“Where did you get your inspiration for your story?”

This probably ranks as one of the top most frequently asked questions during author interviews; and for a good reason. When I learn what sparked an idea behind a novel, it gives me a deeper appreciation for the story.

While it might seem obvious that the main story for Sisters of Lazarus: BEAUTY UNVEILED was drawn from the Gospel, there was something else that brought the biblical story to life for me.

It’s Alright Now by Harvest, featuring Jerry Williams and Ed Kerr

In 1982, the Contemporary Christian Music group Harvest [Jerry Williams and Ed Kerr] released “Because I Am” on their album It’s Alright Now. With rich vocals and sweeping music, the song related the dialogue between Mary and Jesus outside the tomb of Lazarus.

As I listened to this epic song, the story resonated within me. I could see Mary falling at the feet of Jesus, crying out her grief for the loss of a beloved brother, and Jesus reminding her of ‘all the words that I have said.’ Over the years, whenever I read the story of the raising of Lazarus in the Bible, I would remember that song.

One of the first things I did after I signed the book contract for BEAUTY UNVEILED was to pull out the album – yes, I still have it on vinyl – and listen to that song. Even with the skips and scratches of a 30 year old album, the song was just as powerful as the first time I heard it. Every day, before I would begin the day’s writing, I would listen to that song.

I contacted EPIC Ministries, Inc., the interdenominational, evangelistic, and discipling ministry that Jerry Williams and his wife Donna founded. I told them how “Because I Am” had impacted the writing of my new novel and asked if I could share an official music video of the song. Donna explained that, while there was not an official music video, there were several YouTube versions of it from Harvest fans and I had their permission to share any of them.

To learn more about EPIC Ministries, visit their website.