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Sarah Beth Pippen – One Monticello Life

April 21st, 2013 by

Sara Beth, from a prior recitalAs the Monticello community met for the annual Easter Community Service recently, many familiar faces were present.

There was a new face, who was introduced as a part of the program, to sing “How Great Thou Art”, before the message.

Sarah Beth Pippen, the worship leader at Immanuel Baptist Church,  then led the room into worship, as she followed with a strong, spirit-filled rendition of the old, familiar hymn.

MLive recently spoke with Sarah Beth, as a part of our One Monticello Life series.


Sarah Beth remembered a quote from music legend Ray Charles, “I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me-like food or water.”

She also recalled, “Music can change the world because it can change people,” by Bono

She continued, “a truer statement could not be said about my life. God gives us all talents that we use, whether we accept that or not, to glorify Him. My talent was the gift of song. I’ve been singing since I could make noise. My sisters hated car time because I sat in the back seat of our green Minivan singing as loud as I could to anything that would come into my head….even if that meant making something up. I can still hear their words so clear, “Mom, turn on the radio!!” ”

Growing up in church and being raised by her pastor, her talent was used in the church quite often. She and her would sing as a trio, while their mom played the piano. As a child, she wanted to branch out and be a famous Opera singer. with no idea that God’s plan for her talent would be used in a completely different area. As she grew up, she joined community choirs, church choirs, school choirs, and pretty much anywhere else she could sing.

engagementSarah Beth began taken voice lessons when she was in the 8th grade in El Dorado. She completed 3 years at South Arkansas Community College when she decided to take a break during her senior year of  high school. After graduation, she moved to Arkadelphia to attend Ouachita Baptist University. She was a member of the OBU Concert Choir and Women’s Chorus for her first two years, and competed in NATS and placed 2nd place both years. “Somewhere during my sophomore year at OBU I lost a lot of who I was and felt like I had completely fallen off of God’s path. So I decided to put my music aside and change my major to Social Work. I left OBU in 2007 to go back home and complete my Associates degree at South Arkansas Community College. I hadn’t fallen off of God’s path…I was just taking a bigger step towards His plan than I realized.”

“God used the two years I was home to help round me out as a believer, Woman of God, musician, and leader. I became an active member of Lawson Baptist Church, where I helped with the youth when I could. December of 2008 I directed the LBC youth and children in a Christmas production for the Church and community. That following May, I directed a church wide Easter production for the Lawson community. Right then and there I knew what God was calling me to do. He used that precious church to open my eyes to my future.”

“I reapplied for OBU during the summer of 2009 and was accepted to return. With the help of a private donor, I was able to return with no cost. My tuition was paid in full and books were paid in full. It amazes me how God works. Just when you think you’ve got things in the bag, God surprises you. I will be forever grateful for the Pruitt foundation for paying for my last two years of college.”

Sarah Beth continued, “When I returned, I came in as a Church Music Major. I made some amazing lifelong friends, and gained a whole new respect and love for the church, and body of Christ. Worship to me now is not just something I do on Sunday’s and Wednesday’s, it’s my lifestyle. My main mode of worship is through music. Worship is our direct response to God’s voice. There’s no greater feeling than for me to be singing and feel completed enveloped by the Holy Spirit. It’s almost near impossible to explain how that feels.”

After graduating from OBU in 2011 she moved back home on fire for what God had planned. She searched for job after job, and quickly became discouraged, “because let’s be honest; being a woman and trying to find a leadership position in the church is hard to come across. I knew I needed a job, so I applied to substitute teach, was accepted, and began in late August. I did that until October of 2011, when I was accepted as the Secretary for my home church, Wyatt Baptist Church of El Dorado.”

proposal 2proposal 1She told us, “Working at the church in the position I held was amazing. I gained so much knowledge, deeper love and greater respect for the body of Christ, and all that goes along with a leadership position in the church. During my time working at the church, I started dating one of the coolest guys I know today…more commonly known as my husband. I was completed smitten by him after our first date. I knew there was something about him that made my heart flutter. After about a month of dating, I got the privilege of meeting his son. I realized then that James and I were getting serious. However, every time marriage would come up, he would tell me he wanted to date for a few years before making that step. So on May 4th; while we were at the Arkansas Travelers baseball game, I was in complete shock when he proposed in front of hundreds of people as I was presented a bouquet of flowers by the team Mascot. We were married on October 13, 2012 and I fall more in love with that man and little boy every day!”

SONY DSCTo this day, it still amazes me how God works. James and I moved our family to be members of Immanuel Baptist Church back at the end of January. This body, as probably most of the Monticello community knows, is one of a kind. The people are generous, gracious, loving and just a fun group to be around. I was asked by Bro. Zan Pierce to represent our church through song at the Community Wide Easter Service here in Monticello. I took that as a huge honor. The whole service was Spirit led and filled by the presence of God.”

“God placed our family at Immanuel. James and I simply followed God’s call. Through this transition, God has used me in ways still WOW me. I never thought I’d get the opportunity to serve the church the way I am now. Even though I went to school and earned a degree in Church music, like I said earlier, I never actually thought I would get the opportunity to use that degree. However, once again, God’s hand is at work there too.”

Sarah Beth concluded by adding, “I’m sure you’ve heard that music is a universal language. It speaks of love, trials, heartache, grace, eternity, etc. It can be sung in any language and in any part of the world. And anyone who has a voice, can have the gift of song.”

Psalm 95:1 “Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!”

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4 Responses to “Sarah Beth Pippen – One Monticello Life”

  1. Walter Chapman says:

    Magnificent rendition!! Shades of Sandy Patti and Beverly Sills..

  2. Me says:

    I just listened to the video. All I can say is AWESOME! I was moved to tears. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Telese Huffman says:

    So glad to have Sarah Beth and her family at Immanuel. Looking forward to seeing what God has in store for us.

  4. Jamey says:

    What an awesome rendition of a beautiful song! And what a blessing it was to read her life story! It certainly brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart!

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