Singer-songwriter Sarah X. Miracle on self-worth, identity and learning to say ‘no’
After overcoming a teenage pregnancy, surviving a fatal car accident and pulling through a pregnancy loss, Sarah X. Miracle, previously known as Sarah Cheng-De Winne, desires to use her musical talents to testify about the miracles that have happened in her life.
Aptly, the “X” in her new artistic name stems from her Chinese name, Xue Mei, which means snow plum. As a flower that blooms in the winter, it is a miracle in and of itself.
Having recently released a new R&B-pop single, “Don’t Say It”, we sat down with Sarah to find out about the story behind her song, which is seeing an acoustic version dropping today.
What inspired “Don’t Say It”?
Sarah: “Don’t Say It” is really a song about truth. It’s about being able to set up boundaries and being unafraid to say “no”.
Specifically, it expresses that point in a relationship where the other person might seem to want to go deeper, but you really can’t see that happening.
The song was written based on a good friend’s true story. She actually related stages of how she and this guy first met because of some mutual friends and she thought: “This guy quite nice lah. I’ll give him a shot.” So they went out a few times but sadly, she felt that it was just not working out.
I think all relationships will reach that crucial point where you have to define the relationship – like where are we? Do we like each other? Where is this going? Is this love on the cards or not? And for my friend, it was really having that struggle of how to say “no”.
Her story inspired me so much that the chorus hook was down by that same evening after I met her!
Why do you think girls find it hard to sometimes say “no” to a relationship?
Sarah: Underneath the song, there is a greater issue of self-worth at stake. A lot of girls sometimes think that, “oh, I need to be with a guy”, or to have the attention of somebody else to feel that they’re pretty enough, smart enough or attractive enough.
But I feel like that’s a pressure we shouldn’t have to live with.
In Psalm 139, it says we’ve been designed. The Lord knew us even before we were born – and we’ve been carefully and wonderfully made.
For all of us who are believers, we should strive to hear from God and say: “God, reveal to me that purpose. Reveal to me that destiny. Show me how I can use my gifts. Show me how I can grow these gifts.”
And sometimes it takes a community – a best friend or even a parent – to bring that out of you. But these are the kind of conversations you should have if you’re dealing with self-esteem and self-worth.
Because if we keep deriving our sense of self-worth from somebody else that’s not the Author of who we truly are, there’s going to be a lot of problems later on.
My hope is that every young woman will find a person they’re deeply aligned with.
And you know what? There will be someone whom you’ll find worthwhile to continue the relationship with – someone whose company you’ll enjoy, someone with the same values and whom you’ll be compatible with.
But till that guy comes, if there’s any other guy that you even have the slight discomfort with, you should not be afraid to say, “I don’t think it’s working and I can’t move any further.”
As women, why is guarding our hearts so important?
Sarah: The media often paint young women as “damsels in distress” needed to be rescued by a “knight in shining armour”. As passive participants in a love story, we don’t get to choose who loves us.
But if we guard our hearts, we protect our agency in romance, and our control to love and be loved. By this, we get to choose who we fall for and who we let into our lives.
“Don’t Say It” subverts the familiar notion that women are a prize to win.
The key is to give our hearts to Christ first, so that we can find our emotional rest in Him first. As women, we tend to let our emotions lead us… so it’s important to find that balance.
Have you derived your self-worth from anything else other than God? How did you figure out your identity in the end?
Sarah: Absolutely. There are many expectations of what it means to be a woman these days, and even more so as an artist in this day and age.
I’m challenged in my artist journey to rest in my true identity in God rather than a false identity that the world asks us to conform to.
If we keep deriving our sense of self-worth from somebody else that’s not the Author of who we truly are, there’s going to be a lot of problems.
It took years for me to come to terms with my name, Sarah, which I used to think was ordinary or common in Christian circles.
It was only recently that I had a revelation from God about my name, which means “princess”. I realised that I should be giving grace to others — as royalty, you give grace on behalf of the ultimate authority.
But that also means that I must receive this grace first and foremost.
I’m far from perfect on this matter, but in this season of new territory and transition, the challenge is how to authentically host the presence of God in my life, and to allow that overflow to impact all that I put my hand to.
What is one takeaway that you’d want your readers/listeners to have?
Sarah: I’d want them to know that it’s worth waiting for someone who has true alignment with you in spirit, mind, soul and more.
Having been married for a while now, many other young women ofter ask me: “How do you know he’s The One?” My answer is that alignment in spirit has to come first!
For example, both Mark and I clearly love God and want Him to guide our lives. But besides that, we’re also creatives. We’re both on an artist’s journey in our own ways, and we’re always looking to improve our craft and find ways to bless others with our gifts. It’s been a real journey to have grown together and individually.
My hope is that every young woman will find a person they’re deeply aligned with – a person who is willing to work with them on a relationship that is mutually edifying and becomes a blessing to those around them.
THINK + TALK
- What or who are you looking to for your sense of self-worth and identity?
- How easy is it to say “no” to people or things that will only draw you further away from God’s plan for your life?
- In what areas do you need to better guard your heart in?