This episode of Intersection is a little different. Normally we can relate to the people I interview since they are usually from Canada and often live lives similar to ours. But today I interview Josephine, a young woman from Uganda who has been through hardship that some of us can’t even imagine – living in the face of fear day in and day out. Yet she leans heavily on God, whom she credits for her perseverance and for bringing her to her current place in life where she assists International Justice Mission (ijm.org) in bringing justice to some of the darkest places in the world. I also speak with IJM’s Mark Wallenburg about this incredible organization.

Ever wonder what it would be like to be a Christian in the music industry? How do you navigate that? I wanted to know! Well, who better to ask than Dani Strong. As you probably heard in my previous podcast episode with Dani (Episode 10 – check it out!), Dani is a rising country music star who just released her #1 Country Music album “Time to Breathe”. So I had a great conversation about that exact topic. Hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed talking with Dani.

What an opportunity to hear the real-life faith story of Dani Strong. I love how Dani shares her story with such enthusiasm: how she grew up knowing about God and then experiencing Him for real as a young woman. And now she is an amazing country music artist who’s just released her first album: Time To Breathe. Her album debuted at the top of the charts when it was released on iTunes! It was great to chat with Dani about her faith and to hear her share one of her awesome songs, unplugged, in my living room. Listen to the end!

Welcome!  and thanks for joining me here on this page on Thanksgiving weekend.  So MUCH to be thankful for…really.  In my life there is health and goodness, growing children and a loving husband and always always underneath it all, an absolute confidence that God loves me.  Does this translate into unending happiness, well-mannered kids, a deep sense of contentment and my laundry always done? NO!  Life brings challenges and days that are tough and seasons that rattle and frustrate me.  I have figured something out though.  The very best soothing balm for my weary soul is a good talk.  An honest connection with some-one, someone who is willing to be vulnerable about their stuff and invite me to be transparent about mine.  I believe this is God’s design for soul-health, to be loved by Him and to often experience this love of His through each other…and we do that, you know, when we share our stories.  And so today I am thankful for each one of my guests on Intersection; Linda, Dmitry, Maria, Warren, Marissa, Ann, Sue, Julie and Toni.  Each of them chose to be honest and brave in the telling of their personal journey and perspective on faith.  I’m so glad and so grateful to have been given that gift, and of course, it’s a gift given to you too, as you listen in on their stories.  So go ahead, receive the gift, lean in and listen.  Each honest and transparent episode has the potential to lift you up, encourage you and inspire you.  God is in their stories.  God loves you to.  If you really lean in and really really listen, you will hear that too.

This week Rose interviews Toni Nieuwhof who opens up about her personal struggle with depression and marital strain.  Despite seeming to have it all together on the outside, things were falling apart on the inside.  Toni is a successful lawyer (and pharmacist!), and is married to Carey Nieuwhof, the founding and teaching pastor at Connexus Church in Ontario, Canada.     She’s honest and vulnerable and her story is one of deep emotional pain, wondrous trust and tenacious faith.