So I began to write for other people and others showed interest. They’d say, “Oh, I like that song. Do you mind if I record it?” Slowly, Joel would say, “Dude, why don’t you put this out?” My wife started asking the same. Then I realized—as these songs began being put out—that they were all songs born out of my own life, my own passions, and my own relationship with Jesus. It became clear very quickly that I needed to [do Wildfires].

Well, I got a job here at Calvary in Albuquerque, New Mexico and everything was put on hold. It didn’t feel like the right time for anything else. I wanted to understand the church. I wanted to understand the culture and really work with developing the worship team. When we got it to a point where everything was in a state of homeostasis, I finally thought, “Okay, now is the time where I can pursue the worship project.” I didn’t think I’d be lacking in my job or abandoning anybody. I felt like this was the perfect time.

CCM: Were you at all concerned or interested if people would come over to your solo stuff after being with Anberlin for so long?
SC: I think it’s all of the above. I never sat down to question whether someone would be heartbroken if I’m coming out with a Christian record. To me, even though Anberlin wasn’t a Christian band in the sense that all of our members were Christian, I always assumed people knew that I was, based on things I’d say from stage or from things I’d post or interviews that I did. I felt like people knew that. I don’t think it’s a shock that I’m coming out with this record, but I’ve definitely gotten some backlash on social media. You can literally go to my Facebook account right now and anything I post, people will ask, “Hey, are you going to keep preaching at us?”

Stephen Christian, CCM Magazine - image
There are paragraph sentences saying they can’t follow my career anymore, that they respect what I did, but no longer. For me, I’m not going to reply or retort. I understand that this is the overflow of my own heart and I have to believe the Word won’t return void. I choose to believe that somebody out there will buy it because they are fans of the band, and slowly this is going to seep into their system. Whether they become a Christian or not through my music—which would be amazing—they have to confront themselves about how they feel about Jesus. The whole record would be worth it if just one person had to confront Jesus Christ and really soul search into what they believe.


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