Manitoba artist, Danielle Savard, uses her calling to sing and write songs to heal those who are hurting.
"Music has always been a very important part of my life," says Savard. "Music has pretty much been in my life since I was five."
Savard grew up playing the flute, writing songs, and singing but decided to take her calling seriously while in university.
Savard says, "Once I hit university, I felt really called to start singing professionally. I now have my music therapy degree and I've been working as a music therapist."
The Canadian Mennonite University graduate sees her job in music therapy as, "A ministry within a career.
"As a music therapist, I have seen the healing power that music can have. And I personally think that when you combine music and your faith, the possibilities are endless and it can be really powerful in encouraging people in their own faith journey."
Savard primarily works with seniors who struggle with dementia and Alzheimer's: "I have a lot of clients who have actually lost their speech from a stroke, so you're actually able to acquire some communication post-stroke through singing and speech."
Songwriting alongside her faith
For Savard, who has been writing songs since her early teens, songwriting is more than just lyrics and a melody: "Songwriting is very important to me, and it really is an overflow of my prayer life.
"So songwriting has really been my means of praying, connecting to God, and sharing those songs with other people to encourage them on their faith journey."
Savard's latest single, Still You're Deeper, was born from a time of difficulty and sorrow.
"I wrote that song when I was going through a very difficult time. When you're going through a hard time, you really start to ask questions like: 'God, are you really here? Are you really going to help me get through this? I don't know if I can make it on my own.' And, you know, you start turning to him in a new way," she says.
"That song really is a milestone for me because I really discovered that even if you've hit rock bottom, God is deeper than that. There is no pit so deep that His love cannot reach into and pull you out of. It's really a song of affirmation and of hope that regardless of the depth of suffering you're going through, He can triumph through it and He will pull you out of it with His grace."
Savard hopes that this song, and all of her music, reaches the listener's heart and encourages them in their own journey: "It really is my hope that is will encourage people to not give up.
"I think, it's a really important reminder to know that His hand is underneath your suffering, underneath your sorrow, underneath your hardships. There is nothing too heavy that He cannot hold and He really does sustain you through that."