here we go

September 30, 2008

well…we’re just a couple of hours away from an explosion of creativity in atlanta, ga.  joe, tim, matt, alex and i will be headed to our secret band cave to start creating new music.  we are all going into this month with a huge sense of expectancy for what’s to come.  we are believing in God to do something fresh through these songs and offer something new to worship music.  we desire most of all to offer something that is a true representation of who God has made us to be as a band and as sons of God.  we are praying that God would put new melodies and lyrics in our hearts that would call His people to fresh confessions of love and adoration.  what we know is…this is not something we can do on our own.  going into this month we are constantly praying for full and complete dependence on God and His Holy Spirit for revelation and inspiration.

pray with us this month

for humility…dependence on God…and songs that will inspire fresh confessions from the church.

we love you guys.  i’ll try to keep updates consistent throughout the next few weeks to let you know how it’s coming along.

The Fall

September 25, 2008

i love this time of year.  i think everyone does.  whenever it comes around kerri and i leave doors open and take long walks in our neighborhood.  it’s fall and it’s magic.  isn’t it inspiring?  i love to sit in my back yard with my guitar and write folk songs all day long.

this fall season is especially exciting for us for a few reasons.

one…isaac is almost 2 and halloween is going to be a blast.  i asked him the other day what he wanted to be for halloween and he said, “umm…momma.”  oddly enough they didn’t have any momma outfits at target, so we settled for his second choice…elmo.  isaac loves elmo.  he wakes up every morning, drinks some “mulk”, eats some “yeerios” and watches “melmo” on sesame street.  kerri and i have really grown to love sesame street.  the producers are brilliant.  amidst the sesame street drama and the letter and number of the day they pepper celebrity appearances that are really hilarious.  the other day they had Jamie Fox on.  he was visited by a fox named jamie and a duck named jamie fox.  all three jamie foxes sang the alphabet song.  it was pretty funny.  at any rate…we’re looking forward to getting isaac a elmo outfit to wear.  

the other reason i’m pumped about this october is that me and the guys in the band are going to spend most of the month putting the finishing touches on new songs before we hit the studio in november.  we’ve found a space in atlanta that we’re going to set up in and get to work.  i think some pretty cool stuff is in the works.  as i can i will let you guys in on some of the songs.

one last thing…whenever fall rolls around i find myself digging through itunes and asking friends for cool new folk artists with beautiful chilled out music.  this year i’ve found a couple of things that are flat out amazing.  

the first is a david wilcox style artist named andy gullahorn.  my good buddy alex nifong turned me on to this guy.  he’s from nashville and writes beautiful songs.  i recommend the record “Room to Breathe” and the song “beginning of the end”.  you will love it.   

the second is the new John Mark McMillan record called “The Medicine”.  john mark is an independent artist from charlotte, nc who will blow you away with his creative arrangements and lyrics.  the song “carbon ribs” is my fav.

so roll down your windows and open your doors cause fall is here.

Refuge and the Genius Sidebar

September 13, 2008

hello everyone!

we’ve had a great week here at the stanfill house.  i got back 3 am on wednesday morning from birmingham.  refuge proved to be an amazing experience.  first let me say that the Holy Spirit is SO good.  i love being in a place where you can feel God’s presence moving freely and powerfully.  second, after tuesday i’ve learned that a room full with youth pastors free of teenagers is a beautiful thing.  if you are a youth pastor that attended refuge you know what i mean…wow!!  it’s been a long time since i heard singing that loud in America.  seriously…it was LOUD in that room.  i remember standing back from the mic several times and thinking, “i don’t think it could get any louder in here.”  i also remember you all being very good singers…by that i mean on pitch.  it was a great experience all around.

another hero of the day was Student Life.  this free event was basically a way for student life to say to all the youth pastors who have bringing students to their camps for the past 10 years…thank you.  the day was committed to seeking God for the purpose of refreshment for these youth leaders who tirelessly serve students all over the country.  this was a very important event for me personally for a few different reasons.

i shared this from stage on tuesday, but it’s worth repeating.  i became a Christian at a Student Life camp in 1996 on Lookout Mountain in Tennessee.  dave busby was speaking and michael john clement was leading worship.  it was my first experience with the Holy Spirit and i spent most of the week on my face.  i became a Christian at this camp, but i also took my first steps toward learning guitar and worship leading.  for some reason it all made sense to me that week.  i was 12 years old.  i remember leaving that week of camp at a loss for what to do next.  my youth pastor must have seen that in me and he stepped in and became a great friend and mentor.  his name is david peacock.  David taught me scripture.  he taught me what worship is according to the Bible and what it meant to lead people in worship.  david married kerri and i five years ago and i talk to him on a regular basis.  he’ll be a friend for life.  

for this reason, this past tuesday was a very special event for me.  here i was…on stage…at a student life event…leading 1500 youth pastors.  i’m a product of a life changing camp experience and a youth pastor that tirelessly devoted himself to me and my friends.  i love youth ministry.  God used youth ministry to change my life forever.  i believe in youth ministry.  i believe in youth pastors.  that’s why we spend so much of our time leading students.  i pray that somewhere along the way there’s a kid who’s eyes are being opened for the first time and God is drawing him or her to something that will one day take His kingdom to new places for His glory.  tuesday was a cool day.  thanks to all everyone who came and thanks to Student Life for having us!

next up on the agenda…genius sidebar.  have you downloaded itunes 8.0 yet?  if you haven’t…do please.  if you have…throw your hands in the air genius sidebar is here!  im serious when i say this…i think steve jobs has a wireless connection to my hopes and dreams because genius sidebar is an answer to them all.  check it out.

i’ll leave you with this excerpt from an interview i did with Charles “Charlie” Gibson.  we were sitting in my living room, isaac was hitting him with a wiffle bat and we were talking about how bloggin ain’t easy.  he seemed to think i wasn’t ready for the mantle of leadership a blogger has to carry.  here’s a piece of our convo…

Charles Gibson (CG) – “so kristian, when you started bloggin, was there any part of you that was scared?”

Kristian Stanfill (Que Es) – “no, i was ready.”

CG – “frightened?”

Que Es – “no”

CG – “overwhelmed?”

Que Es – “no, charlie (i reach out and touch his shoulder), don’t you see?  bloggin ain’t easy that’s for sure.  in fact, every time i try to write a post i come up short, but maybe one day it will be just like i think it should.”

We’ve been on the go lately. These few days are going to be tiring, but also way satisfying.

We were in Athens last night leading a worship night for uga students. Athens, GA is the coolest. Being there makes me miss college. All the polo shirts, croakies and short khaki shorts…oh the memories. At any rate….It was a pretty amazing night. We were there working with our good friends at Athens Church. Sean Seay is the pastor there and is a great old friend of ours. Being with college students again was so refreshing.

Tonight we were with our favorite Monday night crowd…The Living Room. In case I haven’t told you about TLR before…it’s a college ministry of Buckhead Church. We meet in downtown atl every Monday night at 8pm. It’s an incredibly free and alive ministry that we LOVE being a part of. Tonight was week two of the fall semster and it went great. I love the freedom we have when we lead there.

From TLR we loaded up in two cars and now we are on I-20 west headed to Birmingham, AL. We’re leading tomorrow at an event called refuge that Student Llife is hosting. The event is for youth pastors to come and take it easy for a couple of days and seek God together. Our goal is to use our gifts as a band to pour into these heroes of youth ministry. Hopefully, we’re praying, they leave feeling refreshed.

It hit me as I’m preparing for this event that all throughout Psalms David cries out to God and calls Him a fortress and a strong tower and his…Refuge. It’s good for me to realize before we lead even one song tomorrow that I am not anyone’s refuge. We’re a part of this event to lead people to the God that is. We’re praying that tomorrow will be an intimate time with the Holy Spirit and we all leave changed.

I’ll catch you up on how it went later.

Coffee and the Holy Spirit

September 5, 2008

Well…my “72 hours of possibility” is over and I can honestly say that my hard work paid off. With a little help from two pots of coffee and a lot of help from the Holy Spirit I emerged from my office late on Wednesday afternoon pretty darn pumped. I was able to finish a few pre-existing ideas and start a couple new ones. All of which I am very excited. I’m going to record some demos soon and post them up here or on my myspace. Thanks for all of your comments of encouragement and prayer.

We led at Free Chapel tonight in gainsville, ga. We had never been there before and it was great to be in a new place with new people. If you live in the gainsville area you should check out The Turn on Thursday nights at 7:30 at Free Chapel. It’s pretty slammin.

Tomorrow I’m heading to Birmingham, al to meet with our good friends at Student Life. We are going to be having a creative brainstorming meeting about the conference tour we’ll be starting in spring of 09. We did this same tour back in the spring of 07 and it went great. we’ll be leading with our good friends Stuart hall and Francis chan which makes us glad. The conferece tour is going to be called “Live Love”. It’s based on the truth that we as Christians are called to live a life that shows the love of God to everyone we touch. We are so excited to team up with SL again. You can check out studentlife.com for the specific conference dates. Come see us.

Ok…it’s getting late and I have intentions of running in the morning.

I’m kristian stanfill and I approve this message.

72 hours of possibility

September 1, 2008

for the next 72 hours i have nothing to do.  i will play with my son, kiss my wife, run and write music…that’s it.  i might even try to do all four at the same time.  it’s been a while since i had three days off.  consequently…it’s been a while since i’ve felt especially creative.  im the type of person that needs to dedicate a chunk of time to the creative process.  i don’t do very well with start-stop-start-stop creating.  i know some people who can create in small pieces over a long period of time and they astound me.  i might should work on becoming that kind of songwriter but that sounds…hard.  anyway…it does something to the creative side of my brain when i look at my calender and see nothing for the next three days.  something sparks to life in me.  i begin to daydream hopefully of productivity and diligence.  i imagine that i emerge from my office on thursday morning with 12 songs that will forever change the way the world sees music.  the reality though is that i will probably get distracted by some application on my iPhone and i won’t write a thing.  one outcome is realistic and other is extremely optimistic.  i’ll let you decide which is which.

the problem here is that i know which of the previous options i will be more inclined to lean towards.  i will have very noble and honest intentions of dedicating these few days to writing music, but somewhere along the way i will get distracted.  now…at this point i could go into some long profound tangent about how i’m having some self-revelation about my work ethic or how God is teaching me that i need to lay my iPhone down on the altar of my obsession with culture, but actually i think it’s much easier than that.  

i need a swift kick in the pants.

so im gonna work hard these next few days to finish some preexisting ideas and maybe start some new ones.  we’ll see what happens.