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Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family

Behind the Lights: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Mum and Her Family

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In this inspiring debut memoir, Helen Smallbone, mother of seven creative children―including Christian music artists for KING & COUNTRY and Rebecca St. James―chronicles the family’s journey of faith across the ocean to go where God was leading. Written from a mother’s perspective, Helen shares stories of peaks, valleys, and a family trusting God for provision.

Helen Smallbone’s heartfelt story illustrates what it means to really let God lead, which almost always means living outside the box of how the world says to live. How did an ordinary Australian family produce two Grammy Award–winning artists―Rebecca St. James and for KING & COUNTRY? What happened to bring the Smallbones through closed doors and to new beginnings in the United States? In Behind the Lights, Helen shares not only these stories of her family but of the life lessons they all learned along the way.

In 1991 Helen and her husband, David, packed up their family and sixteen suitcases to move from Australia to the United States. Completely isolated from the support of family and friends, they relied on God to provide them with hope and direction. Helen watched her children join forces as Rebecca St. James’ career grew, soon followed by blossoming careers for the others―as artists, entrepreneurs, filmmakers―and the rise of Joel and Luke’s for KING & COUNTRY on Christian music charts. Helen shares untold stories and insights into how her family worked and stuck together, constantly relying on their faith to guide the way. Helen’s journey includes:

  • Meeting her future husband with a cockatoo on her shoulder

  • The family’s move to the states in blind faith

  • The kindness of neighbors and the local church that gave them the encouragement they so desperately needed

  • Years of touring alongside Rebecca and the formation of for KING & COUNTRY

  • The ways God led and enabled her to homeschool and think about education differently

  • An inside look at the stories and dynamics of the entire Smallbone family

No matter where you are in life, Helen shows through her own experiences that what God has done in her life, He will do in yours, too.

Praise for Behind the Lights

“Make sure you’re buckled in, because it was quite a treacherous and miraculous journey as we, the Smallbone family, fumbled our way toward learning how to sing harmoniously in the lights and, even more importantly, behind them. We believe this book tells the story of all the lessons we were taught growing up with heart and courage. Behind the Lights truly demonstrates that life is a remarkable adventure.”

- Joel and Luke, for KING & COUNTRY

“I’ve known Helen Smallbone for over thirty years and have watched her navigate her journey as a wife and mother of seven with grace and determination. She has been committed to allowing God to order her steps in unconventional yet wholesome ways in order to love her family well and live fearlessly. . . . is book will dare you to be different so you and your children can fulfill your destiny and do greater things than you could ever imagine.”

- Jackie Patillo, president and executive director of the Gospel Music Association

“Helen is a reflection of strength and relentless perseverance. The story of her life has encouraged me to never stop fighting for my family, my faith, and my joy. Her character is rooted deep in God’s truth, and her kindness for others is infectious. Behind the Lights reflects her raw authenticity of truth and always choosing what’s right over what is easy. You will be challenged in your faith, relationships with others, and living a life above reproach. "e world will read Behind the Lights and be encouraged to see how Helen walks through hard things and yet comes out looking very different than most do on the other side.”

- Heather Houle, cofounder of MUMlife

“Helen was my first mentor almost twenty years ago, and I have watched her be brave, wise, joyful (that laugh!), trusting in the Lord’s provisions, and always prayerful—all behind the scenes. What millions see on stages around the world is possible largely because of the stable and happy home Helen created around the dinner table—even if that dinner table was on a tour bus. I am genuinely delighted for you to get to meet her and learn from her. You’ll be inspired to surrender yourself to the amazing adventure God has for you. I know I have been.”

- Heidi Reeves, mother of three and mentee of Helen Smallbone

“Helen and her entire marvelous family have been dear friends of mine since we first met at the Sydney Opera House for a couple concerts back in the ’70s. They’re family to my husband Pelle and me! It is a joy to see how God has directed each one of them in life and in music ministry. Jesus has always been the focus, and for that, I salute and thank them.”

- Evie Karlsson, Dove Award– winning music artist

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