A Conversation With Natalie Isaacs [Download .doc version]

Having the opportunity to sit and chat with Natalie Isaacs, the first thing one is struck by is her sense of humor and love for the LORD. It is not until Natalie shares her trials and the depths of pain she’s endured that you begin to realize the awesome power GOD can have in a person’s life if they only let Him.

Q: Natalie, tell me about your CD “What Heaven is to Me.”

A: The CD was recorded at NorthBeach studio in Franklin, TN and was produced by Cliff Downs. Apart from “Wayfarin’ Stranger,” and “Barakee Nafshee” all of the songs are original, never before heard music.
Cliff and I co-wrote the songs “The Child in You,” “Sister-Friend,” “What Heaven is to Me” and “You are the Lord Most High.” He co-wrote “Safe With Me” with Dominique Messenger and “Can You Hear Me” with Larry Wisse. I co-wrote “Walk on the Waves” with Ann Ault and “Oh Israel” with my friend Jimmy Jack Whitaker. Jimmy Jack also contributed to “Remember Me” with George Maddaloni and Margueritte Miller. “Barakee Nafshee” was written by Sue Samuel.

Q: I understand there was a bit of a challenge getting this project together.

A: Yes, it took three years to finish because Cliff was busy doing major projects and I had vocal problems due to illness. There were many times I was so distraught over not being able to sing that I wanted to give up. I’d go to the studio to record and my voice was hoarse and I’d be sent home. A few times I broke down in tears. I was ashamed and embarrassed, but Cliff wasn’t fazed. I think any other producer wouldn’t have given me the time of day, but he hung in there with me and he had faith that I’d heal and get through it. His light and fun approach to recording saved the day! I can’t imagine even working with another producer.

Q: Did you ever question whether this was project was ordained by GOD?

A: I did. I wondered why did the LORD open these doors and led me to do this and then allow this to happen? I wasn’t sure I’d be able to finish this. The LORD called me into ministry and I’d waited 30 years for it to be birthed. How could this happen? But, Cliff and Lisa Bevill, who supplied all the background vocals and sang with me in the duet, “Sister-Friend,” would not let me give up. In fact, I wrote that song with Lisa and my sister Susie in mind. Cliff and Lisa encouraged me, believed in me and loved me through this difficult time. I am very indebted to them and love them both more than they can ever imagine.
I was blessed to have such incredibly talented people participate in my dream. I was especially thrilled when Marty Goetz agreed to sing on “Oh Israel” and duet with me on “Barakee Nafshee”.

Q: “Oh Israel” is an interesting choice to open the cd with.

A: I chose this song because I know that there is much suffering in the world and in people’s lives. The songs following it give us the answer to getting through this journey.
Being raised in a close Jewish family I’ve always been aware of the Holocaust and anti-Semitism toward the Jewish people and Israel. I use to envision what it would be like, what those people went through that had to endure it. If I had been alive at that time I would have suffered what they did, so I have tremendous empathy.
Most of the people who have lived through it are either elderly, or have passed away. I wanted to sing a song with the feel of the heaviness they felt, but also filled with hope, for God will not forsake his people.
Unfortunately, once again, the Jews and Israel is under attack. But, having said that this is not intended just for the Jews, but for any group of people that have, or are enduring persecution, and on an individual level as well. The Messiah is coming – He is our redemption. He holds us in the palm of his hand.

Q: Tell me about the ministry God has called you to.

A: My goal is that by candidly telling my story on how the LORD turned my life around and by sharing a few of the pivotal moments of divine intervention, others will find hope, inspiration and healing. I would also like to bring a little bit of “Jewishness” including humor into the church, as well as encourage the support of Israel and the Jewish people.

Q: What is your story?

A: I will share a little with you now, just enough to tease you because I want you to come out and hear it through my ministry. I became ill when I was 27. I couldn’t eat or sleep and became emaciated, was hallucinating and I also had excruciating headaches. Doctors misdiagnosed me and everyone gave up hope. I never lost faith and I was finally correctly diagnosed with Lyme disease. I am leaving out the tortuous and most interesting bits.

Q: This is called a teaser.

A: … and that’s all you’re getting. [Laughs]