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Walking Through Samaria with Toni Collier

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"We thought church was a place for saints where we had to stay inside of the four walls and protect ourselves from the heathens out there. What I love so much is that this is a space with equal dwelling."

Meet Toni Collier. Longtime followers of this podcast have met her husband, Sam, on a previous episode, but his better half stands as a force in her own right — a speaker, host, consultant and the founder of Broken Crayons Still Color, an international ministry that helps women process through brokenness and find hope.

That ministry gave Toni the foundation to co-author Overcomer: Defeating Anxiety and Abuse, an iDisciple Publishing book that, in devotional form, helps women navigate hard plights to find holy heights.

She and Sam, the senior pastor at Hillsong Atlanta, lead a congregation that shares a Midtown building with one of the city’s well-known nightclubs. Party spot by Saturday p.m., sanctuary by Sunday a.m. — with a disco ball hanging near the pulpit — the place illustrates the inclusive message that Toni hopes will permeate the church they’ve planted.

“We thought church was a place for saints where we had to stay inside of the four walls and protect ourselves from the heathens out there,” she says. “What I love so much is that this is a space with equal dwelling, where 12 hours ago it served a different purpose, with a different group of people, and we are no different — we’re all crazy, ratchet sinners, living our best and most glorious life, doing our best to point ourselves back to Jesus and live a life of sanctification. It just makes us feel more normal, which is what we should be.”

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