(Photo by Tim Jaynes, Staff)
Teresa Griggs, her sister-in-law Janet Mills and friend Lori Grubbs have witnessed many amazing things since they formed the gospel group Chosen 3 1/2 years ago.
They've performed in Branson and at women's conferences, given concerts at churches and revivals and have recorded CDs and tapes.
When you have God behind you, they said, there's no telling what's going to happen.
Sometimes they feel like they're just along for the ride, like in the case of their most recent happening.
On Nov. 12-13 the trio was in Trinity City, a Trinity Broadcast Network Studio in Nashville, where they were invited to appear on Christian comedian Dennis Swanberg's show, "Swan's Place."
"After having seen all of his videos and being so blessed by Dennis Swanberg's terrific humor and warm heart through the past several years, we were blessed to have the opportunity to open for Brother Dennis here in September," Griggs said. "He came to our associational meeting and we asked if our trio could open for him and we did. I gave him one of our CDs and he called me later and went on and on about it. He said he was going to see if his manager could get us on the show. God is so good!"
When the manager invited them to perform on the show, he suggested they bring several changes of clothes and several songs, including Christmas songs. And for good reason. Chosen will perform on two of Swanberg's shows, one scheduled to air before Christmas and the other after Jan. 1. Although the actual dates Chosen will appear are uncertain, "Swan's Place" is televised at 2:30 p.m. Saturdays on TBN.
Being on television isn't new to the women, but they said this time around was a little less stressful since it was taped, leaving room for improvements to be made.
"If we messed up we could redo it and that was nice," Griggs said. "Dennis was so sweet and everyone who worked there was so nice to us. They had fruit, vegetables and bottled water in our rooms and the whole place was so ornate with royal blue and gold."
The women didn't mind the pampering either, especially when the professional make-up artist arrived on the scene and the fact that they spent one night in one of the exclusive condos built for country singer Conway Twitty's family members.
"If you have ever watched Trinity Broadcasting and have seen 'Praise the Lord' with Paul and Jan, that says it all," said Grubbs. "We were privileged enough to stay in a guest house on the grounds and saying the place was elaborate would not do it justice."
It was definitely a learning experience, the members of Chosen said, having the opportunity to see firsthand that no matter how famous someone is, the individual is still like everyone else deep down.
"Clay Crosse, his wife and two little girls were there and they were just like me and you," Griggs said. "You see all these big artists like him and when you see him backstage he is just a nice Christian man who's using his talents for the Lord. He was very encouraging to us and it was neat to see that real person."
The best part, said Grubbs, was having the opportunity to share the gospel, whether through a spoken word or a song.
Although she's gotten better, Grubbs said she still gets nervous. "When I'm on stage I usually am thinking 'Lord, don't let me forget my words!' I am always a little bit on edge when I sing, no matter if it is in front of two or 200. You should never be comfortable enough not to be a little nervous."
The group still is in awe of the success they've seen and can't help but wonder why them. "We were thinking about all of the groups out there that are trying to make it," Griggs said "Why did the Lord open the door for us, we're not trying to make it. We're just amazed at some of the opportunities that have opened up. We're not seeking this, but if God opens the doors, yes, we'll walk through."