Our readers were tough on worship leader Jeff Deyo, asking him one complex question after the other. Read on to find out what the former SONICFLOOd lead singer and now solo worship artist had to give up for God and why he chose to sing Christian music.
1. What prompted you to get into Christian Music? – Richard Gross, San Diego, Calif.
I started to play the piano when I was six. I fell in love with the idea that classical music taught me how to play what I wanted to play. And as I began developing in my relationship with God, it seemed like a perfect match to have a platform to share my music with my peers who needed God.
2. How has your career changed your outlook on life and impacted your walk with Christ? – Tony Mastroberardino, Lewiston, Idaho
I think it’s the other way around. My walk with Christ has impacted my career. Because I’m a worship leader, that has held me accountable because I am aware that I get up every night and attempt, by the grace of God, to lead people to His throne. For me to be doing that and not actually living it in my life would be horrendous.
3. What is the main theme of your second CD, Light? How it is different from the first (Saturate)? – Ronald Fong, Castro Valley, Calif.
The theme is drawing close to God in balance, depending upon what each individual would need to do. There are a variety of worship songs designed to help individuals, depending upon the day, with what’s going on in life. Maybe there is repentance that needs to happen. Maybe a celebration needs to happen or a thanksgiving. Saturate was more about me drawing closer to God and people getting close to God.
4. How do you personally maintain a one-on-one relationship with the Lord? – Hannah Collins, Wilmington, Ohio
I get up and spend time in the Word first thing in the morning. I usually read something in the Old Testament, something in the New Testament and something like a Psalm or a Proverb. I highlight verses in my Bible and I put on a CD and start to sing. Sometimes I’ll turn the music down a bit and I’ll pray, then I will sing some more.
5. Why do you think worship is such an important part of a relationship with Jesus? – Mykia Wooten, Baxter, Ky.
God specifically asks us to worship Him. Obviously, He knows what’s best. With worship you begin to realize your place versus God’s place. You agree with His place and agree with what your place is-the lower place. In that agreement you develop an intimate relationship and a friendship.
6. What do you feel has been your biggest test as a Christian artist? – Stacy Cooley, Riverbank, Calif.
Walking away from SONICFLOOd was the most difficult thing I have ever been through in my life. It was a test because it was me letting go of something I loved, walking away without fighting. It was hard because I helped start the band. I felt like God was whispering, “Just trust me.”
7. Why did you leave SONICFLOOd? – Brandon Davis, Dallas, Ga.
I was asked to leave by the band. The rest of the band thought there were differences in the approach I had compared to where they wanted to go with the band.
8. Is it different traveling solo than traveling with a group? – Melissa Sadler, Grand Junction, Colo.
The only thing that is different is that the band knows that I am the leader. I have a band now, just like I did with SONICFLOOd. It feels like the same thing, but I am, by God’s grace, the leader of these guys. I think what I have learned through SONICFLOOd is to be a sensitive and humble leader.
9. Who has influenced your love for music and how did they influence you? – Jeff Watson, Wichita Falls, Texas
Honestly, so much of my love for music comes from this thing that God has put inside of me. I’m a little different in that a lot of musicians spend a lot of time listening to music. I hardly ever just sit down and listen to music for fun.
10. How do you serve God outside of music? – Sheryl White, Parker, Colo.
The No. 1 way is by serving my family. My wife, Martha, and Roman, my 1-year-old son, travel with me. To me, it’s important to be a good husband and a good father, doing things like taking the time to invest in the relationship.
11. Were you raised in a Christian home? – Pamela Hays, Santee, Calif.
Yes. My parents have been in ministry all my life.
12. If the roles were reversed, what would you ask me, the listener? – Becky Collins, Phoenix, Ariz.
I would ask, “What would help you as I lead in worship? What helps you draw closer to God?”
13. Was there one moment when you experienced an epiphany, the Word of God revealed in your life? – Khymmyr Hansen, Middletown, Calif.
One thing that is an epiphany is when you see a specific answer to prayer. We took about five years trying to get pregnant the first time. When we saw the pregnancy test and it said positive-that was an amazing moment of celebration for the blessing that God brings in His timing. My son, Roman, is 13 months old and we have another one on the way.
14. Is there one thing in your life that you regret more than anything? – Sarah Clements, Fremont, Neb.
I regret how long it took me to understand that God didn’t need me to make Him look good. I spent a lot of time feeling like if I could just look cool enough, sing cool enough or have a cool haircut that I could help God look good. I hoped people would be drawn to me and then I could point them to Jesus. I lost eight or 10 years of my life in ministry focusing on the wrong philosophy of reaching people for Christ. The right philosophy is not to try to impress people to God, but show them God.
15. What would you say is the most important age group that needs to hear about God? – Alissa Gladson, Collierville, Tenn.
All ages need to hear the gospel. You hear a lot of people talk about this new generation-this young generation-of people that God is calling who are going to change the world. I’m under the understanding that God, in these last days, is raising a new generation. But it doesn’t have anything to do with race or sex or age; it has to do with people who are passionate and willing to give up everything for God.
16. If you had one wish for your son, Roman, as he grows up, what would it be? – Tabitha Dodge, Chesapeake, Va.
I want to teach Roman that everything good comes from God-everything that he owns, and everything we own as a family. It’s His and we are just borrowing it for a while. It’s all God’s and he is the manager of the things that God has given him.
17. What is your favorite Bible verse? – Liz Ernst, Riverside, Calif.
Zephaniah 3:17 talks about how God sings over us. When I first grasped the concept that God sings over us, it humbled me. Not only do I imagine that it would it be amazing to hear Him sing, but that He would utter words of love for me in a song.
18. What is the biggest thing you have had to give up or change for God? – Maria Anderson, Sioux City, Iowa
I had to change my natural tendency to be impatient with people. I have literally had to ask God to give me a love for people. The Bible says to love your enemies. I would try to force myself to love my enemies. I realized that it is impossible as far as a natural occurrence. It has to be a supernatural working within me.
19. What do you like to do in your free time? – Mary Parng, El Cerrito, Calif.
I like to spend time with my family. Martha and I will have been married 12 years in May.
20. What’s your favorite story in the Bible? – Vanessa Lewis, Fritch, Texas
One of my favorites is a story in 2 Kings where Elisha is being hunted down by the king of Syria. The king sends a huge army to surround his camp. Elisha’s servant comes out of the tent in the morning and sees this huge army camped around them. And he went to Elisha, saying “Elisha, what are we going to do?” Elisha said, “Lord, open his eyes so he can see.” God opened his eyes so he could see in the spirit and he saw an army of angels that were bigger and stronger than chariots of fire. That’s my favorite one: God opening the eyes of our spirit so we can see beyond what’s so obvious.
21. Who is your hero? – Julie Thompson, Salem, Ore.
My dad, Art. Growing up, you think your dad is the greatest and he has never made any mistakes. Now, I see things I don’t like, but he’s still my hero. The thing I love most about my dad is he is always open to change. He says, “God is still working on me.” He doesn’t think he has it 100 percent together. He is leading me to live a lifestyle of being open to God continually changing me from now until the day I die.
Copyright © 2004 Christian Music Planet, used with permission.
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