George’s raspy voice was a perfect fit for “It’s a Gift,” a song that Lawhead and Reeves wrote years ago and had stored away for a moment they knew they would recognize. And they were right. “When I met George and invited him to come down, I remembered the song and how it would mean so much more with him singing it,” Lawhead says. “George has something really special. When he plays, it’s fascinating. He’s born to do this.”

George released his debut album, Have My Heart, late last year. He opened for contemporary Christian musician Jeremy Camp and played on the same bill with the Christian rock band Mercy Me.

In October 2013, he married Stephanie Toll, whom he had met through Facebook about six months earlier. Stephanie is also a musician, and the couple is now awaiting the birth of their first child, who is due in July. Shortly after marrying, they traveled to Romania to appear on a television show similar to Inside Edition so Stephanie could meet George’s biological family. George had appeared on the same show earlier in the year to meet his parents for the first time since leaving the orphanage. In the first show, George surprised his birth parents by walking into the garden of their home unannounced. “His [birth] mother knew it was him,” says Mike. “She started to shake and cry.”

“There were so many emotions at once,” says George, who now keeps up with his biological parents and four sisters through social media.

George’s phenomenal story has had an impact on many people, and the Dennehys believe George’s music is making a difference in the lives of others. “He has gotten messages from all over the world,” Mike says. “He talks to groups, and after he talks, people swarm him. He is an inspiration and a true artist.”

JOAN TUPPONCE is a writer living in the Richmond, Va., area who has written for Seventeen, Sports Illustrated and O, The Oprah Magazine.