HerStory: Meet Josie


I found out about Josie through a meeting with my friend Allison, who is doing ministry with college students through the Christian organization CRU this fall.   It was a blessing to hear her heart, her stories, and that she had raised a lot of her own support already. At one point she mentioned she was hopeful that God would provide for her team member, Josie, to join alongside her in ministry, as she was not quite where she needed to be in raising her own support yet.

As I thought about our conversation the rest of the day, God put Josie on my heart several times. I’m convinced more all the time that God has the ability to and does orchestrate many seemingly minute details in our lives- conversations, friendships, etc to bring about His work and glory. So I knew that Allison’s mention of Josie was God’s doing and that He put it on my heart to want to encourage her in her ministry. Since I already use this blog to share people’s stories through the HerStory feature, I thought that my readers might enjoy hearing hers and join me by becoming an encouragement to Josie– however God may put on your hearts.

HerStory in Josie’s Words:

My story in a few sentences: I grew up in the small town of Hartland, Michigan, (30 miles north of Ann Arbor, MI) with loving parents who gave me everything I needed and more. I grew up focused on competitive dance, my friends, and making my parents proud before I went off to college at the University of Michigan. There, by God’s grace, my focus shifted to Him. I just graduated with a degree in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. I am excited to spend the next year working with a ministry called Cru to reach U of M students with the love of Jesus.

Three words that describe me: caring, steadfast, kind-hearted.

How I came to know Jesus: I bought into the idea of Jesus as our loving Savior when I was nine years old, but that did not change how I lived at that time and my relationship with him was distant until much later. In college, (kind of) on my own for the first time, I began to become aware of my sin and the destruction it caused in my life. For the first time I also got to know people whose relationship with God was the most important thing in their life, and I knew that they had something that I wanted. I began to realize I had no hope of being free from my sin or close to God without the grace and power of Jesus, and so by the end of my freshman year I was ready to say “I’m yours” and I have been getting to know Him more and more ever since!

What excites me about CRU: I really believe that our greatest need is to know Jesus and be reconciled to God through him, so I love that Cru is all about introducing people to him and teaching people how to share their faith.

Why I feel called to college ministry: God changed my life in college. That’s when he chose to bring me from darkness into His light, and so, at least for now, I think it makes sense for me to use my time and my story to be part of what God might want to do in the lives of other college students.

The most challenging thing in my life right now: being motivated to do my best and work as hard as I can while also fighting to believe that God is totally in control and learning to rely on him instead of myself. That is hard for me to wrap my mind around.

Musical influences: I like a lot of different music, but lately I’m really loving All Sons and Daughters.

Favorite books: I have a really hard time picking favorites, especially with books, but recently I’ve loved The Path of Loneliness by Elisabeth Elliot and The Jesus Storybook Bible (almost every story makes me tear up). And I truly do love the Bible, increasingly so every time I read it.

What my faith means in my life: that there is hope.

I can’t live without my: phone. (Not proud of that, but it’s true. I have so many helpful apps that help me keep track of everything.)

Things I’m currently working on: making and sticking to a budget and developing a lifestyle of prayer.

If I could have a free weekend and an unlimited budget, I’d: probably want to relax with some people I love, read, and catch up on sleep. To take advantage of the unlimited budget part, I’d love to do this in a beautiful, comfortable, new place.

My health philosophy: is under development. It’s starting to hit me that my health is a gift to be valued, and that I can glorify God by taking care of my body. I never used to think like that – I thought health was just a hobby or a means to looking good. But I’m starting to want to figure out what it looks like for me to work out and eat well with the goal of being able to live and love the people in my life best.

My friends think I’m: loving, others-centered, loyal (I just asked real live friends to answer that for me). Also, once people get to know me they usually think I’m funny. I loved hearing this from one particular friend when we started getting close: “You’re funny, but only when you’re not trying to be.”

Favorite social activity: probably getting coffee with a friend. I know that’s a pretty low-key “activity”, but I love chances to catch up and connect deeply with my friends.

Hobbies: reading, watching movies, spending time with friends. I wish yoga was one of my hobbies and am thankful when I have time for it.

My theme song: Be Thou My Vision.

I’m inspired by: mothers. I have no idea how you do it. I can barely even handle/cannot handle taking care of myself, much less another person too.

You’d never know that I: like to try really hard to sing really well – which always end up being very loud – when I’m driving by myself. The poor car.

Favorite Bible verse: Like I said before, favorites are hard for me, but one verse that always gives me hope and draws me closer to Christ is 2 Corinthians 12:9: “But he said to me: ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

How others can come alongside my ministry: right now I am in need of prayer and financial partners. I’ll be sending out ministry updates throughout the school year to my prayer partners. I know that I cannot handle this ministry on my own and am so grateful for every prayer. Financial partners are people who feel led to participate in what God is doing at U of M by giving monthly or one-time gifts to support my ministry.

Contact Josie at: josie.limburg@cru.org

Link To Financially Support Josie