Grammy winner Jason Crabb and beloved singer-songwriter Sonya Isaacs bare heart-and-soul as they tenderly relate their families’ experiences from the other side of miscarriage. Don’t miss a single episode of Dinner Conversations — subscribe below!


TRANSCRIPT FROM THE SHOW

Mark: Dinner Conversations is brought to you by ChildFund, a community development organization that has been envisioning a world where every child is free to live at their fullest potential no matter where they’re from or what challenges they face since 1938.

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Mark: A child is waiting.


Mark: So how long have you known Jason Crabb?

Andrew: Probably five, six years now. I first met Jason on the set of his show when I had a little Christmas record come out and he invited me to be a guest, but I was a fan of his way before. That voice and the songs and that teardrop he has that’s right down in his throat.

Mark: That cry in his voice. I’ve known him I don’t even know how long, but I’ve watched his growth as a dad, as a husband, as an artist. And this conversation we had today is about what a father goes through when his wife has a miscarriage. You know, we’ve heard many conversations about what the wife goes through. My mother personally went through it, many women have, one in four, you’ll hear in the conversation, Jason mentions that. Well, what is it like for the father?

Andrew: Yeah, it’s a conversation that we have had more and more, especially wanting to be tender and compassionate towards women because it’s such an experience for them, but it is interesting to hear how Jason experienced it as a dad. He is obviously a really cool, amazing dad who has a palpable love for his family, for his wife, and for his daughters. So it’s great.

Mark: There’s one seat left at that table and it’s yours, so let’s join the conversation.


Jason: Okay, do you like my shirt?

Mark: Yeah, it’s pretty.

Jason: Y’all look really nice, and I just wore my–

Andrew: No, no, no, I’ve got it open like you.

Mark: You know what, you’re the artist.

Jason: Yeah.

Mark: We are the interviewers. So here we go.

Andrew: What you got, Mark?

Jason: Oh boy.

Andrew: So growing up with your family–

Mark: Yeah, well, go ahead.

Andrew: Okay, singing, when did that make a turn though? I don’t think, you know, as long as I’ve know you, I’ve never heard when did that turn to be like this is something I wanna potentially–

Mark: Oh, I’ve heard it. You want me to tell it?

Andrew: No, shut up.

Jason: Now what, when did this–

Andrew: When did it turn to become a profession, yeah. When did you say, hey, this is not something we’re just doing in church, this is–

Jason: As the family or for me alone?

Andrew: As the family.

Jason: Okay, as a family, dad’s writing got a little more serious. I heard the… Honestly, I love music. I’ve always loved music. It’s been a part of who we are, who we were, all my life, you know? But I will say that the piece that really grabbed ahold of me was one day I was walking in the halls and somebody had a Gaither video on, and this is a true story, a Gaither Homecoming video on, and Mark and Michael English and I forget. I think even Terry, Terry Franklin, and it was one of the very first ones and Mike was singing “Had It Not Been.” And that grasped ahold of me like… I don’t know if it was like the Lord was… It was a divine moment that God said, “Okay, I’m gonna touch your heart with something that’s gonna change your life.” And I just, at that moment, I walked by and I heard that voice in such a, I don’t even know, I don’t even know how to describe.

Mark: I don’t either.

Andrew: Was it the voice, do you think, or was it the song?

Jason: Well, both, all of it.

Andrew: Together.

Jason: It was all of it, them singing together. It was all of it. It was just suppose God searched through heaven, couldn’t find one willing to be. I mean, just if you speak those lyrics, it’s just powerful. But then when you got a voice like Michael English that’s singing it–

Andrew: It’s even more powerful.

Mark: And the tear. What I hear in you, and I hear in Michael, is this tear, this cry, this passion, and–

Andrew: In your voice.

Mark: In the voice, yeah.

Andrew: It’s like a teardrop.

Mark: You’re running the lyrics through your brain.

Jason: You know what?

Mark: A lot of people fail to do that.

Jason: You told me, probably about 15 years ago, we were on stage together and you gave me a compliment and I’ve never forgotten it and it’s rehearsed in my mind many times and I’ve shared it with a lot of people, is that you said, “I like the way you run the lyric through your head before you sing it.”

Andrew: What do you mean by that?

Mark: Well, I didn’t mean before you sing it, as you’re singing it, and, you know, you’re thinking about what you’re singing.

Andrew: ‘Cause it’s in your face and in your eyes.

Mark: Yeah, and I’m not thinking about my next lick. I’m not thinking about anything other than I’m telling a story, I’m doing it on pitch and on the pocket, that’s what I’m doing. And if you’re not telling the story, you’re not doing it right.

Jason: Yeah.

Andrew: Do you think of the full circleness of that? Like someone is hearing a song, maybe it’s, who knows what it is? It’s “Sometimes I Cry,” maybe whatever, a Jason Crabb song, hearing how you interpret that song. And in 20 years, we’ll be sitting around the table talking about, you know, it’s when I heard Jason Crabb sing. I mean, do you ever think about that? You are having that kind of impact.

Jason: I really don’t because I don’t take myself that serious at all. I can promise you that. I’m just like, Lord, thank you for the dates that’s on the book so I can pay my house payments. You know what I’m saying? These girls are expensive.

Mark: Right, let’s talk about that. You have two girls.

Jason: I have two girls!

Mark: One loves basketball, one loves music.

Andrew: And they’re teenagers now.

Mark: And they’re teenagers. And you’ve had a miscarriage.

Jason: Yeah.

Mark: Well, when was that?

Jason: Two of ‘em. Two of ’em.

Mark: Two of them?

Jason: Two.

Mark: When was that?

Jason: That was before Ashleigh was born, my first, my oldest.

Mark: Oh, okay, you had the miscarriages first?

Andrew: A series of miscarriages, wow.

Jason: Yeah, that was tough, really tough. Especially not knowing, as a man, how to, you know, we’re three or four years in the marriage and we’re wanting this to happen. It was just tough, it was really tough. And then I remember when she told me when we were gonna have a child. I was out trying to– I can remember this plain as day. I came in. We’d just built a little house in Kentucky, her and I, and they had scraped all the the topsoil off the land where we built our house. And so I’m trying to get the grass to grow outside, and it was so hot and I had the sprinkler system out there and I’d burned it up because I put too much fertilizer on it.

Mark: Uh-oh!

Jason: And so I was aggravated and it was just a scorching hot day and I came in and Shellye goes, “Jason, I got something to tell you. Soon you’re gonna be a daddy.” And I just, I’ll never forget it. We sat down on the couch and cried and–

Mark: Now, this was before the first–

Jason: This is the first pregnancy.

Mark: Okay, got it.

Jason: The first pregnancy and it wasn’t long after that till she started having complications and she just knew that it happened, you know? And we had a miscarriage, and it happened again. It happened twice.

Mark: How far apart?

Jason: About, I wanna say about seven months I think. My timing is– I’m really not good at that.

Mark: But there was a time–

Andrew: They’re fairly close.

Jason: It was fairly close, but there was–

Mark: And then she tells you “I’m pregnant again,” so you’re all excited again.

Andrew: But are you excited or are you kind of–?

Jason: No, I’m a little nervous, you know? I really am because we don’t know, you know? We’re questioning, you know? And, you know, the second one, this is the hardest, this is… My wife is an amazing, amazing woman. She’s my very best friend, but she’s one of the strongest people that I’ve ever met in my life. And she’s a rock, like she’s just…

Andrew: Solid, yeah.

Jason: She’s just solid. It doesn’t… I’m thankful that my children have someone like her in their life because, you know, you can’t shake her. You might rattle her, but she ain’t going nowhere.

Andrew: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Jason: You know what I’m saying? She’s not going anywhere. She’s not picking up. So anyways, when she had the second miscarriage, we were scheduled to do a Thanksgiving Singing News photo shoot, and we had the cover and they had sent the camera guy, just everybody in and it happened like maybe 15 minutes before we were supposed to sit down at the table and do the shoot.

Andrew: And give thanks.

Mark: It was about Thanksgiving?

Jason: Yeah. And so, here I am, you know, wondering what do I do? I mean, we’re just a young married couple, The Crabb Family, this is a big shoot for them. What do I do? Do I just… Do we cancel everything? I mean, what am I doing? And I’m trying to be strong for her and to let her know, to be compassionate, you know? And she’s first and you know, this. Then she goes– She looked and she goes, “Let’s go do this thing. Ain’t nothing we can do.” And I went, “Okay.” This is gonna bust wide open when this is over. You know what I’m sayin’? This is tough. But she just gathered herself, we went and did the photo shoot, and we dealt with it later and I don’t know how.

Andrew: What was dealing with it later? Like, what does that look like? ‘Cause I think the conversation around miscarriage, miscarrying, used to be, I feel like, such a silent grief, death conversation. You didn’t talk about it, maybe that’s… I know some women in my life have miscarried and still feel some shame around that, especially if they’re unable to have children. It’s just the body’s not working it out. What does that conversation look like later when kind of the floodgates open up? What are you hearing from her, and what are you feeling? You know, what are your feelings as a father? Future father?

Jason: As a man, you’re trying to know what to do and be strong, which is very, very tough because you want to be that rock for her, but also you wanna be compassionate, you wanna be encouraging.

Andrew: Tender.

Jason: Exactly. You wanna be very tender and you wanna be, you know, that person that she needs. Sometimes that’s hard because you don’t know exactly what that is. You know?

Mark: And how do you know if she doesn’t tell you?

Andrew: And she may not know, right?

Jason: I think it’s a lot of unknowns, you know? Probably what’s running through her mind is, I mean, is he upset with me, that if he thinks that I can’t have children, it’s this, all these things, and so you’re weighing these things out. And it really is a good thing to maybe have someone to talk to to help connect the dots. We didn’t really, we just kinda dealt with it. Here we are on the road, on a bus, running the roads, doing what we do, you know? And going through all of this, you know?

Andrew: With people everywhere.

Jason: Yeah. And then, you know, my younger brother, Adam, you know, here we had had a couple of miscarriages, and his wife, and they come to us and tell us, you know, “We’re getting ready to have a baby,” when we’ve had two and we, you know? It was really a trying moment.

Andrew: Did he know? Did your family know about the miscarriages at that point?

Jason: Oh, absolutely.

Andrew: Sure, okay. So this was shared.

Jason: Everything was open.

Mark: I think it’s more common than we–

Jason: One out of every four. One out of every four.

Mark: Because my mother miscarried before me. And if that baby had lived and come to full term, I wouldn’t be here. I wouldn’t have had my–

Andrew: Tell me about it.

Mark: I’d of missed my window of opportunity.

Andrew: Can you imagine?

Jason: Oh, I got you.

Mark: I’m about to backhand you. So let me finish this before he makes very cynically light of it. I think it’s more common that women shouldn’t take it personally, that it’s like you’ve done something wrong, no.

Andrew: Well, were there things that did encourage you guys that people spoke? And were there things that weren’t very helpful?

Jason: Oh, absolutely.

Mark: What were some things people should not have said?

Jason: What they shouldn’t have said?

Mark: Should not have said.

Andrew: That weren’t helpful, yeah.

Mark: So we’ll know what not to say when that happens.

Jason: Well, I think that there is times when they wanted to say, well, we don’t know, there could’ve been something, you know, God’s trying to protect you from. And that honestly does not do anything, you know? The thing is, as you say, you know what, you’ve been on my heart, I’ve been praying for ya. That means more than… ‘Cause I think people mean well.

Mark: Oh, sure.

Jason: They mean well.

Andrew: They wanna solve it properly.

Jason: They want to. They would really not mean to hurt you, and they wanna say the right thing. Sometimes just saying just a one little hey–

Mark: Or just being there.

Andrew: Yeah, or a hug or a whatever.

Jason: Yeah, yep, absolutely. So that was really powerful. I had a pastor friend though that really was very instrumental. And we are people of faith, I mean, we’re strong believers and we grew up in a Pentecostal church, and man, I’m telling you, my grandmother would do prayer cloth. She would pray over cloths and put ’em in my wallet and my pants pocket, underneath my pillows, pray, you know? That anointing cloth. There was a man though that we went to his revival service, and he told me he said, and this was after two miscarriages, he prayed for me and Shellye, brought us up front, whole church prayed over us and he said, “I want you to go get a bag of Pampers.” And he said, “And put ’em somewhere where you can see ’em every morning.”

Mark: A bag of?

Jason: Of Pampers. Diapers. And he said, “You put ’em somewhere where you can see ’em every morning, and you thank God for the promise. You thank God that there’s that child.” And speaking that in faith. And so we did that.

Mark: You did it.

Andrew: Which takes, I mean, that takes an element of faith if you think about it because there’s got to be fear in that faith too, like okay, we’re gonna do that, we’re gonna step out in faith. We’re gonna speak this out that there is a child to come ’cause there’s gotta be something in the back of your head that also says, “But what if they don’t?”

Mark: Well, faith without doubt is kind of, I mean, you don’t need faith if there isn’t doubt.

Andrew: But was there doubt?

Jason: Which is true. Faith and doubt goes together because faith is speaking things that are not.

Mark: Everybody thinks if you’re doubting, you’re sinning, you’re not trusting, no.

Andrew: That increases our faith, doesn’t it? Without doubt, wouldn’t our faith not–

Mark: There’s no need for doubt.

Jason: There’s no need for faith without doubt.

“There’s no need for faith without doubt.” – Jason Crabb

Andrew: Yes, okay. So I wanna ask another question about it.

Jason: I know that sounds, that sounds a little deep, but it’s really true.

Mark: Think about it, it’s true.

Jason: But then also to have faith and to do that, you gotta be willing to put yourself on the line. And you gotta be willing to go, you know what? It means enough to me that if I’ve got egg on my face at the end of this, it’s okay. And I think that is very important, especially for believers.

Andrew: Well, and then, it’s not egg on your face in the end, right? Like if this turns out differently than I’m hoping, expecting, praying for, that doesn’t say something less about God.

Jason: Doesn’t say anything less about God. It just says less about your… It’s kinda one of those things that you’ve gotta do it to not worry about what anybody’s thinking. You gotta get to a place where you don’t care, which is a good place, it’s a freeing place.

Mark: You’re saying when you, well, I’m confused.

Andrew: Don’t care about what other people think if it doesn’t–

Jason: If you, if I…. An action of faith, like the Pampers, I did that.

Mark: And you didn’t care what anyone thought.

Jason: Yeah, if you do that, to a lot of people that don’t know about faith–

Mark: That’s crazy, yeah.

Jason: About faith, that’s, aw, bless their hearts.

Mark: Hey, you know what? It worked.

Jason: Exactly.

Mark: Nevertheless, I don’t know, you could say, well, was it really the Pampers or was it the sperm hit the egg? It’s both.

Jason: Here’s what I’ll say, it was God. ‘Cause all of it’s a miracle. Every bit of it’s a miracle.

Andrew: Life is a miracle in general. Even living it within the grief and the pain.

Jason: Look at this, look at this. I mean, our hands, the blood that flows through our veins, how we are made up, that’s a miracle of God.

Mark: Fearfully and wonderfully made.

Jason: Isn’t that awesome? Man, that gives me those good ole gospel, good Holy Ghost bumps.

Andrew: What if I don’t have ’em?

Mark: Because you’re not saved.


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Andrew: And while you’re there, check out some of our friendly merch. We’ve got show mugs and Season One and Two DVDs, and we got these little note cards so Mark can write me a note that says “You’re the best co-host.”

Mark: Oh, yes. Well, you know, you get that after every episode. And what about this mug with our faces on it?

Andrew: What says good morning better?

Mark: It’s like we’re on both sides, so lefty or righty, you get to see us every morning.

Andrew: You know, I think it’s time we get back to those guests.

Mark: Yeah, probably.


Andrew: Sonya, I am so glad that you know how much I love you and have for years, and some of that’s just through my own personal experience with your family’s music and how that has had an impact for me personally in some very dramatic personal moments in my own life. I wanna talk about, today, some of your story and your immediate family story, your and Jimmy’s family’s story. But take me back, before we talk about your family today, as it looks today. I wanna hear… I was reading about a story from when you were, I don’t know, maybe a teenager and visiting Dollywood. You know what I’m talking about?

Sonya: Yes, I do, I do. Okay, so ever since I was a teenager, my heart’s desire was to be married and have children. I just wanted, especially a daughter. And I guess the only reason I can make sense of that at such a young age was just because of the great relationship that really all of us have with our mother and what a great mom she is and just having that innate desire to be a mother one day. And so they had this little dress shop at Dollywood called Little Dolly Dress Shop, and I, you know, I couldn’t help but just wander in there one day when we were there and they had the most adorable dress hanging there and it was the cutest thing I’d ever seen and I must’ve been like 17–

Andrew: Yeah, so you’re a kid–

Sonya: Or 18, I was young, I was young. But I knew that one day I would have a daughter, and so I bought this little dress. It probably would fit like three to six months. It was little ruffly, kind of a polyester fluffy dress with strawberries all over it with a matching bonnet, little checkered pattern with strawberries and a little bonnet. I mean, it just looked really old timey. It was just so cute and I just couldn’t resist! So I bought it.

Andrew: So you bought it. I mean, you’re not married or anything.

Sonya: Oh, no, no, no. No, I mean, this was before all that. So I bought the dress and I just said, “I’ve gotta keep this.” And so I put it in a closet, and I just said, “One day, one day,” you know, “I’m gonna have children.” I ended up getting married. My first husband and I, we did not have children. We were married for seven years. I went through a divorce, and I was single for many, many years after that before I met my husband, Jimmy, and I kept the dress.

Andrew: All this time, mm-hm.

Sonya: Everywhere I went, I kept the dress. I don’t know why, I just kept the dress, so I kept the dream.

Andrew: Fast forward then, so 2009, you and Jimmy get married, right?

Sonya: Yes.

Andrew: And you meet somewhere around that time too. That was a pretty quick courtship though.

Sonya: It was.

Andrew: I mean, you knew when you knew, right?

Sonya: Yeah, we knew, we knew. We’re celebrating 10 years this year, and so we only dated for three months and then we got engaged, and then three months later we got married.

Andrew: Wow.

Sonya: So it was just, it was fast, but we knew and that was also a fulfillment of prophecy in my life. And I also have been prophesied that I would have children.

Andrew: Did that ever–

Sonya: And this is before I met Jimmy.

Andrew: And it’s before Jimmy. So does that feel like, I mean, I’m curious about this. I have been prophesied over once or twice. Not in such specific manners, right? More about demeanor and spiritual disposition. When someone prophesies someone and says a word, you know, that’s from the Lord, very specifically in your life, like you will have children, you’ll be a mother, and you’re not seeing that happen or you’re not seeing with who that’s gonna happen with, kind of wilderness type area, does it feel… I mean, were you assured all the time? Or were you like that may not have been a word from the Lord, you know?

Sonya: Well, because I knew the source, I knew that it would come to pass. And so I think it was just God saying, “Here’s a negative hope. Hold on to this until the time is right.” And so I never gave up hope, even when I started in my 30s. I didn’t marry Jimmy until I was 35, 34, 35, and so it was late and I didn’t know if I could have children, you know? I didn’t know if he could have children. I didn’t know anything. But I still felt in my heart that I didn’t need to worry about it, you know?

Andrew: So then you get married and you get pregnant with your first child.

Sonya: Ayden, yes.

Andrew: With Ayden. And so that pregnancy?

Sonya: It was great. It was normal, easy. Again, I was 30, well, let’s see, 2011, I have to backtrack and subtract. He was born in 2011, so, how many years?

Andrew: We’ll just say he’s 8-years-old.

Sonya: He’s 8 now, so eight years ago. Let me think. I was 37.

Andrew: Okay.

Sonya: And actually he was born three days after my birthday, so I think I’d just turned 38, and that was easy and he was great. So for three years, it was just us and Ayden, and we were content. Because he wasn’t a good sleeper, so we waited for a while.

Andrew: Yeah, right.

Sonya: And then we decided to try again.

Andrew: So you didn’t have any fear or trepidation necessarily or any anxiety going into this second pregnancy?

Sonya: The only anxiety I had was my age and knowing that the older you get, the higher the risks are for problems and issues for the child and for the pregnancy, but I just trusted the Lord. And I, again, I had different people sowing into my faith, like they had dreams and visions of me with a daughter and with, you know? And so I still had the dress. I had my son, and if that was it, then that was good enough. I could’ve put the dress on ’em if I really had had to, but no, no, no.

Andrew: Like this is what this was meant for.

Sonya: Right. No, but–

Andrew: I’ll show you some of my baby pictures. No.

Sonya: I wanna see ’em, I wanna see ‘em. But I just knew that God wasn’t finished yet, so I had that peace.

Andrew: So walk me through that pregnancy then, when did that pregnancy with Ava begin to turn from a healthy pregnancy into something unknown?

Sonya: So Ayden was three and a half when I got pregnant with my second child. I found out at 18 weeks that it was gonna be a girl. Again, it was just. I got that little dress out. My husband and I, with Ayden, our announcement that we were having a daughter was me holding up the dress and showing the world, you know, I have had this dress since I was a teenager and we’re having a girl. That was our announcement of gender, and I was crying and it was such a joyous time. And then the doctor called me back into the office after we did the gender reveal, and he said, “I don’t wanna alarm you, but I want you to be aware that there seems to be a slight issue with the way the baby’s growing and I’m not concerned, I’m not alarmed, but we’re just gonna watch it. It could just be the way that baby’s growing particularly where it could mean that there’s, you know, some issues that need to be resolved or whatever.” Enough to scare me to death. Well, it was just a few weeks later that we were touring on a weekend, and I was feeling fine. I had no issues. I had no reason to suspect anything was wrong. But when I woke up that morning, I was hemorrhaging, and it scared me so bad. And we were playing that afternoon, and so rather than stay in Georgia and go the doctor, I said, “Let’s just go home. I’ll go to the emergency room.” I went to the emergency room when we got home. It was midnight, and I’ll never forget it when I got to the emergency room here in Hendersonville. And they ordered an ultrasound, and she came in and the lady was doing the ultrasound and the whole time she’s doing the ultrasound, she just looks like this, like, she’s not saying anything. And I’m like, “Can you see the heartbeat?” You know, “Can you tell me anything?” And she’s like, “I’m sorry. I’m not allowed to discuss that with you. Your doctor will be in to discuss the results with you.” She wouldn’t give me anything, and I just felt like something’s really wrong ’cause she won’t tell me anything.

Andrew: Sure, yeah, avoiding, yeah.

Sonya: She’s avoiding the topic, and so because it was in the middle of the night, we had to wait two hours for a doctor to come in with the results.

Andrew: With this lingering…

Sonya: With this lingering anxiety–

Andrew: Having no idea.

Sonya: Anxiety of what’s going on and I hadn’t been feeling her moving or anything, probably for, you know, a few days, but that happens sometimes. And when you’re busy the way we are, you don’t really notice as much. And I was still early on. I was only about, you know, 23 weeks at the time, 24 weeks. So I just thought she was not very active. Anyway, doctor finally came in. It was 2 in the morning, and she sat down at the edge of the bed. This wasn’t my doctor either. She was the one on call, and she said, “Mr. and Mrs. Yeary, I’m so sorry to tell you that your baby girl has passed away. Her little heart has stopped beating.” And I said, “Are you sure? Are you sure?” She said, “I’m sure. I’m so sorry.” And she said, “We can tell by the ultrasound that she’s probably been passed away for several days already.” And my body just hadn’t responded to it. And she said, “You can either go home and wait for this to happen on its own or we can induce you and begin the process of labor.” And that was so hard, that decision was so hard. And in those waiting hours of not knowing whether she was alive or dead, the TV was on, we were just trying to pass the time, scared to death but praying and hoping for the best and some stupid channel was on and I said, “I don’t wanna watch that.” And so we flipped it, and there were the Gaithers on TV.

Andrew: Your people.

Sonya: And we stopped and I watched those songs, those hymns that just filled the room with so much peace, like the songs of hope that I needed and so desperately in that moment, in those hours of waiting that felt like days. And I just remember feeling the Comforter fill that room with those songs, and I said, “I get it now.” I’ve always loved the Gaither videos. I’ve always loved the singing and even what we do, but here I was in a position where I was the one being nurtured by the music that I was part of creating, and it was such an amazing epiphany for me. So I’m grateful that I had faith in those moments.

“I’ve always loved the singing and even what we do, but here I was in a position where I was the one being nurtured by the music that I was part of creating.” – Sonya Isaacs

Andrew: Did it take you back to that moment of you, even before meeting Jimmy and before knowing what a family would look like for you and still hoping and trusting in that promise? Did it take you back to that submission? That, you know, I heard you say earlier that you were likeIy trust in your will more than my plans.  I mean, is that where your back… It’s kinda like being back at square one a little bit.

Sonya: Right, exactly.

Andrew: Does it feel like that too? Like in a defeating way as well? Or was it hopeful from the beginning because of the support and your faith.

Sonya: I went through the doubting phase of, like, I know the prophet was true, I trust in you, God. And I did have my moments of thinking maybe I misunderstood, maybe it wasn’t what I thought, maybe you were supposed to adopt a little girl. That’s what I thought. But as time went on, I settled back into my peace of, all right, God, you know my heart’s desire. So back to the story, I labored for 12 hours and gave birth to my baby girl. Her name was Ava Devorah. And the funeral home took great care of us. They have a special program that they take care of your babies. All we have to pay for is the little, what do you call that, marker. That was a blessing. And, you know, I just started healing and–

Andrew: Did you do feel like there was something that maybe someone else shared with you during this season of grief, after Ava had passed, that you feel like was really helpful in connecting that dot too?

Sonya: Yeah, I started finding so much comfort and the more that I would share my story, the more that I felt less alone, you know? Because there have been millions and billions of mothers and fathers who have lost their babies, some earlier on, some even more tragically later than me. I was six months pregnant when I lost her, six months. We were almost there.

Andrew: It’s a formed baby, yeah, yeah.

Sonya: We were almost there. And she was perfect. I mean, she was tiny, but she was all there, you know? She’s a life, she’s a real little girl, and her soul is with Jesus. But I found so much comfort from people, so many people that sent me books and people that just… Mark Lowry called me. He called me and he said, “I don’t know what–” He left me a voicemail ’cause I didn’t answer, not on purpose, but.

“She’s a life, she’s a real little girl, and her soul is with Jesus.” – Sonya Isaacs

Andrew: Yeah, well, I would’ve not answered on purpose.

Sonya: Not on purpose.

Andrew: But anyway.

Sonya: Anyway, and Mark said, “You know,” he said, I don’t have the words to make you feel better,” but he said, “Let me tell you this.” He said, “My mama lost a baby before she had me, and if she hadn’t lost that baby, I wouldn’t be here.” And he said, “God has a plan for your life, and he loves you.” And that voicemail meant so much to me, like he doesn’t even know what a perspective that was for me.

Andrew: And a shift.

Sonya: Yeah.

Andrew: Yeah, especially as a mother and as a woman who, again, who’s wondering when it’s my body. It’s just like you had said before, is this my fault? Have I aged out, and I wasn’t thinking and considerate of that? Of course that kind of flips when you talk about Mark telling you if his older sibling had survived that then we wouldn’t have Mark. You can think about that in a lot of different ways.

Sonya: You can’t!

Andrew: No, you can’t actually, you’re right.


Andrew: One more question about that though. If you, okay, so wanting to be so aware, going back to you talking about Shellye and wanting to be aware of her and her feelings and be tender and compassionate and all those things you wanna be as a man, as her husband, but how did you also stay aware of your… You had to have feelings too. How did you also stay aware of that in the midst of trying to care for her? Did you forget to care for yourself? Did you care for yourself? What ways did you care?

Mark: Who did you unload on?

Jason: On the stage.

Mark: Really?

Jason: Yeah, it was really… The neat thing about… I think God– Now I look back at it. I’m 42-years-old, and I’ve lived a lot of life. I mean, there’s been a lot of water that’s been under the bridge, you know, in those years. 26 years of it was on the road. It has been on the road. And during that time was that, and God gave me a funnel and that funnel was a stage. It really was. And so what I was feeling I was putting on that stage out to people. And the neat thing is I’ve learned there’s pretty much nothing that you’re going through that somebody out there hasn’t or isn’t going through. And I think that that’s where the God thing happens. It’s like, wait a minute, I can use my troubles to help encourage others that glorify God. I’m drawing strength from God, you know, being able to do this, and then helping them find strength in God in their trouble and their craziness and their, you know, junk, as well, and we’re doing this together.

Mark: You’re helping them.

Jason: We’re all living this together. I might be on the stage, but that second pew, it’s their stage, you know? They’re feeling it, and you know, it’s their place.

Mark: It’s basically you’re showing your scars. And when you show your scars, everybody with those scars, they know it too. They’re like I’ve been there. Like when my dad went to prison at 76 years of age, I remember getting on the stage, and I talked about it. I didn’t talk about it for a long segment of my career. For two or three weeks, I’d be working it out on stage and then go into my bunk in complete depression. I mean, I didn’t hardly leave my bunk while I was working through this. So, the stage is an outlet for us.

“When you show your scars, everybody with those scars, they know it too.” – Mark Lowry

Jason: But what if it was just the bunk, you know what I mean? If we didn’t have the stage. There was some things–

Mark: You need somebody.

Jason: There was some things I worked out out on the stage. I remember I went through very heavy anxiety attack and just started going through anxiety really strong. And I remember one day I turned on, I was in West Virginia and it was a little local West Virginia Christian station and those are the best because you never know what you’re gonna get. You know those little pockets, you know, that I love. It was a little country station. This little lady, I promise I don’t know her name, I’ve never heard her, never saw her name in a magazine or lights or anything. She just stood up there and she sang, “I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold. I’d rather have Jesus, riches untold.” And I’m sitting there on the edge of the bed, thinking I’m about to honestly die, literally. I’m thinking there’s no way–

Andrew: Because of the anxiety.

Jason: I can survive like this a couple more days. There’s no way my body will make it. And I’m sitting there listening to her sing this, and I walked out on the stage that night and I told Justin, Justin Ellis, which plays keys, and this was before Blaine played for me. I told Justin, I said, I said, “I wanna try something different tonight.” I said, “I have never sang this song before, but I love it.” And I started singing “I’d Rather Have Jesus,” and man, something just started breaking in me there. It was full trust in Jesus. And man, that song was healing for me.


Jason Crabb singing “I’d Rather Have Jesus”

I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold

I would rather have Him than riches untold

I would rather have Jesus than houses or lands

I would rather be led by His nail-scarred hands

Than to be the king of a vast domain

Than be held in sin’s dread sway

I would rather have Jesus than anything

This world can afford me today

I would rather have Jesus than man’s applause

I would rather be faithful to His dear cause

I would rather have Jesus than worldwide fame

I’d rather be true to His holy name

Than to be a king of a vast domain

Than be held, be held in sin’s dread sway

I would rather have Jesus than anything

This world can afford me today

More than this world can afford me

‘Cause I love you Jesus more than anything 


Dinner Conversations Sponsorship Message

Mark: You can help change the life of a child today by partnering with Andrew and me and supporting a boy or girl in Guatemala through ChildFund today.

Andrew: Your sponsorship will not only improve the future of one child’s life. Your child’s sponsorship will promote communities in Guatemala, the communities that Mark and I just visited where we saw parents who are learning to value and to protect and to advance the worth and rights of their teens and children. Who, through your child’s sponsorship, are literally changing the culture of each child’s community from the inside out.

Mark: Perhaps you already sponsor a child. Would you consider sponsoring another child in Guatemala? Maybe in honor of one of your children, a new grandchild, a special niece or nephew? It takes so little to make such a profound difference in the life of a child.

Andrew: Your sponsored child is a real kid with real dreams, just like the dreams of your children and grandchildren. We know because we met them, kids that want to be doctors and lawyers and teachers, even musicians kind of like us. Your sponsorship gives these children their chance to achieve their very unique dreams.

Mark: You may not be able to change the whole world, but you can change the world for one child. Visit childfund.org/dinnerconversations to sponsor a child in Guatemala today. As a small way to say thanks for your child’s sponsorship, we will send you an autographed Season Two DVD and Songs From The Set CD.

Andrew: Yes, plus a special item made just for you by the communities in Guatemala.

Mark: And every sponsor and a guest is invited to a Dinner Conversations Friends & Family Weekend in Nashville.

Andrew: Hey now, which includes mealtimes with Mark and me, private little concerts and chitchats with our friends, and a special Sunday morning service that will happen right before you head out of town.

Mark: And if you sponsor more than one child, you will have the opportunity to be a guest on an actual episode of Dinner Conversations during the Friends & Family Weekend in Nashville.

Andrew: Does it get better than that?

Mark: No.

Andrew: Does it, Mark, does it? Stay tuned for exact details, and don’t forget to visit childfund.org/dinnercoversations to sponsor your child today.


Andrew: So you do have two children? Right, Ashleigh and Emma who are, what’d you say, 16 and?

Jason: 16 and 13.

Andrew: Okay, so that’s got to be an interesting thing raising girls in a 21st century world.

Mark: How is it different?

Jason: You know what?

Mark: From 10, 20 years ago, as if you’d know, you weren’t raising ’em 20 years ago.

Jason: I’m really blessed. Here’s how I’m blessed. I have a 16- and 13-year-old, but the band that I travel with is like 23, 24, 26. And so some of the issues that I’ll go through with my kids, I tell them how I handled it. I’ll talk to them. This is what we went through, this is what we, this is what I said, and I’ll tell them. Sometimes they’ll go, “Man, think about saying it this way.” Then sometimes they’ll go, “I wish I had that. I wish I would have had that.” Or they’ll say, “Your daughters are going to be perfectly fine because you are talking and that they are sharing. The very fact that they’re sharing these things with you is I promise everything’s gonna be okay.” So which has really been good for me because I don’t know what it’s like growing up in this age.I can be the grumpy old man to go, “Well, these Millennials. They don’t have a clue what we went through and what we had to do.” You know what I mean? Honestly, we don’t have a clue what they’re going through. Could you imagine growing up and having a social media page? Or you could talk to whoever you wanted to at that very time?

Mark: No.

Andrew: Around the world.

Mark: I can imagine that, but I can’t– Around the world, you’re right.

Andrew: You know what I think of as like what would have probably been, I don’t know, difficult for me or if I would have been susceptible to is the anonymity that’s possible with your relationship, so I can talk to someone around the world, which is both cool. We’ve had pen pals forever. But I can also overshare. I can share with the things of texting and photos and the easy dissemination of information about ourselves. I think I would have probably started confiding with someone who I don’t have to touch, rather than someone who’s right here next to me, which then I’m isolated.

Mark: How have you handled that with kids? How would you– What would you say to someone who’s got a 13- or 16-year-old? Are your kids on the phone all the time?

Jason: They are.

Mark: Like me and everybody else.

Jason: But we know who they’re on the phone with. Like I said, my wife is the most incredible woman in the world. I’m gonna have to say this. There’s not one thing that goes on in my house that she don’t know about.

Mark: Good.

Jason: Or off the phone. We have this app called Life360. Have you ever heard of that?

Mark: I sure have. My brother’s got it.

Jason: Wherever these children go, whatever time they use the bathroom. It’s so funny too because it tells how fast they are going in a car. So here’s the deal, like this happened, I’m telling you. My daughter is riding with one of her friends down the road. Her friend just got her license. They’re going to a ball game. All of a sudden, I wanted to, I just got this, you know, this feeling, I wanna find out where they’re at, how they’re doing, make sure they’re fine, see if the little button’s still moving down the road. I look it up, and it says 87 miles per hour, and I went.

Mark: On what road? It doesn’t matter.

Jason: It don’t make a difference.

Mark: Well.

Jason: I called my wife. Me and Shellye talked, and I called my daughter. I said, “Hey, honey, what’s going on? Y’all good?” “Yeah, we’re doing good.” I said, “Hey, can you hand your phone to whoever’s driving right now?” I knew who it was, you know, and I called her name. I said, “I just wanna tell her something real fast. Just hand her the phone.” Handed her the phone, I said, “Hey, how fast are you going?” I said, “Now remember, my baby’s with you, okay? Be safe, drive slow.” In other words, slow it down. And I said, “All right, you can hand my phone back over to my daughter.”

Mark: Did you let her know you knew how fast she was going?

Jason: Oh, yeah.

Mark: Oh, yeah. I’d say you’re going 87.

Andrew: Okay, let me just be devil’s advocate for a second because I–

Mark: Devil’s who?

Andrew: Devil’s advocate. I’m not raising teenagers, so I am legitimately asking this but curious. As a parent, is it also to be able to have the resource of constant information about your child, which can be a very beneficial–

Jason: Catch-22.

Andrew: Could it also be like, induce so much anxiety? And like do you wanna know everything?

Jason: No.

Andrew: So how do you balance that then in a world where you can know everything? How do you and your wife kind of go, okay, but you know what, they are their individuals?

Mark: Would your wife want to know everything?

Jason: She helps me with that. See, I’m the one that’s a little bit more–

Andrew: Helicopter-ish.

Mark: Oh, you are?

Jason: She knows everything, but she kinda sifts through what she needs to deal with. So the information’s there, and she’ll handle whatever needs to be handled.

Andrew: What’s important.

Jason: Which is really, really good. You remember Jeff and Sheri had a song out called “Let the Little Things Go.” Do you remember that song?

Mark: No, I don’t. I like that.

Jason: Oh, it’s such a beautiful song, “Let the Little Things Go.”

Andrew: So she helps you know what those little things are?

Jason: Yeah, like last night, my daughter had a little birthday party for her boyfriend. She’s 16, he was turning 17, had a bunch of her friends over. We needed to go somewhere. We had another place that we needed to go, and I’m going, “Both of us ain’t leaving.” And the funny thing was and Shellye goes, “Jason, they’re gonna be all right.”

Mark: Yeah, were they alone? I mean, a room full of people.

Jason: Not a room, they weren’t in the house. No, no. They wouldn’t be. They couldn’t be in the house.

Mark: Oh, I’m confused.

Jason: They were outside at a party and outside at the lake– Not in the house, Lord, God, no. I wouldn’t let them in my–

Andrew: Shellye’s like, “Just leave them, Jason.”

Jason: And you know what was funny, I was getting ready and I’m struggling with this. I’m thinking I’m gonna tell her to stay here, I’m gonna go do what we need to do, go to that thing, Shellye can stay here. I was talking to my manager, which a great, great man, Philip Morris, talking to him and I said, “I think we’re getting ready to leave.” I said, “But Ashleigh’s blah-blah-blah.” He goes, “That’s good for you to do that. It shows that you trust her, and she needs that.” And I went, “Hey, Shellye, let’s go! I think we’re gonna be late.” So I was like.

Andrew: You just did it.

Mark: That one word did it.

Andrew: But let her rise to the occasion, right?

Jason: But when I came back, you should have seen her. She’s like, “Dad, we had a great time. It was great. Thank you for this. Thank you for letting us do this, thank you,” and it was just wonderful.

Mark: Isn’t that great?

Andrew: But it’s hard.

Jason: It was for me ’cause I wanna go, uh-uh! You ain’t, this ain’t happening.

Mark: Well, I wanna play the devil’s advocate. If something had gone wrong–

Jason: See.

Mark: Would you have made the right decision? And would you say, oh gosh, I shouldn’t have, you know.

Andrew: I should have done something different.

Jason: Honestly, true. That’s the conversation that we had. It’s like, are we setting ourselves up? Are we doing this or whatever? And then it goes back to I trust my daughter in the way that I’ve raised her.

Mark: Yeah, you got to.

Jason: And I know who she is. She doesn’t struggle with this. I mean, she looked right across, she looked at me and she said, “Dad, I want you to know this. I don’t do—” We were having a very serious conversation. She goes, “I don’t do those things, I don’t. You gotta trust me.” And I said, “Okay.”

Andrew: Well, and isn’t trusting your kid also part of realizing you’re not in total control? And what if something did go wrong? Well–

Jason: Now that’s my wife. “Now if you’re going to…” I mean, you know, that’s what she says.

Mark: Oh, she’s on to you about being in control?

Jason: A little bit.

Mark: ‘Cause you said that’s your wife.

Andrew: Like a control freak?

Jason: No, my wife says, “You’re gonna have to let her breathe. If she’s gonna do something wrong, she gonna do something wrong when you’re–“

Mark: So you’re the helicopter and she’s not.

Jason: A little bit. Yeah.

Andrew: Maybe that’s so ’cause she’s a woman–

Jason: We’re two different type of helicopters.

Mark: So let me ask you this.

Jason: One is a news helicopter, one’s a police helicopter. You know, the news gives us the information, that’s my wife. The police helicopter, that’s me, with the light going, “Ah! I caught you.”

Mark: That’s brilliant. That’s interesting.

Andrew: Is that because you remember what you did when you were 16?

Jason: Are y’all hungry?

Andrew: Okay, okay, one more question about this though. Like speaking of boyfriends and just our culture today and having girls, specifically having girls who are growing into women, and having a culture that doesn’t always treat women well or respect them just as a base level. How do you both encourage them to respect themselves, maybe in ways they aren’t encouraged by culture? And how do you treat them? And what’s the motivation about how you treat them and care for them and show them who they are to you?

Jason: That’s very tough. I think a lot of that is Lord, help me, guide me to, show me how to help do this in the right ways. There’s times when you go, you say, “No.” There’s times when you let them learn by themselves, but there’s stuff that you gotta guard them against. I think some of the conversations that I’ve had with my eldest daughter. She’s like, “Look,” when we have that conversation, and she said, “Dad, I don’t do this kind of stuff and that.” And it was one of those things to where she said, “And guess what? The people that I surround myself, respect me.” And that meant more to me than anything. You know, she said, “The reason that I like the boy that I’m dating is because he respects me.” Man, that gets me.

Mark: Wow.

Jason: That really gets me because I just don’t want any boys liking my daughter. But if you know–

Andrew: But if they are.

Jason: Yeah, it got me. She said, “He respects me.”

Andrew: That says she respects herself too.

Jason: It does, and so that’s really tough because there’s a tough line here because, you know, think about it, a 13, 14, 15, 16-year-old, the boys are going through the changes of life, different things are happening, they have no clue what’s going on. Their bodies are changing, their voices are changing, they are running crazy. There’s a lot of emotions that’s going through their body at that one particular time and they are not. And this is just, I mean, since we’re just being on it, they are not thinking with their brain at all. They’re thinking about everything that’s changing in their life, and respect is not in the forefront of their mind at all. And so that’s why it’s so important, if you have daughters, to teach them they have to respect themselves for the boys to be able to respect them.

“It’s so important, if you have daughters, to teach them they have to respect themselves for the boys to be able to respect them.” – Jason Crabb

Andrew: They’re kinda helping the boy out a little bit.

Jason: It really is, it’s really helping the boy in such a way, I think. And I think you can be set up for failure. That’s why I think a lot of girls that have trouble at home are looking for approval from a man or someone in a home that find it in the wrong place at the wrong time. You talking about the wrong place at the wrong time, a young lady can find herself in a bad spot, especially with a young man that is going through the changes of life. Her home’s a wreck and you’re just set up for some disasters. So I think our young ladies need to be shown. They just need to be shown how to respect themselves, and how they do that a lot is how their fathers treats the mother. How they treat the mother and how they treat, you know–

Mark: Well, I’ve been to your house and your girls adore you, your wife adores you, I think you’re doing everything right myself.

Jason: I’m gonna say I ain’t doing everything right, but I–

Mark: What would be one thing you’ve done wrong?

Jason: I get high-strung sometimes. I got a little temper. I think like when I was talking about changing the hat sometimes. Now I don’t– When I say hot temper, I’m not throwing nothing or slamming doors. I’m just like, I’m just–

Andrew: Like short kinda.

Jason: Yes, just short, short. And the older I get, you know–

Mark: The less patience?

Jason: I guess, I don’t know.

Mark: For stupidity.

Jason: Well, some of it. That’s it, that’s it.

Mark: I just can’t take stupid no more.

Andrew: It’s all about perspective.

Jason: It is. If it doesn’t line up with my thoughts, it’s stupid.

Mark: That’s right.

Jason: And so, anyway, I think that that’s a little bit of maybe an issue with me sometimes.

Mark: But your family being around people, your daughters, they gotta be rubbing up against that ’cause they’re the ones that will bring that out of you, and then you’re faced with it, you know? That’s how you know you probably have a short temper, you got daughters.

Andrew: And not being perfect is okay, I think, for kids. Parents not being perfect is not a death sentence for kids. It’s parents who aren’t perfect that say they’re perfect.

Mark: Have you ever apologized to your daughters?

Jason: Oh, absolutely.

Mark: That’s a great thing.

Andrew: Yeah, that’s a way to express that.

Jason: You want me to tell you something? One time, and this is, I don’t know how much time we got. But it’s like I remember my oldest got into, just kinda did something that was just a wrong step in the wrong direction, and it was based off of peer pressure. And I knew that’s what it was and she knew that’s what it was and I knew that’s what it was, everybody knew it. Everybody knew that she gave in. It was not a positive step. It was a step if you go down this road, then what else is ahead? And so I had to deal with that. It was a Sunday afternoon. I’m coming home. My wife told me about it. She said, “You’re not gonna believe this, but this is what I found out and this is what happened.” It was nothing like earth-shaking or, you know, whatever, but I had to deal with it when I got home. So I was gonna be home about 7 o’clock. She went to bed about like 4. And so, anyways, yeah, and so she went to bed, and as soon as I got home, I just dropped the bag and I walked straight in and I flip the light on, and I said, and I said, “Honey, I think you got something to share with me, don’t you?” And she turned around and she looked at me and she goes, “I don’t get it. I don’t understand why. I don’t know why I did this. I don’t know why. I knew better.” And boy, it just hit me. And I said, “I know.” I said, “Here’s the thing.” I said, “I wanna be able to trust you with… I want you to live life to the fullest. Your mother and I want you to enjoy life, and the more that we trust you, the more that we’re gonna to let you go and let you do more things that you want.” I said, “But you know, we got to learn this,” you know? “If you’re gonna give into peer pressure and this kind of stuff, then we’re gonna have to put some reins on you just because,” I said–

Andrew: ‘Cause we care about you.

Jason: I said, “Do you think we want you to lay in this bed for three hours thinking about what I’m gonna say to you?” That’s horrible. I said, “That’s the worst thing in the world for a father to think that his daughter is worried about that.” They don’t want that at all.

Mark: Making me tear up. This is a beautiful story.

Jason: You know what I mean? So, we talk, we cry together. I hold her. She asked for forgiveness. I said, “I promise you I forgive you.” We prayed. And after we prayed, she looked up at me, and she said, “Daddy, I thought… The thing that scared me the most was you’re gonna think different of me.”

Mark: Oh my God, that kills me.

Jason: And I lost it.

Mark: I bet.

Jason: She said, “I thought you were gonna think different of me.” And I said, “Let me tell you something, Ashleigh.” I said, “I love you more right now than I’ve ever loved you in my life, more.” And she looked up and she said, “You’re my best friend.”

Mark: Wow.

Jason: And I lost it more.

Mark: You’re not supposed to make me cry. I’m supposed to be the Barbara Walters making you cry.

Jason: Well, I’m just gonna say it was a good moment. And I told her–

Mark: God, I love those kinda stories.

Jason: I told her that it’ll never be brought up at her ever again, never, never. And it never was. Now, here’s the thing that I want people to know about that, that God showed me through that. Number one is if my daughter, my daughter knew that I forgave her, she knew it. With the reaction of I thought you were gonna think, I thought you were gonna do this, et al. But the thing that I asked her was, you said this, the thing that I asked her, I said, “What can I do different?” I said, “You’re my first. I’ve not done this before,” right? “So what am I doing wrong? How can I help?”

Mark: Was that in the same conversation?

Jason: Same conversation. I asked her, I said, “What am I doing wrong in the parenting?” ‘Cause I wanna be a good parent. What do you feel like I need work on? And it was the most door-opening thing for her, that she knew I didn’t have, I got it wrong.

Mark: You didn’t have all the answers.

Jason: No, I was big enough to say–

Mark: That is fantastic.

Jason: I get it wrong, and I know that. But it also opened up to a thing for her to have that conversation, that dialogue. I feel like you maybe should have come this way or I feel like you’ve judged me this way or that.

Andrew: Oh, she had a response?

Jason: I wanted it. She’s like, “Dad.”

Andrew: She didn’t.

Jason: No, she said, “Dad, this has not got anything to do with that. I love you.” And she let on with that, but that was, killed me.

Mark: That must have killed her for her to know you thought, okay, could I done something better to where she would not have done this? So gosh, the dynamic of that conversation has got to be life-changing.

Jason: It was a life-changing experience for me and a life changing experience for her. And so I think that’s when I got on the bus, and I was telling you about the boys, I was talking to them and they’re like.

Mark: You did that.

Andrew: You can have that experience.

Jason: So I think it’s important, but here’s the thing that I want people to know in that, that I learned, is that my child that next morning got up in a home that she knew that there was no condemnation in. She went and got a drink out of the fridge. She went and got to eat whatever, my God, whatever that she wanted because that was her house.

Mark: Just like our Father.

Jason: And that’s God.

Mark: Yes.

Jason: And so many people are living under condemnation and under that guilt and under all of that, when you’ve already asked for forgiveness and you’ve made things right. And you walk around your own home thinking that you’re second rate or that you’re beat down or whatever. That’s not the God that I serve. A good father would never do that. A good father never brings up past failure. A good father celebrates the future.

Mark: Come on, buddy.

Jason: And that’s it.

Mark: And just think, you’re a broken image of our Father. The way you did it so perfectly with your daughter, multiply that by infinity, and you’ve got our Father in heaven. You know, the only reason you knew how to love her like that is because of Him.

Jason: Was because of Him. I’m stupid. No, I really am. I’m just saying, I’m stupid, I know this.

Mark: But my point is all healthy parents come by it, by God. It’s in your DNA. You’re the image of him.

Andrew: It’s his love through us.

Mark: Wow.

Jason: Yeah, I think so. And I think it’s a very important thing too for people to know that, for them to walk in victory. God wants us to live life to the fullest. That’s what I want for my children. They can’t do it with their head hung down in shame. My girls get up in their house and know that that is their house and I will protect them no matter what, why? Because they have my last name. It’s not the greatest name in the world. Crabb is pretty tough. But I’ve worked hard for them to have a good home, you know. My wife and I have and I want them to be proud of that name. I really do. But I also want them to know that there’s love in that home and forgiveness and…

“God wants us to live life to the fullest. That’s what I want for my children. They can’t do it with their head hung down in shame.” – Jason Crabb

Mark: Mercy.

Jason: Everything.

Mark: All of it.

Jason: All of its there.

Andrew: It’s safe.

Jason: It really is, and I want that to be for them. But also, I want it to be a reflection that his forgiveness is enough for all humanity. You can’t walk around with your head hung down in shame. When you ask forgiveness and you wanna be a Christian or whatever, you carry that name, you carry the name of God. So whatever is his is yours. If you walk around in shame and ask already, repentance, then you’re almost saying that his name and he what he did on Calvary wasn’t enough.

Andrew: Yeah, it seems diminishing to God for sure. It makes me God, you know, to say, “No, I’ll say how this goes down.” When He’s saying, “No, this is how it goes down.”

Jason: Right. And I think, I don’t think anybody intends for that to happen. I think it’s just guilt, but the only reason that I would share that is not in arrogance or… It’s I want them to receive victory. The enemy, I believe, wants to do everything in his power to make you walk around like you’re less. Yes, and oh. I just.

Andrew: Not in your house.

Jason: Not in my house. Not in my house.

Mark: In your house, your kids know they are loved, and I think when you finally, even for me at 61, it’s still dawning on me how loved I am by God. And it’s amazing. I mean, it’s still amazing to me as it unfolds. And I think that what your kids have seen in you is a great example of the love our Father has for us. I also think that, I hear you saying this, it’s one of my cliches you’ve heard a million times, but just because we don’t understand the mortgage doesn’t mean we can’t live in the house. We’re the children, He’s the Father, and just like your kids, that’s their home. They have no idea probably what that home cost, or care. But you are the dad, you understand the mortgage.

Jason: Sometimes I let them know. Sometimes I let them know.

Mark: You know what this house cost me? 49 concerts.

Jason: You know, that’s that little edge that you and I was talking about, that little edge sometimes, you know, sometimes that’ll sneak up.

Mark: You gotta let ‘em know how hard you work.

Jason: And honestly–

Andrew: They get it. There’s grace for you too. My dad had a little edge and is my best friend and is the most loving person I’ve ever met.

Mark: My dad went to prison, and I still like him.

Andrew: That’s true.


Mark: We wanna thank Jason Crabb.

Andrew: We sure do. He’s awesome.

Mark: Love that guy.

Andrew: You can find his music and his books through the Amazon affiliate link in our episode description below.

Mark: And you need to get those CDs.

Andrew: You sure do.

Mark: He’s a wonderful guy.

Andrew: The voice, everything.

Mark: And if you’d like to binge watch Dinner Conversations, you know you can do that right now on Amazon Prime. Dinner Conversations is brought to you by ChildFund, a community development organization that has been envisioning a world where every child is free to live at their fullest potential no matter where they’re from or what challenges they face since 1938.

Andrew: Partner with us and our good friends at ChildFund to change the world and the life of a child by considering sponsoring a child today.

Mark: It really does take so little to make a difference.

Andrew: Visit childfund.org/dinnerconversations.

Mark: A child is waiting.


ChildFund is a community development organization that has been envisioning a world where every child is free to live at their fullest potent no matter where they are from — or what challenges they face — since 1938.

Partner with us and our good friends at ChildFund to change the world in the life of a child by considering sponsoring a child today. It takes so little to make a difference. A child is waiting. And remember, every one who sponsors a child is invited to a Dinner Conversations Friends & Family Weekend in Nashville, plus receives an autographed Season Two DVD, CD and a special item handmade for you by our communities in Guatemala.

Learn more here: childfund.org/dinnerconversations.


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Watch Our Other Episodes:

S03, E01: Orphans No More featuring Lisa Harper
S03, E02: Perfectly Imperfect featuring Wynonna Judd