Episode 76 - Get to Know Us + Advice Session

Since we started this podcast, our community has grown so much that we decided to do a fun and encouraging BONUS episode to answer some of the questions we get! 


We really hope that by the end of this episode, you know a little bit about us, but also learn a bit about some of what we do. We hope it helps you in your journey as well!


We talk about some serious questions, but also answer some hilarious and fun questions, so be sure to tune in and find out things like what we wanted to be when we were a kid, what we would sing at Karaoke night, and what we would rather do: wash dishes, clean the bathroom, or vacuum the house?


Let’s get to it…


  1. What’s your favorite book/movie?

AJ: She's a reader! She doesn’t have a favorite book, but the last movie she watched really stuck with her. It was a documentary called Free Burma Rangers, about this family who moved to live in Burma and help the people there with medical care, military training, and all sorts of things. 


Jen: Her favorite movie/book is Sense and Sensibility because her husband also loved this movie. According to Jen, there are only a few things that they both like, as far as entertainment. And they both loved that movie! 


  1. I would love to hear your testimony. How did you come to be followers of Jesus?

AJ:  She was very young when she became a believer. She was sitting on the bus on her way to school one morning and she heard in her heart God speaking to her. That was a turning point in her life because up until that point, she knew the facts of the gospel, but she did not believe that she was worthy of the gospel. 

{If you want to listen more to AJ’s testimonial, we have an episode where she talked more in-depth about what happened in her early years. AJ’s story can help you see the catalyst to start a genuine healing journey is trusting God and not leaning on our own understanding.  You can listen HERE).

Jen: She grew up in a Christian home with strong Christian parents. Her theology was not quite well formed as a child, but she was very confident in her salvation, even as a child. She knew beyond a shadow of a doubt God had her! 


Advice: “The best experience is being rescued from our sin. And from God's wrath. But knowing who He is and knowing who you are in Christ as a believer, does more for your confidence and your identity than anything else. And that comes from the Word of God.”  


“Even though I was saved early, I learned later in life how important knowing God, actually knowing him and knowing what his word says about me and about him is. And that is the object of our faith. We have to place our faith in something. And if we don't know God, well then we're not gonna place our faith in something that's very solid. So understanding who he is and having him as the object of our faith, that really is critical.” 


  1. I've really enjoyed this month's study connecting the Old and the New Testaments. How do you figure that out? 


When you start to look at Scripture, you start to recognize themes. As Jen and AJ were looking at Romans 8, they started to notice certain themes in that particular chapter and their memory started to say,

“You know what? We also see that in the life of Abraham, or we also see this in the life of Hannah.” They started seeing these themes exemplified in these characters and their stories throughout Scripture. 


Advice: This is one of the reasons why Jen and AJ encourage everyone to read systematically through the Bible. 

Reading it  gives you an overview of the entire narrative of scripture from beginning to end, and having that understanding will help you then make these little connections.  



  1. Speaking of Sojo Academy, what's the best part of having a live workshop with your members every single week?

AJ: Our community is global. We have people from literally all over the world, and we get to hear what God's doing in other people's lives, in our sister's lives, hearing how God is working and how he is using his word to encourage and exhort, it's very encouraging.


Jen: The workshops have different themes every week, but the best part is the fact that she can stare at the faces of other sisters in Christ who are doing exactly what she’s doing, and they can join arms together, and get to know them. She knows their lives now, in ways she would not have known their lives before. She can pray for them when they have needs. We all have a perspective that's different from one another. When we read a passage of scripture, God could speak to us differently. And when we share that with one another, it encourages and it builds up the body of Christ and it spurs us on to move forward.


  1. What did you want to be as a kid? What was your dream job?

AJ: She wanted to be a teacher and a writer. She would go home after school and line up all her stuffed animals and stand in front of them and teach what she had just learned in class. When she was maybe 10 or so, she decided that she wanted to be a writer. And that has been her lifelong passion.


Jen: Her dream job is actually what she does currently. In the fourth grade was when she decided she wanted to be a doctor. And the reason is because the fourth-grade teacher, Mrs. Smith told her she would be a great nurse. But she said she wanted to be a doctor instead. Mrs. Smith's answer? “No, sweetheart. Little girls are nurses and little boys are doctors.” Well, Jen is a doctor nowadays.


Advice: “it's funny how God takes our dreams and our thoughts and he allows them to come to fruition and he uses them in interesting ways that you never imagined he would. And then he changes them.  I had this big goal and I've hit it and I've done all these things and now God gives me this new goal and a new dream to do the things that we're doing now with Sojo.”


“The Bible says that when we delight ourselves in him, he gives us the desires of our heart. And I think that's where we can both look back on our lives and see that, as we have delighted in him, He has given us the proper desires and he has also fulfilled those desires.”


“Seek after God, seek to glorify him in all things. Whether the door remains open for you to walk through or whether it gets shut, you know that it is for your good and for his glory, regardless of what the result is of the journey.”


  1. What would you sing on karaoke night?

Jen: She loves to sing! She was part of musical theater, church choirs, and worship teams. On a daily basis, her choice of singing would be Hymns but in a Karaoke with friends, she would be rocking out some 80s music. 


AJ: She would be right there with Jen singing 80s songs! The first song she would probably sing would be Bryan Adams's (Everything I Do) I Do It for You!


80s Playlist to sing along with Jen and AJ:



  1. Why was Sojo Academy created? Why is it currently in existence?

Sojo Academy has been around for about 5 years now, and Jen and AJ have been running it for that amount of time. When they first came together, they wanted to do something where they had a community of women who grew together in their faith over a period of time as opposed to just going through one-off Bible studies. They didn't want to just see women getting into God's word for a few weeks and then dropping off or getting everything they studied and it never impacting their lives, how they handle relationships with their husbands or their children, how they present themselves in the workplace. 


Jen and AJ wanted to see God's word impact our day-to-day lives. 


“One of the best ways to do that would be in a membership where we could actually see each other, like we are right now, on Zoom every week, week after week after week, and grow together in God's word.”

Both of them were doing ministry for decades, the missionary wife, the online ministry, and the bible study teacher.  They really have done it all. But one of the things they recognized was the importance of accountability and community and habit building and continuity. 

Fun Fact: When they first got together, their initial goal was to start a podcast. They were gonna start a podcast and then got talking about their own thoughts and goals and beliefs. They started to realize how aligned they were and that's how Sojo was born. 


  1. What are the biggest differences between when you first started Sojo around four and a half, five years ago and now?

When they first started, Jen and AJ didn't really know where the needs of the women were gonna be best met, the women that God was gonna bring to them.


A lot has remained the same, but over the last five years, they have had discussions with their members regularly, through feedback, figuring out where they are and where they could be effective in supporting and serving the women that God has allowed to be under their ministry. 


Recently it's more community driven, it is truly about the members of the Academy who come together and feel a sense of community with one another.


  1. Who's on the team, so we can thank them and pray for them?

It does take the team that we have to get everything done to free Jen and AJ up a little bit to actually write the studies, and to meet with their members on a weekly basis. 

We could not do Sojo without these beautiful people:


Trista, her responsibilities range from keeping us in line to doing tech stuff on the back end. Like she handles just about everything.  She was our first person to come on the team.

Veronica, she has been our podcast manager since we started the podcast and she does social media and marketing. 

Erin,  she is our creative design person. All of the studies that you have seen over the past year and half have been by her design. She's very gifted and she's definitely a much needed asset to our team. 

Margot, she is learning the ropes. She is helping with a lot of the backend stuff, learning the ins and outs from Trista

Julie, she is a personal friend and  she's new to Sojo. She's been a member of Sojo for a long time, but she's now going to step into the role of community manager.

Adrich, he is behind the scenes putting some of the tech together. He is now helping get some backend stuff working properly. And that's quite a job, it actually is very intensive to do what we do on the back end.



Finally, but not least.

  1. Which would you rather do? Wash dishes, clean the bathroom, or vacuum the house?

AJ: Definitely vacuum the house. She has a thing for clean floors. She vacuums the floors very often. She’s a no-shoe person in the house. She can have dirty dishes in her sink, but she can not have anything on the floor. 


Jen: The dishes! She won’t choose the vacuum because she can't really listen to anything while she’s vacuuming. 


The clean bathroom's just an obvious No for both of them. Who likes to do that, right? 



Thank you for joining today to get to know Jen and AJ a little better. And If you aren't sure about exactly what we do at Sojo Academy, we do invite you to go over to sojoacademy.com where you'll find out more details as well as you will discover what the current study is that we are working on in Sojo Academy.

And of course we would love to have you in there, and we'd love to meet you on our next Zoom call.  So please come and introduce yourself to us there!





Oh! We have a new cover for our podcast! Let us know if you like it! Very groovy of us, right? 




Free Romans 8 Coloring Page

We hope you use these coloring pages while listening to the new series on The Sojo Show podcast! Have fun!

Episode Sponsored by: Sojo Academy - an ongoing membership for Christian women that provides a practical, streamlined, spiritual growth plan for every woman.


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Also, If you have a question for us, it could be super silly, it can be a little bit deeper. It doesn’t matter, email us at hello@sojoacademy.com... you may just hear the answer on an upcoming podcast episode!