Q: When did you first attend Gateway Church?
A: Actually, I first attended Gateway when I was, I want to say I was 17. I came to youth which was [called] More then. So I came to youth every once in a blue moon. Pastor Preston was still the pastor. And I also came to Kari Jobe’s first concert in the old building [at] 2121, where she opened for Delirious. If you don't know who Delirious is, that's your loss.
Q: What has your journey been like leading up to this album?
A: My journey here has been such a journey of growth. I have gotten to be around some of the most incredible leaders. And they weren't just interested in ability or skill, but they were truly interested in my life and in my personal journey. And so for them to be able to speak into some of those things, as well as the skill, as well as some of the more “professional” things–I feel like I'm better for it now than I was when I first started. So I'm grateful for that.
Q: What's your favorite song on the album and why?
A: That’s a hard question! I would have to say probably “Wilderness” because it's so personal. It’s really personal to me. It came out of a season of my life, and it wasn’t one of those songs that we had to really chase. It’s kind of one of those songs that just came out of a season.
Q: What do you love about worship?
A: I think my favorite thing about worship is that is gets your attention off of yourself, and it puts your attention on Him. And the moment that we’re able to get our eyes off of us and our eyes on Him, everything else seems to pale in comparison. You know, I think worship is not just a song. It's not just music. It is your life. It's a lifestyle.
Q: What superpower would you have and why?
A: I would like to be invisible! I think that would be extremely cool. Just because I would [want] to be in certain rooms where a songwriting session is going on with some people that I really respect and admire. And I can just be a fly on the wall. Being invisible, I think, would be super fun.
Q: What piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
A: What the Lord told me in the very beginning when I first started to pursue [music], the call that I felt like He put in my life and [I was] asking all these questions, asking Him what do I need to do next? He came back to me with “I've called you to love me.” And initially I remember I was frustrated with that answer because I, of course, love [Him]. But the moment that I began to just be intimate with Him in my quiet time and in my secret place. And that became my one desire, the only thing I wanted. Everything else seemed to just happen. If you haven’t been to those intimate places with Him, you can’t expect other people to go to those intimate places with you.
Q: We know you came from the Ukraine as a young child. How has that heritage and your family connections to that country affected your ministry perspective?
A: Wow. Very much. Being born in a different country, I know I was really young when we moved to the states. But my parents really made it a point to make sure that I knew my heritage. And knowing my heritage, knowing I was born into a communist country really gave me a heart of gratitude. I do not wake up a single day without being grateful. Without just being grateful for what the Lord's given me.
The fact that my parents sold everything that they had so that we could be in a free nation, in a free country. And be able to worship Jesus anyway that we want to. To be able to be free and tell people about Jesus and just the struggles that my parents went through. From, you know, barely having any money and living off of food stamps and all of that. I wake up every single day just so grateful for everything that the Lord's done and everything that He's doing.
And I have a heart for my heritage. I still speak Russian, and so I do believe that is going to be a part of my journey at some point. Where I'll be able to minister and go back to where I was born and [bring] some of the things that I was able to learn here.
How Glorious is available now at the Gateway Bookstore and on all of your favorite digital streaming platforms.