Never too broken to belong: Amy Lambert's new video
by Sherrie Norris
Sharing a message through a cut from her latest CD, "The Seeker," Lambert, in the video, also shares the spotlight with three individuals from her hometown; St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church in Valle Crucis serves as the backdrop and the place where people find hope.
"You're Never Too Broken to Belong" delivers a message of hope to those in distress, and it proves, as Lambert sings, "You are never too wounded, never too far gone ... when you find Jesus, you'll find a home."
Featured in the video are Ed Pilkington, portrayed as a compassionate, nonjudgmental church pastor; Bruce Greene as a military veteran in visible anguish while trying to fight personal battles after the war; and Jessica Barrett, a young woman searching for answers through a dilemma in which too many young unmarried women find themselves.
"There are so many broken people all around us," Lambert said. "So many people are hurting, some because of addictions, others because of broken relationships and other painful situations they cannot control. We are all just people in a hurting, broken world."
Lambert said she meets many people all the time who share personal stories of defeat and seeming hopelessness.
"People think they can't go back to where they need to be," she said. "They don't think God can love them, but I tell them all they have to do is come back home -- come to Jesus."
The song, co-written by James Tealy, Michael Puryear and Simon Hawkins, has been recorded by other artists, Lambert said, "but once I heard it, I played it over and over. It's so beautiful. I just want people to understand that there is always forgiveness. God never turns anyone away."
When recording the CD, Lambert said she knew there was something special about that particular song.
"I knew there could be an amazing storyline that could easily come alive in a video," she said.
The "concept video," Lambert described, has done well in other genres of music, such as country and rock, she said, and only recently has started to "catch on in gospel."
"We talked about it, prayed about it and finally decided to go ahead and just do it," she said.
The video was filmed and produced locally by Arthur Rasco, an employee of Samaritan's Purse, who was recommended to Lambert and did "an amazing job," she said.
"He is just awesome, such a perfectionist. He found our actors, who were also perfect for the parts, and he chose the church, too. I wanted an old church with a lot of character. He found it. I didn't even know it existed," she said.
Realizing that "everything is so driven by social media these days," Lambert said she and her team decided to move forward, "to get it out there where people will see it. Many people will click onto You Tube a lot quicker than they will listen to a gospel song on the radio."
To be able to put a story to a song makes it more memorable, she said, "and then adding the actual visuals makes it that much more appealing."
It is her hope that many lives will be impacted by the video.
"Despite our brokenness in life, there's always hope," she said. "No matter how bad our situation might be, we can always turn it around. We can't go back and change things, but we can look to the future with hope, with the help of our lord and Savior."
After taking a break for a while to spend more time with her adolescent and teenage children, Lambert said she sees her latest recording as a "re-launch."
"I've been busy helping to raise my family, but I'm ready to get back out there, now," she said. "Plus, when you take too much time off, you are easily forgotten in this fast-moving industry. I feel like this is a perfect opportunity -- and a perfect song for a new beginning."
She hopes, too, that her hometown folks will watch the video and share it with their friends and acquaintances.
"We can reach so many people this way," she said. "The individuals in the video portray those who might feel as if they do not belong in a church and are reluctant to enter the doors. After they see it, hopefully, they will realize the truth. They do belong."
"We all live with that feeling of unworthiness, to some extent, and with regret. We can't go back, but we can go forward," she said.
Lambert said she is living her dream. "I've never really wanted to do anything else except sing gospel music," she said. "I've been very blessed. I've had an incredible career, so far."
It all started in 1989 when she sang with The Greenes for five years before transitioning to a solo ministry and then singing with The Gaithers for several years.
"The best part of my ministry, so far, was getting to travel with the Gaithers," Lambert said, describing them as "wonderful people who shaped and influenced my career."
She was recently a featured soloist in "Women of Homecoming," a Gaither project which she said was "a great honor."
"I can look back on my life and see that I've already had the opportunities I only dreamed of as a young child," Lambert said. "God's faithfulness to me has been amazing; as his word promises, he does give us the desires of our heart."
In early 2003, Lambert began to deal with an illness and decided to take time off from her busy schedule to focus on getting well -- "and on my family," she said.
While she didn't stop singing and traveling completely, she said she became more selective and pursued quality opportunities, rather than those of quantity.
"My time with my family is my priority," she said. "I've been able to attend soccer games and wrestling matches, but now that the kids are getting older, I feel like I can go back out now and start working a little more."
Lambert said she believes that God has allowed her to experience pain in certain areas of her life "so I can understand the pain of others and help them in some small way."
Much like the subjects in her video, she said, "I have experienced things in my life that only the Lord could have brought me through."
God's will and timing are far better than our plans, Lambert said.
"He's always there to pick us up when we can't carry ourselves," she said.
Lambert's powerful vocals and performance skills have made her one of the few female vocalists to climb into the Top 10 on the national charts with her first two singles, "He'll Do It Again" and "Tears Are A Language."
She has received Top 5 nominations for the Singing News Fan awards in both favorite soprano and favorite female vocalist categories for seven consecutive years and was the recipient of the Gospel Voice Sunrise Award in 1997.
She has also been nominated for Album of the Year and Soloist of the Year at the Gospel Voice Diamond Awards.
Lambert and her husband , Jeff Templeton, make their home in Boone with daughter Lauren, son Hunter.
Her video may be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCJfal9DBYM.