Thursday, March 16, 2017

Flyby Review: Laura Story's Open Hands

The last couple of weeks, we have had the opportunity to review Laura Story's new album, Open Hands.  This album is a welcome addition to our music library.  In 2004, I fell in love with the song "Indescribable," which was written by Story and became popular when recorded by Chris Tomlin.  I love the story behind the song, which you can read on  Laura continued to write and record her own music, with her most popular song, "Blessings," reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Christian Songs chart in June 2011.  I am probably one of the few people on the planet who did not fall in love with that song, because it was just too sad for me, but again, the story behind it is beautiful.  Laura wrote the lyrics while dealing with her newlywed husband's struggle with and recovery from a brain tumor.  It was a time her faith was put to the test and she learned what really trusting God in the darkest times looked like.

I think what I really love about Laura Story is that her faith seems so genuine and truly shines through in all her work.  Her songs sound like true worship from the heart rather than performance-driven work.  Lyrics and meaning in music are very important to me, and so many modern worship songs are devoid of meaningful, theologically-correct words.  I love the sound of the heart that is 100% given in worship to God that is flowing through these songs.  In that vein, Open Hands did not disappoint.

Open Hands is Laura's seventh solo album.  While it is compiled of original songs, there are several songs, such as "Awake My Soul (A 1000 Tongues)" and "For the Love of My King" that are updated versions of old hymns.  I have always loved newer versions and covers of old hymns, and these two are my favorite songs on the album.  The title song, "Open Hands," is another testimony of what it means to give everything to Jesus, even in the hardest times.  "Give You Faith" is a beautiful message from a mother to a child, in which Laura has captured the feelings I have as I watch my children grow up.

Performance-wise, Laura Story gives a flawless recording and has God-given talent and a lovely voice.  These songs do all sound a bit the same, and there is nothing earth-shattering style-wise here, but the album is a beautiful collection for quiet listening or personal worship, in the vein of Amy Grant or Sandi Patty.  In addition, most of the songs are very singable and will be easily adaptable for corporate worship in the church.

If you would like a chance to win a free copy of this CD, leave a comment here or on my Facebook page with your favorite worship song.  If you don't have one, you can comment that, too!  And trust me, you do want to win a free copy of this CD!  Drawing will be held March 24.

If you are not lucky enough to win a copy, you can purchase one at:

             Web and Social Links:
Video links:
Open Hands (Official Lyric Video) -
Open Hands (Song Devotional) -

In addition to being an artist, mom and author, Laura Story is also a worship leader and is gifted at teaching the truth of God to others. Below are some devotionals that she wrote:
About Laura StoryGRAMMY® award winning artist, speaker, songwriter, author and worship leader Laura Story has a gift for penning songs that connect with people all around the world. Among her successes as a solo artist with her smash hits “Mighty to Save” and “Blessings,” Laura has also penned hit songs for other renowned artists including Chris Tomlin’s “Indescribable.” Her solo artist music debut in 2008 with Great God Who Saves led to four Dove nominations and the award for “Inspirational Album of the Year.” In 2011, Laura released her sophomore project Blessings. The album and the emotionally powerful title was inspired by her real life trials and adversities, primarily her husband Martin's diagnosis of a brain tumor. The album resonated with a huge audience and led to whirlwind career highlights for Laura, peaking at the No. 1 album spot for three consecutive weeks on Billboard’s Contemporary Christian Overall chart, topping the iTunes® Christian/Gospel Top Songs chart and holding the No. 1 spot for an impressive 28 consecutive weeks on the Christian charts. The success of the single “Blessings,” which was certified RIAA Gold, includes the GRAMMY® Award for Best Contemporary Christian Song, the Billboard Music Award for Top Christian Song and the Dove Awards for Song of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Song of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year and Songwriter of the Year. The song inspired Laura's first book, “What If Your Blessings Come Through Raindrops?” in 2012. God Of Every Story released in 2013 to much acclaim, and her first ever Christmas project God With Us, released in October of 2015. Laura recently released a new book and bible study curriculum When God Doesn’t Fix It; Lessons You Never Wanted to Learn, Truths You Can’t Live Without.  She has a graduate degree from Covenant Theological Seminary and has served as a worship leader at Perimeter Church in Atlanta since 2005, but her greatest joy is being a wife to Martin and the mother to Ben, Griffin and Josie.
Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification. 

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