Singer-Songwriter Holly Starr Celebrates Grace
By Sarah Komisky
Unlike the world around her that screams, “Be perfect!,” Holly Starr is admitting she’s not. Candid about her own struggles and insecurities, this twenty-four year old has discovered the truth of grace: being made perfect in weakness. Passionate about these discoveries, Starr is calling others to lean on a strength bigger than their own and find one they never though they had.
Digging deep into her Christian faith during junior high and high school, Starr was faced with the challenge of effectively answering questions about God. Feeling ill equipped, she asked Jesus for help. Starr shared that she prayed and said, “I can’t do that (music ministry) unless I know how to accurately share what the words faith, grace and trust mean. I need to know what that means, because I don’t want to get on stage and talk about something when I don’t really know what I’m saying.”
This prayer launched Starr on the road to understanding God’s grace. She stated, “God comes into our lives and He can do through us things that we never imagined possible.”
Confessing situations like speaking to a person she would make her uncomfortable, singing at a church she never performed at, or going on a missions trip that she would otherwise not want to attend due to fear of traveling, were all real life scenarios where God has shown himself strong. Defining this as grace, Starr chose to believe on the grace of God to do the impossible.
“Believing on the grace of God is really saying, ‘okay I’m not really going to feel like I am strong enough in my own strength to do pretty much anything God calls me to do, but if I can trust in Him, and put all my weight on him and depend on him for that source of strength, then He will come through and He has come through in my life,” said Starr. “There’s this tendency to feel like we have to measure up and the more we strive to measure up on our own strength the more broken we’re going to be but the more we take those moments of weakness and depend on who God says he is, the more strength we’re going to find we have in Him and through Him and by Him alone.”
I was insecure in a lot of areas and God started to show me, “hey, this is what it means to believe in who I am and who I say I am and believe in my grace for you.”
Starting to write songs in Junior High, Starr was noticed by a producer in the Seattle area on Myspace. This enabled her to record and start sharing with others songs that reflect her passion for worship and also her passion for honesty sharing, “I feel like when we’re honest, it kind of breaks down a lot of walls like jealousy or anger or pride or whatever and just kind of brings us together in unity and I just love the power of being honest.”
Inspired by real life and people she meets on the road, Starr is determined to seize every opportunity given to encourage others and remember them in her songs commenting, “It’s a gift that God has given me that I don’t take very lightly, it’s something that has kind of become a part of who I am.”
Overall, Starr noted that her point of reference in a song is always God expressing, “That’s the vision of all my songs is that okay, at the end of this song is this directing everybody’s attention to the character and name of God because its in His name that we’re saved and there’s power in his name for healing.”
With the song, Through My Father’s Eyes and on her latest project, Never Going Back, Starr was able to share her struggles and write a song off that release with that title that would celebrate how God changed her life – what she wants to inspire others to do as well.
“I have been changed in a way that I just can’t no matter how much I try I can’t be who I was because I think differently now about it so it’s kind of me raising my hand and saying ‘I’m never going back there because I can’t because of God’s healing in my life,’” said Starr. “I just love saying ‘hey have you been changed and if you’re walking with Jesus how have you been changed and lets rejoice in those changes because that’s amazing to see ourselves grow and not being bitter or not having pride or jealousy or anger or whatever and those are awesome things to celebrate.”
Additionally, Starr also invites those that don’t know if they believe in God yet to see what happens when God changes a life and see why we would never want to go back– truly a reason to celebrate!
Check out Everything I Need – the new EP from Holly Starr coming in September and join Holly this summer at a festival near you or on tour this Fall.