Jonathan David & Melissa Helser

sustaining the passion

Practical resources to empower you and your journey with God.


latest podcast

In this exclusive podcast episode, Jonathan and Melissa sit down to walk through the stories and songs found on part 2 of We Rise We Bow, the brand new Cageless Birds album releasing next week! Hear a special sneak peak of all five tracks in this podcast, and learn more about the artists and stories behind them! 

“We Bow” available on October 11. 


 we rise we bow


WE RISE / WE BOW, 2019

Our new studio album is titled We Rise We Bow and has been released in two parts.  We released We Rise, in June, and now we’re excited to share We Bow with you.  Our dream for this album is that when you hear it, you would hear the sound of North Carolina and feel the heartbeat of our community. 

One of our favorite elements of this album is the unique theme of declaration and testimony.  This album is a compilation of songs that reflect our own personal stories, our friendships and the time that we have spent fighting together for the next generation.  We Rise We Bow was curated as a gift to you, the listener, as a collection of songs to declare as your own. 



beautiful surrender

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Beautiful Surrender, 2016

Worship leaders and songwriters Jonathan & Melissa Helser present their eighth album: Beautiful Surrender. This album marks their first studio release with Bethel Music, and the project’s overarching message is a vibrant response to their last album, On The Shores (2012).

Jonathan and Melissa both contributed heavily to the writing of the album and the authenticity of their connection permeates each song. Lead vocals alternate across different tracks and careful harmonies decorate each arrangement. The Helsers tracked the record in Nashville, Tennessee with award-winning producer, Ed Cash, who also co-wrote on several songs. 

Accompanying the Helsers with crafted instrumentation are members of their band, The Cageless Birds.

These original songs weave an intentional tapestry of the core message behind the project: that the further we walk with Jesus, ‘surrender’ becomes a willful response rather than a heavy task. Just as Jesus lived on the earth with no resistance toward God the Father, these tracks personify surrender with a confident energy. Surrender is not burdensome, but a joyful choice motivated by love. Beautiful Surrender invites worshippers to explore the reality of God’s goodness and respond with fresh passion. 



on the shores

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on the shores, 2010

“To record the music of your life is in itself a gift, but to do it with your best friend and the love of your life is a gift beyond explanation.   In the 11th year of our marriage, we decided to take the beautiful journey of recording an album together.  In years past we’ve soared to the highest heights and traveled to deepest depths, and in the end we have collected these melodies which are some of the greatest treasures we possess.  As songwriters, we write to express the language of our seasons to God and to man.  We gladly give these songs to you—the listener, the worshipper—to pour your own heart over Him. May you find God as consistently good as we have.

In the autumn of 2010 we moved the furniture out of our house and filled our home with instruments.  We invited some incredible musicians, who also happen to be our dearest friends, to spend a week arranging, creating and dreaming into the new songs we’d written.  The following week, we took these songs into a studio called “Threshing Floor.”   The music that we captured in those days is the sound of a family diving deep into the heart of Love.  At the helm of this grand adventure stood our fearless friend and producer who gave the next year of his life to carefully weave together the songs on this album.  There is nothing like being surrounded by a group of friends who fight for your dreams.  To have among those friends musicians, artists, and a producer, who all helped bring our hearts and songs alive is an honor beyond words. 

Our favorite part of writing music is how a song can become like a diving board taking you to the deep places.  This album is really like being on the shores of what happened that week in the studio. If you want to dive deeper, look for Endless Ocean, Bottomless Sea a double disc collection of the extended versions and experiences of these songs.” -The Helsers


live at home


live at home, 2012

“Live at Home” is the first creative adventure of our collective Cageless Birds. The idea for this album was born one day when we were dreaming out loud together. We fell into one of those moments where beautiful “what if” statements started cascading upon one another.

Our conversation sounded something like this...

“What if we recorded an album in our house? What if we invite everyone in our band to record one of their songs for the album? What if we recorded the whole album in one week? What if we film each song, so that everyone could see what’s happening in this community? What if we made this project a true story and didn’t overdub or gloss over the mistakes? What if we let it be a real live album...”

One of us said ‘this is crazy’ and both of us said ‘let’s do it.’ And so we did. We are excited to share with you this project that came from our community stepping out on the water.






Cultivate is a series of books that call to rhythms of devotion, creativity and transformation. These books prompt you to initiate personal time with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit so that you can live an empowered, sustainable life connected to your heart.  We encourage you to slow down and savor each part of the journey.




We rise / we bow, 2019

We are releasing our first Cageless Birds album in five years!  Our new studio album is titled We Rise We Bow and will be released in two parts.  We are releasing We Rise on June 21st and We Bow on October 11th.  Our dream for this album is that when you hear it, you would hear the sound of North Carolina and feel the heartbeat of our community. Continue reading…