Shortly before her eleventh birthday, Paige Omartian learned she had cancer, a time she calls ‘the beginning of an amazing journey.’
Paige was ultimately healed, but while battling the disease, she was given the chance, through the Make-A-Wish Foundation, to fulfill a wish to record in Nashville. It was through her music that Paige would eventually meet her husband, Chris Omartian, a Nashville music producer and the son of Christian author and speaker Stormie Omartian.
Paige and Stormie recently collaborated on a new book, A Book of Prayers for Young Women.
This is your second book; what sparked your desire to write?
I’ve always loved writing. Growing up, I used to write elaborate stories and draw pictures to animate them. However, I never would have dreamed that I’d be writing books! The Lord used circumstances that I went through as a child to teach me about Himself and the precious purpose of each of our lives. When I was sixteen years old, God gave me a very clear message to write down that He had been stirring in my heart for years. It started with the words “You have a life, use it!” and ultimately God led me to fill in what that meant by searching the Bible for His definition of how to truly use our lives. As I wrote out what He gave me, I noticed that it looked like the makings of a book. God confirmed to me as I prayed that one day this would be a book, and that I needed to start preparing and researching for it. From age sixteen–nineteen I did just that . . . I prepared. When I was twenty, Harvest House Publishers offered to publish my first book, Wake Up, Generation, which released a year and a half later. God’s dreams for me blew my own way out of the water!
How does your faith play into your work?
My work is because of my faith. God has called me to help people find and live out the purpose that He’s given them in all that I do. Whether I’m writing, speaking, recording music, or whatever, my mission is to inspire others to find the reason they’re breathing and to not waste this precious time they’ve been given on earth. I am a messenger for the Lord, as every believer is in a unique way, and I live my life to say what He tells me in the way that He chooses. Following Him certainly makes life a beautiful adventure!
Has God ever provided an unexpected “detour” in your life that turned out to be positive?
My life is made up of detours! : ) Though each one has surprised me, they have led exactly to where God wants me to be.
The biggest detour in my life so far, came when I was diagnosed with cancer at eleven years old. I had been a totally healthy little girl when all of a sudden my right leg started hurting. Though many doctors thought it was merely growing pains, it ultimately ended up being a bone cancer called “Ewings Sarcoma.” The world I had known was ripped out from underneath me as I was thrown into chemotherapy treatments and surgery to replace the bone in my leg. It seemed as though one day I was this vibrant, blonde-headed little girl, and the next I was bald, dying, and in a wheelchair. I didn’t know if this was a detour or the end of my life.
As I came to find out . . . it was a detour. A painful, terrifying, but beautiful one. After a year of my battle, God healed me of cancer. He used that circumstance to completely change me, and to show me that life is precious. James 4:14 says, Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
The truth of this verse struck me and I began to wonder if each of us really lived like our lives were a mist, how much different would our lives be? I knew that God had spared my life for a reason, and I vowed to not waste the time that He gave me. From the age of twelve and on, He has opened up miraculous doors of ministry where I’ve been able to share my testimony and music all over the world. God took the worst thing that ever happened in my life and brought about the best things . . . and that’s what He promises to do for each one of us if we’ll let Him. Romans 8:28 is the promise of that!
The Bible also says that, In His heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps (Proverbs 16:9). God puts dreams in our hearts, but the path to get there and what it looks like is up to Him. If I were the author of my own story, I never would have written in “cancer.” But I also would have missed the entire purpose of my life . . . because I wouldn’t have traveled through His divine detour.
Let’s talk about A Book of Prayers for Young Women (Harvest House, April 2013). Please tell us about it.
A Book of Prayers for Young Women was an unexpected blessing and privilege that I was asked to write with my wonderful mother-in-law, Stormie Omartian. It is a unique book because it addresses so many of the topics that young women face with insight from two different generations. Stormie has an amazing story and went through a lot in her young years. Because of this, she can share from experience and zoom out with the wisdom her years have brought her to speak as a mentor to young women. I am in the midst of this “young woman-ness” myself so I face the same pressures as my peers and know how essential it is to cover our lives with prayer.
One of the things that I love about this book is that it’s laid out according to topic, so you can search for the one that you need most that day. The 154 prayers are evenly divided in half between Stormie and me. Her prayers are on the left page, and mine are on the right. Whether you’re struggling with insecurity, control, planning your day, needing restoration, or praying for a relationship, these prayers will cover every area of your life and are meant to be a conversation starter between you and the Lord.
God often uses our writing to teach us something. What did you learn (about life, faith, and/or even yourself) in the process of writing this book?
When I was initially asked to write this book with Stormie, I was honored but felt overwhelmingly inadequate. She has written more wonderful books than I can count, and my first book had just released! But I am passionate about my generation and the Lord led me to accept and step into the journey.
During the process of writing, my own prayer life was unexpectedly attacked. I began to question whether my prayers were powerful and if I should really be writing prayers that others would then pray themselves. As my family prayed over me, I was able to see the attack for what it was . . . the enemy trying to stop me. God reminded me that prayers are powerful not because of any special wording but when they’re offered in true faith and submission to Holy Spirit’s leading. God spoke to me about how real He wants each of us to be with Him and how an intimate relationship is deep because it’s messy. He wants us to come to Him with our raw feelings and unpolished words, but to trust Him enough to submit our hearts to His truth and plan.
As I flip through the pages of this book I am in awe of the way He gave me the specific words for each prayer and carried me through my own personal inadequacies. My life and ministry is living proof that He truly is most powerful in our weakness. Thank You, Lord!
You’re also a musician. Please tell us a bit about your music and your CD, Wake Up.
I started writing songs when I was battling cancer, and God began to birth dreams in my heart to have a ministry through music. Ultimately, God used a wish that I made through the Make-A-Wish Foundation to record a professional CD to unleash a domino effect of opportunities to sing and speak all over the country. This wish led me to Nashville where I fell in love with the city and ended up moving there just before my senior year of high school. God orchestrated things in a way that only He could, and I ended up signing with a record label the day after I graduated from high school. My debut rock album, Wake Up, released in 2009, and that CD was truly a dream come true. God had been storing up challenging and inspiring messages in me for years that I got to pour into the songs on that record. The passionate music and compelling lyrics was a direct reflection of what the Lord had been stirring inside of me.
Many people ask if I’m going to make more music, and the answer is yes! But in God’s timing. We’ll see where He leads!
A few fun questions…
What is your favorite comfort food and why?
Good salads and chicken. I travel a lot getting to speak in different places and I find that these are the two things I depend on when away from home. Salad gives me some veggies to keep me going and chicken is pretty much always safe . . . and should be hard to mess up! haha
What’s the title of the last GREAT book you read?
Lead Me, Holy Spirit by Stormie Omartian. I know she’s my mother-in-law and all, but it’s not because I’m biased. : ) This book has such great balance and has been very eye-opening for me in my relationship with the Lord. Cannot recommend it enough!
If you were a song, what kind of song would you be?
A song that fused edgy guitars with beautiful piano and strings and that had a very moving and inspiring bridge.
In the story that is your life, are you the strong, female lead; the girl next door; the mysterious woman behind dark glasses; the super heroine; or the little girl trying to walk in high heels?
Perhaps all of the above to different people. I often feel like the little girl trying to walk in high heels, as many of us ladies might feel, but it’s not usually the way we’re perceived. So, I would have to defer this question to the Casting Director!
I’m a dog lover. Please tell us about your pets, if any, or your favorite pet as a child.
A little over a year ago, my husband and I got a puppy that we named Peppers. He is a miniature Australian Shepherd mix, and he is absolutely precious. We got him three months into our marriage, which ended up being quite a lifestyle shock for me because I had grown up with cats. Peppers has been a wild ride, but he is the most amazing pet I have ever had. He is incredibly smart, intuitive, and abundantly loving. My husband and I have made many wonderful memories with this little guy that we’ll always cherish as we look back on the start of our marriage!
Thank you, Paige! It’s great to have you as a guest at DivineDetour.
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For more information about Paige, visit her website.
To purchase A Book of Prayers for Young Women, logon to:
To purchase the Wake Up CD, logon to:
What an amazing, uplifting story. Thank you Paige for sharing your heart–you’ve truly inspired me. May you be blessed with health and joy.
Thanks for dropping by Elaine. I hope you have a good weekend!
“Life is made up of detours” — so true. I think we hope for a straight path but God’s plans are so much bigger than ours. Your story blessed me, Paige. I trust God will continue to use your testimony and passion for him to reach all generations.
Amen, PJ! Sometimes the best comes in unexpected ways.