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For Laura Story, concert tour a time to learn and to share

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Christian concert

What: Contemporary Christian music artists Steven Curtis Chapman, Laura Story and Jason Gray will perform in concert.
When: 7 p.m. Saturday
Where: Auer Performance Hall in Rhinehart Music Center at IPFW, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E.
Cost: $25 and $35; tickets available at www.itickets.com.

She often sings about life's ups and downs in her music

Thursday, October 24, 2013 - 12:01 am

Laura Story has learned a lot on her current concert tour with longtime contemporary Christian music star Steven Curtis Chapman.

From Chapman, she's learned about songwriting and performing live. She's also learned about balancing career and family, and how he engages people while performing or when he meets them.

“More than anything, Steven is such a man of God,” Story said by telephone recently from Sacramento, Calif., during a stop on the tour.

Story, Chapman and Jason Gray will bring their Glorious Unfolding Tour to Fort Wayne for a performance at 7 p.m. Saturday in Auer Performance Hall in Rhinehart Music Center at IPFW, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E.

While Chapman has headlined concerts at Memorial Coliseum in some years past, this tour has focused on smaller venues, Story said.

“It's really such an intimate setting,” she noted.

The three artists spend about three hours playing songs, some individually and some together, and sharing with the audience.

“The central theme through the whole evening is how God has been faithful to us,” said Story, who also is one of the worship leaders at Perimeter Church in Atlanta.

That includes even when things don't turn out the way we have hoped.

Story often sings about life's ups and downs in her music, and she focuses on those joys and pains in her new album, “God of Every Story,” which was released Sept. 30. She hopes the album's 11 songs encourage people to worship God, whether their life story is moving along happily or filled with challenges.

Story, for example, was offered a record deal about eight years ago, an early chapter in what seemed to be a story headed for a promising and happy ending. Within 48 hours, however, her husband, Martin, had been diagnosed with a brain tumor.

He survived, but he is disabled and only recently started working again, she said.

“When he is with us (on tour), he is so helpful meeting people, talking to people and praying with people,” said Story, a Grammy Award, Billboard Music Award and three-time Dove Award winner.

About a year ago, the Storys also had their first child.

“She's been to about 40 states in her little year's worth of life,” Laura Story said.

She describes becoming a mother and the insight it has brought as a “gift of grace.”

“I write songs to my father God,” she said. “It's neat to get the feeling of being a parent.”

Whatever new life lessons lay ahead, Story believes God will be in the midst of them.