be nice to have new BarlowGirl music to help me grow. However, new BarlowGirl music is not in God’s plan, at least not at present.
So I let hope lead me on. Hope that maybe, one day Lauren, Alyssa, and Becca might come out with another album or tour. Hope that maybe one day, I will Come Alive and be one of the Million Voices to positively make an impact on the lives of those around me, maybe even as big of an impact as BarlowGirl has left on my life. Hope that even without new BarlowGirl music I will continue to grow until I eventually reach a Beautiful Ending. Hope that I will know I am Never Alone because God will always Stay with Me. Hope that even when I fall Harder than the First Time, I will always be strong enough and brave enough to go One More Round. Hope that when I Need God to Love Me, He will do one better and Sing Me a Love Song. Hope that when I come to Grey areas in my life, I will be able to make the right decisions. Hope that I will Take My Chances by proclaiming that I Don’t Regret choosing to Surrender my all to Jesus, when faced to decide whether I want to Keep Quiet or Let Go and let God. Hope that Tears will Fall and my Porcelain Heart will cry out with a Song for the Broken whenever unbiblical and immoral things take place. Hope that instead of being an Average Girl whose Clothes define her, I will look in the Mirror and see an Image of God’s Superstar. Hope that I won’t ever let 5 Minutes of Fame Take Me Away from the knowledge that My God’s Enough. Hope that I’ll say “Time for You to Go,” when I feel I’m putting someone on a Pedestal. Hope that when our Worlds Collide and I see Open Heavens, I will say, “Here’s My Life, for You Led Me,” rather than “I did this On My Own.” Hope that I will Believe in Love when “Sweet Revenge” shows its ugly face. Hope that Thoughts of God will lead me where Love is Marching. Hope that people will never say, “She Walked Away,” when describing who I am. Hope that when We Pray, we will realize that we need to act whenever the chance is given, because we recognize that we’re Running out of Time.
Hopeful in Christ,
P.S. Yes, of course, I know it’s rather cheesy to do the whole “write a story with every song title from your favorite artist” thing, but most of the song titles were perfectly fitting for what I wanted to say, so I decided to go all the way.