Interview With America’s Got Talent Contestant & Christian Singer-Songwriter Joseph O’Brien

A couple months ago, my family and I were watching America’s Got Talent. This guy  named Joseph O’Brien came on and started singing an original song. In his song, he mentioned praying and my brother made a sarcastic comment that maybe he was “Christian,” and I laughed and was like, “maybe?”

I proceeded to look Joseph up on Instagram and noticed he had a verse in his bio. I thought that was pretty cool, but we all know that anyone can call themselves “Christian” or put a verse in their social media bio, but not be truly living for God.

However, as I followed Joseph on Instagram and watched him while he was on AGT, I noticed that he truly does live like a Christian. His faith in God influences the way he lives and all he does, and that really encouraged me. It’s nice to see someone on a show like that with genuine faith in God! I absolutely love his music and his voice, but his faith is what inspires me above all. He is an amazingly talented guy!

I reached out to Joseph via email a couple weeks ago asking if he would answer some questions to share with you all. I was SO SOOO excited when he replied with a YES!!

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Advice for Living a Worshipful and Thankful Life

It’s hard to believe that fall is here!! The summer days just seemed to fly by.  A few of weeks ago, I was putting out decorations, getting ready for the Autumn season, when I began to think again about the subject of thankfulness and the whole overall aspect of the season.  I have been blessed to grow up in a Godly home with loving parents who have taught me from the very beginning of my life to be grateful for opportunities to bless people. So I am thankful for this opportunity to write on this blog. Because more than anything, I am hoping to encourage you all as well as myself to follow hard after Jesus.

Every once in a while, my mind will think of a phrase poised as a question; “Am I Falling for Jesus?” You know how leaves fall off the trees in autumn?” To me, they have a beautiful red, yellow, orange, and gold glow as they float to the ground. “Am I Falling for Jesus?”

We like to think that we are following the Lord as much as possible.  We set aside time to spend in God’s Word, we go to church, and maybe even go to Bible studies. But are we just going through the motions? We can do all those things to show we are faithful to God, but are we falling for Him? We should be striving to worship God all day, every single day.  Falling at his feet in honor to him; in every thought we should be praising Him.

We should be striving to worship God all day, every single day..png

John 4:23-24 // But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. God is a spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. (KJV)

Psalm 35:28 // And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long. (KJV)

When I was nine years old I prayed and asked Jesus into my heart, but it was more out of fear of Hell than anything.  I went through a rough start in my early teenage years.  I felt helpless and miserable all the time.  At age thirteen, I had a realization that there was no fruitful change in me. I knew the only right thing to do was to admit to the Lord that I believed in Him and confess my sins.  In a way, it was an awakening for me. Falling at the feet of Jesus, admitting that I was a helpless and suffering person who needed saving. I had to put away the old self, and let God take over and control my life. I was not worthy to be forgiven of my sin. I don’t deserve to live a life knowing that my Savior is keeping me safe in His arms. But it is God’s gift to me. “O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.” (Psalm 96:9 KJV)

We shouldn’t only be thankful for the life that God has seen fit to give us, but we should also be falling at the feet of Jesus thanking Him for giving us another day to live another day to glorify Him.

Some days we feel like we can’t go on. Life is too hard. In those times, we need to remember to let God into our lives. In tough or hard circumstances, praise Him, because God is in control.

Sometimes we can become self focused, and all that matters is what we want. We miss out on things that are important to us, and that just isn’t fair in our opinion. We deserved to go to that party, or, we deserved to be able to hang out with our friends! When we become self drawn, we often get disappointed and say to ourselves, “I was looking forward to this, and now it’s not going to happen.” We can hold that event in high respect…but here’s the dangerous part: we can hold it in higher respect than God. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true.

In all our choices, we should honor God first before ourselves. Fall at His feet and tell God that you want to honor His choices for you instead…He will only do what is best for us.

In tough or hard circumstances, praise Him, because God is in control..png

We can learn to worship God all the time; worshipping Him in song is a great example. In 1873 Fanny J. Crosby wrote a song called “Blessed Assurance” which in the chorus says:

“This is my story, this is my song

Praising my Savior all the day long

This is my story, this is my song

Praising my Savior all the day long”


This is the perfect testimony of how we should worship and praise God in everything.

Here are some questions for us to think about:

Are we falling for Jesus?

Are we living our lives to the fullest for His glory?

What is something that you are thankful for?

Thanks so much to Abby B. for writing this post!


About the author:

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My name is Abigail. I am eighteen years old and live with my parents. I have an older sister and brother, and sister in law. I am a full time babysitter. I love writing, enjoy baking and spending time with my family. I have had the Lord in my heart since 2013 and my constant desire is to know Him better and be changed into His image.

Why I Stopped Watching “Anne with an E”

I LOVE Anne of Green Gables, thanks to a friend of mine who told me about the movies a year or so ago. 😉 I fell in love with the movies and am currently reading book 4 in the series.

Last year, Netflix started a show called “Anne with an E.” It’s a very modernized version of Anne of Green Gables, and they made numerous alterations to the books and original story.

Despite these changes, I really enjoyed the first season – the actors were all spectacular, the was setting GORGEOUS, and the filming was amazing. And can I just say, GILBERT! If you know anything about AoGG, enough said. 😉 There were a couple questionable things in 2 of the episodes that made me uncomfortable, but I decided that I would try out the second season, and if these kind of things continued, I would stop watching the show.

I was disappointed after watching most of the second season. Let me just say, I don’t mind how the show strays from the story-line, it doesn’t particularly bother me. However, when they do things that are against God’s Word, along with some things that were not-so-great in the first season, I simply cannot keep watching/supporting the show. In season 2, they did something that I do not support in any way.

One of the characters is homosexual. Well, he has desires to be, and likes guys, and they support him. Anne believes that love looks different for everyone and whatever kind of love you have, whether you are straight or gay, that should be supported. She even talks about this in one episode.

You might be thinking, okay, it’s just one character, and you can fast forward through any scenes that aren’t good. However, I don’t think I’m going to continue watching this show unless things improve.

Ephesians 5:3-4 says: But sexual immorality, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not even be mentioned among you, as becomes saints; nor filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not appropriate; but rather giving of thanks. (emphasis added)

I thought about continuing to watch the show, but I honestly didn’t even really enjoy the second season much anyways. Plus, God’s Word says to not even mention sexual immorality among you. This means that we shouldn’t watch it, speak of it, think about it, or do it. “Anne with an E” obviously supports gay people and homosexuality, and God’s Word doesn’t.

Let me make this clear: I love gay and homosexual people, and I believe God does too. He sent Jesus to save ALL people, not just the straight people. John 3:16 says: For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

I don’t, however, support their sin. It’s wrong according to God’s Word. (For more on God’s design for romantic relationships, check out this post) I can’t watch Anne with an E the same way knowing that there’s a character on there who is homosexual. It’s against God’s Word, and even if there’s just a hint of it in this show, I know it’s something I shouldn’t watch.

I encourage you to be careful what you are watching and allowing into your mind. I know that there are some really great shows and movies out there that have homosexuality in them, and I want to encourage you to chose to refrain from watching those shows. God calls His people to be holy and pure, and not participating in, agreeing with, or thinking about sin. Even if you go through those scenes of sexual immorality, whether it be with a man and a woman or with people of the same sex, is it worth it? You shouldn’t have to compromise your morals for entertainment.

You are called to be set-apart and holy, so I encourage you to think before you watch.

1 Peter 1:13-16 // Therefore prepare your minds for action, be sober, and set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ— as children of obedience, not conforming yourselves according to your former lusts as in your ignorance, but just as he who called you is holy, you yourselves also be holy in all of your behavior; because it is written, “You shall be holy; for I am holy.”

Romans 12:1-2 // Therefore I urge you, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service. Don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what is the good, well-pleasing, and perfect will of God.

Philippians 4:8 // Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think about these things.

Matthew 7:13-14 // “Enter in by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter in by it. How narrow is the gate, and restricted is the way that leads to life! Few are those who find it.

More posts on television/movies/entertainment:

To Watch or Not to Watch?

// Why I Won’t be Watching Love, Simon (or most movies these days) //

Why I Don’t Watch Many Mainstream Movies (Why I Don’t Series Pt. 1)

What I’ve Learned From Keeping the Sabbath {With Testimonies from Others}

Whenever the topic of keeping the Sabbath, aka Shabbat, on Saturday comes up, many people will say that it’s legalistic. It’s a very controversial thing in the church, and many think that we should be able to choose our Sabbath day, or that Jesus is our Sabbath. However, these things aren’t Biblical, and I have found such rest and joy keeping the Sabbath.

Today I want to share with you a few things I’ve learned from keeping the Sabbath, as well as share some testimonies from some good friends of mine who keep Shabbat. Thanks to them for sharing their answers with me!!

My family started keeping the Sabbath in 2014/2015 or so. For the first few years, I admit, I just kept Shabbat because it’s what we did. However, over time I have started to truly keep Shabbat and spend extra time doing restful things and spending time with God.

Since I’ve started to understand what the Sabbath means for myself and not simply keep it, I’ve begun to look forward to it and truly enjoy it! It has taught me that all of God’s commands are for our good and His glory, and that rest is a beautiful thing. We honor Him by keeping the Sabbath and by obeying His commands, as a son obeys his father and thus honors him. Furthermore, we are also immensely benefited by keeping this day.

God’s ways are so perfect and planned out, and bring true joy! I have found that I don’t have to force myself each week to keep the Sabbath, but rather, it’s something that I want to do and do joyfully. I’ve even made challah bread some weeks to usher in the Sabbath.

I’m not obligated to keep the Sabbath, nor is it my duty. Rather, I do it because I know God gave us the Sabbath for a reason and that it’s an amazing gift.

Now that I’ve shared a bit of what Shabbat has taught me, I’m going to share some testimonies from friends! Thank you all SOOO much for sharing your wisdom and thoughts for my post!

Busby Family

(been keeping the Sabbath for 6 + 1/2 years)

“We’ve learned that remembering the sabbath shows obedience to God, living a life more like His, resting, setting it apart and always tying it back to the Father is really good.

“It all comes back to God saying that we, as His hard working children need rest. He has known what we needed since the beginning of time. Ever since day one, He set that day for us to rest on. Since God knew that we needed rest and since He gave us this rest we have to wonder, what other areas is He taking care of us in? Also, resting in Him and resting in your relationship with Him is where the true peace and joy come from.

“One of the commandments says “remember the sabbath day and keep it holy.” Holy means set apart and that is a different meaning for everyone. One thing that it has taught us is when we take this one day off, it refreshes us to be more productive when that new week comes. God stopped working after six days not because He got tired, but because He knew we would need rest. So, you are obeying God, following His command and being more like God by doing this. You are aligning yourself to Him.

“The whole foundation of the sabbath is: we need rest. But it goes beyond that. Even Erev Shabbat (Friday night) is special. The thanks we have given, showing our appreciation for each other, speaking blessings over each other has brought our family through a lot of hard things.

“We are thankful for Saturday’s where we are all together as a family. We try to set this day apart by not working, cooking, cleaning and keeping it different from the other days. We want to live in obedience. We don’t have to do this but we get to do this. It brings rest and refreshment.

We have learned to follow the Father in deeper ways by doing this. He wants to give us good gifts and we believe this is one of the gifts He has given us/invited us to partake in. It’s a beautiful and refreshing thing and we have loved walking on this path. We have learned more about God, love, and joy through keeping the sabbath.”

We have learned more about God, love, and joy through keeping the Sabbath.

Preston Scott

(been keeping the Sabbath since around March of 2017)

“In keeping the Sabbath, there are many spiritual lessons to be learned. One of the most frequent I encounter is that of trust. In our work oriented world where we hardly slow down to “smell the roses,” doing no work for small chunks of time (much more 24 hours) can seem pointless and even foolish; especially when we have deadlines fast approaching. We might have something we feel can’t wait or else, “how is it going to get done?!”

“Meanwhile God is calling us to take a leap of faith and know that He’s got it in His hands. Perhaps it’s Friday and you have a test on Monday that you’ve hardly studied for and you just know you’re going to have to study all weekend to learn what you need. Well, Sabbath rolls around Friday evening and you realize that if you’re going to honor God’s instructions for this day that you’re not going to be studying until Saturday evening or even Sunday. That can be hard.

“But what it does is that it teaches us to trust God that He’ll provide enough manna. And maybe you get the highest score in your class. How’d that happen? Well, in the natural it can be explained something like this: since you decided to rest, your brain was not on overload from constant work, but rather more ready to learn what you needed; both faster and more efficiently. Therefore, you attain the highest score. In the supernatural it can explained in this way: God honors those who honor Him. (1 Samuel 2:30) Seriously though, God said there are “blessings and curses” (Deuteronomy 11:26-29; 28; 30:19) that come with His commands. Blessings when we obey and curses when we rebel.

“In conclusion: Yes, the Sabbath does require trust if you’re going to keep it, but the rewards reaped in that trust are so amazing and the fruit it produces displays so much growth spiritually that it is totally worth it. I have experienced it firsthand!”

Olivia Scott

(been keeping the Sabbath for about a year)

The Biblical Sabbath has for years quickly been labeled as “bondage” by many, but I have found quite the opposite to be true: it’s a huge blessing! Instead of trying to rest my way on my schedule when it’s convenient for me, I have made the choice to intentionally rest and set apart the time that our Creator Himself has called set apart, the time that He’s resting. And in making that choice, I have experienced only joy and greater intimacy in my relationship with Him.

The Sabbath to me is a just another representation of God’s infinite love for us. First of all, He knows our limits as human beings and so He, in His all-knowing wisdom, gave us a day to rest.

Second of all, He gave us a whole day to spend time with Him…the Lover of our soul! I try to remember it as a “date” with Jesus. I anticipate that time with Him each week and I know He’s anticipating that time with me, too. Can you believe it?! What an awesome God. It’s like having a weekly party.

Aimee Morrison

(been keeping the Sabbath for 12 years)

“Since I was 7 my family has been keeping Shabbat. As the years have gone on, Abba has shown us more and more and deepened our knowledge and love for keeping this beloved, but often forgotten, 4th commandment. Now that I am nearing 19, I can’t imagine living without it. Yeah, when I was younger I didn’t take it seriously, but He has increased my understanding of the importance of keeping His Day kadosh, or set-apart.

“First off, Shabbat is a sign. When you biblically keep His Sabbath day, it is showing your dedication to Him… “if you love me you will keep My commandments..” (see John 14:15) This also proves that you are His because you are putting aside the will of your own flesh to obey. Just like a child does to a beloved Father.

More recently, I have realized what a breath of fresh air it is. I began a job working at a juice bar a few weeks ago, and after all the work and hustle, it’s so refreshing to have a day to rest and enjoy the day with like-minded believers. Not only is keeping Shabbat something we need to do because He told us to, but it’s something we are blessed with. A day where we can relax, spend time in His presence, grow in Him, and be refreshed from the work week. Shabbat is a blessing. A gift. And the more we cherish this gift, the more we are able to know Him.”

We have learned more about God, love, and joy through keeping the Sabbath. (1)

I hope this post has been an encouragement to you! The Sabbath is such a wonderful gift from the Father, and I pray you wouldn’t just take our word for it, but study out the Word of God yourself.

To read my post on why I keep the Sabbath on Saturday, click here.

Let’s chat!

  • Do you keep the Sabbath, and if so, on what day?
  • Have you heard about or studied keeping Shabbat?
  • Which one of the testimonies in this post stood out to you, and why?

My Thoughts on Ant-Man and the Wasp

*If you haven’t seen Ant-Man and the Wasp and don’t want spoilers, read with caution*

In July I saw the Marvel movie called Ant-Man and the Wasp. If you’ve read my previous blog posts, you might know that I have said I don’t watch Marvel movies. This is because, after getting somewhat into them in 2016, I realized the violence, language and overall profanity was too much for me and I felt convicted about watching them.

However, some friends were going to see Ant-Man and the Wasp, so after watching the trailer and looking at Christian reviews, I decided to try it. To my surprise, it was one of the best movies I have ever seen, and by far the best Marvel movie that I have seen.

This movie definitely exceeded my expectations. If you have ever seen Marvel movies, you know they are full of violence. I cannot watch violence personally, and felt God convict me about it. In Captain America: Winter Solider, a character is tortured and brain washed, becoming a slave to the “bad guys,” and in other movies, there is much war and blood.

However, Ant-Man and the Wasp was different. The movie was about how the wife of the man who created Ant-Man’s suit (Hank) is stuck in this place called the Quantam Realm and now they must save her. After years of creating, Hank has created a way of going in and rescuing his wife.

However, there is a man who turns his back on Hank and his daughter and decides he wants to steal their invention and get into the Quantam Realm. There is also a villain named “Ghost” who wants to steal it too.

At first I thought the villain was kinda creepy, but then they explained her back story and I was super intrigued. When “Ghost” was younger, there was an explosion which killed her father and left her with a weird disease. This disease caused her cells to be broken apart and thus, she could walk through walls and disappear much like a ghost. However, this disease also caused her much pain and she was dying, which is why she wanted so badly to get into the Quantam Realm to find a cure to her illness.

Unlike other Marvel movies, this movie was focused on unity and family. I especially liked how the villain in this movie wasn’t your typical villain. She was simply a girl who was struggling and was dying and needs a solution. She is desperate, and that is why she is evil. In the end of the movie, she finds a solution to her problem and seems to become good, which rarely happens in movies, especially Marvel.

The humor in this movie was HYSTERICAL. Oh, my, word. My friends and I were laughing a lot. It was also clean, which is pretty amazing to see in a mainstream movie.

The only issue I have with this movie is that there was language. It was words you could easily hear by going to school/grocery store/etc, but still, I feel it was not needed. It’s kind of sad to me that this movie was so great otherwise, but they had to add something that truly wasn’t necessary.

Rather than leaving this movie and feeling saddened by the violence and disturbed, I left feeling like I had spent my time well by watching this movie. I laughed a lot and (surprisingly) genuinely enjoyed this movie without having any huge issues with it.

I’m not saying I don’t think language is wrong, and I don’t watch many things with language in it. However, since that was the only issue I could see, Biblical;y, along with a divorce & some romance things and some slight violence, I think the movie was a good one.

I would definitely recommend this movie to those who are over the age of 12. I don’t normally do movie reviews here on Salt and Light, but I wanted to share my thoughts today because this movie truly surprised me.

Let’s chat!

Have you seen Ant Man and the Wasp? What did you think?

How to Have God-Honoring Friendships

Friends are a wonderful gift. They can enhance our lives, draw us closer to Christ, and call out our sins in a loving way, helping us grow.

However, friendships can also be toxic. Many people can get hurt by so called “friends” and afterwards are never the same. It can be tough to find and make good friends, as well as know how to be a good friend.

In this post I want to talk about both of those things, and how to honor God in our relationships with our friends. Let’s go!

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