Give Grace Podcast

By Megan Smalley and Koral Dean: Scarlet & Gold

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Category: Religion & Spirituality

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Description

OVERCOME THE BATTLES OF LIFE AND FIND JOY IN THE MIDST OF SUFFERING. When it comes to the hardest seasons of life, many people feel isolated and forced to walk the road alone. The Give Grace Podcast is a tool that we hope equips you to share your story, create community and find joy and contentment. As we share stories of grief, loss, hardships and struggles, we hope you feel just a little bit less alone.

Episode Date
Relationships + Community | Combatting Lies with Truth
59:06

This episode is part of our Give Grace Study. This week we are combating the lies of Satan about relationships and community. You see, we weren’t called to do this life alone. But in times of struggle, the enemy loves to make us feel isolated. We hope this message challenges you to get outside your comfort zone and do life with people.

Jun 13, 2018
Joy + Contentment | Combatting Lies with Truth
28:33

This episode is part of our Give Grace Study and we are sharing all about how to find joy and contentment in the midst of struggles and combating the lies we often believe. We hope this message encourages you to choose joy every single morning.

Jun 07, 2018
Even If + Hope | Combatting Lies with Truth
37:38

This week is part of our Give Grace Study and we are talking about Even if God’s answer is no and hope, sharing times in our lives that we have experienced these things and combating the lies that we so easily believe with God’s Truth. We hope this message challenges you to have an eternal perspective on suffering and encourages you to find hope in Jesus.

May 30, 2018
God's Promises + Grace | Combatting Lies with Truth
42:17

This episode is part of our Give Grace Study and we are talking about God’s promises and grace, how we stand on them, what the Bible says about these topics and combating the lies that we so easily believe with God’s Truth. We hope this message challenges you to believe what the Bible says and to extend grace to yourself and those around you.

May 22, 2018
Shame + Identity | Combatting Lies with Truth
34:56

This week is part of our Give Grace Study and we are talking about the feelings of shame and where we place our identity, sharing struggles that we have experienced and combating the lies that we so easily believe with God’s Truth. We hope this message encourages you to find your identity in Jesus alone.

May 14, 2018
Waiting on God + Grief | Combatting Lies with Truth
37:16

This week is a special episode that is part of our Give Grace Study. We are talking about waiting on God and grief, sharing times in our lives that we have experienced these things and combating the lies that we so easily believe with God’s Truth. We hope this message encourages you to put on the armor of God and learn to stand in times of uncertainty.

May 08, 2018
The Consequences of Sin (ft. Blakely Stephenson) | Ep 19
47:23

I met my friend Blakely Stephenson when we were freshman at Auburn and in the same sorority, but Blakely didn’t have the usual college experience. When she became pregnant and got married at the age of 19, she was forced to grow up fast.

This sudden change of lifestyle brought along feelings of shame and guilt. She showed the physical changes of a growing belly when she walked around campus, but she hid the emotional pain of feeling like she had let both her parents and the Lord down, even when her parents were quick to support her. Through it all, both Blakely and her husband accepted their sin and watched as God used his mercy and grace to transform it into the beautiful gift of a baby boy. 11 years later, Blakely and her husband have continued to battle side by side through every trial and continue to seek him out in ways that follow their new mantra - living by conviction and not by convenience.

Through this episode, we learn how to acknowledge our mistakes and turn to God for healing and guidance, no matter how small we think the situation is. Blakley also shares how important it is to seek support and love from the community God places around us and lastly, how to heal our own “heart conditions”.

Jan 02, 2018
The Effects of Shame and Depression (ft. Lauren Walton) | Ep 18
47:05
Lauren and I got to know each other in college through my brother and I have always been so drawn to her authentic heart. When she reached out to share her story on the podcast, I knew there would be so many out there that would be encouraged by her words.
 
After losing her mom and then a tough break up shortly after, Lauren began to question her faith and start down a dark path. Growing up in the church, she felt like she was supposed to have it all together so she stuffed her feelings deep down inside so no one would know. The isolation led to more darkness and an identity as "the sad girl" that had come to accept. Once she decided to let people in and allow community to carry her through, true healing began.
 
Lauren shares practical tips for walking through darkness and speaks so much encouragement to anyone walking through a hard season. She challenges us to let go of the expectation to have it all together and just be real with God and the people around you.
Dec 25, 2017
Secondary Infertility (ft. Erin Tuohy) | Ep 17
52:44

There is a side to infertility that doesn’t quite get the same recognition or sympathy as most situations do. One person who can understand this firsthand is my good friend Erin Tuohy. Erin and her husband gave birth to a beautiful, healthy baby boy and already were planning to follow with many more babies in the few years after. Her dreams of her young family were put on hold when she suffered several miscarriages after the birth of their first son. She went through surgery and periods of time when she was so hurt and angry with God she couldn’t understand why he would do something like this to her. Instead of just asking God the questions, she seeked his answers in scripture. She studied verses that taught her who God is and found hope in the fact that God answers prayers in ways that we don’t sometimes want to see. He answers each and every prayer we have in his own ways. Erin realized at this point she had two choices: to be happy and to trust God or to continue being angry and upset at the rest of the world. She chose the first, and has followed that path ever since.

Secondary infertility is often met with misunderstanding and the idea that “at least you were able to have one”. Like we mention frequently in this podcast, there is such a need for people to understand the right and wrong things to say to someone struggling with infertility. In this episode Erin and I break down the right and wrong ways to talk to a friend who’s hurting and also touch on the importance of being brave, sharing your story and letting your voice be heard.

Dec 18, 2017
Dealing with a Chronic Illness (ft. Haley Ryan) | Ep 16
45:58

One thing we often take for granted is our health. It’s easy to forget just how amazing it is to be healthy until we are faced with complications or scares. For me it was infertility and the status of my reproductive health. For my friend Haley Ryan, it was a long and exhausting battle with Lyme Disease. Haley and I were roommates in college, and the Haley I knew was extremely active and fit. She played sports, coached cheerleading, did crossfit, trained for half marathons and was just two years into her marriage when she received her life changing diagnosis. Over the next several years, she would visit 14 different specialists and undergo various surgeries to solve problems both she and her doctors didn’t know the cause of. While she was fighting the disease physically, it was also taking a toll on her mentally and spiritually as well. She slipped into depressive states and struggled with a loss of identity that came with the loss of her health. She didn’t know why God would let something like this happen to her and couldn’t seem to find the answers for any of her questions. In addition to her running list of doctors and specialist, her mom invited a prayer warrior into her life who changed everything. Once Haley learned to change her mindset and focus on her blessing instead of her burdens, she began coming closer and closer to God. She wasn’t ashamed to ask for prayers and didnt’ feel guilty that she wasn’t out living what she thought was her purpose. She put her faith in God and learned to lean on the people he had placed around her. Since then, she has come to find her identity in Him and his plans for her, whatever they may be.

Dec 11, 2017
What Not to Say to Someone Who Lost a Baby (ft. Ashlyn Montgomery) | Ep 15
23:57

In this episode, we dive into just how important it is to be mindful of the setting and the timing of approaching a friend who is grieving. We may want to cheer them up or maybe the first time we’re seeing them since a tragedy happens to be in the middle of Target. While we want to acknowledge our friend and what they’re going through, public places aren’t really the time.

The whole idea goes back to being gentle with those who struggle and being mindful of how they’re feeling. Pray for them and love them but remember that who they are, their beliefs and their experiences will shape how they see the world around them. If you yourself can’t see things through their eyes, connect them with those you know who can. If you know someone who has been through a similar struggle, a mentor or contact can give them the opportunity to know that others have been in their shoes before and have been able to come out on top.

Another great idea is to read up on what your friend is going through, whether it be infertility, loss or any other struggle. The act of taking the time to understand them shows so much love and is something they will truly appreciate. When you can better understand where there mind is at, you know how to speak and interact with them. In this podcast, we’ll discuss some of the insensitive yet common phrases we often hear. When you can figure out how to talk to and approach a friend who’s grieving, it gives them the strength and support that they so desperately need.

Dec 04, 2017
Supporting Someone After Losing a Baby (ft. Ashlyn Montgomery) | Ep 14
18:57

This episode is all about what to do when a friend is grieving. It can be hard to hear sad news or see a friend for the first time since a tragedy. Often, it can be hard to know what to do, what to say or how to handle the situation. We feel uncomfortable being moved to tears around these friends, but throughout this episode we discover that often, a genuine response can be the most powerful form of support.

If you can’t find the words to speak, write them. Sending a card to a friend gives them a tangible reminder that they aren’t alone in their struggle. The act of going above and beyond a quick text or email can be a really powerful thing.

Set up a meal train, collect financial donations, group gifts, offer to go along on therapy sessions or appointments. And if you don’t know, simply ask them, and ask them more than once. No one knows exactly how to navigate the process, and your friend may be going through a range of emotions on any given day, so their needs are always changing. Grief is a terrible burden to bear, but with a strong support system, healing will come.

Nov 28, 2017
Choosing Your Words Wisely (ft. Ashlyn Montgomery) | Ep 13
36:24

Grief is a powerful emotion that so many do not know how to navigate on either side. It’s difficult to know what to say or how to love a friend that is walking through something hard. Whether it’s infertility, loss, sickness or another struggle, we must be better. We have to figure out a way to not hide behind the awkwardness or the excuse that you don’t know what to say. We must roll up our sleeves and walk through the hard things with our friends. We must learn how to love them in the midst of the storm.

I am honored to share my longtime friend, Ashlyn Montgomery’s story of both infertility and full term stillbirth. Grab your tissues because this one is tough. There are so many moments when life can seem so unfair, but Ashlyn gives such great insight into walking this road with grace. She covers what grief is, what to say and what not to say to someone dealing with loss and the importance of acknowledging what someone is walking through.

My prayer for this three part series with Ashlyn is that we would all learn how to be better and really learn how to love people well. Life is hard. So let’s not walk these roads alone.

Nov 21, 2017
Special Holiday Edition (ft. Koral Dean) | Ep 12
01:03:15

My favorite co-host is sitting down with me to help answer all your questions. We are covering a wide variety of topics and hope that this episode allows you to get to know us just a little bit better. We hope you will listen in and be encouraged by our answers!

Holiday Collection

 

What does work look like now?

 

What does it take to make your company work?

 

How do you balance it all? (Work, being a mom and wife, fitness, spiritual growth, etc) 30 Encouragement Challenge

 

Working from home - how do you make it work?

 

What advice do you have for someone transitioning from single to married life? Personality Quiz

 

What advice do you have for new moms? Koral's Blog Post

 

What were your favorite holiday traditions growing up?

Nov 13, 2017
Standing In A Season of Trial (ft. Marian Jordan) | Ep 11
25:23

I am so excited to share this episode with y’all because it features one of my biggest influencers, my high school mentor and bible teacher, Miss Jordan. She has spent her life spreading a ministry of transformation by the grace of Jesus Christ. She started this with the Redeemed Girl ministry and has written 7 books. That’s a lot of powerful stuff, but there is one word that truly has shaped everything for her.

In this episode, Miss Jordan tells the incredible story of how she learned to “stand”. It was in a time of trial and uncertainty in her relationship that she learned to ignore the waves of “what ifs” and uncertainties and instead put her complete trust in the Lord.

No matter what your struggle is, whether it’s infertility, relationship struggles or spiritual warfare like her husband Justin encountered, it’s so important to remember that God can always do more than your eyes can see.

Her story is an amazing testament to the grace of the Holy Spirit that you HAVE to hear. It’s time to put feet to our faith and stand firm in the belief that the Lord has bigger plans for us than we ever could for ourselves.

Nov 06, 2017
How To Be a Friend (ft. Koral Dean) | Ep. 10
18:04

As a friend, it can be pretty tough trying to love someone through infertility and loss. Sometimes we don’t know the right things to say or really what to do at all. We know that the bible tells us to help our friends and take on their burdens as our own, but sometimes we just don’t know how.

So often we feel like we have to fix things or fill the void when things get uncomfortable. Throughout this episode, Koral and I hope to share our experiences loving on one another in a way that helps you feel confident to do the same in your friendships, especially when things get uncomfortable.

Often times the best thing to do is just listen and tell your friend you’re sorry they have to go through this. Meet them where they are, wrap your arms around them and let them feel their emotions. I know firsthand that it can feel so good to receive the validation that this season of life is unfair and scary. Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions and don’t pretend like nothing has happened. As friends, we all have to challenge each other to be better. So with this episode, we’re challenging you to go above and beyond for the people around you. Because if they need it now, you’re going eventually going to need it too.

Oct 23, 2017
Shedding an Eating Disorder (ft. Becca McCormack) | Ep. 09
35:15

I’ve often preached the words “Give Grace” and highlighted the fact that you never really know what someone else is going through. Whether they are your parents, your siblings, your best friend or your next door neighbor, we all fight battles that sometimes only ourselves and God are aware of. You’ve heard the depths of my story with infertility. Through this podcast series, we’ve listened to the struggles with addiction that my brother Russell went through and now, this episode offers an eye opening look into my sister Becca’s personal battle with an eating disorder.

What had started as an innocent goal to train for a half marathon and tryout for Baylor’s cheer squad spiraled into what she describes at “exercise bulimia”. Her unhealthy habits brought her all the way down to 90lbs and left her with a fear of her own future. Thanks to the outreach of family and friends, she was able to lean on her support system and find the strength in the Lord to overcome her battles. When it comes to truly helping someone both physically and prayerfully, she explains to us why it’s so important to understand where they are in their struggle and where they need to be.

I know firsthand the amazing healing that speaking out about your battles can have, and through my relationship with my sister, we were able to discover and establish an open and continuous conversation. My hope with this series and this episode is to create continuing conversations that don’t end when the podcast does. No matter what those around you are struggling with, don’t avoid talking things out or the asking the hard questions. Give them grace and understanding and prepare to walk the road together.

Oct 17, 2017
Caring for Someone’s Heart (ft. Krystalle Wheeler) | Ep. 08
39:39

In this podcast, we’re able to hear the amazing testimony of my new friend Krystalle Wheeler, the founder of Lullaby of Hope. After a miscarriage in 2012, Krystalle struggled with the idea of feeling like a statistic and fighting the emotions of guilt, blame and grief. When a second baby died at 21 weeks, Krystalle turned completely to the Lord and poured her emotions into him. At the time, Krystalle couldn’t find enough resources to support her during her grief.

Through Lullaby of Hope, she has provided these resources to women everywhere. Each item has been a tool she feels helped her and her team through their own struggles.

Like our own, this ministry has created so many friendships for Krystalle with the women she connects to. She is a beautiful example of how to love on others and take care of someone else’s heart. In this episode, Krystalle explains how to be present during a friend’s struggle with infertility or other hard times in life. Through her own experiences, she has painted a beautiful picture of grief not wasted. Through her walks with miscarriage, she has received the gift of empathy and the ability to be intentional in her interactions with friends and family. Her ministry is truly a gift that keeps on giving, and we hope you are able to find inspiration and direction in her words to intently care for someone else’s heart.

Oct 09, 2017
Waiting Well (ft. Katherine Strickland) | Ep. 07
54:33

I started my Give Grace journey thinking that if one person was able to relate to my story and feel just a little bit better, it would all be worth it. Through my decision to hit the 'share' button on my very first blog post, I have made countless connections to some pretty amazing people. Through social media, I connected with Katherine who was going through many of the same infertility struggles as I was.

By opening up and being honest in our struggles, Katherine and I have been able to learn so much from each other. She has introduced me to the idea of "Waiting Well" and learning to trust in the Lord's refining process. Through this episode, Katherine shares the importance of strengthening confidence in the idea that we don't have to be labeled with shame and unworthiness and a lowered sense of womanhood. Instead, we have the opportunity to band together and pour into a community of unbelievably strong women who have taught us to lean into god and trust in our marriages and our savior.

With infertility, it's common for people to assume that the issues lay with one side of the marriage and that the wife is carrying so much more of the burden. Katherine's husband Trey felt the calling to share his side of their journey as a couple and completely shattered that notion. In Katherine's own words, she beautifully explains the unity and teamwork that infertility creates and demands within a marriage.

By listening to Gods calling to share these stories, both Katherine and I feel that it has created an invaluable support community for us in our journeys. We hope you walk away from this episode feeling encouraged to share your own story and walk side by side with the people around you, because you never know what kind of relationship might be waiting for you just behind that 'share' button.

Oct 02, 2017
Practical Steps to Share Your Story (ft. Russell Dixon) | Ep. 06
18:59

This episode serves as a follow up to episode 5, where my brother Russell shared with us his personal story of overcoming addiction and finding hope in the lord. I so believe that sharing our stories is instrumental in our calling as Christians. It allows us to bridge the gap between ourselves and the people around us. It's how we make friends out of strangers and ultimately, believers out of non-believers.

While God has given us each these unique stories, he's given us opportunities to be lights for him in the world. Ministering to others by sharing our stories and allowing ourselves to be vulnerable is a big idea, but its made up of a lot of little steps that are taken through continuous, conscious efforts.

In this episode, Russell shares the practical steps of opening up to one another and sharing your experiences confidently. It's not always easy letting other people see the darkest parts of our lives, but as my brother explains, it's so, so worth it.

Sep 25, 2017
A Story of Addiction (ft. Russell Dixon) | Ep. 05
47:27

I’ve been blessed to be able to use Scarlet & Gold as a platform to share my personal story and struggles with infertility. Knowing that my words reach so many people who are fighting the same battle has helped me heal in so many ways. In this podcast, I chose to feature the story of someone very close to me who struggled with another battle that like infertility, hasn’t always been talked about.

My brother, Russell Dixon, amazes me in his ability to relate to and bring people to Christ through his personal story. Much like I so badly wanted to have a baby, Russell was captivated by a dream to play major league baseball. Through our own unique experiences, we both realized that being so consumed by that thing we want most stopped us from just being content or enjoying the season of life God wanted for us. When we allow ourselves to focus on just one aspect in our lives, we aren’t always aware of the changes taking place both in and around ourselves.

For Russell, that meant realizing the dependency his daily life had on drugs and alcohol. While his addiction took him to some dark places, it has been instrumental in his more recent calling to bring others to the light of God. If you’re feeling consumed by your own struggles, I encourage you to listen to my brother’s story and take his advice on changing your perspective, giving things up to God and finding a friend or community to confide in.

Sep 19, 2017
The Impact of Infertility (ft. Wynne Elder) | Ep. 04
01:01:37

One of the biggest struggles infertility can bring us is a helpless feeling of loneliness and shame. These emotions can make us feel so divided from the rest of the world - including the people we love most. It can drive a wedge between us and our husbands, our best friends, our family and the Lord. Through my own struggles, I know firsthand how important a strong marriage, a solid support system and an unwavering trust in the Lord can be in your pursuit of motherhood. Through this episode, I hope to give you the tools you need to strengthen and build these core relationships up during a time when it can be so hard to feel connected to anyone at all. I understand how discouraging it can be to see your friends and family experiencing fertility and childbirth when it’s something you want so badly for your own husband and yourself, but I'm here to offer hope.

While this feeling can admittedly cause us to lose friendships, it’s actually created some for me. I met my friend Wynne Elder, featured on this podcast, on Instagram where we shared our stories of infertility. Social media opened so many doors for me to learn the stories of beautiful women who were struggling all around the world with the same battle that I was. Suddenly, I was thrust into a community of women. While the “infertility club” isn’t a club I ever wanted to be a part of or would ever choose to be a part of, it’s helped me see the Lord’s plan for me in the darkness of all of it.

Sep 11, 2017
Singleness (ft. Chandler Mann) | Ep. 03
32:20

Today we have a guest very special to our hearts, Chandler Mann. Chandler will be talking about singleness, and hopefully once you get done listening to this, you won’t feel like the only person walking this road. Chandler has been single for 3 years now, and like so many of us, Chan always planned on getting out of college and getting married, but the Lord had other plans for her.

Chandler talks about finding contentment in her season of singleness. She realized that the culture we live in often contradicts the Lord’s truth, so she had to decide if she was going to listen to the culture of this world or the Lord’s plan for her life. Through making the decision to listen to the Lord’s plan she has found contentment and growth that she never would have experienced if she was already married, and she has realized what a gift her season of singleness has been.

Chan also covers all of the feelings that can go along with your season of singleness such as comparison, sadness, feeling left out, etc. She says that Satan loves to feed off the victim mentality of why me, or why not me? But those feelings are not from the Lord, you are worthy and the Lord has you in your season of singleness because He loves you and has a perfect plan for you.

Chandler encourages us to not waste these seasons, whether it’s singleness or something else. Don’t waste the season you’re in, and she gives us great examples of how she has thrived in her 3 years of singleness in ways she never could have if she had been married, which once again proves that the Lord has you where he has you for a reason, and there is so much contentment to be found in living out His will for your life.  

We truly hope through this podcast you feel challenged to let the Lord work on your heart and that you find contentment in whatever season you are in. We hope you leave this podcast feeling encouraged in knowing that the Lord is absolutely enough!

We can’t thank you enough for joining us, and always remember to Give Grace!

Sep 05, 2017
Every Story Matters | Ep. 02
31:24

We wanted to use this podcast to give a voice to an issue that a lot of us struggle with in silence. Everyday, we flood our minds with images of our friends and family doing happy things, making cool memories and living lives we feel we can’t keep up with. If there’s one thing we want you to know, it’s that comparison is absolutely the thief of joy.

When we feel we aren’t measuring up to the lives of everyone around us, we feel inferior and excluded from the “norm”. Through our infertility struggles, Koral and I have felt this in so many ways. We felt betrayed by our bodies and ashamed in our own skin, in our own lives and we felt so alone. As women, we know that women walk through many difficult seasons in life, yet we always forget that everyone is struggling right alongside us, just with a different battle. In this podcast, we call you to have empathy for one another and to be present and real with each other even when it’s uncomfortable. Most importantly, we need to give validity to everyone’s story. God gives us all our own unique stories, with different ups and downs than anyone else. So to beat ourselves up or compare our story to anyone else’s is so, so wrong. Everything you’re going through and have gone through is for a reason. We hope that this podcast encourages you to keep marching on and to do so hand in hand with the woman struggling beside you, with grace, respect and empathy.

Aug 31, 2017
The Ugly Truth About IVF (Megan’s Story) | Ep. 01
01:01:41

We are thrilled to have you joining us for our first official podcast! This is something that the Lord has put on our hearts, and we are so excited to be able to share in this journey with you. We truly hope to shed light on stories of heartache and suffering, so that you do not feel alone. Our hope is that you will leave this podcast feeling so encouraged! In this podcast, I am sharing my story! You will hear me talking about marriage and our struggle with infertility. I’m sharing all about how I learned to be content through the suffering and season of waiting. I will be walking you through all the twists and turns of our crazy past five and half years. I will be telling you about my husband and myself, our marriage, when we decided to start trying to have children, all the ups and downs that went along with our IVF treatments, our Give Grace campaign and the heart behind it, and finally, sharing with you about how after all of the suffering, we are having little twin miracle boys. God is SO GOOD. I will also be sharing all about God’s goodness that he reveals to us during struggles and hard times. He is able and he is faithful in your journey.  If you are in any kind of a valley, I truly encourage you to really lean on the Lord and lay whatever it is that you want at the foot of the cross. I will be talking about how doing that is truly what helped lead me to such contentment. We really hope and pray that this podcast and these upcoming podcasts will make you  feel less alone. We pray that you will have a renewed sense of joy by leaning on the Lord. God loves you infinitely more than you can possibly imagine, how incredible is that?  

Aug 28, 2017
Give Grace Teaser | Ep. 00
16:11

Hey everyone!! Thank you so much for joining us, we are thrilled to have you! During
these next 16 minutes we're going to tell you a little bit about our backgrounds, our time with
Scarlet & Gold, and how that has led us to this GiveGrace Podcast! We will be sharing what our
vision for this podcast looks like, and we are so excited for what God is going to do through this
ministry. In a nutshell, we want to really and truly love on women walking through the valley's of
life, whether that's infertility or something else such as eating disorders, addiction, depression,
loss, waiting, marriage, singleness, etc. We pray that God will speak through our words to give
you the tools to not only survive the valley's, but to thrive in them. If you have a topic in mind
that you do not see on the podcast schedule, please let us know by messaging us on
Instagram, @scarletandgoldshop with your topic suggestion and we'll do our best to cover that!

We are truly so excited you are joining us on this GiveGrace journey, and we can't wait
to pour into people's lives through a ministry we are so passionate about.

Thank you once again for joining us and remember to always Give Grace!

Aug 15, 2017