RUBY: Tell us about your connection to Troy UMC.
Emily: Well, I first came to Troy UMC in 2002 with my youth group for the Fire-Up Conference. I gave my heart to the Lord that weekend and my life was forever marked by God. I came back with my youth group every year after that. That conference fueled my life in high school and something in me changed every time. I was very grateful to be asked to minister at Troy UMC a couple weeks ago. It had been 10 years since I had been there, so it was a very special time for me because it was where my journey began with the Lord.
RUBY: Share a favorite Bible verse and/or inspirational song, and why this is a favorite.
Emily: The very first verse in the Bible that I memorized was Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
This is something that I declare constantly because it reminds me that I don’t have to struggle on my own in life; that I am an over-comer because of the One who lives inside me. Jesus is my strength. No matter what I am going through, I know that I can always lean on God and He will help me get through to the other side. The Bible also says that the Lord is made perfect in our weakness, which means He loves it when we admit we can’t do it on our own and we fully depend upon Him. I am a perfectionist and sometimes I struggle with giving God control in all areas of my life. But we weren’t made to go through life trying to achieve everything on our own. Eventually, because we are human, we will get burnt out, stressed, and exhausted. Jesus’ yoke is easy and His burden is light. He just asks us to come to Him and He will help us carry the heavy load that can weigh us down in life. Any song that talks about the topic of surrendering our life to God is probably one of my favorites. There is a song called “I Surrender” by Kim Walker-Smith that I have been listening to recently during my prayer time. The chorus is: “All to You, I surrender everything, every part of me. All to You, I surrender all of my dreams, all of me.” That is beautiful to God’s ears when we say that to Him.
RUBY: I thoroughly enjoyed your testimony and singing. You inspired me to think of my own Jesus backstory. Thank you for sharing your story and your talents with us. Which songs did you sing?
Emily: Thank you very much! I’m so happy that I was able to minister and share my story with everyone. I sang “Breathe” by Marie Barnett. An oldie, but a goodie, I say. It was written in 1995, but it was a special song to me in high school because I first heard it at Chrysalis, a Christian retreat for high school students in 2002.
The other song that I sang was “How He Loves” by John Mark McMillan. The lyrics of this song deeply move me because it speaks of God’s amazing love for us. The first few words are so powerful: “He is jealous for me...” Some people don’t fully understand what that actually means. It doesn’t mean that God is jealous of us and doesn’t want us to be happy. When the Bible declares that God is a jealous God it means He wants our whole heart completely devoted to Him because He just loves being with us. He doesn’t want us to put our hope or trust in anything or anyone else but Him because He will never fail us. He created us to walk with Him and be His family. He understands that we can’t spend every waking moment with Him, but when we can spend time with Him, He enjoys it so much! Why? Because He loves us and loves being around us! This is definitely a message our world needs to know.
RUBY: Tell us about your family.
Emily: I met my husband Paul in 2008, shortly after I graduated college. I started attending a church with my family in Fenton, MO, which is where Paul had spent his entire life. I had plans to move to LA by 2009 to pursue a career as an actress, but those plans quickly changed when I met Paul. I like to say God had other plans that were way better than mine! Instead of moving to LA, I moved to St. Louis and Paul and I got married in December 2009. He truly is my best friend and I can’t imagine my life without him. We just make a great team in all that we do. We get the privilege of running in ministry together at our home church on the worship team where I sing and he plays bass. We are also the leaders of our church’s young adult group. He and I take turns teaching and I help leading worship. We will hopefully be buying our first home in the fall and eventually begin our family. We both cannot wait to have children! But for now, we are enjoying this season of our life just the two of us serving God with all that is within us.
RUBY: What is your favorite meal?
Emily: I enjoy any kind of pasta dish. Italian food is definitely my favorite.
RUBY: Which moment from your life would you choose to relive if you could?
Emily: I was thinking about approaching this question as something that I would like to “do-over” again, but I don’t live my life with regrets. I believe that everything that has happened in my life has made me who I am today and has made me stronger. But if I could relive a moment that just brought me so much joy, that would be my first date with my husband. We spent 10 hours together that day just talking and laughing. It was so long that we had to eat twice! LOL It is a moment that I cherish dearly and can’t wait to tell our children about it one day.
RUBY: Where do you create?
Emily: One day, when we have a house, I will have my own special room for prayer, writing, music, and other artsy stuff, but for now in our tiny, 1 bedroom apartment, I actually get a lot of my ideas in the bathroom when I’m getting ready in the morning. I love listening to music when I’m by myself and that helps with the creative mindset I think. I am a songwriter so I’m always listening to music. I also enjoy listening to music when I blog or journal. Writing has always been a passion of mine ever since I was very little.
RUBY: What are you reading now?
Emily: I just finished a book by Bob Sorge called “The Secrets of the Secret Place.” One of my goals for 2013 is to read at least one book a month, so for this book, I actually mapped it out to where I could read it over the course of the month and take it much slower and let everything really sink deep in my heart. I like to read books that will help me go deeper in my relationship with God. This book was definitely that. My next book that I will start in February is called “Abide in Christ” by Andrew Murray.
RUBY: What is your greatest accomplishment?
Emily: My husband and I somehow managed to get ourselves in about $15,000 of credit card debt in 3 years. The Bible says, “Little foxes spoil the vine.” And it’s true. Just spending a little bit here and there can really catch up to you if you aren’t paying attention to it. We had some major financial things hit us too, which didn’t help matters either. But in August 2011 we felt like we couldn’t handle the pressure any longer. We started to read “Total Money Makeover” by Dave Ramsey. Some friends of ours got us the book as a wedding gift and it just sat on our bookshelf for 2 years. But that book, along with the Bible, helped us out a ton! It takes a lot of discipline and patience to get out of debt. Paul took on 2 jobs and we didn’t see much of each other for over a year. We sold certain things that we didn’t think we needed anymore and even sold my paid off car to help take care of a majority of the debt. We didn’t eat out as much and learned how to live on less than we had before. Within 15 months, we paid off our very last credit card. The weight had finally been lifted! We would have never been able to do it on our own. The Lord definitely blessed us constantly, but He also used this to teach us a lesson discipline and hard work. But it is possible!
RUBY: How may we contact you in order to make a further connection?
Emily: You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Just search for Emily Rose Massey. You can also check out my website, www.emilyrosemassey.com, for my schedule, full testimony, and links to my blog and email.