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Hello Love: An Interview with Chris Tomlin
By Elizabeth Guiten - February 18, 2009

Worship leader and songwriter Chris Tomlin will bring his "Hello Love" tour to The Rock Church Tuesday, March 3, with Israel Houghton.

A Rock Writers Ministry volunteer recently spoke briefly with Tomlin about his tour, his music and his thoughts about America's Finest City.

Rock Writers Ministry (RWM): This isn't the first time you've been to San Diego. Do you have a favorite thing about it or part of the city?

Chris Tomlin (CT): You're right, this isn't the first time I've been to San Diego. It's a beautiful city but I have to admit I haven't seen a whole lot of it. When I'm here it's always been for a concert and I'm pretty much in and out though I have been to Coronado Island.

RWM: Get out! I live there.

CT: Big blue bridge?

RWM: That's the one.

CT: They have a great hotel.

RWM: It's what the city's known for.

CT: It was really nice.

RWM: Very cool. I read a different interview of yours not too long ago where you said that the "Hello Love" tour signified a reintroduction to love. When or how do you believe love, as it is meant to be, went astray and what can bringing it back mean both within the church and the world?

CT: We, in Western culture, use the word love lot and I believe it's lost some of its meaning. The goal is to bring back the realization that for us, it all comes down to love and that love should draw us to God. God is the source of all love, He is love and He loved us first. Worship is our way of showing our love to God but we can't forget to love people as well. In Hebrews 13 we're encouraged from the beginning to continue in brotherly love. The chapter goes on to tell us to continually offer our sacrifices of praise and give thanks to His name but it doesn't end there. He tells us not to forget to do good and to share, because with these sacrifices God is well pleased. We're really good at giving praise but we can't forget to do good.

RWM: That is an excellent segue into the web site. What was the initial catalyst for the project?

CT: came out of the Passion Movement in 2007. The message was to tell college students, they could do something right now where they are. You don't have to wait until you've graduated and everything's in order. If God's put something on your heart, you don't have to wait, you can do it now. During 2007, 23,000 students who attended Passion events throughout that year gave one million dollars. It was incredible and I believe [it] really impacted the kids who desired to be a part of something bigger than themselves.

RWM: Alot of your songs; "Forever," "How Great Is Our God?," "Famous One," "Holy Is The Lord," describe God and His attributes. At this point in your life, which of these attributes do you feel most akin to?

CT: The peace of God is something that's important to my life right now. Feeling God's Holy Spirit, it's an incredible peace that money can't buy. That, and hope. We'd have nothing without hope.

RWM: When I first heard about the tour, I saw it was with Israel Houghton, who's just really great. How did that come about?

CT: Israel and I are buddies. We go way back. He's got an amazing heart. We've been wanting to do something together for a while so I'm really glad we've got this opportunity. It's going to be a great show, people will definitely not be able to say they didn't get their money's worth.

RWM: On a completely different topic, one of my best friends is learning to play the guitar and I'm contemplating learning the bass.


RWM: Which of your songs would you recommend trying to learn that has a fairly simple bass line?

CT: I'd probably say, "Sing, Sing, Sing" would be the best bet.

RWM: All right then. Thank you so much.

CT: No, thank you.

Note: Tickets are currently on sale for $29.50 at the Rockpile bookstore or online at