American Idol finalist and Miss America finalist Jasmine Murray, Christian singer featured on K-Love, explains her dreams, goals, and advice to her younger self!

Living Fearless

M&H Staff

Best known for her powerhouse vocals as a finalist in season eight of “American Idol,” Jasmine Murray was named Miss Mississippi and placed top 10 in Miss America 2015. Now at 26, she’s inspiring audiences not only with her fresh pop sound but with a profound message of hope as an artist and songwriter.

“I feel like I'm on a journey, and it’s a privilege to be able to share that with people,” she says. “I know this is my purpose. I'm where I’m supposed to be. I want to reach people with the message God’s given me.”

Jasmine already has a top 5 single under her belt with her debut “Fearless” and her second single “No Other Love” impacted radio in February. She spent the fall of last year out on the road with Mandisa and Danny Gokey, and plans to head out again with Mandisa this Fall on her “Girls Night Out” tour.

Let's Get To Know Jasmine!

American Idol finalist and Miss America finalist Jasmine Murray, Christian singer featured on K-Love, explains her dreams, goals, and advice to her younger self!

Why did you decide to choose the Christian genre over other types of music?

I felt called to go into Christian music after an incredible experience during a morning worship service at my church a few years ago. I got involved in worship team and one particular Sunday when I was up onstage singing, I felt the presence of God and it was unlike anything else. I remember looking out into the audience and seeing others worship God and that feeling of ushering them to do so was amazing. I was overwhelmed with how tangible the presence of God was and I felt him speak to me in that moment and say “this is where I want you.” “I want you to use your voice for Me.” At that moment I just felt like I wanted to be obedient so I said “okay God, why would I want to do anything else?” “This is literally the best feeling in the world.”

That must have been exciting to become a finalist in American Idol! What was that like?

It was such a dream come true to be selected as a finalist on American Idol. As a 16 year old with hopes of becoming a recording artist, it just felt like I was one step closer. American Idol opened so many doors, and it was such a blessing to have made it that far and to have such an incredible opportunity to learn and grow.

You were a finalist in Miss America 2015 as Miss Mississippi as well! (you go girl!) What was that like?

The Miss America Organization is one of the leading scholarship providers for women in the country. To have the opportunity to compete on the Miss America stage is such an honor. I got to represent my state as Miss Mississippi 2014, and it was so amazing to be named a top 10 finalist and Quality of Life Award Finalist at Miss America. This organization is all about scholarship and service and empowering young women. I learned so much during my year of service and my time at Miss America. I really believe it helped me become a better, more confident version of myself, and it helped teach me what it really means to serve others in every way.

How was the tour this last year with Danny Gokey and Mandisa?

The Rise Out of the Dark Tour was my first big tour and I loved every minute of it. I got to open up the show every night, and we toured about 32 cities in 8 weeks. I think touring is so special because you really have the chance to connect to people all over the world. I was amazed at how many people came to worship with us. It was also so special to be on the road with Disa, Danny, and Jodi and Chris and learn from them. I look up to each of them because they are all such incredible artists but they truly have hearts for the Lord and for people.

You have an upcoming tour too, right? Are you excited?!

This fall is going to be a blast! I get to go back out on the road with Disa and Blanca and Candace Payne for the Girls Night Live Tour! I have toured with Disa and she’s literally like a big sister to me and a very dear friend, and I’m so grateful she asked me to be apart of this tour in the fall. I think there’s something so incredible when women come together and lift each other up in the name of a Christ. I believe God wants us to stand together and encourage each other in every way and I know Mandisa has a beautiful vision for what she wants this tour to be like. I know that her heart is to please the Lord and to give him glory in everything so I’m looking forward to this tour and to bond with these incredible women!

What advice do you have for other young aspiring singers?

I would tell anyone aspiring to be a singer to first have faith. Second, work hard. And third, don’t give up. Faith is the most important thing to have with anything you want to do in life. I believe we all have a purpose and once you feel you have found what it is, you have to believe in it and believe that you can do it if that is what God has called you to do. I think that in order to do your best you have to work hard and grow in order to get better. It’s wonderful to have talent, but if you don’t want to work for what you want it will be hard to get to where you want to be. I also believe that life is hard and sometimes things won’t always fall into place the way you want them to so perseverance is key. You have to be resilient because often times you will be told “no” a lot but you have to keep working and keep trying until someone “yes.” It’s important to be patient but not to give up. Everything is in God's timing.

Tell us about your nonprofit, 13 Going On 30!

13 Going on 30 became a passion of mine while I was competing in the Miss America Organization. It is based on the movie with Jennifer Garner, where a young girl wishes to be 30 on her 13th birthday and she wakes up the next day to find her world has completely changed as she becomes a 30 year old but still with the mind of a 13 year old. I believe that this is true in today’s society where many young girls feel the pressure to grow up faster than they should. So many of our youth are making adult decisions before their time and are altering their lives in so many ways. My aim is to encourage young girls to embrace their age and enjoy being young while they can and enjoy life at each stage and not rush it. I believe God wants young girls to know their worth and not feel like they have to give into the pressures of this world in order to fit in. My hope is that young girls will feel free to be themselves and to make wise decisions early on so they can be everything they desire to be when they grow up.

Favorite Bible verse?

My favorite bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11
“For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans to give a hope and a future.”

This verse gives me so much peace to know that God has our lives in his hand and that he only has the best planned out for his children. He wants us to live with full trust in him because he will never fail us. Once we truly let go and give our lives to God we can live with full peace of mind that he has it all under control.

As a 26-year-old, what advice would you give to your 20-year-old self?

I think life is incredible because you get to learn about who you are and who you are becoming each day. I think at 26 I am understanding more and more that life is so precious and I think more than anything I would tell my 20 year old self to just enjoy every season you are in. I think so many times we don’t live in the present because we are always looking forward to what’s next or how to get to the next goal or the next level. I think it’s good to always have that in mind and work for that, but to also to stop and enjoy this very moment right now. I’ve learned that time is the most valuable thing we have because we can never get one moment back so the way you spend each minute counts. I’m enjoying where I am today and realizing what a gift this very moment is.