On today’s episode, I crossed another name off my bucket list and chatted with Charlene Nash – a singer and songwriter out of Ontario, Canada – again shout out to all of my fellow Canadian creatives. I’ve been a fan of Charlene’s music since 2017 and let me tell you, there’s levels to her music and to her game!

We talked about how she would describe her music, being inspired by the Spice Girls, how much the Christian music scene has changed over the years, being open to change, and new music – including her latest single “Melancholy”.

There always comes a point in an episode where my guest and I enter into the zone in which I call “the real talk” zone. At this point we’ve talked about some topics and had some laughs, but now we just have some things we need to get off of our chests. The “real talk” moment in this episode was when we talked about the creative process, dealing with crazy expectations, and the hustle stereotype that plagues so many creatives.

It’s the great struggle that many of us encounter – to push towards creativity despite not feeling any motivation or inspiration from God. The battle to feel like you have to remain “relevant” in a time where consumers are overwhelmed with the amount of choices that they have. Charlene noted of this struggle, but also said that Psalms 131 had helped her immensely in the process:

O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.

Psalms 131:1-3 (ESV)

The “ah ha” moment that I had was reading the words of David, when he says “I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.” No matter where we are in life, there will always be things that are greater than us that we are facing, there will always be decisions that are too big for us to make. But David instead quieted his soul, he calmed his soul despite of what he was facing.

Sometimes the hardest part is to just stop and remind ourselves to be calm. That when we stop and be still, we can hear the Lord speak and hear his direction.


EPISODE DETAILS

Icebreaker Questions:

  1. What is one show you could watch for the rest of your life?
  2. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
  3. What is your favorite cake flavor?
  4. If you could collaborate with anyone, who would be the first person you’d call?
  5. If you could only play one instrument for the rest of your life which one would you choose?

Episode Timestamps:

  • Charlene’s Music in 5 Words/Spice Girls to Avril Lavigne/Writing Inspiration – (15:34)
  • Music Is Different for Everyone/We’ve Come a Long Way – (26:45)
  • God, Music & Lipstick/New Music – (33:36)
  • It’s A Lot of Work Ya’ll!/Breaking Out of the Hustle Stereotype – (43:00)
Charlene Nash on The Lampstand Chronicles

keep shining bright;

On today’s episode, I chatted with Oyin – an entrepreneur and former DJ, out of the UK. Oyin started the clothing company Refuge London after realizing that getting clothes shipped to the UK from the US was just too expensive.

We talked about what it was like starting a clothing company from scratch and the meaning behind some of the designs, what it means to have an impact with our calling, some real talk about dealing with recurring sin and addiction, and cultivating our own relationship with God.

If He calls you by name, why do you answer to other labels?

Oyin, Refuge london

If you know of any Canadian faith-based clothing brands please let me know, send me an email or DM me on Instagram because I’d love to support them!

One of the things that I keep coming back to from this episode, is when Oyin and I talked about not letting recurring sin fester, and the power that sharing our struggles with other people has. The enemy wants nothing more than for us to be isolated from our friends who will in turn encourage us, empower us with the word, and hold us accountable. The silence of our tongues when it comes to sin, is the downfall of the body of Christ.

I know it’s not easy to talk about a choice that we made that we realize in hindsight wasn’t the right one to make. I know it’s not easy to be vulnerable, but I know that we were not meant to stay in shame. And shame is a lie from the enemy, it’s not my portion and it isn’t yours either.

If you don’t have at least one person that you can’t be 100% open and honest with, I encourage you to pray about it, so the Lord can reveal who that person is to be. I’m telling you, your life will never be the same.


EPISODE DETAILS

Icebreaker Questions

  1. What is one accessory you can’t live without?
  2. What emoji do you use the most when you text?
  3. Name a dish you want to learn how to cook for the first time.
  4. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
  5. If it were 100% safe to travel, where in the world would you go first?

Episode Timestamps

  • The Start of Refuge London/Understanding Our Calling, Impact and Level of Success – (14:45)
  • The Dark Night of the Soul/Seeking a Relationship with God – (28:58)
  • Investing in Our Salvation/Dismantling Comparisons – (39:26)
  • Fighting the Rebellious Heart/He Leaves the 99 for the 1 – (52:00)
  • Real Talk: Let’s Talk About Our Mess – (1:05:30)
  • Do It For Your Authentic Self – (1:02:25)
  • The Future of Refuge London and Connecting with Oyin – (1:24:06)
Oyin from Refuge London on The Lampstand Chronicles

keep shining bright;

On today’s episode, I chatted with singer and songwriter Dion Davis – who in 2019 serenaded me down the aisle at my wedding. Now he wan’t physically there, but I walked down the aisle to “Lean Back” and if you would’be asked me if the opportunity would arise for me to talk to Dion in 2020 I would have looked at your some type of way. But here we are!

We also talked about what keeping the faith looks like in difficult seasons, experiencing the power of worshiping in hardship, and what it was like recording Lean Back.

Worship [is] so much more than having the ability to sing or play well. Worship is the position of your heart.

Dion Davis

Now why did I decide to use the song Lean Back? My journey back to Christ was an interesting one, but essentially I came back to Him out of heartbreak. My boyfriend who I was dating on and off for the past three years broke up with me out of the blue… again. I was surprised, hurt and disappointed and felt like my identity was so wrapped up in this individual, and now that he was gone I felt the harsh reality of emptiness begin to set in. I believe that was a Thursday night, and by the following Sunday I was in church.

Now I’ve known God all my life, grew up in church with my dad being a pastor, but I think the thing that lacked the most was having a personal relationship with God. I knew of Him but didn’t know Him myself in my heart. And after that breakup I began to learn what the love of God truly was – how it really does fill you and is so overwhelming at times. Over time I understood how the love of God could teach me to love myself and what it would mean to love my future husband.

And that’s where Lean Back comes in, this song has caused me to shed tears of joy, peace, and even sadness because of the love of God that I missed out on for many years. Lean Back brought my story full circle and it perfectly depicted the new journey I was about to embark on with my husband.

So wherever you are, and whatever stage you’re currently on in this journey called life, may you come to know the perfect, all encompassing, mountain climbing, shadow chasing love of God.


EPISODE DETAILS

Icebreaker Questions:

  1. What is one song you have on repeat right now?
  2. What is your favorite snack to eat while watching a movie?
  3. What emoji do you use the most when texting?
  4. If you could only keep 3 apps on your phone, which ones would you keep?
  5. What year has been the most memorable?

Episode Timestamps:

  • Faith in Difficult Seasons/Early Church Memories/Embracing Our Emotions – (8:14)
  • Leading Worship Intentionally and Experiencing the Power of Worshiping in Hardship – (30:27)
  • A New Approach to Writing and the Creative Process – (49:15)
  • Recording “Lean Back” – (55:51)
  • Connecting with Dion and Future Projects – (1:03:18)
Dion Davis on The Lampstand Chronicles

keep shining bright;

On today’s episode, I had an awesome conversation with Lydia Bricker – a singer and songwriter, worship pastor and mother of four out of South East Michigan. Can you talk about a busy schedule? We talked about her early inspirations, leading worship at 13, attending Bethel’s School of Supernatural Ministry (BSSM), becoming a worship pastor, and inspiring the nest generation of worshipers.

My favorite thing that I’ve learned in leading worship is that you are meant to be the thermostat and not the thermometer.

lydia bricker

Talking with Lydia one of the things that stood out the most to me was the importance of investing in others. Her parents invested in her at an early age while being pastors of their own church. From personal experience and seeing other PK’s go through the same thing, sometimes the calling of being a pastor is so big and demanding that family, and family time is sacrificed. But Lydia’s parents wanted her starting point in ministry to be their ceiling… let that sink in for a moment… because that is deep!

Now Lydia is doing the exact same thing with the people that she leads at her home church. Pouring out what she has learned over the years to inspire the next generation of worshipers and giving them a platform to not only learn and grow, but also to experience failures in a safe space. Sometimes the fastest way for us to learn is to teach others, you’ll be surprised about what you learn about yourself.

Who are you pouring into? Who are you teaching some of the things that you know? Sometimes I think that we need to be at a certain level, or have credentials after our name in order for this to happen. But the knowledge that we have is unique and has the potential to unlock the door to someone’s destiny, so pour it out.


EPISODE DETAILS

Icebreaker Questions:

  1. What is one song you have on repeat right now?
  2. What is your favorite snack to eat while watching a movie?
  3. If you could only keep 3 apps on your phone, which ones would you keep?
  4. What is your favorite pizza topping combination?
  5. What year has been the most memorable for you?

Episode Timestamps:

  • Putting Words to Feelings, Being a PK, and Learning from Parents – (14:31)
  • Fear in Leading Worship and Tapping Into God’s Presence – (21:17)
  • Lessons Learned at BSSM to Becoming a Worship Pastor – (26:37)
  • Teamwork Makes the Dream Work – (33:54)
  • Vision for Music and Inspiring the Next Generation – (42:31)
  • Finding Rest – (47:56)
  • New Releases and Upcoming Projects – (52:22)

keep shining bright;

On today’s episode, I chatted with Will, releasing music under the name STILL – he’s a singer, writer and an up and coming producer in the making out of Pennsylvania. If you go and check out STILL’s Spotify or Apple Music page don’t let the number of releases fool you – it’s all about quality over quantity, and releasing music in the right season.

We had a chance to talk about the inspiration for STILL’s sound, the right season and time for releasing music, the impact of the Christian creative space, and being on social media.

The solution to my heart feeling heavy is finding my rest in God.

WILL, STILL

I love where the Christian music space is currently at, it’s grown immensely in the past decade, but I think more specifically in the past five years there’s this sense of abandoning traditional genres. And that’s totally alright and amazing at the same time. Because we are so interconnected with our ideas, likes, and influences that has showcased itself in music. You have R&B elements mixed with EDM, alternative and hip hop, experimental indie mixed with lo-fi.

The scene has become the perfect melting pot, where we’ve thrown away putting things into a silo. And we’re in a sense saying let’s re-write the story to what it means to be a creative. And that is awesome to see!

I’ll speak for myself in this regard, music has such a strong emotional connection. I listen to it for everything, and there’s some songs that bring me back to a difficult time in my life, or even a time where I felt overwhelming happiness. So thank you to every musician who has laid it on the line with their lyrics, who bared their soul as a way to encourage us, who dared to push the boundaries on what it means to glorify God.

Thank you.


EPISODE DETAILS

Episode Timestamps:

  • Releasing Music and Just Going For IT – (2:01)
  • STILL’s Sound Inspiration – (12:28)
  • Be STILL and Know… – (16:10)
  • Producing and Collaborating – (20:38)
  • Meaning Behind the Music – (26:21)
  • Community Impact, Social Media and Being Patient – (35:06)
  • Upcoming Projects – (49:17)

keep shining bright;