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It’s all about our path choices…

It’s all about our path choices…

I submitted my song, one of my first songs, "Heaven," in 1986 to Houston’s major Christian radio station. They were having a Contemporary Christian Music songwriter’s nationwide contest, judged by Morgan Cryar. I won 2nd place. I won a trip to Estes Park, Colorado.


I believe there’s pearly gates And I can’t wait to see The mansion He’s preparing And building just for me

His kingdom is within us His kingdom is yet to be I want to live in Heaven And let Heaven live in me

Heaven’s streets are made of gold And people will cry no more But down here on earth we think we’re waiting All along we have the keys to Heaven’s door

His kingdom is within us His kingdom is yet to be I want to live in Heaven And let Heaven live in me

Yes, we are His holy temple And I can’t wait to be Made of gold and filled with treasure Oh, He’s building inside me.

Copyright 1986 Angel Isaacs All Rights Reserved

If I had gone to Estes Park, the trip I had won, I would have met those in the Christian Music industry who choose the artists. Instead, I was busy buying Chapelgate, as our family home. I told KSBJ I couldn’t go to Estes Park but thank you. So I didn’t meet the CCM industry movers and shakers. Robin and I bought our forever home and I renamed Evins Mill, the private jewel of Senator Edgar Evins & Congressman Joe L. Evins. HERE It had been in their family for 50 years. I was going to name it Angel Creek. After all, it was now mine.

Instead I named it Chapelgate. It was more than a name change, it was a choice of paths. I changed my focus on myself to a focus of pure dedication to God our Father. To me, the property was a perfect little jewel, a chapel. I dedicated it to God, I gave it to him, as a temple, a gate, into his presence. I gave it to the writers of his songs, those who wrote the ideas passed down to God’s people. I turned it into a private hideaway for Contemporary Christian & Gospel Music songwriters and recording artists. At the age of 16 I had already turned down a recording contract with RCA, the flagship of the industry. I had already gone solo. Just God and me. I would write the songs HE gave me, as his pen. Choices.

So I did, I started driving Robin’s new red Corvette into Nashville, with my guitar, alone, twice a month. I had read about Koinonia, a Christian bookstore, already known as a gathering place for Christian songwriters. I had read about it in a book by Chris Christian. Look him up. HERE So I found Koinonia and soon made friends with Christian songwriters. I would take my guitar up on the small, coffeehouse stage and sing my songs about God.

Soon I started telling my songwriter friends about Chapelgate. I hired a bus and made an event, bringing my friends from Koinonia to Chapelgate, 70 miles east from Nashville. They arrived with their guitars and began looking around in sheer wonder. 39.5 acres, a 7500 sq ft 200 year old Gristmill, a 5,000 sq. ft. grainary made into classrooms, a tiny chapel made of logs, a creek through the heart center, a Millpond, a 200’ long cement dam 50 feet high the millpond water flowed over, a Guesthouse, and my 5,000 sq ft log and stone mansion on a cliff overlooking the dam & Gristmill. The logs were extinct American Chestnut. A millstone was embedded outside in one of the double chimneys. Down the creek 1,000 feet, after the dam, the creek fell into the gorge. I owned 3 waterfalls in a gorge - 15 stories high, 6 stories high, 3 stories high. Perfection. I renamed it, Chapelgate, gave it to God, and gave it to the writers of his songs.

One day the phone rang and a stranger asked if Amy Grant could make what would become the #1 Christian video for the #1 Christian album and song of all time, up to that time, "Lead Me On." HERE God did that. God brought the industry leaders to ME because I sacrificed meeting them in Estes Park. My best friend, Dwight Liles, had written songs Chris Christian sang, especially one called “Living Sacrifice.” HERE I had heard that particular song many times on KSBJ while living in Houston. I loved it. Now, my beloved late husband, Robin, and I had uprooted our little family from Houston and moved to the middle of Tennessee, Smithville, where we we had bought and renamed Evins Mill. Robin saw Dwight Liles first, noticed his incredible skill before I had, at one of our CCM retreats and he had pointed him out to me. "That guy is playing the keyboards along with whoever (of 200 ccm artists) gets on stage without missing a note," he had said. Soon, we had become friends. Dwight produced and Robin engineered my first two albums of my songs in the recording studio Robin had built for me in our log mansion, the Lodge, at Chapelgate. Dwight is one of the most prolific Christian songwriters of all time with over 400 hits by a host of international recording artists. His songs have been sung TO the Pope IN the Vatican. HERE

Choices. You choose your path. You pick your direction. You sacrifice. You put your Father God first as we are instructed. Miracles occur.

This is my winning song, “Heaven.” My story is called, “The Chapelgate Adventure Series. You can buy my books HERE. I wrote them all along the way.

Copyright 2023 Angel Isaacs All Rights Reserved

Written May 30 at 2:12 pm


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