Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family

Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family

Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family

Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family


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In this inspiring debut memoir, Helen Smallbone, mother of seven creative children―including Christian music artists for KING & COUNTRY and Rebecca St. James―chronicles the family’s journey of faith across the ocean to go where God was leading. Written from a mother’s perspective, Helen shares stories of peaks, valleys, and a family trusting God for provision.

Helen Smallbone’s heartfelt story illustrates what it means to really let God lead, which almost always means living outside the box of how the world says to live. How did an ordinary Australian family produce two Grammy Award–winning artists―Rebecca St. James and for KING & COUNTRY? What happened to bring the Smallbones through closed doors and to new beginnings in the United States? In Behind the Lights, Helen shares not only these stories of her family but of the life lessons they all learned along the way.

In 1991 Helen and her husband, David, packed up their family and sixteen suitcases to move from Australia to the United States. Completely isolated from the support of family and friends, they relied on God to provide them with hope and direction. Helen watched her children join forces as Rebecca St. James’ career grew, soon followed by blossoming careers for the others―as artists, entrepreneurs, filmmakers―and the rise of Joel and Luke’s for KING & COUNTRY on Christian music charts. Helen shares untold stories and insights into how her family worked and stuck together, constantly relying on their faith to guide the way. Helen’s journey includes:

  • Meeting her future husband with a cockatoo on her shoulder
  • The family’s move to the states in blind faith
  • The kindness of neighbors and the local church that gave them the encouragement they so desperately needed
  • Years of touring alongside Rebecca and the formation of for KING & COUNTRY
  • The ways God led and enabled her to homeschool and think about education differently
  • An inside look at the stories and dynamics of the entire Smallbone family

No matter where you are in life, Helen shows through her own experiences that what God has done in her life, He will do in yours, too.

“Make sure you’re buckled in, because it was quite a treacherous and miraculous journey as we, the Smallbone family, fumbled our way toward learning how to sing harmoniously in the lights and, even more importantly, behind them. We believe this book tells the story of all the lessons we were taught growing up with heart and courage. Behind the Lights truly demonstrates that life is a remarkable adventure.”

—Joel and Luke, for KING & COUNTRY

“Helen is a reflection of strength and relentless perseverance. The story of her life has encouraged me to never stop fighting for my family, my faith, and my joy. Her character is rooted deep in God’s truth, and her kindness for others is infectious. Behind the Lights reflects her raw authenticity of truth and always choosing what’s right over what is easy. You will be challenged in your faith, relationships with others, and living a life above reproach. The world will read Behind the Lights and be encouraged to see how Helen walks through hard things and yet comes out looking very different than most do on the other side.” 

—Heather Houle, cofounder of MUMlife

“Helen and her entire marvelous family have been dear friends of mine since we first met at the Sydney Opera House for a couple concerts back in the ’70s. They’re family to my husband Pelle and me! It is a joy to see how God has directed each one of them in life and in music ministry. Jesus has always been the focus, and for that, I salute and thank them.”

—Evie Karlsson, Dove Award–winning music artist

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781954201248
Publisher: K-LOVE
Publication date: 04/12/2022
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 172,232
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

HELEN SMALLBONE is the co-founder of MUMlife Community and a podcast host with AccessMore. Her passion is encouraging mothers and families with the God-breathed wisdom she has gleaned over thirty-two years of active mothering. Born and raised in Australia, she dedicated her life to Christ as a young teen at the Billy Graham Crusade in Sydney. Now a mother to seven—five boys, bookended with girls—and grandmother to thirteen, she currently lives outside of Nashville, Tennessee, with her husband, David, and a small menagerie of animals.

LISA STILWELL is a veteran in Christian publishing with twenty-plus years of experience and is the owner of Loadstone Literary, a comprehensive freelance editorial service that provides book development, editing, and ghostwriting. She’s worked with best-selling authors such as Max Lucado, Charles Stanley, and Sarah Young. She is also the author of God’s Truth for Troubled Times and 100 Days of Faith Over Fear. When Lisa isn’t writing or editing, she loves to be outdoors hiking and kayaking.

Table of Contents

Foreword Rebecca St. James xi

Introduction xv

Part 1 In the Beginning

Chapter 1 From Head to Heart: A Strong Foundation 3

Chapter 2 So This Is Married Life? 13

Chapter 3 Three Closed Doors 25

Part 2 America, the First Years

Chapter 4 One-and Only One-Open Door 39

Chapter 5 Nashville, New Beginnings, and the Goodness of God 49

Chapter 6 More Work, More Waiting, and Finally a Breakthrough 69

Part 3 Touring and Family Life

Chapter 7 From Landscaping to Touring 87

Chapter 8 Life on the Farm-Our First Real Home in America 101

Chapter 9 Rebecca's Continued Rise and a Few Growing Pains 113

Chapter 10 Homage to Homeschooling 127

Chapter 11 My Dear Libby 141

Part 4 For King & Country

Chapter 12 Transition Years 163

Chapter 13 From Desert to Promised Land 177

Part 5 God Isn't Finished

Chapter 14 It's Not Over Yet 193

Chapter 15 Where They Are Now 205

Afterword David Smallbone 225

Acknowledgments 229

About the Authors 233

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