Don't Mom Alone Podcast

By Heather MacFadyen

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Description

Heather MacFadyen, mother of four boys, connects you the listener with people and resources to help you feel less alone. Consider it an invitation to "withness".

Episode Date
Life Empowered by the Holy Spirit :: Max Lucado [Ep 381]
53:36

What does it mean to have the Holy Spirit? To encounter or experience the Holy Spirit? How does he speak to us? Does he speak to us? 

Western cultures tend to operate under the assumption that if we can’t explain it, it isn’t real. My guest this week gives us hope beyond what we can understand. Author and pastor Max Lucado encourages us that God wants to guide us and speak to us and reminds us that the Holy Spirit was given to us as believers to guarantee our arrival one day in heaven. He shares some of his own experience and what it’s like to hear from God by the power of the Holy Spirit. If you are looking for empowerment in motherhood and strength for difficult days and decisions, Max Lucado is encouraging you to “open yourself to the possibility that the greatest power in the universe is alive and well accessible to you wherever you are.”

Connect with Max Lucado: 

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Oct 03, 2022
Ages & Stages Series--The Tween Years :: Charissa Lopez [Ep 380]
50:47

How do you feel when you are in between stages of life? Excited? Nervous? Afraid? 

Tweens - those kids in between childhood and adolescence - are capable, growing into their own thoughts and ideas and preferences, but not quite as opinionated as teenagers.  In this “in between” there is plenty of room for curiosity and character development if we will stay connected to and interested in our kids. 

My guest this week is Charissa Lopez (she’s gotten married since she was last on the show as Charissa Fry), a therapist and parent coach, and she encourages us that healthy attachment can lead to healthy individuation (that process of our kids distinguishing themselves from us).  She helps us see that for the entire time we are in relationship with our kids they need comfort and encouragement and connection with us. Though we still have authority over our kids we, as parents, are transitioning out of such a hands-on role in their lives and Charissa helps us think through puberty and friend groups, and our tweens’ spiritual growth. 

Connect with Charissa Lopez: 

Links Mentioned*:  

**For resources mentioned below, parents should read the book first. Don’t feel like you have to read every word to your child. Just use the parts that work for your family and skip the rest. Or discuss why some people believe differently than you.*

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Sep 26, 2022
Navigating Middle Motherhood :: Kara Trochta [Ep 379]
50:33

What do we do with ourselves when our kids need less of our minute to minute attention? How do we fill the space given to us when kids go to preschool or elementary school?  If we aren’t intentional as we step into this next phase of motherhood it can become a place of confusion or lost identity. As we focus on different Ages & Stages of our children’s development during this series we are taking an aside this week to parent ourselves if you will. 

My guest this week, Kara Trochta, has a special place in her heart for the moms in the middle - whose children aren’t all launched into adulthood but who aren’t asking for their juice boxes to be opened 1675 times a day anymore. Through her own journey of soul searching and learning to dream again she has created a program to walk moms through this process of realigning who you are and where you are headed.  

Connect with Kara Trochta: 

Links Mentioned:  

  •  Book Your Free Middle Motherhood™️ Life Audit Session to get clarity and create purpose and passion in this next season of motherhood. www.karatrochta.com/session
  • Grab your Free Guide: 5 Steps to Writing Your Next Chapter in Motherhood www.karatrochta.com/free 

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Sep 19, 2022
Ages and Stages Series-- The Elementary Years :: Dr. Meg Meeker [Ep 378]
51:12

What is your favorite elementary school memory? A teacher you loved? Playing on a favorite team? Parenting elementary school kids can sometimes feel like a breath of fresh air - kids are more capable, they can get their own snacks, help out around the house, and more. But in every stage of childhood our kids are developing and it’s important we give them the tools to do so.  

My guest this week is pediatrician, author, speaker, and mom, Dr. Meg Meeker. For over thirty years she has been helping kids and their parents navigate childhood. In this episode she encourages us to let our elementary kids slow down and grow self-esteem and empathy by being and doing with us. We cover a range of topics from identity formation to sensory issues to extra curricular activities. 

Connect with [Dr. Meg Meeker]: 

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Sep 12, 2022
Ages and Stages Series — Infants/Toddlers :: Rachel Norman [Ep 377]
51:25

It’s cliché until you have to live it - the grocery store crying infant or toddler tantrum. The hushed pleas or commands from embarrassed parents. The silent judgment of others.

Crying or whining are often attempts at communication, but they cause a stress response in moms and it can feel easier to just hush the child than keep a boundary. From there it’s a quick hop, skip, and a jump to all the mom-guilt we can throw on our shoulders. No, we can’t keep your toddler from throwing inane tantrums or make your infant suddenly articulate, but we know someone who can help you approach these situations from a different perspective. 

As a licensed Language of Listening parent coach, certified sleep consultant, and mom to 5 kids, Rachel Norman has experienced a lot of infant and toddler behavior. In this episode she teaches us how to validate our children’s feelings while holding our boundaries. Rachel helps us understand why managing and understanding our own stress response to whining and crying can be a valuable tool as we help our children learn to regulate their own emotions. 

Connect with Rachel Norman: 

Links Mentioned:  

**Please note, this is a pre-order link. The book releases October 11, 2022.**

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Sep 05, 2022
Reading Aloud to Overcome Mom Fear :: Jennifer Pepito [Ep 376]
48:42

What fear pops up in your parenting again and again? Maybe it’s, “how do I teach my kids that they can do hard things in a loving way?” or, “what if my kids make bad decisions?” or “what if I’m a bad mom?”

These fears can feel overwhelming and that the answers to them are complicated.  My guest this week gives us an unexpected ally in overcoming the fears that grip us as moms - reading aloud. It sounds almost too simple, but author and mom of 7, Jennifer Pepito, shows us that the stories we share with our kids can help them navigate some of the tougher experiences with life. By exposing our kids to character building stories we can infuse them with perspective and thoughtfulness as they face life’s difficult situations. She also encourages us that forgiveness can be an avenue to freedom from fear in our lives and specifically our parenting. 

TRIGGER WARNING: This episode briefly mentions suicide. If you or anyone you know are struggling with suicidal thoughts please reach out to someone you trust. You can call or text 988 anytime of day or night. 

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Aug 29, 2022
Doubt, Questions & Your Teen’s Growing Faith :: Mary Jo Sharp [Ep 375]
46:32

Doubt is a normal part of a growing faith. When the big questions come, you can navigate them with confidence. 

Is it worth it to go to church? If God is loving, why would he allow bad stuff in the world? Did God really create me the way I am on purpose?

Questions and exploration are rites of passage for the teenage years as each of us grapples (in varying degrees) to figure out who we are and where we want to go in life. With a near endless supply of voices, ideas, and influences from the internet and culture at large it can feel like our kids are in danger of being lost in a sea of information we have no control over. 

But all is not lost! My guest this week, apologist and writer Mary Jo Sharp, encourages us to walk with our kids into the tunnel of doubt. She reminds us that contrary to what we might think, we really are still the biggest influencers on our child’s religious views and that the culture we create in our homes around self transformation and questioning can help our kids make their faith their own. By giving them a safe space to ask and discuss the big questions of life we will likely give ourselves a seat at their decision-making table. 

Mary and her team create resources for parents and teens as they walk through doubt and faith finding at DarkroomFaith.com

Connect with Mary Jo Sharp: 

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Aug 22, 2022
Building Strong Marriages :: Kimberly Beam Holmes [Ep 374]
49:47

Marriage is like riding a bike with no training wheels - you have to keep pedaling to stay up. There’s no easy downhill, no coasting. It’s worth it, but it’s work. Add a kid or a few in there with work and bills and activities and it’s easy for us to stop the pedaling of intentionality that builds a strong marriage. 

My guest this week is Kimberly Beam Holmes and without God’s intervention and her parents’ commitment to do the hard work of repairing their broken marriage she wouldn’t be alive! Now she is committed to helping couples build strong relationships through the organization her father started, Marriage Helper. They are passionate about situations that feel hopeless and she encourages us that while growing a healthy marriage isn’t simplistic, there are simple places for us to start. 

Connect with Kimberly Beam Holmes: 

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Aug 15, 2022
Behind the Mic :: Heather [Ep 373]
24:31

If you’re new here or even if you’ve been around a while, join us this week as I give you a glimpse into who I am, how Don’t Mom Alone came about, and where we’re headed as a show. We’ll talk through a listener story and some of my own healing journey I’ve walked through this summer. My hope is you’ll accept the invitation to “withness”. And, that you’ll join our team to help other moms not go it alone. 

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Aug 08, 2022
Raising Discerning Viewers :: Heather [Ep 372]
31:25

Media is all around us - movies, music, tv, online videos, reels, TikToks, and more. And, there are as many parenting strategies around media as there are types of media. How do we safeguard our kids around media in today’s culture?

Spoiler Alert: We aren’t going to talk about what to watch per se, but rather how to watch. 

In this episode I’ll talk about what it could look like for us to raise not just haphazard watchers but discerning media consumers. Of course, we should exercise wisdom with what our kids watch and listen to, but also, as moms we’re in the business of teaching men to fish. 

Let’s teach our kids to become discerning viewers. I’ll give you some handlebars to foster discussions about movies or TV with your kids and to get them thinking about what they’re watching too. “We want our children to know the one good story so well that when they see Luke Skywalker, Harry Potter, Frodo, Anne of Green Gables, Ariel, and Sleeping Beauty they can recognize the strands of truth and deception in them.” (Karalee Reinke, in Ep 27). 

“O Discerning Spirit, 

Who alone judges all things rightly, 

Now be present in my mind and active

In my imagination as I prepare to engage 

With the claims and questions of diverse cultures

Incarnated in the stories that people tell.” 

A Liturgy Before Consuming Media, Every Moment Holy by Douglas McKelvey

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Aug 01, 2022
Rebranded: Stepping Into a New Season :: Christy Wright [SOM Wk 6]
48:33

What would it take for you to walk away from the most abundant time in your career? From a time that was not only full, but fun, rewarding, and productive? 

My guest this week, Christy Wright did just that - walked away from a season of immense abundance in her career, not because of difficult situations but simply because God called her out of it. She says this call was so clear she came to a point where she feared disobedience more than the uncertainty of leaving her career. She followed God into a new season of freedom and work. It's like God called Christy in for a meeting to talk about rebranding - not to change who He had created her to be, but to change her everyday look and her assignments. 

We've spent our summer talking through our unique "mom brands" and in our final week of Summer of Mentorship we're hitting on something that will happen to each of us as moms at one point or many - the need to rebrand. To leave behind what worked and was right for that specific time to embrace what God is saying is right for now. Ecclesiastes reminds us there is rhythm and seasons to life and we will walk through transitions in our work and home life. Christy encourages us to courageously cling to God's voice in those times and not let the fear of uncertainty keep us from the rebranding God is walking us through.. 

 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you from the episode? 
  • What current roles help shape your days? 
  • Are you ok with you when you take away what you do? Or, how easily can you separate out who you are from what you do? 
  • Have you gone through a “rebranding” as a mom? Either because of change in circumstance or because your routines weren’t serving you, or for another reason. What was difficult about that time? What was beneficial in that transition?
  • Spend the last 10 minutes of your group time in silence praying and listening and ask God, “Is there anything I need to be freed from?”

Connect with Christy Wright: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jul 25, 2022
Move from Comparison to Compassion :: Karen Ehman [SofM Wk 5]
43:13

Does your life look exactly like you want it to? All too often we come across what seems like the life that we want on someone else’s Instagram. You can dismiss those as the “highlight reels”, that is what they are, but sometimes the girl next door has what you want. What do you do then? How do you prep your kids for when they don’t get invited or when they feel like someone else has it better than them? 

My guest this week, Karen Ehman, says, “Go find your old self.” 

She’s not leading us on an existential journey into the past, but to those around us that need the love of Christ. She encourages us in a powerful way that when we are discouraged by someone who has it “better” than us to find someone who has it “worse” than us, not so we can feel good about something, but because there is a person who needs the love of Christ. 

We’re taking time this summer (as usual) to be mentored by some experienced moms and benefit from their wisdom. I’m asking them about their “mom brands” and the unique families and assignments God has given them to help us embrace the specific and unique spot God has given each of us. 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you in this episode? Why? 
  • Who is your “old self”? What was a particularly difficult time God brought you through that you could use as a connection point to love someone else? 
  • When have you felt loved or seen by someone else in the midst of a difficult situation? 
  • Thinking about Karen’s mom and how hard she has to work as a single mom, where in your life are you having to work hard? Which of your God-given assignments is either physically, or mentally, or spiritually challenging? Spend some time praying for these situations with your group. 
  • When you think about loving others by inviting them into your life what limitations come to mind? 
  • Who is a necessary person you can love tangibly this month? Brainstorm ideas with your group about simple ways to show Christ’s love.

Connect with Karen Ehman: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jul 18, 2022
Creating Family Culture :: Amber O’Neal Johnston [SOM Wk 4]
47:18

Creating Family Culture :: Amber O’Neal Johnston [SOM Wk 4]

You are creating a culture for your family, right now, whether or not you’re aware of it or intentional in it. Your words and actions reveal the functional values you have for your family. Is yours a culture of fun and laughter? Grace and second chances? Integrity and grit? It could be all of those and more, or something simpler - it is unique to your family! Whatever it is, if it isn’t intentionally cultivated it will be like a garden filled with weeds - growing, but haphazard.

My guest this week is Amber O’Neal Johnston and one of the values that drives her family’s culture is that her kids would know they are seen and valued at home and in the world. And that other people are just as valuable too.  This, along with other values, drives the decisions they make about how they interact with the world around them, right down to the restaurants they eat at.  She challenges us to not only cultivate a family culture, but to grow as moms and people along the way. Her book, A Place to Belong: Celebrating Diversity and Kinship in the Home and Beyond is available now.

We’re taking time this summer (as usual) to be mentored by some experienced moms and benefit from their wisdom. I’m asking them about their “mom brands” and the unique families and assignments God has given them to help us embrace the specific and unique spot God has given each of us. 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you from this episode? 
  • What practices or resources have you used to expose your kids to other cultures? 
  • Where has God called you to speak out in love when you’d prefer to remain silent? Spend time praying with your group for these circumstances.
  • What is one value that you want to emphasize in your home? 
  • Amber shared that she had to release her need to impress other moms in order for her kids to flourish - what expectation or ideal do you need to let go of so that your kids can flourish?
  • How would being secure and confident in your family culture change your relationships with other moms or families? 

Connect with Amber Johnston: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jul 11, 2022
Focused Living :: Shontell Brewer [SOM Wk 3]
49:23

“I don't have time for the things that God has not called me to.”

My guest this week, Shontell Brewer, wisely speaks those words. She is a wife and mom of 5. She’s written a book on parenting and still things haven’t always gone the way she’s planned or wanted. But she has learned where to lean in and wait on the Lord. She’s learned that to be intentional as a mom or wife or teacher she’s got to cut out the “keeping up” with others, whether on social media or the mom down the street. And she’s learned that God hasn’t finished writing the story. Even if she can’t see to the end of all God’s workings in her kid’s lives, knowing His word and taking time to commune with Him have given her a firm foundation to stand on. 

We’re taking time this summer (as usual) to be mentored by some experienced moms and benefit from their wisdom. I’m asking them about their “mom brands” and the unique families and assignments God has given them to help us embrace the specific and unique spot God has given each of us. 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you from the episode?
  • Shontell encourages us to get on the same level as the person across from us to grow intentionality in our relationships - be it a spouse or child or friend. What relationship in your life needs this sort of attention? How can you meet that person right where they are? 
  • How has God gifted you? Do you know? 
  • Have you thought through what you want for your children, or what the goal of your parenting is? Keeping the tiny humans alive is big work, so no shame at all if you haven’t! If we’re working towards intentionality as moms, thinking through this question can help us cut activities or practices we don’t need and to make space for ones we do.  
  • How do you measure your success as a parent? 
  • What situation or circumstance would benefit from you processing with God before processing with a friend? Set aside time to do that this week. 

Connect with Shontell Brewer: 

 

Links Mentioned:  

 

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Jul 04, 2022
Life Giving Faith in Every Circumstance :: Lisa Appelo [Summer of Mentorship Wk 2]
41:52

Childhood should be carefree, right? We hope that our kids make it to adulthood with as few scars as possible, but that isn’t the nature of the world we live in. What happens when our kids encounter grief? What happens when we aren’t able to give them the childhood we wanted them to have? 

This week I talk with Lisa Appelo, widow and mom of seven, who found herself in that spot - grieving the life she wanted for herself and her children, and then having to navigate the shift in every relationship that comes through change or grief. What she has found in the last 11+ years has been the presence of God for her and her kids. The rhythm of their regular bible study was a lifeline and she offers us great encouragement of God’s nearness and direct involvement in our lives. Read more of their story in Lisa’s new book Life can be Good Again: Putting Your World Back Together After it All Falls Apart.

We’re taking time this summer (as usual) to be mentored by some experienced moms and benefit from their wisdom. I’m asking them about their “mom brands” and the unique families and assignments God has given them to help us embrace the specific and unique spot God has given each of us. 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you in the episode? 
  • What does family bible reading look like in your home? What is one change you could make to your routine to incorporate some kind of bible reading? Think small! Remember that Lisa says it’s a fight to make that space but totally worth it. 
  • Where can you give your kids the freedom to choose, allowing the Lord to work in them independent of your direct guidance? You can think small here too! 
  • Where might you need to step back in your child’s life to preserve your relationship with them?
  • What relationships have shifted because of loss or change, big or small?  Spend time praying with and for one another over these relationships and God’s good plan for them. (This could feel like an insurmountable question for someone in your group - approach it with empathy and care!)

 

Connect with Lisa Appelo: 

 

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Jun 27, 2022
Lasting Parent-Child Relationships :: Helen Smallbone [Summer of Mentorship Wk 1]
46:25

“Don’t care how, I want it now!” When we watch Veruca Salt sing those words in Willy Wonka we are immediately repulsed. And yet, lots of our time and energy is spent trying to unlock the secrets to a quick change of our circumstance.  This week, mom of seven Helen Smallbone, encourages us that following Christ and parenting alike are long games. Marathons, in fact. She has honesty and wisdom to offer as we strive to grow and maintain relationships with our kids that last into adulthood. She also encourages us with some practical ways to foster relationships between our kids, to get them working, and retain our own sanity. 

We’re taking time this summer (as usual) to be mentored by some experienced moms and benefit from their wisdom. This year I'm recording new interviews and I’m asking guests about their “mom brands”. They share their values, unique assignments God has given them and what helps their family flourish. The goal is to help you define your "mom brand" and the places God is assigning you. 

Discussion Questions:

  • What stood out to you from the episode? 
  • Do you take a “mum’s time out” during the day? Why or why not? What would change about your day if you did? 
  • How do you balance connection with your kids while maintaining the boundaries of a parent-child relationship?
  • How do you typically handle sibling conflict? Which of Helen’s tactics could you adapt to use in your own home? 
  • How do you maintain or reestablish connection with your child after an argument/difficult exchange?
  • What’s your favorite way to help kids get their energy out? If another mom shares one that might work at your house, write it down! 
  • Helen reminded us that motherhood is not for the faint of heart - what aspect of motherhood has got you feeling fainthearted? Spend some time praying for one another about those specific areas. 

Connect with Helen Smallbone: 

Links Mentioned:

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Jun 20, 2022
Villages of Hope and Help :: DeVon and Paulette Franklin [Ep 371]
38:26

Tragedy struck and Paulette Franklin could have given up hope. Instead, she used it as a chance to “bring together the village of hope and help” from her extended family, namely her aunts, who lived both near and far. They rallied around Paulette and her boys through presence and connection. Make no mistake, single parenting was still hard work, but by clinging to her faith in God and the village around her, she and her boys thrived. 

Though this bond with extended family was knitted together well before Paulette’s husband passed away, she had to let them in, she had to let them help. For Paulette’s middle son, DeVon, and his brothers, their aunts’ houses became places of refuge and connection that they still rely on to this day.  DeVon and his aunts tell their compelling and encouraging story in his audiobook, It Takes a Woman, available now on Audible. Through the audiobook all of our villages are enlarged, all of their wisdom can be ours.

Connect with DeVon and Paulette Franklin: 

 

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Jun 13, 2022
Gender and Sexuality :: Preston Sprinkle [Ep 370]
58:05
Over 20% of Gen Z identifies as LGBTQ+.  That’s roughly 1 in 4 of today’s teen and young adult populations. There is a lot of confusion around gender and sexuality in our Christian culture today - how do we love others well that have different belief systems and  different language around gender and sexuality? How do we parent our children in a way that honors our faith and what we believe to be true? What do we do with the Church’s reputation of hate towards LGBTQ people we inherited? 

With even the staunchest of liberals asking questions around the sharp rise in people identifying as LGBTQ our grace and truth filled responses are more important than ever. This week’s guest, Dr. Preston Sprinkle, is the co-founder and president of The Center for Faith, Gender, and Sexuality and has written several books guiding Christians through these areas including Embodied: Transgender Identities, the Church + What the Bible has to Say and People to be Loved

Connect with Preston Sprinkle: 

 

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Jun 06, 2022
Dwelling Differently :: Natalie Abbott [Ep 369]
43:01
“I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Psalm 119:11 is a very familiar verse, but do you take it as a life-giving exhortation or do you shove it into the mental closet of “shoulds”?  The rest of Psalm 119 tells us the person who loves God’s word enough to hide it in their heart finds peace, wisdom, delight, comfort, blessing, shameless life, reminders of the Lord’s nearness, and promises that will endure forever - just to name a few! 

So why don’t we memorize scripture? 

What if you had a system that was simple and beautiful and easy enough for the whole family to practice together? This week’s guest, Natalie Abbott, is a mom of five who knows firsthand of the wonderful things the rest of Psalm 119 promises the person who hides God’s word in their heart.  She and her sister, Vera, created Dwell Differently, a system of temporary tattoos and devotional cards all beautifully designed for simple memorization of and meditation on one verse a month. It gives individuals, families or friend groups a chance to sow one verse into every aspect of their lives and then reap the peace and wisdom that comes from nearness to God. 

Connect with Natalie Abbott: 

Links Mentioned:  

  • Dwell Differently. Visit www.dwelldifferently.com to get the first month free of a FAMILY membership ($12 value) use the code: DMA

 

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May 30, 2022
Raising Emotionally Strong Boys :: David Thomas [Ep 368]
01:03:57

Our sons are constantly receiving messages about how to handle their emotions - from us as moms and dads, or from other men in their lives and from our culture as well. All too often that message has been “Be strong, emotion other than anger only shows weakness” and this to their detriment. Anxiety and depression are rapidly on the rise and our boys are not immune. 

We need our boys to grow into men who are strong of character and a beautiful, if undervalued, aspect of that is helping them learn how to name and process their emotions. This can be difficult to do as a grown up - imagine how your child experiences this and the training they need! 

Counselor and author David Thomas works regularly with boys and their families to help them put his three R’s of emotional processing into practice - recognize, regulate, and repair. Listen as he walks us through the importance of these practices and how they can set our sons up for lifelong emotional health. His new book, Raising Emotionally Strong Boys: Tools You Son Can Build On for Life, and companion study guide for boys, Strong and Smart: A Boy’s Guide to Building Healthy Emotions release June 14th

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May 23, 2022
Winning Together as Co-laborers :: Heather [Ep 367]
38:23
Mommy Wars. They may have started out as “working mom” v. “stay at home mom” but it has morphed (or devolved) into something much bigger.

While, in the eyes of our culture, “you do you” might have freed us to make different choices than another mom, has it drawn us together and given us the support we need?

Parenting is so difficult and Ecclesiastes reminds us that toiling away alone is tantamount to trying to catch smoke. What we need instead are co-laborers. We need other moms to come alongside us, not because we agree on everything, but because we have a common goal - the flourishing of the next generation. 

We need to come alongside other moms because when we pit ourselves against one another due to differences in parenting styles, we cut off our nose to spite our collective face. Join Heather this week as she challenges us to look introspectively and grow in conflict resolution in light of Ecclesiastes 4. 

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May 16, 2022
God’s Hand Over Everything  :: Tori Hope Petersen [Ep 366]
47:11

God ordains the time and space we inhabit - sometimes that’s one home for decades, sometimes it’s 12 homes in 6 years and instant homelessness at age 18. It was the latter for Tori Petersen and for so many other children in the foster care system. Tori has accomplished a lot since then - 5 time State Champion in track and field, a book releasing August 30th, and even a Mrs. Universe 2022 title. But if you asked her how she got here, she would say it was because someone loved and served the “least of these.” (Matthew 25:40)

She was the least of these. She experienced extreme difficulty while in foster care, but looking back she sees God’s fatherly hand guiding her all along the way, loving her through the words and actions of her track coach, and now working through her and her husband to others as they model loving and serving the “least of these” for their own kids. Tori tells her compelling story in her new book, Fostered: One Woman’s Powerful Story of Finding Faith and Family Through Foster Care, which releases August 30, 2022. 

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May 09, 2022
The Lazy Genius Kitchen :: Kendra Adachi [Ep 365]
53:23

The kitchen. It can be a place of glorious delight or it can be a place of burnt despair. Whether it’s mostly delight or mostly disaster for you, it’s often a place of frustration. Everyone is hungry and needs something all the time or everyone is refusing to eat; there isn’t enough space or you feel like a pinball trying to get people what they need. 

Enter Kendra Adachi, aka The Lazy Genius. She’s here to help you be a genius at what matters and lazy about what doesn’t and she’s at it again, this time in the kitchen. She gives you permission, she helps you analyze and streamline, but most importantly she’s offering you a middle ground - the space between perfection and hot-mess, where you can love your people well with those important moments at the table but not be overwhelmed with how to get there. (Spoiler alert: we can apply these principles to the rest of our lives too!) 

Kendra is a wife, mom, and author. Her latest book, The Lazy Genius Kitchen: Have What You Need, Use What You Have, and Enjoy it Like Never Before releases May 3, 2022. 

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May 02, 2022
The Power of Pausing:: Kirsten Watson [Ep 364]
41:35

Pausing to not miss out on what God is teaching/leading. Pausing before we intervene on our kids’ behalf. 

Do you remember commercial breaks? They were built-in pauses, breaks from the drama or sitcom. With DVR’s or streaming services we can easily skip or minimize the pauses. But what if “pause” is what your everyday really needs? Not a week-long, pick your favorite vacation spot pause, but a quick moment to stop and say, “God, where are you leading? What are you saying?” or “Help me today because I don’t have what it takes to make it through the day.”  

Kirsten Watson is a busy woman - a wife, a mom to seven, an author and podcast host - but all those responsibilities only lead her to pause more. Whether it’s in the moments just after her alarm goes off, or in the middle of after-school stories, she challenges us to slow down and first ask God for the help we need, and then to see where he is at work. She encourages us to practice discernment for what is most helpful in our kids’ sanctification - either stepping in or stepping back. She invites us to tap into the power of the Holy Spirit available to us if we will only ask.

 Kirsten’s book, Sis, Take a Breath: Encouragement for the Woman Who’s Trying to Live and Love Well (but Secretly Just Wants to Take a Nap), releases May 3, 2022.  

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Apr 25, 2022
Gentle Christ-Centered Parenting :: David and Amanda Erickson [Ep 363]
54:49

“Peaceful” and “parenting” aren’t words we usually put together. Think about the parenting moments that stick out to you from the last week – was there anything peaceful about them? What if there could be? What would it change for you if parenting didn’t feel like moving from one fight to another? My guests this week, Dr David and Amanda Erickson of Flourishing Homes and Families, encourage us that it IS possible. Peace and grace can be meaningful parts of your parenting – not only for your kids, but for you. The gospel always brings freedom.

Gentle Christ-Centered Parenting will not only change the dynamic of your house, but it will set your kids up for success in the hardest parts of life – responding with grace when someone hurts them, learning to hold boundaries and communicate their needs in a way that still respects the dignity and honor of the person who hurts them or crosses those boundaries and how to collaboratively problem solve. Ultimately, there is no better place for them to see reliance on the Holy Spirit’s work in life than through us fighting against sin by his power in our own lives. David and Amanda have fostered children and are raising two biological kids. They too have had to work against the patterns of their own childhoods to transform their parenting. 

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Apr 18, 2022
Walking Through Seasons of Unbelonging :: Shauna Niequist [Ep 362]
47:25

We all walk through seasons of transition, whether we leave something behind by choice or it was chosen for us. Life after a disruptive event or during life transitions can feel like “starting over” just as much as a move clear across the country. You may be asking the question, “who am I here?” even in familiar places and routines. Author Shauna Niequist encourages us in what to hold on to and what to let go of, through seasons of loss. 

She equips us with three tools for the journey - curiosity, self-compassion, and courage. We discuss how prayer can tenderize an angry heart, and Shauna shares how hanging on to writing and hospitality, even when they felt like impossible disciplines, helped her journey forward through grief and change.

Shauna Niequist is a wife, mom, and author to numerous books including, Present Over Perfect, Cold Tangerines, and Bread and Wine. Her new book, I Guess I Haven’t Learned that Yet, releases on April 12, 2022

 

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Apr 11, 2022
Mom, You Are Important but Not Essential, and That’s Good News :: Brittany Turner [Ep 361]
35:45
As moms we do carry a big burden – we have a God-give responsibility to love and care for our children, but how often do you feel crushed under that burden? It’s hard to do all the tasks to take care of everyone – especially if you’re measuring yourself by how many meltdowns (your kids or yours) did or didn’t happen this week. What if that responsibility came with the freedom to not hold it all together? What if there were someone more loving and more powerful than you to shape all the details of life for the good of everyone involved? This week, Brittany Turner encourages us that the same God we trust to take all the hard in our lives and turn it into good is God for our kids too! We can rest in his capabilities and invite others into our lives to help carry the load. You do not have to mom alone! 

Brittany Turner is a wife, mom of four, speaker, and writer who loves to help people take what they say they believe and put it into practice in their everyday lives. 

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Apr 04, 2022
Creating Digital Safe Spaces :: Chris McKenna [Ep 360]
52:30

Does keeping your kids safe on the internet ever feel like a game of Whack-a-mole - frenzied and unending, always trying to fend off the threats that pop up? Or maybe you’ve been afraid your kids would be or feel left out if you had more limits on their screens? You’ve seen the documentaries and the research of how addictive social media can be and the average age in which kids are exposed to pornography keeps going down and yet, we know on some level what we forbid our kids to do has the potential to become the only thing they want. Families around you probably have a wide range of tech norms in their households. Kids relentlessly request screen time. Honestly, sometimes we long for the quiet of a kid mesmerized by a screen. 

What’s a mom to do? 

Enter this week’s guest, Chris McKenna, dad of four and founder of Protect Young Eyes, an organization devoted to helping parents create safe digital spaces for their kids. Chris encourages us that while there are real things our kids need protecting from on the internet, there are real ways we can foster digital trust and create safe digital spaces for our kids. Chris helps us understand that rather than a controller, our kids want a coach - someone to teach them how to use technology in ways that honor God, themselves, and others. 

 

Connect with Chris McKenna & Protect Young Eyes: 



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Mar 28, 2022
How to Help a Friend Process Life [Ep 359]
46:49

How do you respond when a difficult situation comes your way? One that feels out of the blue, or that doesn’t have a clear solution, or all the solutions you’ve tried haven’t worked? 

In this birthday episode (Happy Birthday Heather!) join Heather and DMA team member, Stephanie Snow, as they talk through what it looks like to process through all those thoughts that circle around our brains as we deal with the difficult stuff of life. We talk about not only how to sort out your own thoughts, but how to come alongside friends, family, and even your children to listen well and ask good questions. 

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Mar 21, 2022
Mentoring with Lisa Bevere [Ep 358]
56:11

Have you ever wished for a fairy godmother? Someone to wave a wand and make your troubles disappear? The next best thing just might be a real godmother - a woman to see you in your distress and to offer help and encouragement. What’s hard for you in this season of motherhood? Your reactions to your kids? Seeing how your kids react to one another? Maybe you need to break free from life centering around your kids. 

In this mentoring episode we take a proverbial walk with author and speaker Lisa Bevere through anger, growth, idolatry, guilt and hope in the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives and sibling rivalry. Her most recent book, Godmothers: Why You Need One. How to Be One encourages women to live with and for one another and to ask for help from those who have gone before you - which she graciously does with us in this episode! Lisa and her husband John raised four boys and she has written numerous books on womanhood, identity, anger, and much more. 

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Mar 14, 2022
Recovering from Mom Burnout :: Nicole Zasowski [Ep 357]
50:02

Every mom will experience burnout. It’s as simple as our energy output exceeds our energy input, but it can be debilitating and discouraging. You may wish for a vacation, or spa day or even just 15 minutes of silence, but what if those typical self-care strategies are out of your reach? Where can you find rest when it seems like your circumstances just don’t allow for any? 

“You may find that if someone pours water all over you, you are damp and distracted, but not cured of your sadness, the way a fire department can douse a fire but never recover what has been burnt down.” —Lemony Snicket, The Bad Beginning

This week we talk with Nicole Zasowski, a mom of three, therapist, and author of the new book, What if it’s Wonderful? Through her own life journey that has included deep sorrow and deep joy, Nicole encourages us to fight burnout with regular rhythms of celebration. No, not another party for you to plan, she’s not looking to douse water on burned-out you, but to help you recover joy that has been lost.  She gives you an invitation to look at the good God is doing all around you, in every season. 

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Mar 07, 2022
Equipping Your Kids for Difficulty :: Kim Sorgius [Ep 356]
58:44
What happens when you’ve had a Proverbs life - following the rules and making the right choices -  but then you wake up to find yourself living in Ecclesiastes where life is painful and doesn’t quite make sense? It’s easy for us to think we can do and achieve - that if we just get the right formula we’ll unlock an easy life replete with God’s blessings and perfect family photos.  Through her own story of God’s provision through heartache and uncertain circumstances, Kim Sorgius encourages us to lean in and really know the Lord in difficult times. Not just to know about him, not to search his word for what the plan is, but to search it for Him. She wants our paradigm to shift and for us to embrace that “the beauty of life isn’t found in perfect circumstances…[but] in faith.” 

Kim has a deep desire for us to both experience and pass that sturdy faith onto our children. Born from the difficulty (and faithfulness) of single motherhood is her blog and online store, Not Consumed, where she has created Bible studies and products to help you engage the scripture with your kids. Join us to hear Kim’s incredible story and to be encouraged as you work to share your faith in meaningful ways. 

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Feb 28, 2022
Church Hurts, Healed by the Church :: Angel Ricchuiti [Ep 355]
52:04

Think of 9 women you know. Statistics says that 1 of those women was sexually abused as a child. This week, Angel Ricchuiti bravely tells us her story of sexual abuse within the church. She gives us hope that God heals, restores and is near to us through the body of Christ and skilled professionals. You will hear practical ways to listen well and come alongside a friend who suffered trauma as you are graciously invited into her story. And, you will be encouraged to think about the process of uprooting fears and walking in freedom caused by hurts. Be informed and empowered toward empathy and compassion whether trauma or abuse is a part of your story or not. 

 Angel is a wife, mother of four, as well as a trained counselor. 

WARNING: This episode contains references to child sexual abuse within the church. We know Angel’s story may be especially hard for some, as it may stir up very real feelings. Please be encouraged, Angel’s story is full of hope and healing, too. While this episode might not be good for little ears, it is a story that will equip you and help you walk in more freedom.

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Resources for Sexual Abuse Recovery and Prevention:

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People to Follow:

Books Recs & Questions to Ask Your Local Church Leadership:

  • On Guard – Preventing and Responding to Child Abuse at Church, by Deepak Reju
  • We Too – Mary E. Demuth
  • Who knows about/ keeps track of convicted sex offenders in our congregation? 
  • Who monitors their coming and going on our campus? 
  • Who on staff is responsible to check in with their probation officers and confirm the reason for their status on the sex offenders list and recommendations they have for securing safety?
  • What is the safety plan for these individuals? What is included & who supervises this plan?
  • How often does the supervisor meet with this perpetrator or other known perpetrators AND fact check the information they provide? 
  • Is he or other known perpetrators chaperoned while on campus?
  • Do we have an official document which discloses how we as a church body agree to handle this particular issue?
Feb 21, 2022
Be Vulnerable, Find Your People :: Jennie Allen [Ep 354]
55:51

Friendship isn’t something we are taught in school. We sort of fumble our way through the trial and error of how to make and keep friends.  Add in our culture of independence, where it can be hard to admit we need others, and lots of times it feels easier to just stay home and binge watch seasons of Friends rather than try to find some real life ones. In this episode, author and speaker Jennie Allen acknowledges that friendship is full of risk, riddled with awkwardness and yet completely worth it. Through her own journey of finding a core group of friends in a new city, she challenges us to enter into the awkward places to build the friendships we long to have.  Jennie Allen is a wife, mom, author, and speaker. She deeply believes God created us for relationship - first with him and then with others. Her newest book, Find Your People, is a tool-kit, a guide, an encouragement, and an honest look at why we really do need a village, and how we cultivate it in our lives.  

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Feb 14, 2022
Extending an Invitation :: Trillia Newbell [Ep 353]
54:02

Let’s have some “real talk” and think about our faith in action when it comes to our neighbors, even when they are different. This conversation will help you think about being more open and welcoming and train your children to do the same.

Our guest this week, author Trillia Newbell, encourages us in the message of James chapter two - love for others that doesn’t show favoritism to those who look or think or act like us. Her book, The Big Wide Welcome, illustrates how the love of Christ sees and welcomes others for who they are and how we should do the same. Trillia is a wife, mom, author, and speaker whose writings address and encourage our faith, our families, and the culture around us

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Feb 07, 2022
Consistency in Bible Study :: Katie Orr [Ep 352]
50:37

In a world of increasing chaos, we crave certainty. We “know” the answer lies in some good disciplines like daily time with God. How can you step into a habit of studying God’s Word with consistency and success, even when your daily rhythms are upside down?

Let’s turn Bible study from a “should do” into a vibrant, life-giving way to get the Word into your heart. Our guest this week, Bible teacher Katie Orr, will encourage you in practical and approachable ways so that you can open God’s Word and be fed.

We talk through the stops on Katie’s “Bible Study Boulevard” - an assessment you can take on her website to help you figure out just where you are on your Bible study journey. Identifying your “stop” can help you adopt methods you can use right where you are, right now to connect with God and know Him more. Her online community at www.biblestudyhub.com is a place where women can connect and receive training, encouragement, and accountability to enjoy God’s word. She is even offering Don’t Mom Alone listeners a special on her 5 Days to Better Bible Study Course to jump start your study! 

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  • Uncommon Goods: To get 15% off your next gift go to UncommonGoods.com/dma. Don’t miss this limited time offer. 

 

Jan 31, 2022
Understand Your Developing Teen :: Dr. Nell Bush [Ep 351]
01:02:05

The preteen/teen years are a time of immense change and growth that often come with difficulty between mother and child. As the mom of a teen you may find yourself confused or frustrated with your child’s new behavior and attitudes. (The thought of those years is enough to fill elementary-kid moms with dread!)  Come and listen as we shed light on the confusion of these transitional years that will help us both prepare for and thrive during this crucial developmental stage.

In this episode Child Development Specialist, Dr. Nell Bush, explains to us the four pillars of preteen/teen development.  Dr. Bush co-authored The Parenting Survival Guide, a practical handbook for parents addressing common child rearing concerns. Having four children of her own, she understands teen development on a theoretical and practical level.

Nell encourages us that if we can understand what’s going on socially, emotionally, mentally, and physically with our preteens/teens we can respond with compassion and adapt our parenting strategies to fit their needs. She also covers aspects of development from why teens sleep so much to why they seem to love and hate us almost simultaneously. Draw hope for the present or wisdom for the future as you sit in (or do the dishes, or drive the kids all over) on Heather and Nell’s conversation. 

Connect with Dr. Nell Bush: 

  • Email:   nell.f.bush@gmail.com

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Jan 24, 2022
Friendship is Hard :: Amy Weatherly and Jess Johnston [Ep 350]
58:38

We’ll just say it - friendship as an adult is hard. It’s hard to find friends, to keep friends, and to be a good friend amidst all the hustle and bustle of motherhood. And motherhood can be an extremely lonely place. On this episode, Amy Weatherly and Jess Johnston, founders of Sister I am With You, share the good, the bad, and the awkward of making friends as a mom. They guide us through their own story of friendship (and encourage us to get out there and start the work of friendship) with candor and humor.  They talk about some pitfalls of making friends and share tips on how to be a good friend. 

Their book, I’ll be There, (But I’ll be Wearing Sweatpants), releases January 25, 2022. 

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Jan 17, 2022
Sunday Planning :: Retha Nichole [Ep 349]
58:22

Do you ever feel like you wake up Monday and the week is already running away from you? Overwhelm is a common feeling among moms and in this episode Retha Nichole shares the system she created that helped create margin in her own life. 

As a working mom to three boys, and at times a single mom, her Sunday Planning routine and portioning out her “plate” has helped her take care of herself and her people well.

Sunday Planning looks different in the different seasons of life. As a mom of two  littles I thought of the five things that would help me the MOST. That is still what I do as my children have grown up and can do most of these things on their own.”

Retha walks us through measuring our own capacity and how to craft your own Sunday Planning routine. Her website offers several products ready to make the most of your Sunday Planning efforts. 

Connect with Retha: 

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Jan 10, 2022
Honoring Others :: Rachael Wade [Ep 348]
53:47

As we enter the holiday season, it’s easy to get swept up in the tasks and external pressures that crowd our days… coordinating family events, planning the food, buying and wrapping gifts. With so much to do, it can be easy to adopt a Grinch-like personality or to just be a bit snappy with people who enter our lives. 

My guest Rachael R Wade is here to help our hearts grow three times larger by practicing giving honor to those around us. It’s a simple act of kindness that can be very powerful.

“No one gets tired of hearing encouragement or being honored. And it's just calling out what God has put in others. Just taking the time to notice them and saying something kind. That little piece of encouragement could be the difference for if they decide to continue on in a dream or how they parent their kids. There's a lot of weight to our words.”

Whether it’s showing honor to our kids and extended family or the clerk at the next store you enter, I invite you to pour out God’s love to a hurting world and use your words to heal. Rachael shares a lot of ideas for honoring others and how coming alongside and holding space for those around us is a catalyst for God’s kingdom here on earth. 

Connect with Rachael R Wade: 

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Nov 29, 2021
Parenting in the Power of the Holy Spirit :: Jeannie Cunnion [Ep 347]
53:11

Jeannie Cunnion is back on the show with a powerful message that reminds us that we are NEVER ALONE. As believers we always have the Holy Spirit with us and Jeannie shares how to deepen your understanding of the Holy Spirit and come to know Him as an intimate friend and companion.

Not only that, but the Holy Spirit gives us power for the daily grind and holy work of motherhood. She shares about how He is faithfully at work, making the gospel irresistible to our kids and the freedom that comes from not having to do the Holy Spirit’s job for our kids. 

“I think that there's a freedom and a frustration that comes with the Holy Spirit. There's freedom because it's like I can not do the Holy Spirit's job. He is going to be the one who sparks their faith, sustains their faith, strengthens them, sanctifies them. That is all his job. But that can also be frustrating because we want to be able to produce that fruit in their life to spare them from the consequences and the pain of sin. I have to remind myself that God loves my kids infinitely more than I ever could imagine and that he longs for them to live in the fullness of his grace and mercy, even more than I do.” 

If you are longing to experience the freedom that comes from resting in the Holy Spirit instead of your own strength, this is the episode for you! Jeannie shares more in-depth on this subject in her new Bible study available for pre-orders now, Never Alone - Bible Study Book: Parenting in the Power of the Holy Spirit.

Connect with Jeannie Cunnion: 

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Nov 22, 2021
Embracing Your Power in Marriage :: Dr. Juli Slattery [Ep 346]
47:23

Many women feel lost in their marriages. They don't know what to do with their disappointment, when to ask for help, or what it looks like to let go of the need to control. But God has given women incredible power in marriage and Dr. Juli Slattery is here to help us learn how to use it.

Dr. Slattery joins me to discuss key points from her bestselling book Finding the Hero in Your Husband and about how what we believe about our husbands can make all the difference in the intimacy, connection and health of our marriages.  

“There are going to be issues in every marriage that have to be addressed, but it's the relational equity that we build through how we treat our husbands that gives us the power to confront things when they really need to be addressed. And when your husband has come to rely so much on your intimacy and companionship, then the fact that you have a concern really gets his attention because he doesn't want to lose you.”

We talk about being emotionally safe for our husbands, stopping the cycle of disappointment and nagging in our marriages, and taking another look at intimacy as a sexual journey to go on with our husbands. It’s. So. GOOD. 

If you are in need of a boost of hope and excitement to help you re-engage in your marriage, this episode is for you!

Connect with Dr. Juli Slattery: 

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Nov 15, 2021
Sober-Minded Living :: Jenn Kautsch [Ep 345]
51:18

Jenn Kautsch is an empty nester mom and a retired "grey area" drinker. She takes us into her story of feeling tired, stuck on auto-pilot, and ready for a change when it comes to her relationship with alcohol. 

Through her own journey of seeking God about her casual drinking habit that was becoming a toxic mental battle, Jenn stopped asking if her drinking was “bad” for her and reframed it.

“So I turned it around and I started asking myself the question, Jenn, is it good enough? Is your drinking good enough for you? Is your relationship with drinking, helping you become the best version of yourself? Is it taking you where you really want to go? Is it matching up to your outsides being like your insights or are you walking around with duplicity in a divided mind and a mental tug of war?”

After choosing to embrace a sober lifestyle, Jenn started SoberSis,  a like-minded community of women who are renegotiating their relationship with alcohol without labels, shame, judgment or rules.

We talk about how God brought her freedom from what felt like a divided life -- constantly feeling in conflict and stuck in an internal tug-of-war so she could live a more wholehearted life. And how she’s now been able to connect with close to 20,000 women from all over the world through her SoberSis community of women.

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Nov 08, 2021
When You Don't Know What to Pray :: Kayla Craig [Ep 344]
42:41

As Kayla Craig sat in the hospital watching her daughter have a machine breath for her, she struggled to find the words to pray. In that difficult time in her family’s life, she learned about the power of liturgies which are scripted prayers from scripture. The more she turned to these powerful prayers prayed by Christians from all over the world, the less alone Kayla felt. 

Years later, Kayla has created a book with modern liturgies for parents with more than 100 prayers to voice when words are hard to find.

“The book of prayers that I have created are just simply prayers that you can borrow, prayers that can become your own. The prayers of another can comfort us and can lift our arms up and we can't lift our arms up. If you don't have the words to pray, take mine.”

From everyday struggles like helping your child find friends or thrive in school to larger issues like praying for a brighter world rooted in peace and truth, these pleas and petitions act as a gentle guide, reminding us that while our words may fail, God never does.

Stay tuned for about 20 minutes in when Kayla prays a powerful prayer over all of us weary parents! I think you are going to love learning more about liturgies and breath prayers from Kayla. I hope this is just one more tool in your prayer tool belt -- we certainly need all we can get!

 

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Nov 01, 2021
Your Unique Color Palette and Authentic Style :: Karen Blanc [Ep 343]
49:04

Motherhood can be a time of self-forgetfulness. We pour into our kids, partners, careers and can lose ourselves in the process. One way I’ve rediscovered who God made me to be is learning about my unique color palette and authentic style. 

In this week’s episode I chat with House of Colour Consultant, Karen Blanc. She teaches us a bit about color theory based on the work of Johannes Itten. And how based on our natural coloring, each of us harmonize best with either warm or cool colors, then either bright or muted. 

“I love to give people permission to embrace something that's very near and dear to them, God's gift to you: your color palette.”

We also spend some time talking about the process of discovering your authentic style based on your body architecture and personality. With some combination of styles from the basic six: dramatic, classic, natural, gamine, ingenue or romantic. 

My hope is this episode will inspire you that God made you with a light to shine where you are. Through learning more about color and style you can actually spend less energy on “what to wear” and more time being who God made you to be. “To be yourself in a world constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson). 

Connect with Karen: 

Links Mentioned:  

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  • Mathnasium— Whether you’re looking to get your kids back on track or want to ensure they’re staying ahead with their math studies,  find a center near you at mathnasium.com and contact them for a free in center or online consultation.

 

 

Oct 25, 2021
Fed is Best || New Baby Series Pt. 2 :: Dr. Bridget Young [Bonus]
28:10

Feeding a baby is stressful enough. Choosing a formula and transitioning to formula doesn't need to be stressful too.

Today's guest, Dr. Bridget Young, is a doctor of Perinatal and Pediatric Nutrition with a PhD from Cornell University in Nutritional Science.  She specializes in maternal and child nutrition. Currently she is an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center. You can read about her active research on infant formula here.

In this episode Bridget (her preferred name), mom of two boys, gives advice to the new mom on how to transition from breastmilk to formula (or a new type of formula).

She also explains the most important aspect that differentiates one formula from another. I ask her to explain soy formula from hypo-allergenic. And she gives great advice for how to approach your bottle feeds.

Most importantly, I'm thankful to connect you with the wealth of information on her website and YouTube channel. If you're looking for even more guidance check out her course (DMA listeners get a special $10 off discount with the code: DMA10).

Connect with Dr. Young:

Links Mentioned:

Oct 22, 2021
Fed is Best || New Baby Series Pt 1 :: Demetria Martin and Dr. Odom [Ep 342]
46:11

Late nights, milk stained clothes and feeling like you’ll go crazy if your baby spits up that precious breastmilk…. I have been there. We’ve never done an episode specifically on breastfeeding, but I want to provide support to moms who may be in this very isolating time of life.

My guests are Certified Lactation Counselor Demetria Martin and Pediatrician Dr. Brittany Odom and they talk us through some of the common hot topics surrounding breastfeeding from supply issues to nighttime feedings and everything else in between. 

“Sometimes you don't have a good sense of community around breastfeeding. There are some pediatrician's offices that aren't super breastfeeding friendly. There might be some family members or friends who are not supportive of your breastfeeding journey. You may feel pretty alone when you're kind of starting this out. But give yourself, you know, a pat on the back for how far you have come. Even if it's been a day and a half, that's still a day and a half more than you've done before. So taking those small steps, knowing it is going to be a journey.”

Ultimately, we agree that a fed baby is a happy baby, so I hope you understand my heart is not to idealize the breastfeeding journey. Just to provide resources and community so you don’t mom alone as you feed your infants! 

(Later this week we will publish a bonus episode featuring another lactation consultant about how to choose the right formula for your family.)

Connect with Demetria: 

Connect with Dr. Brittany Odom:

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Oct 18, 2021
Relationships You Need To Be the Mom You Want to Be :: Heather MacFadyen [Ep 341]
50:58

Join me as I step into the role of guest on my own show! My friend Courtney Cleveland interviews me and we do go in depth on my first book, Don’t Mom Alone. **Now available wherever books are sold!**

We talk about how being a good mom isn’t about doing everything right to create a set of perfect trophy children–though every mom has felt the pressure to do just that and to do it all on her own. And how asking for help feels like defeat, but when we try to do it all by our own strength, we end up depleted, lonely, and ineffective.

We are not meant to do this alone! I believe moms can be empowered by God, supported by others, and connected with their children. With encouragement and insight, you can foster the key relationships you need to be the mom you want to be so we DON’T MOM ALONE. 

Links Mentioned:  

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Oct 12, 2021
For the Mom Tired of Striving:: Ruth Chou Simons [Ep 340]
49:31

In this episode, I’m excited to welcome back Ruth Chou Simons. In her newest book, When Strivings Cease, Ruth invites us to rethink our preoccupation with approval and the striving that comes because we feel like we’re forever missing the mark. It offers a deeper, abiding understanding of what God’s generous, unmerited favor really accomplishes in and through us when we receive the gift of grace.

As a mom of six boys, an author and an entrepreneur, Ruth shares from her experience of feeling like she needed to strive to move forward as a creator and how learning to trust God through the experience of mothering in the little years made all the difference. 

“Sometimes I feel like a late bloomer, but there's no such thing in God's timing and God's economy of ideas and opportunities. And those 10 years of changing diapers and just keeping my children alive felt like things were happening so slowly. But God taught me more in the slow waiting, hidden moments of a season that didn't look the way I wanted it to. And those things are fruitful. They've created the fruit that you see now.”

We talk about how to reset when you feel striving taking over, how to stop ourselves from demanding perfection/striving from our kids and how to preach truth to ourselves when we need to be reminded that we can trust God instead of living in fear. 

Connect with Ruth: 

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Oct 04, 2021
Truth for When You Feel Like a Bad Mom :: Jamie Ivey [Ep 339]
50:02

Sometimes you have to preach truth to yourself when the days are long and you feel inadequate. And oftentimes we need a friend or two to point out the truth. Jamie Ivey is on the podcast today to be that friend for us. She brings us into her personal struggles as a mom and reminds us that we aren’t alone in the struggle.

“It brings me so much comfort that God is not surprised by our diagnoses. He is not surprised by our families. He's not surprised by our struggles. He's not surprised by our insecurities, but he is a God who's willing and ready to be with us in the midst of those.”

If you need a reminder that God made you to have your kids. He made your kids to be who they are with all their abilities and challenges. And he didn’t just create us and stand away distanced as we struggle in life. This episode is for you. 

We talk about Jamie’s new children’s book God Made You to Be You, but dive much deeper into what that message can mean to us as moms and how we can encourage our kids as they relate to others who are different than them. 

Connect with Jamie: 

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Sep 27, 2021
Helping Our Kids Foster Friendships :: David Thomas and Sissy Goff [Ep 338]
01:02:03

I’m excited to welcome back Sissy Goff and David Thomas to the show to talk about helping our kids foster friendships.  As licensed counselors, working at DayStar Counseling Center in Nashville, they provide support, encouragement & compassion to children, adolescents & families in need through counseling.

We talk about the nuances of boys vs girls in friendships, what to do if your kid is the bully, helping kids when friendships change or friends move, and how to take cues from our kids when it comes to their friendships

“It is really more important to prioritize teaching kids to be friends than to be concerned with them, having friends. And when it comes to our worries and fears about friendships, we can't have more emotion than they do over whatever's going on for them relationally. Often that will make them either feel like we're not safe to talk to, or it'll just make them dam up these feelings.”

Connect with David & Sissy: 

Previous Podcasts with David & Sissy:

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Featured Sponsors: 

  • Mathnasium: Whether you’re looking to get your kids back on track or want to ensure they’re staying ahead with their math studies, find a center near you at mathnasium.com and contact them for a free in center or online consultation. 
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Sep 20, 2021
Long Game Parenting :: Melanie Shankle and Sophie Hudson [Ep 337]
01:02:08

Their real names are Melanie Shankle and Sophie Hudson, but they’ve been blogging for a long time on the internet as Big Mama and BooMama. In addition to being authors and speakers, they also host the fun podcast The Big Boo Cast where they talk about all the important stuff: faith, family, friends, football, fashion, and food. Plus, of course, their hair.

They join me for a mom friends episode where we talk about parenting teens, launching kids to college and letting go of mom guilt. 

“If you were a bad mom, you wouldn't spend a lot of time worrying about if you were a bad mom. So the fact that you're feeling that guilt is like, you love your child, you're showing up, you're trying to do all the right things. And you just have to trust that God's grace covers the rest of it because they're going to be things you get wrong.”

You won’t want to miss the fun and funny Melanie and Sophie. I consider them some of my mentor moms and they offer up a lot of candid advice and wisdom for playing the “long game” of parenting. 

Connect with Melanie: 

Connect with Sophie: 

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Featured Sponsors: 

  • BetterHelp: Visit betterhelp.com/DMA and join the over 2,000,000 people who have taken charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. Special offer for Don’t Mom Alone listeners: get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/DMA. 
  • Rothys:
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Sep 13, 2021
Weathering Life’s Storms :: Sally Clarkson [Ep 336]
48:15

Even without the overwhelm of the pandemic exhausting us both physically and emotionally, life inevitably brings storms our way. Storms that we can ride out with God or storms that we allow to sweep us away. 

Sally Clarkson, author, speaker and mentor of moms, joins me to talk about how to weather the storms of life with grace and hope. We talk about how some anchors we can put down in stormy times, pushing into friendships, filling our cups when we are depleted and parenting our kids through life’s disappointments. 

Sally also shares about how weathering life’s storms helps us care for others who are experiencing hard times better. 

“Sometimes in my life I think Jesus wanted me to grow up a little bit because it was in facing my storms, learning to walk through them that I was humbled. I learned a lot. I had more compassion for other people going through storms.  I feel like the story that you live becomes the platform for your compassion for other people.”

Connect with Sally: 

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Sep 06, 2021
Self Differentiation and Why It Matters :: Nancy Houston [Ep 335]
54:05

Self differentiation, emotional enmeshment and emotional cut-off… We got some new-to-me terms to learn in this episode, but you’ll be very glad you stick with us for the definitions. And I promise there won’t be a pop quiz at the end. 🤣

I’m chatting with Nancy Houston, a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Sex Therapist specializing in individual, marital, and sexual issues. We go deep on some important concepts that I wish I’d learned earlier on in my marriage. 

The big one is self differentiation. Who am I separate from motherhood and marriage? And how can I stay a healthy individual in those roles without swinging too far either direction. Nancy shares practical tips and breaks down big concepts to get us going down the path of self discovery. 

“Health is being able to hold the middle where we can have some grace for ourselves and one another. Where we can have some quiet. Until I can stop judging myself so harshly, I'll never stop judging you.”

Connect with Nancy: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Aug 30, 2021
How God’s Holiness Helps Mothers :: Jackie Hill Perry [Ep 334]
48:09

If God is holy, then He can’t sin. If God can’t sin, then He can’t sin against you. If He can’t sin against you, shouldn’t that make Him the most trustworthy being there is?

I’m thrilled to have Jackie Hill Perry back on the podcast to share about her much anticipated book, “Holier Than Thou”.

She walks us through Scripture, shaking the dust off of “holy” as we’ve come to know it and revealing it for what it really is: good news. As it turns out, God being “holier than thou” is actually the best news in the world, and it’s the key to trusting Him.

“Holiness is really abstract, but what does it have to do with me? The truth is it has everything to do with the way we live because the way we engage with the world around us is symptomatic of what we believe is true about God.”

We also chat about how Jackie doesn’t “mom alone,” about her growing family and the holy calling of motherhood. This is a powerful episode! 

Connect with Jackie: 

Links Mentioned:  

FEATURED SPONSORS:

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Aug 23, 2021
Body Awareness in Parenting :: Mary Van Geffen [Ep 333]
58:39

How we feel in our bodies affects so many facets of parenting-- and in some ways you might now expect. My guest Mary Van Geffen joins me to talk about 4 Ps that can help us practice body awareness as we work on parenting our kids (even the spicy ones) with empathy and connection.

“When in doubt I say choose connection rather than control. We're not going to have a lot of control and we don't have the time or the energy to follow through on things. So let's make sure we're connected because connection is the honey and it will help us to have more control.”

We go in depth on how paying attention to your Presence, Posture, Proximity and Phase of your Cycle can change how you parent and bring awareness of how to honor your body and rest when you need it. 

Connect with Mary: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors:

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Aug 16, 2021
Factual News, Flexible Thinking and Family Moral Imperatives :: Sharon McMahon [Ep 332]
54:28

News, politics and world events are on a 24-hour and 365-day cycle. Every second something new is happening and keeping up with the latest can be a full time job. Add on top of that the bias inherent in mass media and it can be hard to tell fact from manipulated fiction. 

Enter Sharon McMahon, a former high school government and law teacher on a mission to combat political misinformation. With her viral Instagram account @SharonSaysSo, she shares non-partisan facts about the US government and democracy in a way that is easy to understand.

Sharon talks with me about how to be flexible thinkers and to hear both sides of a political issue using the same critical thinking skills she taught her students in high school. We also chat about her motherhood journey and raising kids who can talk respectfully with people who have different viewpoints on the world and politics. 

But she doesn’t want you to listen to just her or any one person to learn the news of the day:

“I don't think it is wise to just look at one human, me or your favorite political pundit or anybody, and believe that person is right 100% of the time. It is still your job to consume and figure out using your own brain, the own skills in your head to determine whether or not that aligns for you and whether or not that actually is an accurate depiction of your feelings or viewpoints. So I always caution people. Don't take one person's word as gospel because all humans are fallible.” 

Connect with Sharon: 

 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors:

  • Athena Club— Show your skin you care with the Athena Club Razor Kit! Sign up today and you’ll get 20% off your first order! Just go to AthenaClub.com and use promo code dma
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Aug 09, 2021
Shifting Perspective on Hard Things :: Summer of Mentorship Week 6
56:09

In this episode, Jen shares what she’s learned about heaven (from co-leading a study for 100+ women). She also gives a super practical way to figure out how you can help a friend in need. Jen reminds us mamas to hold our children loosely. To realize we have the privilege of partnering with God, but ultimately how our children “turn out” is up to him. 

And this. . .

It’s hard in the crisis to build that support system. Invest in women’s lives now. Not because you’re going to need them in case you have cancer. But that the time invested in friendships, meaningful friendships is worth it.–Jen

My biggest take-away from our conversation is to view my “to do” list as a “get to do” list. What joy to get to pick up my boys from school, to get to serve them meals, and to get to put them to bed!

Wrapping up this summer may we all see our everyday in light of eternity. Be grateful for all our “get to”s. And invest in our sweet friendships.

Read more of Jen’s story:

Personal Blog

What we chat about:

  • Jen’s surprise engagement, surprise baby and surprise cancer diagnosis.
  • Hope for the mom with chronic sickness/trauma/heartache.
  • What Jen’s learned about how friends help well.
  • The truths Jen gained from studying Heaven last summer.
  • Lessons for all of us to hold our children loosely.
  • Dealing with temper tantrums and other challenging behavior when mom is sick.
  • The value of building strong friendships.

Links Mentioned:

  • Not to us, Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.” (Psalm 115:1)
  • Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain,
     to the place where you dwell.” (Psalm 43:3)
  • In Light of Eternity by Randy Alcorn
  • Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:2-3)
  • Nobody’s Cuter than You by Melanie Shankle
  • Just Show Up by Kara Tippetts & Jill Lynn Butelyn

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Glorify App—Glorify your relationship with God with 50% off unlimited access to premium
    content designed to help you get into good worship habits and grow closer to God. Download the Glorify app now, create an account and enter code DMA in the
    profile section for a special limited-time discount of 50%.
  • Lovevery — Take the guesswork out of your child’s play. Choose Lovevery TODAY and get free shipping when you sign up to receive your Play Kits at Lovevery.com/DMA.
Jul 26, 2021
Encouraging the Exhausted Mom :: Summer of Mentorship Week 5
44:12

Mush brain.

That’s how I’d describe my mind after years and years of sleep deprivation.

Most young moms (especially if you had lots of littles in a row) know the challenge of forming a complete thought. Or staying focused during a quiet time. Or even having a moment alone with God.

I know Jennie understands.

Jennie is a sweet mom of two from Cambridge, England. She emailed me sharing struggles with sleep deprivation. Her son suffered from a serious of medical challenges leaving them with four years of interrupted sleep.

She knows the power of a strong relationship with God. But in this season has found connecting deeply with Him difficult given her exhausted, “mush brain”. 

The mentor that I called to answer Jennie’s questions is the amazing Sally Clarkson.

Sally understands having children who don’t sleep and she’s been through her share of challenging seasons. From those experiences and others she began to mentor young moms and encourage other women to do the same .

In this episode, Sally helps moms move beyond traditional spiritual disciplines to experience God in their everyday moments. Inspiring us to find the goodness of God, by intentionally filling our lives with beauty and pleasure.

For the exhausted mom who longs to know God better, I hope this episode gives you peace, perspective and practical ideas.

Connect with Sally Clarkson:

Site :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest 

What we chat about:

Jennie’s Questions: 

  • How do I have a decent quiet time when I’m exhausted?
  • What tips do you have for getting through challenging circumstances?
  • Does a hard season have long-term impacts on your faith?

Sally’s Answers: 

  • Motherhood is a battleground.
  • What we struggle through is normal and women for generations have experienced it.
  • God created us to be in community. God is present through people.
  • Build things into your life to enjoy the goodness of God.

Other topics we cover: 

  • Journaling prayers
  • Breath prayers
  • Physical rest vs. soul rest

Links Mentioned:

Featured Sponsors: 

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Jul 19, 2021
Breaking Up with Perfect :: Summer of Mentorship Week 4
40:48

If you've ever strived for perfection, then you know how it feels when you fall short.

Maybe you aren't the one carrying a list of all you "need to do to earn God's love." But more the type who carries a "Never Good Enough List” with all the reasons you'll never be able to earn His love.

Either way, Amy Carroll, (author, speaker, Proverbs 31 contributor) is on the podcast this week helping us break up with perfect.

In this episode (and in her new book), Amy helps us recognize the lies we have been believing and the Truth to set us free.

Lies like: "I was created to produce perfection" or "People are obstacles to my tasks" or "If I have the right stuff, my life will be perfect."

My favorite quote from our conversation was:

Only when I end my own pursuit of perfection can God do a perfecting work in me. --Amy Carroll

 May you experience a supernatural freedom from the struggle to be perfect. May your friendships deepen, your family be strengthened and your awareness of God's love grow as you stop striving and surrender to His gentle heart work.

Connect with Amy:

Breaking Up with Perfect :: Blog :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest 

What we chat about:

  • The events making Amy aware of her perfectionism
  • The impact a mentor had in Amy's journey to lose the list of perfect
  • The supernatural work God did on Amy to break the shell around her heart, to feel His love
  • The two perfect super moms in Amy's head--torn between two ideals.
  • The destruction of friendship when perfectionism enters.
  • The different types of perfectionists and their lists: good girl list or the never-good-enough list
  • The possibility of passing on perfectionism to our kids.

Links Mentioned:

Discussion Questions:

  1. Have you had friendships end because of your struggles with perfection? When friends go through hard times do you wonder how to be a good, imperfect friend? 
  2. Do you have a mentor? Is there someone you wish you could meet with? Could you make a plan to meet with her once in the next few months? 
  3. Could you relate to Amy’s struggle to feel God’s love and having a list of things you have to do to be right with God?
  4. What areas are you striving for perfection in motherhood? Who is your mental ‘ideal’ mom? Earth-mama, right-on-schedule mom? 
  5. Which type of perfectionist do you relate to—the good girl list or the never-good-enough list? Need to measure up or will never measure up? Or do you swing between the lists? 
  6. What have you found helpful to break up with perfection?

Featured Sponsors:

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  • Glorify app--Get 50% off unlimited access to Glorify App with promo code DMA applied in the profile section of the app. 

 

Jul 12, 2021
Identifying Your “Wifestyle” :: Summer of Mentorship Week 3
46:53

Our first year of marriage was HARD. And we hit another rough patch (a.k.a. the “come to Jesus” days) after our second son was born. I took all the marriage advice I could get.

For all you mommas out there looking for a little marriage help, I’ve invited Jen Weaver on the show to talk about her newest book, “A Wife’s Secret to Happiness”. This episode originally aired on March 6, 2017. 

Jen is an adorable millennial who knows God’s Word and isn’t afraid to hit the marriage topic head on. She shares some great insights on a few controversial issues. But more than anything she helps us identify the marriage habits (a.k.a., “WifeStyles”) that are attracting or denying the blessings God has for our marriages.

What we chat about:

  • What is a “wifestyle”?
  • Habits that can attract or deny the blessings God has for our marriages
  • The slightly-controversial topic of “submission”
  • Making room for your spouse to lead and space for the Lord to speak.
  • What about when your spouse isn’t walking with the Lord?
  • Wifestyles: “braided” or “frayed”
  • What Jesus asked Jen.
  • Wifestyles: “doubtful” or “decided”
  • When you go through a relationship winter after a new baby
  • Hebrew convo about “chayil”and Proverbs 31 woman who is a wife of valor

Connect with Jen Weaver:

Website :: Instagram 

Links Mentioned:

Discussion Questions:

  • Discuss the idea of submission the way it’s described in the episode. 
  • How can you choose to make space for your spouse to lead in your relationship? In what ways do you lead?
  • Do you feel frayed or braided with God right now? How can you rebraid your attention back toward God?
  • What was your most recent relationship winter? How did you come through that?
  • What are your Proverbs 31 wife superpowers? How do you use your strengths in a way that blesses and doesn’t hinder?

Featured Sponsors:

  • Rothy’s — Don’t miss this great opportunity! Get $20 off a purchase of $100 or more. Rothys.com/DMA.
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Jul 05, 2021
Mentoring Mom Insecurities :: Summer of Mentorship Week 2
56:55

This special episode was recorded at our first Live Event held in 2017. Guests, Kat Lee & Wynter Pitts shared their mom stories. And encouraged with audience with thoughts on mentorship, friendship and dealing with fear and insecurity in motherhood. 

What we chat about:

  • Kat Lee and Wynter Pitts’ motherhood stories
  • Dealing with insecurities in motherhood
  • The importance of having mentors and deep friends in the motherhood journey
  • Mentors don’t have to be older than you or available weekly. Find a way to make mentorship work for you.
  • Think of areas you are struggling with and look for someone who excels in that area to mentor you, no matter their age
  • Start or join a DMA podcast club as a way to connect with other women
  • You can be a mentor too! Look for younger moms who need encouragement.
  • We are never alone because God is with us, but it’s hard to remember that when life gets crazy. Kat and Wynter share what helps them remember God in the midst of life.
  • “Should is not a sustainable why.” Don’t just do things you SHOULD do if you don’t have a good reason for WHY.
  • Helping your kids develop healthy friendships and community
  • Not trying to over control your children’s lives and praying through how involved you should be in their friendships
  • Hope for dealing with irrational fears and grief
  • Giving yourself permission to be honest with God when you aren’t coping well and realizing that he is good despite your circumstances

Connect with Kat and HelloMornings:

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

Connect with For Girls Like You:

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

Links Mentioned:

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Lovevery — Take the guesswork out of your child’s play. Choose Lovevery TODAY and get free shipping when you sign up to receive your Play Kits at Lovevery.com/DMA
  • Function of Beauty — Go to FunctionofBeauty.com/DMA to take your quiz and save 20% on your first order. That applies to their full range of customized hair, skin, and body products.
Jun 28, 2021
Resolving Sibling Conflict:: Summer of Mentorship Wk 1
58:08

"They just keep fighting!"

Summer, for us, means lots of unstructured time together as a family. Which is great. . . until it's not.

Perhaps you can identify. Maybe you see yourself in one of the following situations:

Situation #1 - The kids are fighting - again! The harder you try to make it stop, the worse it seems to get - and the kids seem more and more resentful.

Situation #2 - One minute they love each other and the next minute they’re arch enemies. The older they get the louder and angrier it gets. You hate the way this affects everyone’s mood, including your own.

Situation #3 - Time-outs, required apologies, and firmness temporarily curb the fighting, but it soon comes back with more intensity.

Situation #4 - Your young kids are beginning their rivalry and you worry where it’s heading if you don’t learn some better strategies.  (copied from Sibling Conflict Online Course description).

Jim & Lynne Jackson from ConnectedFamilies.org are back to equip us in training our children to solve conflict well. And instead of just wishing they would "just stop fighting", to recognize the gospel work of guiding our family to reconciliation.

Jim & Lynne have been on the show before sharing their fabulous 4-layer framework for discipline that connects (Listen here to Episode 80 & 81). And again helping connect in any situation (Ep 98).

Today, they are talking us through The Peace Process. A simple but effective way to guide our kids to a lifetime of reconciled relationships. Here's their great graphic with the four steps moving us from "crazy mountain" to peaceful reconciliation (Click here to print your own copy):
peace_process

Conflict is inevitable. Instead of just getting frustrated and annoyed, I've found having a plan to reconnect hearts and train empathy so helpful. I also loved all the phrases Jim & Lynne modeled to use as we guide our children through the process. Here are some of my favorites (I'll be bookmarking this page and referring to often):

  • "Sounds like y'all are having a hard time. Do you need my help or are you able to work it out on your own?"
  • "Solving brains won't work until we're calm. Why don't we each find a comfortable place. How long do you need? 5 min? 10 min? Then we'll come back together to work this out."
  • "Did you hear that? How does she feel? Do you like that what you did made her feel that way? You two are listening to each other. How does that feel?"
  • "Your big feelings are a gift. And they are an even greater gift with you can use them to help understand other's big feelings."
  • "What's going on? What was important to each person? How have you solved this problem before? Would you like to think of ways to solve the problem or do you want me to help give you choices on how to solve it?"
  • "Are there four things you could say that are kind and true about that person?"

Lastly, if you need more help learning how to guide your kiddos through the peace process, check out Jim & Lynne's new SIBLING CONFLICT ONLINE COURSE. I'll be working through it this summer. Join me!  USE DMA20 to save 20% off. 

What we chat about:

  • Considering your own baggage/sibling situation as you rush into your kids' conflict.
  • Are we trying to get conflict to stop or teach reconciliation?
  • The four steps to "The Peace Process". 
  • A real life example of applying peace process.
  • How training in reconciliation helps our kids in their future marriages and relationships.
  • Helping our kids learn how to solve the problem of the conflict (a 3-step process).
  • A scenario of a more empathetic child in conflict with a more strong-willed child--growing specific skills in kids.
  • Addressing the differences in your kids outside of conflict.
  • Help for the mom who has a child with special needs in the sibling mix.
  • Connecting with others based not on experience but emotion.
  • Tips for conflicts that happen right before you have to leave the house.

Connect with Jim & Lynne:

Connected Families Site :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest

Links Mentioned:

  • Free Discipline that Connects handbook
  • Building Empathy in Kids (Part 1) and Building Empathy in Kids (Part 2) article
  • "Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ." (Ephesians 4:15)
  • "Suppose your brother or sister has something against you, go make peace with them." (Abbr. Matthew 5:23-24).
  • "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God." (Matthew 5:9 NIV)
  • "You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family." (Matthew 5:9 MSG).
  • Need one-on-one parent coaching? Click here
  • Peaceful Mothering DVD

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • What is your process for sibling conflict to management in your home right now?
  • What are some ways you and your child can calm down in the heat of conflict? How could taking a mom "time out" help you can down?
  • Discuss how seeing conflict resolution in light of your child's future relationships (think coworkers and future spouse) can help you see why these skills are so important to learn now.
  • Guiding your kids with questions as they resolve conflict helps support them make better decisions. Think of a few questions you could ask for common disagreements.
  • Think about each of your kids and help make a plan for their individual personalities for conflict resolution.

FEATURED SPONSORS: 

Jun 21, 2021
The Screen Struggle is Real :: Arlene Pellicane [Ep 331]
55:46

It’s summertime again and in the absence of formal school your kids may be looking forward to unstructured time and more access to screens. As one of the first generations to parent kids in the age of smartphones, we can choose to be on high alert to how healthy our kids' digital habits are and help them set healthy boundaries.

My guest Arlene Pellicane shares strategies from her book Screen Kids and from her own family life. They have a “no phone, no gaming, no social media” policy for their kids and she shares the research and practical reasons behind why. But, wherever you are with screens and your family, this time of year is a perfect time for a reset. 

“For our summer mindset, we all need a break and this could be a beautiful time to have some kind of different routine with our screens."

We talk about digital vegetables vs digital candy, reconsidering phones for younger kids, building real world skills for our kids instead of just digital ones and setting digital boundaries. It’s so helpful and I’m already implementing some of Arlene’s advice for my boys this summer. 

Know that you are not alone in this struggle. Together we can do this!

Connect with Arlene: 

 

Links Mentioned:  

 Featured Sponsors: 

Jun 14, 2021
Slob Clean Your Summer :: Dana K White [Ep 330]
52:59

Managing your home in the midst of motherhood is a challenge, especially when cleaning, organizing and decluttering don’t come naturally. 

My guest Dana K. White struggled for years to figure out why her home was so messy. She could get it clean, but it would take days and then in no time it was right back to where she’d started with piles of clutter, laundry and dishes. 

“I had always thought before, my home is not who I am, but now it was my identity and it was even harder. And that was when I really thought. There's something wrong with me. Like, literally I am broken in some way. I cannot do this thing that other people seem to be able to do so easily.”

God brought her to a place of breakthrough when she started an anonymous blog to get open and real about being a “slob.” Through that, she started to discover some simple truths about cleaning and organizing strategies that actually work for people who don’t love cleaning and organizing.

We talk about tips for how to start cleaning when you feel overwhelmed, how to only make progress when decluttering and more. It’s a great listen for yourself and to learn how to help the less organized members of your family. 

Here’s to making progress on our homes this summer! Stay tuned for the Summer of Mentorship starting June 21st. Great episodes to listen to while you clean and declutter. 

Connect with Dana: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Rothy’s --Keep it clean with washable shoes and bags from Rothy’s. Plus they just launched men’s shoes, so make sure to check them out for the men in your life. Go to Rothys.com/DMA today to check out your favorites
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Jun 07, 2021
Your Body is GOOD :: Jess Connolly [Ep 329]
51:46

Jess Connolly has not always seen her body as good. It’s a struggle all of us can relate to. Whether it’s a concern over weight and external beauty or a physical disability or medical issue, there’s always something about our bodies that cause “trouble.” 

Jess shares about her struggle with an autoimmune disease and feeling body shame from an early age. 

“I spent a few years treating that disease, as if my body was a huge problem that just needed to be solved or a project that needed to be completed. My healthier behaviors as a young mom weren't rooted in love, but in extreme frustration.”

And she takes us into her journey of asking God to give her a kingdom body mindset to break free of body shame. We talk about shifting our perspective on what makes a body good and so much of it comes down to a key question Jess shares:

“Do you treat your body as if it is loved or as if you want it to be lovable? Are you trying to make it good? Are you trying to treat it as if it is good? Because when I treat my body as if it was made good, and I want to steward that.”

For more on this, grab a copy of Jess’ new book Breaking Free from Body Shame.

Connect with Jess: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

 

  • Acorn TV — Try Acorn TV free for 30 days. Go to Acorn.tv use code: dma (all lowercase letters). 

 

 

May 31, 2021
Let’s Talk about Sex :: Mary Flo Ridley and Megan Michelson [Ep 328]
50:30

You asked and I’m so happy to have Mary Flo Ridley and Megan Michelson back to coach us on how to talk with our kids about the topic of sex. I love their approach which is explained in their online course called Birds and Bees. It’s all about having multiple conversations over the years with your kids instead of having one big TALK when they are older. 

“What we want parents to do with the topic of sex is to not be afraid and be silenced, but to be equipped and have tools and phrases to say an age appropriate ways … They're drip by drip, by drip conversations, because it takes a lot for them to absorb this information.”

Mary Flo and Megan take us through reasons why we should have conversations with our youngest kids about reproduction, birth and specific scientific terms for private areas. We chat about how to bring these topics up and answer questions that might make you nervous at first. It’s all about giving your kids accurate and honest information on this important topic.

“I know when parents first hear about this they think, ‘I didn't want to talk to my kids about sex one time, why in the world, but I want to do this multiple times?’ But it's just so much easier to do it in bite size, age-appropriate phrases and conversations and soundbites because that's how things are digested and absorbed.”

Connect with Birds & Bees: 

Links Mentioned:  

Previous Podcasts with Birds & Bees:

Featured Sponsors: 

  • StoryWorth —Give your dad the most meaningful gift this Father’s Day with StoryWorth. Get started right away with no shipping required by going to StoryWorth.com/DMA to get $10 off your first purchase. 
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May 24, 2021
Exploring Global Cultures at Home :: Dorina Lazo Gilmore-Young [Ep 327]
36:02

Dorina Lazo Gilmore-Young is an author and speaker who is passionate about helping people discover God’s glory in unexpected places. But in the midst of the Pandemic with her family’s long-awaited travel plans delayed and then cancelled, Dorina found herself struggling to see glory in the continued quarantine life. 

With a long winter break and nothing to look forward to, Dorina processed her disappointment with her husband Shawn and her three daughters. Shawn suggested bringing Hawaii home by having a luau and ordering in Hawaiin food and it sparked the idea of Global Glory Chasers, a cultural exploration program for families. 

Dorina and I talk about doing deep dives into the food and culture of international communities and how helping our kids engage with other races and nationalities gives them a global perspective on the glory of God

“Learning about cultures is actually an invitation for us to learn more about God's glory and how he has made each one of us into his image bearers.  We can't understand God, unless we're willing to listen to stories of people from different backgrounds. So we like to say we’re breaking barriers by breaking bread at home and by eating the foods of the different cultures.”

Connect with Dorina: 

Links Mentioned:  

May 17, 2021
Going on a Soul 30 :: Kay Wyma [Ep 326]
55:07

In a world that seems to bring more and more division every day, how do we connect with other people in a deep, human way? Kay Wyma takes us into her story of how seemingly small acts of kindness, thankfulness and mercy have made all the difference for her and her family. 

“There are so many ways you can practice kindness that are outward acts of kindness. And then you'll start to realize kindness is picking up the laundry for somebody that I'm frustrated with, you know, that they could have done it themselves.There are kindness opportunities everywhere. Be kind to yourself for Pete's sake. At least one day a week. Actively do something kind for yourself.”

Learn about what Kay calls a Soul 30 and her new book The Peace Project. I love that this isn’t another thing for your to do list, it is more about HOW you do the things on your list. And when we practice kindness, thankfulness and mercy we can’t help reflecting the goodness of God to a world that needs it more than ever.   

Connect with Kay Wyma: 

 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Nextdoor—Join your neighborhood on the FREE app. Use this link nextdoor.com/DMA to let them know you heard about it from me. 
  • Betterhelp—Listeners of the DMA podcast get 10% off their first month of secure online professional counseling. Betterhelp.com/DMA.
May 10, 2021
Owning Your Motherhood :: Erin Moon & Courtney Cleveland [Ep 325]
01:04:25

Long-time friends Erin Moon and Courtney Cleveland join me to share their motherhood stories and how they’ve found their identity as moms separate from motherhood stereotypes. 

“There are so many ways to be a good mom and what it looks like for you doesn’t look like it does for me. And I really had to let go of the idea that I had to be the same kind of mother as everyone else... It was so freeing and it seems so simple. I mean, that's not even how humanity works. So why would motherhood be that way?”

We talk about mom superpowers, viewing dinner as optional food exposure and the ridiculousness of keeping track of socks for multiple kids. Listen and laugh along with us as we take light hearted views on the daily grind of motherhood. I’m sure you will relate. 

Don’t Miss: Near the end Erin shares a great idea for creating your own “fake Mother’s Day” on a different day from the actual holiday that I’m totally going to try. 

Happy Mother’s Day to you all! I pray you feel celebrated for all the unique gifts you bring into motherhood. 

Connect with Erin: 

Connect with Courtney: 

Links Mentioned: 

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Rothy’s — Check out all the amazing shoes, bags and masks available right now at Rothys.com/DMA
  • Thrive Market — Join Thrive Market to get $20 off your first order and an exclusive FREE gift. Go to Thrivemarket.com/DMA
May 03, 2021
Walking Thru Divorce :: Lara Williams [Ep 324]
48:11

The daily grind of marriage, parenting, and life wears on us all, but when your relationship with your spouse is no longer a healthy one, how do you choose to walk away? My guest and long-time friend Lara Williams brings us into her story of working through marriage infidelity with her husband and her long, painful journey to divorce.

“And it was a process, but I think I finally got to that place where I could accept that divorce was happening in my life, but that's just it. It's happening. It doesn't mean that's who I am. And it doesn't just because God hates it. It doesn't mean he hates me. He loves me and I went through a process of washing those lies with the truth of what God says and he's so gracious to transform our minds.”

We talk about all the ways Lara and her husband worked to save their marriage, what it was like when saving it was no longer an option and how God met Lara in that place. Lara shares about parenting when you are walking through divorce, dating after divorce, and how the church can both help and hurt during this painful experience. 

I’m so thankful for Lara’s heart and how bravely she shares her story. She has graciously given permission to publish her email address if you or someone you know would like to reach out on this topic. 

Connect with Lara: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors:

  • Nextdoor- Go to Nextdoor.com/DMA to sign up and see what your neighbors are talking about. Join your neighborhood today. 
  • Skylight Frame- You can get $10 off your purchase of a Skylight Frame when you go to skylightframe.com and enter code DMA. 
Apr 26, 2021
Inner Healing Prayer :: Jennifer Barnett [Ep 323]
50:57

There is often a disconnect from what we read in scripture and how we experience life. God say, “I have not given you a spirit of fear,” but we keenly feel fear and anxiety. We know that God has taken away our sins, but we still feel like it comes between us and hearing His voice. 

One powerful way to work towards freedom in these areas is through a biblically-based program of inner healing prayer. My guest Jennifer Barnett of Freedom Prayer joins me to talk about inner healing prayer or freedom prayer, a powerful process that helps restore individuals to a more fruitful and fulfilling walk with God.

“Inner healing prayer is its own sort of type of prayer. If you're not familiar with it, we would say it's some really intentional time devoted to allowing God to remove anything that would hinder someone from a full abiding relationship with him. That could look like sin, wounding, ungodly beliefs, or lies that we believe about ourselves, God or other people.”

My experience with inner healing prayer has been so powerful and I believe it can be for you too. For more information on Freedom Prayer visit their website at https://freedomprayer.org

Connect with Freedom Prayer: 

Featured Sponsors: 

  • FabFitFun — get $10 off your first box with the code DMA10 over at www.FabFitFun.com
  • BetterHelp—DMA listeners get 10% off their first month of online secure professional counseling at Betterhelp.com/DMA
Apr 19, 2021
Six Needs of Every Child :: Amy and Jeffrey Olrick [Ep 322]
55:56

As moms we are often looking for parenting formulas and quick fixes to solve our latest parenting problems. When they are babies, following formulas for sleeping and eating makes sense, but as they get older and their needs change it gets a lot more complicated. 

We often turn to friends and mentors for advice, but that doesn’t always work or what works for one of our kids doesn’t for another and it can make us feel lost. 

Jeffrey Olrick, Ph.D. and his wife Amy Olrick join me to share a different way to interpret our kids needs using some practical tools and the science of connection. They offer an alternative question to “What do I do?”, asking instead: “How can I be with this child?”. They go through the six needs of every child and a helpful compass to help you find your way when it gets challenging.

“I think some of it is a fear that we have parents. If we lose the trail for even a moment that our children will be put in imminent danger. And we want to set parents free from that and say, no, actually that's actually going to be pretty normal to lose the trail. But you are still together and you're going to find your way back to firm footing with these six needs.”

This approach is teaching me a lot in my own parenting and I know it will help you on your parenting journey. To learn more from the Olricks, check out their podcast!

Connect with the Olricks: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Hello Bello— Go to hellobello.com/DMA to get 25% off your diaper bundle order and 15% off any add ons like vitamins or wipes!
  • StoryWorth—Give your mom the most meaningful gift this Mother’s Day with StoryWorth. No shipping required. Go to StoryWorth.com/DMA and get $10 off your first purchase. 
Apr 12, 2021
Healing from Broken Friendships :: Shundria Riddick [Ep 321]
43:54

On a recent Instagram survey I learned that 68% of y’all have experienced broken friendships. I knew we needed an episode to help.

The last year has not been easy for any of us. So many things in our lives changed in response to the pandemic, political and racial tensions, and the loneliness of quarantine life. In the midst of everything, it has been hard to keep friendships healthy.

Licensed professional counselor Shundria Riddick is here to walk us through some healthy ways to work toward reconciliation and how to know when to walk away from friendship that is hurtful. We talk about setting healthy boundaries, having clarifying conversations, and how to analyze the health of relationships.

Connect with Shundria: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Rothys—Check out all the amazing shoes, bags and masks available right now at Rothys.com/DMA.
  • Thrive Market—Join Thrive Market today to get 25% off your first order AND an exclusive FREE gift! The ONLY way to get this offer is by going to Thrive Market.com/DMA
Apr 05, 2021
Hosting a Simple Passover Seder :: Chris and Karen Katulka [Ep 320]
54:47

With Easter right around the corner, the traditional Jewish feast of Passover is also coming up. The Passover Seder, a ritual feast that marks the beginning of Passover, is a powerful, symbolic meal to help both Christian and Jewish believers remember the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt.

My friends Chris and Karen Katulka walk us through all the elements in a way that is doable for families with young kids and still poignant for us as adults. You may be surprised all that you learn about how specific foods can serve as meaningful reminders of God’s redemption.

“And what you do is you eat the bitter herbs with matzah as a reminder of the bitterness of bondage that was felt for the Israelites. For us as Christians, you know, there was a point where you didn't know Christ, a point where you were separated. So that bitterness is a nice, fresh reminder of what was life like before.”

The Katulkas help make this sacred celebration accessible and understandable for families whether you’ve participated in the past or want to start a new tradition this year. Download their helpful Passover packet with recipes and more information.

Connect with the Friends of Israel: 

Links Mentioned:  

FEATURED SPONSORS: 

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Mar 29, 2021
Connecting Through Play :: Charissa Fry [Ep 319]
50:11

Licensed Professional Counselor Charissa Fry is back to help parents get the “most bang for our buck” when it comes to one-on-one connected time with our kids — PLAY!

Even if you’re a mom who doesn’t love playtime or you feel like you can’t add one more thing to your family schedule, listen in as Charissa breaks down how the benefits of special playtime far exceed the difficulties. 

“We follow the child's lead because it allows the child to feel seen, heard, understood, and delighted in like you care about what they care about. You're interested in what they're interested in. It also models cooperation. And it’s helpful with the power dynamic between a parent and a child.”

We talk about how to remove the teacher, parent and disciplinarian hats and enter into playtime with a positive and engaged attitude that can reap BIG benefits in our parenting over time. Charissa explains some of the “rules” of special playtime that can help us reinforce positive behavior and give our kids permission to play however they want. 

I hope this episode leaves you encouraged to connect with kids through imaginative play. For more information, check out this resource from Charissa! 

Helpful Verbal Cue:

“Hey, in five minutes, we're going to have special playtime and you get to choose what we do together.”

Connect with Charissa: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • FabFitFun— use code DMA10 to save $10 off your first FabFitFun box at FabFitFun.com
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Mar 22, 2021
True Intimacy with God :: Mo Isom Aiken [Ep 318]
01:00:51

I’m excited to welcome back Mo Isom Aiken  to the podcast. She writes and speaks powerfully about how God has redeemed her own brokenness and set her on a path to challenge, encourage and equip other Christ followers. In this episode we talk about how each of us was made for true intimacy with God on a heart level. 

“The ultimate will of the Father is to know him intimately and to be known by him and to press into an intimacy with God that is all-consuming and not based on our doing as much as our being with him -- who we are, who he is. Allowing this intimacy that really takes us to think about marital intimacy, a vulnerable exposed, honest place that draws near to us. And somehow this rhythmic, you know, coming together transforms our heart.”

Mo takes us into her own story of God peeling back the layers of shame and her own twisted view of intimacy to heal the deep places of her heart. We talk about how God wants to do the same for each of us, but it’s a process. 

In this time when so many of us have lost the support that sustained us and distractions that hid our true feelings, Mo invites us to draw near to God trusting him and exposing our physical vulnerabilities to him. 

“If we want to understand the deeper layers of spiritual intimacy with God, we've got to be willing to work through the very physical layers of things that have impacted our life and story because everything in the physical is ultimately served to shape our perspective of intimacy overall and especially intimacy with God.”

Connect with Mo: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Mar 15, 2021
Supporting Students with Dyslexia :: Kerri Irvin [Ep 317]
55:54

When it comes to learning differences and special education diagnoses, it can feel overwhelming and defeating to see your child struggle. My guest Kerri Irvin is a dyslexia specialist who has worked with countless children, teens and adults to help them thrive and embrace their learning differences. 

“It amazes me the gifts that God provides for all children, alongside their challenges. For every challenge, an equally important, if not more significant, gift has been provided and their challenges, without fail, are gifts that support them with their talents and make them better learners and people.”

We talk about what dyslexia is, how students with dyslexia learn differently, ways to partner with your child’s teachers to help them succeed, and how to support friends who have children with learning differences. Kerri shares with passion and hope about how dyslexia is not just a learning challenge, but can be a strength. 

Connect with Kerri

Email: kdicalt123@gmail.com 

Site: SK Designs for Learning

Links Mentioned:  

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  • Function of Beauty — Go to FunctionofBeauty.com/DMA to take your quiz and get 20% off your first order. 
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Mar 08, 2021
Bruce Learns to Label His Feelings :: Bruce and Heather [Ep 316]
42:57

“What’s something you’ve grown in but at different speeds?”. After collecting listener questions, this question stood out to my husband Bruce. So instead of doing a general Q and A episode (in honor of our 22nd wedding anniversary), we decided to discuss Bruce’s journey in learning how to identify what he is feeling, labeling it and sharing it with others. 

Listen to how we learned to process our feelings through church small group. And how we’ve grown as a couple to express those emotions in a healthy way.

“I think a common theme through all of this is just having a really constructive, clear language to talk about things. It is not like any one of these methods solves things. It's not a formula. The more precise and constructive and simple we make this language,  the more effective communication can be.”

Here are the cards we reference in the show (see website show notes). 

More Episodes with Bruce:

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

PrettyLitter — use code DMA to save 20% off a one month supply over at prettylitter.com

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Mar 01, 2021
A Lil Help with Boys and Screens :: David Thomas [Bonus]
10:46

David Thomas and I talked for SOOOO long in our interview because he's the BEST. The last part of our convo was specific to handling screen time with boys. The DMA team figured we could shorten the main episode by releasing this part separately. Of course, David and I did not cover every angle of managing technology (people write whole books on that topic). But I hope it helps you feel less alone in the struggle and empowered to do a few things:

  1. Create a Family Media Plan (or at least use the media calculator)--see links below
  2. Discuss what creative things your family has done outside of screen time. After reminiscing, brainstorm new ideas.
  3. Ask your son about one of his favorite video games. Perhaps sit down and play one with him. Let me know how it goes.

Links:

 

Feb 26, 2021
Understanding Boys Better :: David Thomas [Ep 315]
01:04:34

Understanding the emotions of boys is a challenge no matter the age. Anxiety that presents as anger or distraction. Depression shows up as low-grade irritability. David Thomas returns to the show to answer listener questions about all things boy.

David is a family therapist and director at DayStar Counseling Center in Nashville. He has lots of experience counseling families and children and has a set of twin boys himself. We talk about teaching our sons about emotional language, going to counseling, helping sibling relationships, and managing boy energy levels.

“I think we need to be clear with boys. I think it's always helpful to use concrete language with them. When we're concise, clear, and concrete, those are kind of three rules of thumb, we can consistently be adopting. The mistake that I think we can make is we kind of soft pedal and dance around things.”

If you are a parent of boys, this is an episode for you! Watch for a bonus episode coming out later this week too.

 

Connect with David: 

 

Links Mentioned:  

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Feb 22, 2021
Talk to Your Kids about Race :: Kirsten Watson [Ep 314]
41:24

The topic of racial inequality and the need for reconciliation and education on race in America is a BIG. It can seem overwhelmingly big when it comes to teaching our kids how to be allies for people who are different from them. 

 

My guest Kirsten Watson breaks down why we shouldn’t shy away from these conversations, but how to show our children the importance of diversity and how to righteously fight for what's right. 

 

“As a believer, as my sister in Christ, the reason it's so imperative for you to have this conversation with your kids is because when it happens to my kid, when the joke is made, I need your kid to stand up for my kid. Because they know that my kid was made in the image of Christ and they know that God made us all different. That they would stand up for my kid, because my kid is any kid who is not white.”

 

Having these conversations with our kids and bringing it back to God's truth allows us to change the narrative and raise the next generation to continue to work toward racial unity.

 

Connect with Kirsten: 

 

 

Links Mentioned:  

 

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Feb 15, 2021
Overwhelmed Beyond Your Strength :: Jackie Askvig [Ep 313]
55:28

My guest Jackie and her husband David always thought they would foster and maybe adopt. After starting a family of their own, fostering siblings for a time and having twins, a viral photo of a malnourished orphan in Ukraine changed everything. 

As Jackie and her family prayed for the boy to be adopted and cared for, God spoke to her heart.

“There were plenty of reasons that we could come up with, but no real reason that seemed good enough to say ‘no’ to it. So we committed to adopting him. We didn't even know what country he was from to start with people. God just said, that's your son.”

After committing to their first adoption, another boy in Ukraine in a similar situation came to their attention. He was soon to “age out” of the adoption system and was desperate for a family. Again, Jackie and her family prayed and again God called them to adopt.

Listen to the episode to learn more of Jackie’s story and all that God has done from them simply saying “Yes” to this assignment outside of her own strength. Another reminder not to overcomplicate motherhood, to watch how kids can flourish with love and care. 

Here are side-by-side pics of Miles and Jonah from the day of adoption, to 1 year and 2 year anniversaries. 

Connect with Jackie: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

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Feb 08, 2021
Why Read the Entire Bible? :: Tara Leigh Cobble [Ep 312]
41:46

Have you read the whole Bible? That was the question my guest Tara-Leigh Cobble struggled to answer while talking to a pastor friend. As she thought back through her life growing up in a Christian home, being involved in church and now working in full-time ministry and she couldn’t say for sure that she’d really read ALL of the Bible. 

So she started a chronological reading plan to read it all, even the genealogies. But as she read, Tara had to wrestle with stories she’d never heard from the pulpit.  

“I was questioning the Bible because I was reading the Bible and I was questioning not is this true, but is he good? Yeah. Do I like him? My mentor said the places where you have difficulty with God lean in because the good stuff is on the other side of this. The good stuff is on the other side of this struggle.”

After completing her own journey of reading the full Bible and seeing scripture and God in a new way, Tara-Leigh created The Bible Recap podcast and book to help others encounter God through his Word. And she’s here to give us a pep talk for reading the full Bible too. 

“You behold the living God in scripture, and all of a sudden, instead of feeling burdened by your to-do list, you're going to be buoyed and carried along by the love of the God of the universe and by the person of who he is. And that's what I want you to take away from scripture every day, a vision of the God who loves you and who has already accomplished all that he requires of you.”

Connect with Tara-Leigh: 

Links Mentioned:  

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  • Pretty Litter — get 20% off your first order at prettylitter.com with promo code: DMA
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Feb 01, 2021
Getting Brave About Anxiety :: Sissy Goff [Ep 311]
49:35

Sissy Goff is one of our favorite counselors to have on the show and she’s back with us to talk about her new guide for helping teen girls with worry and anxiety. But beyond that she offers hope and help for all of us as we experience hard emotions in the midst of this pandemic.

We talk about strategies for working through worry and anxiety for different ages and stages of kids and for us as moms. And Sissy reminds us to trust our instincts when it comes to helping our kids. 

“You are not alone. And as a mom, your gut is your superpower. You are so intuitive and trust your gut on what's going on with your kids and, and have a few people that you trust a lot that you can talk to. Definitely talk about it because anxiety left untreated only gets worse. I'm seeing so much more in the pandemic that it's spilling over into depression.”

She also reminds us that asking for help is a brave and often necessary step for helping our kids learn practical ways to fight back when worries come up.

Connect with Sissy: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jan 25, 2021
Finding Yourself in Motherhood :: Amber O'Neal Johnston [Ep 310]
49:59

Amber O’Neal describes herself as a homeschooling mama using Charlotte Mason principles in an atmosphere where “Charlotte Mason wears an afro.” She joins me to talk about how she unexpectedly found she loved homeschooling and working to help her kids love themselves and others.

“The Holy Spirit is the supreme educator and the Holy Spirit will speak directly and work directly with our children just as he does through us. And that was a total reframe for me because it gave me a lot of freedom and released a lot of pressure for me when I realized that I'm actually not the supreme educator, I am a guide and I'm going to come alongside my child and that my job is not to teach in the traditional sense of teaching, but more to act as a guide.”

Amber shares why she’s creating resources for her children and others to share books and history from people of color and the journey she’s been on with her children as she encourages them to embrace their skin color and cultural history.

 

And her resources and the Charlotte Mason principles aren’t just for homeschooling mamas. She has book lists of great things to read with your children to give them a more holistic view on black history, poetry and culture. 

Connect with Amber: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jan 18, 2021
Safe Conversations :: Harville Hendrix and Helen Hunt [Ep 309]
46:58

Harville Hendrix, PhD and his wife Helen Hunt, PhD have been helping couples for years as therapists, authors and speakers. They are on a mission to share the concepts of safe conversations with the world. They join me to share how their method can help us have more effective in-depth conversations with our spouse and children.

This works every time. It works with parents, with children and couples. It is something that we now know scientifically that if you mirror another person back accurately and with warmth and no judgment, something will happen inside of them. Something marvelous.

They model a safe conversation for us and offer a lot of encouragement and hope for couples who are struggling and how “Conflict is future growth waiting to happen.”

Harville and Helen have an amazing offer for DMA listeners. Use code DMA on their site at safeconversations.com to get 50% off your choice of SC Essentials or the Ultimate Couples Bundle, both courses will receive free tickets to a live workshop of your choice, a $196 value.

Connect with Harville & Helen: 

Links Mentioned:  

Safe Conversations courses: https://safeconversations.com

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Jan 11, 2021
Redeeming Shame through Community :: Dr. Curt Thompson [Ep 308]
43:42

Our kids begin to feel and respond to shame as early as 15 to 18 months of age. Those early moments can begin a lifelong struggle with feeling unworthy, inadequate and unlovable. Shame also disintegrates us (separating our thinking brain from our feeling brain) and isolates us from others. 

My guest is Dr. Curt Thompson, a psychiatrist and expert on the effects of shame and how to find freedom from the lifelong negative messages that come after us and our family.

“One of the things that we notice about shame is that because we are immobilized and we are hiding, shame does not actually ever allow us to move toward God. This is why we have to have someone come and find us. This is why when our children are experiencing shame, we have to go and find them. This is why it's important for us as parents to have others who are coming to find us.”

YES! Moms don’t let moms sit in shame. We can choose to seek out others when they are stuck in the shame cycle. Who are your 2 or 3 moms that will help you tell your story more truly? 

Dr. Thompson walks us through some practical ways to build in memories and physical reminders to work against shame in the future for both ourselves and others. And throughout our conversation he points back to how God doesn’t leave us to deal with shame alone.

“The beautiful thing is Jesus isn’t worried about our kids. He's not worried about your mothering. He's delighted. He knows how hard this work is and he knows that we will do it imperfectly. Even when we have our worst moments in which we foist to shame upon our kids or when our kids experience shame against everything that we're doing to try to combat it, God is saying: ‘I'm not worried. I never run out of options.’”

Connect with Dr. Thompson: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Jan 04, 2021
Worth Repeating // Kirk Martin (Calm Parenting)
24:55

I love Kirk’s realistic approach to parenting. He understands what your home dynamics are like. And gives practical tips. After listening to today’s episode you will have at least three different “tricks” to apply.

Most of all, I’m thankful for the new perspective he has given me. Kirk helped me recognize how emotionally invested I was in my boys’ behavior and freed me from the need to regulate their behavior for them.

The last couple days I’ve enjoyed the boys more. I’m also less tense and frustrated when we are out in public. In fact, I may need to go back and listen to this episode more than once, so it sticks!

This episode originally aired in May of 2015

Kirk came back on the show multiple times. Check out additional episodes here.

What we chat about:

  • Kirk’s realization that he needed to focus on his own behavior and stop trying to fix his son’s strong-willed behavior.
  • The switch he made from training 1500 kids in his home to training parents to calm themselves.
  • The one thing you can do today to de-escalate a tense situation in your home.
  • How to calmly handle your child’s meltdown

I can only control one person in life, and that’s me.

  • How motion changes emotion–helping little ones calm down b/c they don’t know how to “think” their way out.
  • What to do in the middle of Target aisle 3 when your child freaks out
  • Handling a tantruming child when his siblings are fighting and another needs help with homework and dinner is cooking (Heather’s daily 5 pm reality).

If you don’t care enough about yourself, to take care of yourself physically, emotionally, spiritually. . .why would anyone else care?

  • How sometimes parents want good behavior so badly, they are too invested in it and give children too much control.
  • How to be an impartial giver of wisdom.
  • Write down your emotional triggers & do the opposite of what you normally do.

Connect with Kirk:

Site :: Twitter :: Facebook :: Podcast

Links Mentioned:

  • CDs/DVDs
  • 888-506-1871–Toll Free Number for Frustrated Parents

Become a DMA Insider! Join me and Bruce in 2021 to discuss StrengthsFinder! How it impacts your marriage, parenting and career. You're invited! 

Dec 28, 2020
Worth Repeating // Christy Nockels (Christmas Ed)
21:47

This episode originally aired in Nov 2016

Today’s guest is Christy Nockels, Dove award winning musician and mom to three children. In 2006 she made the God-led choice to step away from the music industry, for a time, to pour into her family.

In 2016 she released the solo Christmas album, “The Thrill of Hope”. With a blend of classic Christmas carols and original pieces, she has crafted a beautiful addition to our Christmas music collections.

In this episode you’ll hear the inspiration behind the songs, “Amaryllis” and “Wrap This One Up”. . .both stories gave me goosebumps. I won’t think of the Bethlehem shepherds the same way again. And the winter blooming amaryllis reminds us the hope Jesus brought . . .

Our King has come, He’s with us now & He’s making all things new again. That’s the thrill of hope.

What we chat about:

  • How motherhood takes you from peaceful quiet times to sock-and-underwear prayers
  • The secret of simple scripture and open dialogue with God
  • Christy’s new album “The Thrill of Hope”- her first Christmas album!
  • The message of the amaryllis for those with heavy hearts in the Christmas season
  • How “wrapped in swaddling clothes” may have meant much more to the shepherds
  • Christy’s song on the new album that makes her listeners “ugly cry”

Links Mentioned:

You are invited to become a DMA Insider! Join us over here and get bonus content. Including live Mentor Moment Q&As. In 2021 Bruce and I will lead Insiders through a StrengthsFinder Series. Learn the 101s of StrengthsFinder. And how knowing your Strengths impacts your marriage, parenting and career. 

Merry Christmas!

Dec 21, 2020
Worth Repeating // Sally Lloyd Jones
25:16

This is episode originally aired in Nov of 2015. 

Our copy is duct-taped and well-loved. . .

My oldest son beamed telling me how he’s read the whole Bible in a couple weeks. . .

It’s sold almost 2 million copies. . .

Children (and adults) have been wooed by the story of their Great Rescuer. Of His ‘Never-Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love.’

And now “The Jesus Storybook Bible” is even more accessible.

This week’s podcast guest, author Sally Lloyd-Jones, chats with me about her newest project. . .

Same great content, new design, new title. . .for a new audience. “The Story of God’s Love for You” is now available. For the person you never would have thought to give a children’s Bible. The person who needs to hear:

“It’s not about rules, so keeping them God will love us. Or heroes we’re supposed to copy so God will love us. It’s about a God who loved us before we even knew Him. A God who will move heaven and earth to be with His children.” –Sally Lloyd-Jones

In this episode, Sally shares a little of her background and the inspiration behind “The Jesus Storybook Bible”. We also spend time talking about how God uses stories to reach our hearts.

Sally knows how to speak grace and the gospel message. Her words will feel like a deep cleansing breath. Her books are daily reminders of grace. The grace we long to show ourselves and our children.

Connect with Sally:

Story of God’s Love for You :: Site :: Facebook :: Instagram

Join our DMA Community: 

Become a DMA Insider. In 2021 Bruce and I will lead the community through a StrengthsFinder Series. Learn the 101 of StrengthsFinder. How knowing your strengths helps your marriage, parenting and career. 

Dec 14, 2020
Worth Repeating // Jess Connolly
25:00

"We can feel isolated – that’s real, but we can’t stay there. We have the entire trinity on our side, the Father loving us fiercely and making a good plan, the Holy Spirit interceding on our behalf, our coheir Christ interceding and making a way for us.

Don’t believe the lie that it’s all on your shoulders, and it’s all up to you and you have no clue where to go or what to do.  He is a very big God, and what’s better – He is incredibly near." --Jess Connolly, A Naptime Diary

This is an edited, republished episode from April 2015. 

In this episode Jess openly shares about her bouts with depression. She offers three “helps” for the gal struggling to have hope. I nodded with agreement at everything she says. 

Especially the clinging to intimacy with God part. The praying out loud, walking around your house reading Scripture part.

Cuz motherhood is no joke. There is an invisible battle raging all around us. We aren’t alone. Like Jess said we have the entire trinity on our side.

Connect with Jess here: https://jessconnolly.com/

**Starting in 2021 Don't Mom Alone Insiders in our Patreon Community will begin a "StrengthsFinder Series". Learn the 101 of StrengthsFinder, how it impacts your marriage and parenting and get direction for your life pursuits. Go to Patreon.com/DontMomAlone to learn more. **

Dec 07, 2020
How to Have Healthy Conflict :: Lynn Hoffman [Ep 307]
49:21

Between the pandemic and uncertainty of this last year and all the pressure of the upcoming holiday season, there is a lot of potential for conflict. My friend and mentor Lynn Hoffman is here with some timely advice on how to engage in this inevitable conflict in a healthy way.

We talk about doing some inner work when you feel hurt by someone or see conflict on the horizon and Lynn shares some stories of how examining her own heart and feelings have made all the difference in her own relationships. 

“It’s about recognizing that I'm a limited human being and I have a limited amount of emotional capacity. It is not infinite. So it's my responsibility. Not somebody else's to pull back and spend some time with the Lord.To do some inner work to really figure out, okay, what's going on with me and what do I need at this moment?”

Whether you find yourself in new, hard places of stress and conflict or fear the constant repeating of old woundings when interacting with family, this episode is for you. 

Questions to ask yourself in conflict:

  • What happened?
  • What do I think about this situation and person?
  • What did I want (expect)?
  • How do I feel (now and any related past feelings)

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Hello Bello -- Get 25% off your diaper bundle order. Plus get 15% off any add-ons. Go to hellobello.com/DMA
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  • Ancestry -- Get an Ancestry gift today with their special Holiday pricing. Ancestry.com/DMA
Nov 30, 2020
Santa or No Santa :: Ep 306
37:46

You know who is coming to town. The big man in the red suit is everywhere this time of year and each of us grew up with different traditions on how to engage with and celebrate Santa. 

My assistant Sarah-Jane and I chat about what it was like for each of us growing up with and without Santa and how we acknowledge the jolly yuletide figure with our kids without taking the focus off Jesus.

Sarah-Jane shares how her family adopted a separate holiday in December, Saint Nicholas Day, and I talk about playing the “Santa Game” with my kids. Wherever you fall on the “Santa spectrum,” we hope this conversation gives you grace to celebrate Christmas with your family with or without Santa being a major part (and give that same grace to others).

 

“Isn't it so great that God doesn't work the same way as Santa? It’s because we're so naughty that we got the gift of Jesus. It's the opposite. So I would, as a teaching moment to reemphasize the glorious grace of Jesus. Instead of thinking, I can't do Santa because it takes away from the grace of Jesus, the good news is we have a different option.”

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsors: 

  • Skylight Frames --get $10 off your purchase of a Skylight Frame when you go to SkylightFrame.com and enter code DMA.
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  • PrepDish -- Just go to Prepdish.com/shop and enter code DMA5020 at checkout to get HALF OFF meal plans (deal only lasts from Black Friday to Cyber Monday). 
Nov 23, 2020
Celebrating Advent :: Tsh Oxenreider [Ep 305]
47:38

As a mom of three small children, author and podcaster Tsh Oxenreider found Christmas a bit overwhelming and as Charlie Brown would say, “too commercial.” Year after year she found herself dreading the season and looking for simple ways to refocus the holiday on the things that mattered most. 

After living overseas for a year with her family and switching to a more liturgical church, Tsh found the centuries old observance of Advent to be the perfect way to slow down the crazy season of Christmas. She joins me to introduce Advent if you are new to it and to talk about the beautiful new Advent guide she created.

“This is for us, this is to reset our hearts and our focus to that which is the true reason we celebrate Christmas. So the thing I love about celebrating Advent in our culture is that it feels pretty counter-cultural in a world that both is focused on the gifts and is focused on the consumption parts of Christmas.”

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the liturgical practice of Advent, this is the show for you! Tsh shares a lot of practicals and perspectives about why celebrating this separate season can help us prepare for both the celebration of Jesus’ birth and the eventual time when Christ will, one day, make all things new.

Connect with Tsh: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Nov 16, 2020
Forgiving What You Can’t Forget :: Lysa TerKeurst [Ep 304]
53:13

Do  you  ever  find  yourself  replaying  and  reliving  the details of the deepest hurt in your life? My guest today has endured a devastating, public heartbreak – and she has wrestled with the lingering,unresolved pain which followed. Author and speaker Lysa TerKeurst joins me to share part of her  journey of  learning to forgive what you can’t forget.

“I don't want to make this sound more clean and pretty than it actually was. It was hard. It was horrific. It was terrible. And walking out something as devastating as an affair in a marriage created tremendous burden and tremendous hardship. But I will say that one commitment that I made that was really important was that I can feel hurt, but I don't have to choose to live hurt. Or perpetuate that hurt into other people.”

Lysa shares vulnerably and offers advice for anyone who feels stuck in a cycle of unresolved pain. We talk about the huge help a Christian counselor has been both for Lysa and her children throughout this process and how she delved into what the Bible really says about forgiveness.

“The Bible never says that people have to forgive and forget. It actually says quite the opposite. If we can be healed of it, it is actually beneficial not to forget because it becomes a testimony that can be used in powerful ways. And that's part of the good that God can bring in our story. I think how we know that we are experiencing healing is the way that we tell the stories of our lives.”

Connect with Lysa: 

Links Mentioned:  

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  • HelloBello --Get a diaper bundle 25% off, free shipping and 15% off add-ons hellobello.com/DMA
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Nov 09, 2020
Praying as God's Daughter :: Molly Rhodes [Ep 303]
43:40

As a long time believer, my friend Molly just couldn’t see much value in prayer. With her always on-the-go personality and her full life raising three boys with her husband, taking the time to sit in silence and pray seemed unappealing. Besides, doesn’t God already know what’s going to happen? 

But, something shifted in a big way for Molly as she started to learn more about the Holy Spirit and met a friend who prayed with power and conviction and talked about really having a relationship with God. 

“I would say that my prayers were very polite and just formal at best and just really few and far between. So I really did just kind of blow the lid off of the box that I had him in regarding prayer and just gave me this fresh perspective of going to him and communing with him…  I started to see it as this right and this privilege to pray as God's daughter.”

Since then, Molly has seen God move in powerful ways in her life through the humble act of prayer. She shares just a few of the stories of how God has used her — just a “normal mom” — to minister to others around her, even door-to-door salespersons! 

If you are feeling discouraged or need a boost in your prayer life, this is the episode for you! I pray Molly’s story gets you excited about talking with God in a new way. 

Links Mentioned: 

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Nov 02, 2020
Your Funny Mom Stories [Ep 302]
42:11

With the heaviness of 2020 weighing on so many moms, I thought this week we should share a few laughs. My assistant Sarah-Jane Menefee joins me to share some funny mom stories we’ve experienced and stories that listeners submitted. 

We’ve got everything from simple misunderstandings to funny church stories to the ever-popular and unavoidable poop stories. I also share a tip on one way to remember the fun stories for each of your kids that doesn’t involve trying to write things down in a book. 😉

Sometimes you’ve got to laugh to keep from crying and that’s what this week is all about.

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Oct 26, 2020
Sexual Identity and Radical Ordinary Hospitality :: Dr. Rosaria Butterfield [Ep 301]
51:49

Several listeners recommended Dr. Rosaria Butterfield as a guest on our recent survey. I’m so glad you did! Dr. Butterfield shares about her former life as a lesbian and professor of queer theory. In a quest to understand why Christians hated her, a neighbor introduced her Christ. Now she is an author, speaker, pastor’s wife,  adoptive mother of four and gospel advocate to her neighbors. 

She is passionate about helping Christians lovingly look past labels of sexual identity and share the gospel effectively.

“So if you know that you have neighbors who identify as lesbian. Don't avoid them. That's not what Christian neighbors do. You know? I think we really do need to see these things head on. Don't be afraid to listen to what people's concerns are and then speak a word in season. I would say too that Christians don't throw people away. We shouldn't be known for people who throw people away because they're inconvenient.”

We talk about a lot of subjects that can be difficult for us as moms to discuss, but also about how important it is that we have conversations with our kids about sexual identity, the Gospel and who God made them to be. 

“The first thing is as Christian parents, if you don't talk to your children about sexuality, Someone else will. So while we want to maintain modesty and care and age appropriateness, we absolutely do not want to shirk this responsibility. We need to foreground the beauty and the majesty and the calling of what it means to be a man and what it means to be a woman.”

Connect with Dr. Butterfield: 

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Dr. Butterfield’s Books:

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Oct 19, 2020
Healthy Habit Building :: Kat Lee [Ep 300]
49:55

Whether we like it or not we have habits that define our lives. We have habits that determine when we wake up, how we spend our time and where we focus our energy. Joining me today to talk about how to establish routines and healthy habits is my good friend Kat Lee. 

As the founder of Hello Mornings, Kat is all about helping people have a life-giving morning routine every day in as little as three minutes, but beyond just mornings, Kat has a wealth of knowledge to share on habit formation and a lot of encouragement that we can do them.

“Whatever it is that you're wanting to change or improve--whether it's your morning routine, your parenting, your marriage--whatever it might be, if you believe that it's possible with God and you have a plan and you're committed to it, then you can only progress.”

We talk about the idea of deconstructing habits we want to break to find solutions. Decision design and how our lives make habits easier or harder and we even get into a little neuroscience. 

But ultimately, Kat wants to remind me and you that God is for us and wants our time and attention.

“It's not just about the morning routine or checking anything off, but it's about tapping into the one thing that's going to help you the most each day. And I hope that if you walk away from anything from this episode, it's just that God is with you and that He is for you.”

Connect with Kat: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Oct 12, 2020
Nurturing Your Marriage :: Brent and Janis Sharpe [Ep 299]
44:49

Marriage can be really hard. You start out so in love and excited but over time the daily strain of work, home, and parenting makes it challenging to connect with your spouse. Add a global pandemic and the strain is just overwhelming. 

My guests Brent and Janis Sharpe are both Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists who have been married for 42 years. They are passionate about helping couples have healthy and thriving marriages even in the hardest of times. 

“Most marriages are dealing with malnutrition. They're feeding everything else in their life… all the demands of children, the demands of taking care of a house, the demands of their job. And by the end of the day, they're just spent and they don't have much energy to move back towards each other. So finding little ways that we can move back towards one another and care for each other is significant.”

We talk about healthy habits that we start right now to give our marriages a boost and they aren’t what you might expect. What is so encouraging about the tips they share is how simple and small these habits are and the big impact they can make.

Don't miss the 90/10 lie! 

Connect with Brent and Janis: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Oct 05, 2020
You Are Never Alone :: Max Lucado [Ep 298]
42:57

It was such an honor for me to chat with one of my favorite authors for this episode. Max Lucado has written almost 100 books and is a pastor at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio. We talk about his new book You Are Never Alone and he shares with so much kindness and care about how we can trust in the miracle of God’s presence — yep, even in 2020.  

Max knows God’s word and he combines meeting you where you with the truth of who God is in a powerful way as we talk about responding to loneliness as moms.

 

“I'm not saying it's going to be easy, but what if God does have a miracle? And what if God in his sovereignty can use this isolation or use this unusual circumstance to draw you closer to him and show you who he is? So rather than resist this, be open to the idea and say, Okay, Lord, I still believe you're there.”

 

If you are feeling weary with all this year has brought your way, this episode is the pep talk you need to reframe your perspective on God’s goodness and not give in to our emotions or feelings of hopelessness. 

“The message of the miracles is you're really not by yourself. You're not alone. Your heavenly father loves you and the Lord Jesus will come to you. And the Holy Spirit will empower you. Don't give in to despair now. You may feel nothing but exhaustion, but your feelings are not a barometer of the presence of God.”

Connect with Max: 

Links Mentioned:  

**Amazon affiliate links

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Sep 28, 2020
When Joy is a Struggle :: Keli Reese [Ep 297]
39:44

Keli Reese is a naturally joyful person and a teacher who loves children. She figured that motherhood would come naturally for her too. But, after having five children in five years she found herself in the midst of life and home with lots of littles and wondered where her joy had gone.

“I had this mindset of what our home was going to be like because I'm doing this for Jesus. We're going to have this wonderful home. And when things were not looking that way, when I wasn't loving getting up early; I wasn't loving the laundry that never ended; I wasn't loving potty training; (all the things that was actually happening in my real life) I found myself sinking really deep.” 

As she struggled to perform and achieve her way through motherhood and live up to the ideals she’d had before motherhood, Keli came to breaking point with God and that’s when everything changed. 

“I said God, I can't do it anymore. I cannot do it. And I can just remember the love of the Lord wrapping around me. And he reminded me that no one called me to do it all. I experienced this relief in this release of God.”

Connect with Keli: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Sep 21, 2020
Grace and Truth for Moms :: Lynne Jackson [Ep 296]
51:15

As a mom of three, Lynne Jackson struggled to maintain the order and perfection she expected to have in her life. Conflicts with her oldest son especially left her feeling defeated, angry and fearful of the future. 

“The Lord was speaking to me one day about some of these beliefs that I had. And in Ephesians 4:15, it talks about speaking the truth in love. And I felt like I heard his voice say, you are not speaking the truth in love to yourself, about you and your kids. And then I went on a journey to figure out what was really true.”

Lynne shares how she learned to fight back against the toxic lies she believed about herself and her kids with God’s truth.  We talk about practical ways we can take time to process our feelings with God and with others so we can let go of expectations that hurt our families and can find freedom in our identity in Christ.

“The goal to have perfect kids and be a perfect mom is just a setup for anger and despair. And it's actually idolatry. The real truth that helps us let go of that chronic anger is it's my job to parent wisely. My kid's job is to learn over time, to respond wisely. And that's a process.”

Connect with Lynne: 

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Sep 14, 2020
Practicing Faith Through Fear :: Dominique Young [Ep 295]
44:38

As minister and mom of one with another child on the way, Dominique Young looked like she had it all together —  great job, great family, great ministry. But a few months into her second pregnancy she started experiencing postpartum psychosis, high anxiety and began hearing voices.

The feelings she always tried to mask or hide behind helpful scriptures could not be controlled anymore, but she started to find breakthrough when she learned that her real problem was fear.

“I always thought faith was easy. If I just said something and I kept moving, then God, on the back end, without my knowledge would take out all the fear. All I had to do is quote enough scripture. And what God began to show me is that he wanted me to have faith that he is God, so that I could just be human.”

We talk about her experience of getting a new perspective on faith, learning to experience emotions in a healthy way, and allowing herself to rely on others more and she started her journey toward health and wholeness. Now, she helps other moms do the same with her online community of Faith Mamas.

Connect with Dominique Young: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Sep 07, 2020
Shaping Your Family Culture :: Kimberly Amici [Ep 294]
45:51

Kimberly Amici wanted her family to live by a set of values and a mission. So, she sat down with her husband and wrote out her ideas and expectations. But, in the midst of their busy life raising three kids and “going with the flow,” the Amici family didn’t have a set purpose or culture and it showed.

However, through a series of ongoing conversations as a family, Kimberly has been able to identify a few areas of purpose that are now a part of her family’s culture. It took having more in-depth conversations to get buy-in from kids to really identify and own their unique family culture.

Now, Kimberly provides coaching and resources that help others build their best families by having these conversations, choosing a few values to focus on and making small steps towards those values each day.  

“The routines that we've put in place, these small steps that we take every day is what builds culture. It's not some big campaign saying we're going to transform our lives and become this other family. It's these teeny, tiny steps along the way.”

Connect with Kimberly Amici: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Aug 31, 2020
Choose What Matters to YOU :: Kendra Adachi [Ep 293]
01:04:08

(If you struggle with how to manage distance learning and working from home...listen to Kendra "lazy genius" that situation for me)

Kendra Adachi also known as the Lazy Genius calls herself a professional permission giver. And she’s here to give us permission to be a genius about the things that matter and lazy about the things that don’t.

“I've come to this place of realizing we do not need another life hack. MacGyvering together a list of hacks and inspirational quotes isn’t going to get you a life that is wholehearted and anchored in what matters to you. That's why you're tired because that doesn't work.”

That sounds great, but the hard part is choosing what matters to YOU. We talk about how Kendra learned to let go of the expectations of doing everything well as a mom and how her Lazy Genius principles can help others get the same freedom.

She helps me “lazy genius” my life when it comes to the constant interruptions of parenting and virtual schooling as a work-at-home mom with some solutions that are both practical and soulful. I hope this conversation is helpful to many of you as we head into a fall season full of unknowns. 

My key takeaways:

  • Make house rules that serve you and your sanity
  • Breath prayer when you feel scattered or like everything needs your attention: Lord, open my eyes to what matters right now. 

Connect with Kendra: 

Links Mentioned:  

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Aug 24, 2020
Week Six Summer of Mentorship 2020 :: Stacey Thacker
46:58

When I recorded this interview in 2015 I had no idea just two years later my father would pass away. Stacey's wisdom on grief became my lifeline.

This year with so many losses our hearts have experienced constant, low-level grief. On top of being quarantined, some of you may have lost loved ones. As moms, you've been unable to have time/space to grieve (or have a formal memorial service).

Today’s podcast guest is my soul sister friend, Stacey Thacker. She and I have been chatting about life, Jesus and family for the many years. Stacey writes online and has authored several books (a new one releasing in just a few months--Threadbare Prayer). When we conducting this interview Stacey shared so much of what she had learned from the loss of her father.

Since the interview she's experienced additional trauma and grief. Through it all she remains tethered to her faithful God. She is wise and can be trusted.  

My hope is whether you are the one who has experienced loss or not, you will be encouraged that even when our worst fears are realized, God’s grace is ever present. And as Stacey points out:

“He holds all things together. And all things means all things.”

What we chat about:

  • How the message of Stacey’s book, “Hope for the Weary Mom” became real
  • How do moms grieve while handling the dailiness of motherhood
  • What actions and words of friends comforted her the most
  • How children grieve differently
  • How to be available and present with a grieving friend
  • What moments over the course of the year bring back grief
  • How do you manage your home when one child has to be hospitalized
  • How God holds all things together

Connect with Stacey:

Site :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest

Links Mentioned:

**Amazon affiliate links

Featured Sponsor: PrepDish get two weeks of FREE meal plans if you go to http://prepdish.com/dma 

Aug 10, 2020
Week Five Summer of Mentorship 2020 Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith
52:57

As moms, we know we need rest. We usually equate rest with sleep or rest with a vacation, but this week’s guest shares a much bigger picture of our need for rest in multiple areas of our lives. 

Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith is a medical doctor, wife and mother to two boys. She had everything she’d dreamed of and worked hard to achieve, but wasn’t enjoying it. 

“So I kept pushing and pushing myself till I got to the point where I literally just burned out. I wasn't happy with my job. I couldn't see how my marriage would survive. I didn't want my kids anymore. I was just at the end of myself. I didn't want the life I created.”

After reaching this breaking point, she went on a journey of restoration and healing where she learned to connect with God and with his plan for rest. Now she shares her research and methods with her patients and with all of us. If you’ve ever felt tired and at the end of yourself, this episode is for you. 

“We already have permission to rest, but the mommy guilt that sometimes comes tells us we don’t. That is really a lie. I look at it as the John 10:10. The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. And he's doing it to a lot of us through our inability to rest, our inability to trust God that when we lay things down that he is able to uphold them.”

What we chat about:

  • When Saundra reached her breaking point from stress and lack of true rest
  • We have physical limits to what we can do as moms 
  • How Saundra researched rest and looked at scripture for clarity on how God rested
  • The seven types of rest are physical, to mental, spiritual, emotional, social, sensory and creative.
  • The difference between a vacation and resting
  • Paying attention to a place that feels painful in your body in the moment vs ignoring it
  • Finding emotional rest through connection with friends, even through video chat if getting together is impossible
  • The importance of authentic, open friendships with women who can relate to your life situation
  • Ideas on how to stay engaged with your husband and reignite your marriage
  • Putting limits on social media time so that your mind has down time
  • Tips for getting mental rest and release ideas that make your mind race
  • Sensory rest-- what it is and ways to get it
  • It is not selfish to prioritize resting. It keeps you from having a toxic reaction to those around you.

Links Mentioned: 

Website: http://ichoosemybestlife.com/

Book: http://ichoosemybestlife.com/sacred-rest/ 

Quiz: http://restquiz.com/ 

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Aug 03, 2020
Week Four Summer of Mentorship 2020 :: Sally Clarkson
38:02

Sippy cup refill requests. Another load of laundry to fold. A sibling dispute.

Ever feel like you are reacting to life? Life is coming at you and you respond.

There have been many times in my mothering where instead of joy & hope I feel beat down and unfulfilled.

One woman who has whispered beauty and calm into those dark places, is today’s podcast guest, Sally Clarkson.

She told me motherhood can be more than just doing the dishes. It is an important job, guiding souls through discipleship and love. She taught me that my hard-to-handle boy may need me to sympathize more than instruct. She agreed boys may be a little wild. . .but showed me they can be civil & sip tea.

When I was coming out of a time of “not feeling like myself” Sally showed me how to own my life. To drop the negative thoughts which held me back. To consider what I wanted my days to look like and then make them happen.

He is the living, vibrant not-to-be-contained God. The more I would ponder God and engage with him in my own heart, the more my kids were drawing from me all the excellencies and realities of God. When we are passionate and filled with the Holy Spirit, our children will be exposed to the living God.

Sally has written her encouragement into a book called, “Own Your Life” (2015).

In this podcast episode, which originally aired January 6, 2015, I asked Sally all-the-things I’ve been pondering, from how to help your children really “know” God to simple advice on transforming a hard mom day.

What we talk about:

  • Why I struggle to read Sally’s books at the end of hard days.
  • Every mom has her own mom personality.
  • In spite of our mom errors, children can learn our hearts
  • How do we help our children “Yadah” God…to know Him personally
  • Living a life of color & taste & joy so our children see & know the goodness of the Lord.
  • How we are motivated…not by guilt or checklists but by love & encouragement.
  • Balancing grace & truth in parenting–practicing patience & love takes time.
  • Definition of the phrase “own your life”-
  • Sally’s example of a friend who “owns her life” in a special way why she serves her son with a disability.
  • In an immediate gratification society, not forgetting the long term process of your life. growing day by day, little by little.
  • Making sure you make time for yourself, to fill up before you pour out to the little people in your life.
  • Common barriers to owning your life.
  • Sally’s advice to a mom who was depressed<–LOVED THIS
  • Importance of believing the right philosophy–God is for you.

Connect with Sally:

Blog :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Instagram

Links:

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Jul 27, 2020
Week Three Summer of Mentorship 2020 Francie Winslow
48:33

(This episode originally aired in 2016) Francie Winslow shares the exponential impact marital intimacy has on the world around us.

Sex is a multiplying factor in our lives, not just with producing kids, but producing a massive amount of connection.

In the past two years Francie has been doing extensive research on theology of the body. Exploring how God stamped His image on us. How we express our roles as image bearers through sex in marriage.

God is an invisible God who wants to make himself visible to us. When man and woman come together as one it’s his invitation for humanity to become one with God. Intimately connected with Him.

Francie shares their own family stress and her personal struggle with anxiety. Things that can disrupt marital connection. She vulnerably shares how she and her husband have purposefully chosen sex over isolation.

God’s training us to fight for connection and for each other instead of against each other.

Love Francie’s practical tips for keeping technology in check. So often screens and devices creep in between couples, increasing the distance and decreasing the intimacy.

Don’t miss the list of great resources below to help train your children in forming a healthy perspective of the body and sex.

What we chat about:

  • Francie’s journey to learn sex isn’t dirty or a duty but a delight.
  • Her recent study of theology of the body.
  • How anxiety and adoption stress led Francie and her husband to choose to have more sex (you read that right).
  • How technology impacts our marital connection and practical solutions
  • Help and healing for women who struggle with their view of sex.
  • A reminder to daily do the things that keep you alive as a person.
  • The Ripple Effect of sex in marriage.
  • A word of encouragement for the single mom.
  • Training our kiddos in a healthy sexual worldview (check out Francie’s resource list below).

Connect with Francie:

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Links Mentioned:

Francie’s Resource List:

Get these books (as many as you can!) and read them over and over and over.  They are great for a range of ages – not just toddlers.  Not only will it help form a great spiritual foundation for your kids as they enter a sexually intense world as kids (sadly it happens young these days), it will help you as a grown up re-learn how to think about bodies, sexuality and identity.  It will also help give you simple, common language to use on an everyday basis in your home.  They have all been such a big part of us growing in this new way of seeing the gift of sex as a family.

For older kids:

Theology of His Body/Theology of Her Body** by Jason Evert (This was written with college kids in mind, but I found it super helpful and use it woven into conversations with my kids.)

For those who want more depth…Theology of the Body for Beginners** by Christopher West

**Amazon Affiliate Link

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Jul 20, 2020
Week Two Summer of Mentorship 2020 :: Dorena Williamson
48:27

Many of us avoid and struggle with conversations about race or disabilities because it’s uncomfortable. When our children ask innocent questions about someone who is different than they are, it can make us feel tongue tied or embarrassed.

Author Dorena Williamson has created some lovely children’s books to help parents respond and invite their children to join them on the journey of learning to love and speak worth over every person that God created.

And I kept feeling frustrated thinking that’s not the solution to teach your children to be colorblind because that’s minimizing the beauty of God’s handiwork. And as Christians we should be the biggest proponents of celebrating the beauty of our racial diversity and not minimizing it or sort of washing it away and this colorblind land.

She shares powerfully about how to engage with your children about racial and cultural differences and how we can model what it looks like to grow in the area of loving and accepting people who are different than us.

As our children get older, I think that these are valuable conversations to have with them because the beauty of it is that it tells your children you are teachable and that you don’t get it right all the time and that you’re continuing to learn and grow.

What we chat about:

  • All about Dorena’s family and their multiracial church, Strong Tower Bible Church
  • Her book ColorFull and the background behind why she wrote it
  • The creativity of God and how he uses color in all that he created
  • Looking for opportunities to share the beauty of racial differences with our children
  • Language for parents to use to help teach children and avoid shaming
  • Reinforcing the idea that “Different is not bad” and calling out the worth of people
  • Why equipping kids early is important
  • Modeling how we are all growing when it comes to loving and accepting people who are different than us
  • Encouraging our children to ask questions even when they are uncomfortable
  • Engaging with our kids about other cultures whether we can travel internationally or experience cultures in our own cities

Connect with Dorena:

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Links Mentioned:

Other books/sites that Dorena recommends: 
Jul 13, 2020
Week One Summer of Mentorship 2020 :: Rachel Anne Ridge
35:59

Rachel Anne Ridge is an author, professional artist, and speaker in Texas. Together with her husband Tom, she bootstrapped her way through the Great Recession, raised a family, and rediscovered her purpose in the midst of the everyday juggle of life. Her books, Flash, The Homeless Donkey Who Taught Me About Life, Faith, and Second Chances, and Walking with Henry are inspired by the stray donkeys (yes, donkeys) who interrupted her juggling act and revealed how ordinary (and sometimes hilarious) events help us find our higher purposes and deeper faith. Rachel is mom to three adult children and Nana to five littles.

 

Little did I know when I asked Rachel to be on the podcast, that the day before our interview she wrote a viral blog post encouraging the lonely mom of older kids (click here to read it).

 

Her honest, yet hopeful words, are what I’m sure caused 37,000 + people on Facebook to like her words. She admits the hard parts but encourages moms to keep their eyes on the bigger purpose.

Show Highlights: 

  • Rachel shares personal parenting challenges and what she (and her husband) did to overcome them.
  • Discover a variety of ways to get God-centered (none of which include getting up early).
  • Hear Rachel’s parenting regret and advice on how to avoid it.
  • Be encouraged by Rachel’s greatest parenting strength.
  • For the mom of older children, listen to Rachel’s thoughts on how discipline changes during this stage to a coaching role
  • Most importantly hear the Truth of God’s great love for you and your family.

Links: 

Connect with Rachel:

Blog :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest :: Instagram

Featured Sponsor: 

Thrive Market  go to https://thrivemarket.com/dma use DMA to get $20 of store credit. 

Jul 06, 2020
How to Avoid Power Struggles :: Stacy Bellward and Chad Hayenga [Ep 292]
41:28

With more family togetherness than ever before comes the potential for a lot more arguing and nagging our kids to obey. If you’re stuck in a parenting rut or negative cycle, then our friends from Connected Families are here to help. 

Stacey Bellward and Chad Hayenga join me to talk about breaking the patterns of defensiveness in our kids and how the power of curious questions can create productive conversations and build wisdom.

“I think as we look at scripture and we consider how Jesus approached people, you know, it was surprising to me when I first learned that Jesus asked 307 questions that are recorded in the gospels. And that's a lot of questioning. And we think about Jesus as being a great teacher. Jesus is a great teacher, but he often times uses questions to build wisdom and to hold people accountable.”

If you want to go deeper after listening to this show, Connected Families is offering a special promo code for Don’t Mom Alone listeners for their Power of Questions online course. With the code DMA20 it’s just $30. 

Connect with Connected Families: 

 

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Jun 29, 2020
Focus on Growth vs Guilt :: Lisa Bevere [Ep 291]
43:01

Author and speaker Lisa Bevere is back to give us a powerful message as we head into summer with our kids: “push aside the guilt and celebrate growth.”

She shares some personal stories from very hard places in her life as a young mom and how God led her to work through her anger and underlying fears. 

“God said to me: ‘Children inherit one of two things, either my promises or your fears.’ And that I needed to face off with these things. I leaned into that process because of my son. Not because of me. I just came to the place where I realized that in my weakness, he is strong. I've watched God take every weak place in my life and inhabit it with his strength.”

I’m so thankful for how Lisa takes us into her story and points to God’s faithfulness to heal and restore our brokenness. She also encourages all of us to set aside the unnecessary guilt and heavy expectations we may be carrying in motherhood and to accept God’s mercy which is new every morning. 

Connect with Lisa: 

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Jun 22, 2020
Build Lasting Faith in Your Kids :: Dr. Kara Powell [Ep 290]
44:46

From learning to walk to tying their shoes and eventually learning to drive (coming up for me soon!), so much of parenting is teaching, training and encouragement. 

When it comes to faith in God, we do all we can to teach our kids about God’s Word and engage kids in church, but research from the Fuller Youth Institute is helping to shine a light on the potential gaps that cause a high number of youth to abandon their faith in college.

My guest Dr. Kara Powell shares a number of research findings that can be game changers for our families as we seek to help our kids develop a faith that sticks with them their whole lives, or “sticky faith.” As a mom of three, she talks about how she’s parented differently in light of her research and why now is the perfect time to start making small changes that could make all the difference.

 

“One of the things that surprised me in our research is that when young people feel close to their parents, they're also more open to what's important to their parents, including their faith. And so it's not just good for our family relationships. It's also good for the long-term trajectory of our kids.”

Connect with the Fuller Youth Institute: 

Links Mentioned:  

Sponsor: Text DMA to 303030 to get a free trial of Beachbody On-Demand

Jun 15, 2020
Strengthening Our Friendships :: Susan Seay [Ep 289]
45:37

Deep friendships are essential to our lives. Whether we’re extroverted or introverted, have a lot of friends or a few, we all need someone else to walk through life with. I’m excited for you to hear from Susan Seay, a mom of 7 and a mentor to many. She shares some great advice on keeping our friendships strong during life’s challenges.

“We're all in the same storm. We're just not all dealing with it in the same way. We don't even have the same viewpoint on just how big this issue is or how small it is. If I need to remember, that's not why I chose them as friends. I didn't choose them because we agree on everything. We're always going to be different and unique and varied. It's our foundation that keeps our relationship strong.”

We talk about fighting back against insecurity and comparison which can break down friendships. And we get into how to have a healthy disagreement with a friend and stay close. Susan also shares tips for staying connected with friends and extending grace for misunderstandings and miscommunications that happen in our hyper-connected world. 

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Jun 08, 2020
Working from Home :: Jehava Brown [Ep 288]
36:50

My guest today Jehava Brown takes us into how she started a blog as a side project while staying home with her kids and transitioned that site into a full-time job. 

We talk about work/life balance, setting health boundaries and trusting God to be in charge of the things we can’t control.  

“I know that God is the one who provides every job and every dime. And so when I can rest in that, I don't feel the pressure to hustle 24 hours a day. I was working sometimes even 60 hours a week, which was just crazy. And most of it was at night, so it wasn't getting good sleep. I realized I'm not willing to live that way. So I really had to trust God to a different level”

Jehava is a mom of three boys and she blogs at www.onlygirl4boyz.com. She also shares how she’s connecting with her teenage son differently and some changes she’s made since the quarantine to keep up with housework.

Connect with Jehava: 

Jun 01, 2020
Tough Transitions with Toddlers and Newborns :: Hailey Bain and Meredith Woodruff [Ep 287]
40:22

In the past two years, a lot has changed in the lives of my friends Hailey and Meredith. They came on episode 199 to talk about discipline and toddlers. Since that conversation their families have grown and changed. 

Today we’re chatting about tough transitions with parenting young kids. Whether it’s a newborn who won’t stop screaming or the anticipation of being outnumbered by a third child, change is hard for both parents and kids. 

Hailey and Meredith share how they’ve found hope in God during some difficult situations and how their community of friends have helped them not mom alone. 

“They reminded me that God is working in this. He has not left you. He is working in this situation. And that gave me a lot of hope. One specific friend said: You are serving the Lord when you are holding your screaming baby, when you are in there trying to teach her how to go to sleep. That is service to the Lord.”

 

Links Mentioned:  

Discipline & Toddlers :: Hailey Bain & Meredith Woodruff [Ep 199]

Meredith shared scripture from Lamentations 3:16-24

Foundations Book by Ruth and Troy Simons **

Meredith's business : Concrete Conversations

Hailey's business : Hey Honey Clothing Company and her Facebook Store

Sponsors:

Sunbasket -- Get $35 off your first order of meals over at Sunbasket.com/dma. Use code DMA.

Exploring the Bible Together --Now through May 25, 2020, Don’t Mom Alone listeners can pick up a copy of Exploring the Bible Together along with a selection of ESV children’s Bibles for 40% off with a free Crossway+ membership. For more information, visit  crossway.org/DMA8

May 25, 2020
Reflecting on Financial Priorities :: Ericka Young [Ep 286]
35:41

During the ongoing health crisis of COVID-19, there are a lot of changes in household finances. Maybe grocery and electric bills have gone up because everyone is home. You or your spouse may have a reduction in income or you’ve faced losing your job. 

In the same way we work to protect ourselves with social distancing and wearing masks in public, there are some important things we can do to protect our finances and take time to reflect on where our money goes each month. Financial coach Ericka Young joins me to talk about budgets, cutting costs and how we can use this time to reprioritize.

“This is the perfect time to reflect on what it is that you really want, why you want it. And I think if people reflect on what their goals were in the beginning of the year and make certain that this season doesn't derail their progress. We can start looking on the bright side and ask God what he has next for us.” 

Ericka is the owner of Tailor-Made Budgets and has a passion for helping people pay off debt. Listen to how she and her husband paid off almost $100,000 in episode 244.

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Sponsors: 

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  • Little Passports -- Use DMA to get 15% off any subscription at https://www.littlepassports.com/
May 18, 2020
The Good God Wants for Our Families :: Paul David Tripp [Ep 285]
54:36

With the current global pandemic, we are all together more than ever and it’s causing friction in our relationship with our spouse and kids. Back by popular demand, Paul David Tripp is here to answer your parenting and marriage questions and give us hope for how God can grow good things in our families during this challenging time

“One of the things that I've tried to keep in mind as we're going through this unprecedented thing is what the cross of Jesus Christ teaches us. God can produce very good things out of very bad things. So I want to ask the question, what is the good that God wants for my marriage and my parenting out of this?”

We talk about building trust and unity in a marriage, making a plan with your spouse for parenting and discipline and the three stages of parenting from a Gospel perspective. It’s my hope that this episode will fill you with fresh faith for what is possible in your family. 

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Listen to previous Paul David Tripp episodes:

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  • Exploring the Bible Together --now through May 18, 2020, Don’t Mom Alone listeners can pick up a copy of Exploring the Bible Together along with a selection of ESV children’s Bibles for 40% off with a free Crossway+ membership. For more information, visit crossway.org/DMA6

  • Thrive Market -- Go to ThriveMarket.com/DMA. Join today and you’ll get up to twenty dollars in shopping credit toward your first order. 
May 11, 2020
When You Carry the Burden of Perfection :: Aubrie Norman [Ep 284]
41:06

I’m so excited to introduce you to my friend Aubrie Norman. We have walked together in community for a few years and it’s been a gift to see her family’s journey toward healing. 

Aubrie and her husband Thomas came to their marriage from broken families and felt the weight of unresolved issues from their past. As their family grew, so did the stress and lack of communication about each of their emotional needs.

Aubrie carried every perceived failure in marriage and parenting thinking it was her responsibility to make life better.

“There's obviously something I'm doing wrong. I'm a new wife and mom, so I felt the weight of responsibility. That really goes back to a huge lie, I have believed for a long time in my walk with the Lord. That it's up to me to do something and that God's waiting on me.”

She takes us into her family’s story of recovery and how she’s learned to trust God to take care of her relationships.

 

Links Mentioned:  

Sponsors:  

Sun Basket -- www.sunbasket.com/dma 

Crossway --  Exploring the Bible Together along with a selection of ESV children’s Bibles for 40% off with a free Crossway+ membership. For more information, visit crossway.org/DMA5.

May 04, 2020
Embracing the Mom You're Meant to Be :: Jo Saxton [Ep 283]
47:24

Have you ever questioned the roles you find yourself in, wondering if you were made for more?  Jo Saxton found herself in that position a few years (and two babies) into her marriage. She shares her struggle to own her calling and gifting, choose to work outside the home, and how her family thrived when she let go of fear.

Fear is not our friend. It has these aggressive ways that intimidate you and it has these quiet ways where you just don't do things and you don't know that that kind of checking out. It is a fear-based thing because it's so automatic. You don't even call it fear anymore. They're just the things you don't do and the ideas you don't entertain anymore.

Now as a leadership coach and speaker, Jo affirms that God designed women for influence and impact. In her new book, Ready to Rise, she shares meaningful wisdom from her journey to leadership and shares information to empower other women to leaders in their own communities. 

Connect with Jo: 

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Little Passports-- littlepassports.com use code DMA for 15% off

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Apr 27, 2020
Many Hues, One Humanity :: Dr. Lucretia Berry [Ep 282]
48:33

Dr. Lucretia Berry is the founder of Brownicity, an online space that provides education and support for racial healing. She joins me to share how we all can take steps to advocate and bring restoration to our communities that have been fractured by the lies and injustice of racism. 

As a mom of a multi-ethinic family, Lucretia shares how she and her husband addressed how they would teach their children about race. They didn’t want to teach their daughters to be “colorblind,” but instead wanted to talk about the many hues of humanity in a healthy way that cultivated life and beauty.

When that conversation extended beyond their family, Brownicity was born. Since then, Lucretia has authored a study, created an online course and spoken at many events to spread this antiracism information in a way that is accessible for everyone. 

It isn't about if you're racist or not, it's not even about that. You know, this is about how we've been molded and shaped. There are all these decisions that I've made in my life that are based on how I've been racialized and not necessarily my God-given identity. We all have this work to do, to detox from the ideology that we’ve been swimming in for the past 400 years or so. We've inherited it. But God is greater, so we have hope that we can create something new.

To access her courses for free in the month of April and May, learn more here. 

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Apr 20, 2020
Enneagram and Stress :: Ian Morgan Cron [BONUS]
36:15

In this bonus episode, we are sharing information from a session Ian Morgan Cron did on Enneagram and Stress. We go through each Enneagram number and talk about their strengths and weaknesses under pressure and some simple ways for each type to flourish in these hard times  

As we’ve said in previous episodes, the Enneagram is just a tool to help us understand ourselves and others better. At a time when being quarantined at home can cause all kinds of friction, understanding each other’s unique perspective on the world is such a gift. 

And the goal isn’t to stay stuck in our Enneagram number. The ultimate goal is to move toward health/wholeness and follow Jesus. 

“Jesus doesn’t have an Enneagram number. The wholeness of God is in him and he is at the center of all the nine types.”

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Go to compassion.com/dontmomalone to start sponsoring a child.  

 

Apr 17, 2020
Keeping Minds Healthy During Crisis :: Dr. Henry Cloud Recap [Ep281]
37:47

We’re all processing the changes that the COVID-19 pandemic has made to our daily routines. As we adjust to the new normal of sheltering-in-place, I wanted to share some information I’ve found helpful from Dr. Henry Cloud.

On a recent webinar I attended, Dr. Cloud talked through the psychology and the science of all that’s happening in our brains as our worlds have been turned upside down. He shares great ways to help us and our families stay mentally healthy during this unique time in history. (or during any time of crisis)

“We need to view ourselves like a house in how we're experiencing COVID-19 matters. The foundation of a house or a human is this sense of bondedness and connectedness to God and people. Relationships are vital to our structural integrity. ”

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Sponsor a Child with Compassion

Text HEATHER to 83393, and you’ll get a link back to a child you can sponsor.

Go to compassion.com/dontmomalone to start sponsoring a child.  

Apr 13, 2020
Choosing Connection Over Critique :: Rachel Macy Stafford [Ep 280]
51:25

Rachel’s 'Hands Free Mama' mentality is all about finding balance in a media-saturated, perfection-obsessed world. And it’s about seizing the little moments that life offers us to engage in real and meaningful interaction.

In this episode, Rachel shares realizing she 'd lost connection with her people. How she believed a lie that in order to be loved and accepted she needed to hide certain parts of herself, the messy parts, the imperfect parts. A pivotal moment happened when she vulnerably shared these thoughts with her daughter and found acceptance.

“Opening that door to being human actually brings us closer together. Then we can connect from that place of 'I'm struggling' and that doesn't mean there's something wrong with me. That doesn't mean I need to hide it. It means I need to reach out and talk to someone about this so we can work together to see how we might go forward.”

We dive into what Rachel’s learned in her parenting journey as a mom of teens and preteens. She talks about how choosing true connection with our kids can bring them closer to us and keep the lines of communication open as they grow up. 

“This is all about redefining what our role is as a parent. It is not the authoritarian model anymore. It is the guide, the truth teller and the encourager. Not the enforcer, not the half listener, not the critic. That those roles are only going to get us further and further from each other when the idea is right now we need to come closer.”

Connect with Rachel: 

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Apr 06, 2020
Listening to the Lord :: Kelsey Phillips [Ep 279]
47:58

A few years ago, my friend Kelsey Philips hit a crisis in her life. She felt physically unwell, depressed and desperate for healing. She connected with a missionary couple from her church who prayed with her and over her for two hours. It was in that prayer time that Kelsey recognized God’s voice for the first time.

He had been speaking to me for a long time. I just didn't know it was him. When you have an encounter like that, he speaks to these places that are so deep. He is healing wounds that are so far back and he is breaking you free of chains that are so heavy and hard and real. You don't ever want to go back to a place where you don't have that.

As we are in a worldwide crisis with the COVID-19 pandemic, I’m asking you to listen to Kelsey’s story with an open heart and mind. I believe we can hear God’s voice and that he is still speaking today. As Kelsey reminds us, there’s no better time than now to practice listening to the Lord. 

“It does require solitude and quiet and that is not our nature. But here we are in a season where we are in worldwide rest. We are forced into this place of quiet. We've all had to come off of the hamster wheel and this has been an incredible time to allow space to listen to him about what he's doing on so many levels.”

Links Mentioned:  

Additional Resources:

Mar 30, 2020
Faith in the Unexpected :: Christine Caine [Re-Run]
41:32

In light of an unexpected time in history, our team thought we all need to be reminded of the Truth of who God is and to have our faith emboldened. This episode stood out as the perfect one to re-release. This conversation originally aired Spring of 2018.

Powerhouse Christine Caine shares how she let go of fear and found faith for when the unexpected happened. Lots of truth and encouragement here for anyone who has encountered fear in parenting, a medical diagnosis and rejection in friendships… so all of us!

"Jesus never said we’re not going to have trials. He said, 'When trials come', not if, but when. I think sometimes as believers we forget that, but we have a grace within it. I think part of our testimony to a lost and broken world is the way we go through it."

What we chat about:

  • Christine Caine’s new book, Unexpected
  • Emboldening our faith and letting go of fear in motherhood
  • Trusting that God will fill in the gaps of what we’re able to do as parents
  • Basic spiritual practices can be some of the most powerful things in our lives
  • Facing painful actualites in a fallen world
  • Christine’s reaction to her cancer diagnosis
  • Jesus is the name above all other names, including cancer
  • Having a “faith cocoon” of friends to encourage you in the face of fear
  • Enduring suffering as Christians
  • Giving in to the pain and fear and suffering is not the answer
  • We serve a God who is bigger!
  • Godly motherhood in this generation is harder than it’s ever been
  • Leaning in with a spirit of faith and not pulling back with a spirit of fear
  • We’re called to train our children up and not restrain their giftings
  • Dealing with rejection in friendship and moving forward

Connect with Chris:

Links Mentioned: 

Mar 23, 2020
Giving Kids a Firm Foundation :: Troy Simons [Ep 278]
44:45

So much of parenting can feel like constantly disciplining our kids for their behaviors. This sets up a system of praise for good behavior, but doesn’t address the heart of our kids. 

As the Bible says in Isaiah 29:13, “The Lord says: "These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.”

As followers of Jesus, I know that we want more for our kids than to just acknowledge God with their lips. My talk today with Troy Simons has some practical advice and encouragement for us on how to have heart-level conversations about the Gospel with our kids.

You'll find that your understanding of who God is and what he's done with the Gospel will be there. And you'll find that coming out in your conversation with your kid. Be humble enough to be transparent about when you've been rebuked. You know, it may be some deep-seated, long struggling issue in your life. That kind of candor and response with our kids and conversation is just gold for them. It wins their hearts and shows them the influence of God’s word.

Learn more about Troy and Ruth’s new easy-to-read family devotion book that includes Scripture, devotional thoughts, and discussion questions for leading your family through 12 Biblical Truths.

Connect with the Troy: 

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Mar 16, 2020
Postpartum Depression :: Brittany Turner [Ep 277]
45:37

As difficult as pregnancy and birth tend to be, the postpartum period can be the hardest of all. After all the anticipation you finally have your baby! But many women don’t feel like themselves. They feel sad or hopeless and struggle to connect with their babies. 

My guest Brittany J. Turner takes us into her story of postpartum depression and what it took for her to start a journey towards wholeness.

For me it was years of pain that I had never dealt with. They were feeding this lie that I was alone, that I was unworthy of being loved, not just in my marital and parenting relationships, but I was unworthy of being loved as a daughter, as a friend and that I deserve to be alone. And so therapy was my escape.

While postpartum depression can’t totally be prevented or even predicted, we also talk about what went differently after she had her next child and the big part friendships and deeper community played.

Connect with the Brittany: 

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Featured Sponsor: Seek and Find Bible

Go to crossway.org/DMA3 to save 40% off ESV children's Bibles now until March 16th. 

Mar 09, 2020
Answering Your Questions :: Heather MacFadyen [Ep 276]
38:57

This week Don’t Mom Alone’s host Heather MacFadyen answers your questions! She shares everything from a favorite weeknight recipe to her personal testimony of faith and what worship song she has on repeat.

“That song to me just takes you to a place of setting aside all distraction and anything that's trying to pull you from his presence and his get you to a place of listening. I think sitting and listening to the Lord is probably where are we all struggle the most these days. We want to study, we want to check off something off a list, but to still ourselves and listen is really hard.”


If you have questions on helping your kids bond, how to find time to read the Bible while you’re raising little kids or want to know some of Heather’s favorite podcast guests, listen in!

(Big thanks to my virtual assistant Sarah-Jane Menefee for playing the role of host in this episode! She did a fantastic job!)

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Featured Sponsor: ESV Seek and Find Bible crossway.org/DMA2 to save 40% off by March 9th. 

Mar 02, 2020
Coping Mechanisms, Recovery and Codependency :: Taylor Bashta [Ep 275]
50:42

Twelve years into her marriage, Taylor Bashta knew that something was wrong. Her husband who had always been a casual drinker had become more and more dependent on alcohol. She started Googling, “What is an alcoholic?” and wondered what she should do to intervene. 

Taylor bravely takes us into her story to share what she did next and how setting firm boundaries and seeking help took both her and her husband on a journey of healing. Now, one year later, she shares what’s made the biggest impact and what they are doing to continue their healing.

“He is the only person in charge of his recovery. And I am the only person in charge of mine. We can not let each other effect that. I still live wondering what we’d do if he relapses. I think that's one of the scariest parts of recovery. AA’s big slogan is 'One Day at a Time.' So that’s what we’re focused on. Just one day at a time.”

Taylor talks about how we can support friends who may be going through this type of situation and how sharing openly can make all the difference.  

“Hiding is what kills us inside. And our hiding is what invites that shame, guilt, and condemnation. When you put it out there, it's gone. You're putting away gossip, you're putting away just the pressure. When you name it, it takes the power out of it.” 

Connect with the Bashtas: 

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Feb 24, 2020
Training an Oppositional Child (Bonus Episode) Dr. Scott Turansky
13:04

During the last 10 minutes of my conversation with Dr. Turansky I asked him about how to train a child with oppositional behavior. He mentioned 7 different tools. With each tool there are several resources available through his website (https://www.biblicalparenting.org/). 

Please listen to Ep 274 for the rest of the conversation. 

Feb 21, 2020
Training a Child's Heart :: Dr. Scott Turansky [Ep 274]
42:39

When a child disobeys, our knee-jerk reaction is typically to discipline with consequences. It’s probably how we were parented and seems like the best choice at the moment. But what if we took a different approach? 

My guest Scott Turansky has some exciting, hope-filled news for us. We can look at our child’s behavior and identify a heart attitude that needs training. Changing their attitudes or internal motivations is what will drive external or behavioral change. 

“I would suggest that parents move to consequences too quickly and that another approach is needed to make a lasting change in a child's heart. If we strategically focus on the heart of a child and use techniques that are more internally-focused, we can see some really significant things take place.”

Scott is an expert in parenting. He literally teaches college courses on it. He’s the director at the National Center for Biblical Parenting, the author of several books and a father of five. Scott shares a lot of wisdom and practical advice for moving our kids from a place of defiance and disobedience to an attitude of honor and selflessness. 

It’s a lot to take in, but so good and full of hope. We can do this and Scott is here with resources and ideas to help us train our kids’ hearts. 

Connect with Scott: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsor : ESV Seek and Find Bible Until 2/24/20 save 40% off at crossway.org/DMA1

Featured Sponsor : FabFitFun Use DMA10 at www.FabFitFun.com to save $10 off your first box

Feb 17, 2020
Navigating Friendships :: Melanie Shankle [Ep 273]
40:12

Finding friends as an adult, keeping up with friends when you become a mom, transitioning friendships as your children grow up… No one tells you what to expect. But, friendships are worth investing in and they are a key part of what helps us not mom alone.

Author, speaker and mentor mom Melanie Shankle joins me to share how she’s navigated friendships as an adult. She opens up about what worked, what didn’t and a few things she wishes she’d done differently.

“I think it was some of it was my own insecurities of getting out there and making new friends. I don't find women to be any less intimidating in my forties than I found them to be when I was 16 years old. I think there's also a thing as women that we tend to get in a circle and be inward-focused and we aren't good about looking out to see who might need a friend or who may want to be included.”

Melanie talks candidly about her friendships, being an introvert and about how friendship doesn’t mean we have to agree on everything. Looking back, she wishes she’d been more open to meeting people and making friends instead of being more inwardly-focused. 

“I think you would be better off going with the assumption that everybody would like to make a new friend. You know, just that everybody's open to friendship and to get to know a new person.”

Connect with Melanie: 

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Episodes on Friendship:

Feb 10, 2020
Fighting Toxic Thoughts :: Jennie Allen Ep 272
44:28

It starts subtly the same way it did with Eve in the garden. “Did God really say?” These small lies from the enemy pass through our minds as one of the 60,000 thoughts we have each day. But lies don’t stay small.

Some take root and build highways and cities in our brain that cause us to question God, question who we are and live in fear that the lies are actually the truth. 

My guest Jennie Allen talks about how to fight back against the lies that are constantly thrown at us. She opens up about her doubts and how she’s learned to fight back in the war for her mind. We talk about everything from mom guilt to questioning God’s existence to fighting for the minds of our kids. 

Jennie shares that we have to recognize there’s a battle and we have to fight it with the right kind of weapons.

“This is a spiritual war and we have to throw spiritual weapons at it. And then it says in 2 Corinthians 10 that we are given divine weapons that can destroy strongholds. So those of you out there that are like, you know what? This isn't passive, that thought of doubt or this isn't passive, this is a stronghold that has captivated me most of my life. Scripture says that we have divine weapons to destroy it. Now those divine weapons, we've got to choose to employ them and it's not easy.”

Listen as we learn how to fight back in the war for our minds.

Connect with Jennie: 

Links Mentioned:  

Feb 03, 2020
Finding God Faithful :: Kelly Minter [Ep 271]
46:07

Kelly Minter followed her dreams to Nashville to pursue a career in music. After years of highs and lows as an artist (mostly lows), Kelly had the opportunity to switch fields and write her first Bible study with LifeWay Publishers. 

Kelly shares with us about how in the midst of disappointment and unfulfilled dreams, she has found God faithful to continue writing her story. One of her first studies centered on the life of Joseph, a man who also had dreams that weren’t fulfilled the way he expected.

“Suffering made Joseph fit for the dreams that God had for him. Those dreams were birthed and they were going to happen. But it was the hard, difficult process that made Joseph ready and able for those dreams. Because a lot of humbling had to happen, a lot of faith had to be forged, a lot of obedience had to be built and a lot had to happen for Joseph to be ready for that.”

Now an established author and speaker, Kelly has a gorgeous new cookbook out focused on accessible recipes to inspire your cooking and stories about building community around the table.

Links Mentioned:  

Jan 27, 2020
Grace According to Our Needs :: Beth Moore [Ep 270]
52:55

It’s not an exaggeration to say that Beth Moore is a spiritual mother and inspiration to many women. Her numerous Bible studies and books are a staple in women’s ministries at countless churches. 

Instead of just an interview promoting her new book, she took the time to chat with me about her own hard experiences in motherhood and marriage. Get ready for some real talk about real life and real problems. Beth doesn’t want to be seen on a pedestal. 

Whether it was the difficulties of the busy schedule ministry and speaking or the dynamic of spiritual leadership in her home, Beth shares that she’s always found God to be faithful in her places of need. 

“There is grace for every day. I always think of the mercies of God when he says in Lamentations, that his mercies are new every morning. I think about the manna and how each person gathered exactly what they needed. That’s how God’s grace is for us. It is always given according to our needs.”

Beth is a powerful communicator and our interview only gets better as we keep talking. Hang in there to the end for a holy ground moment when she prays over all of us.

“Father, I ask you for supernatural trust in these mothers. I ask you that right now you would settle and establish their hearts that they are intimately known by you. I pray, father, that they will rest in the assurance that there is nothing they can do to shake your love or even shake away your presence with them.”

Connect with Beth: 

Links Mentioned:  

 

Jan 20, 2020
Intimacy with God is the Main Thing :: Kim Cash Tate [Ep 269]
36:50

As a lawyer who felt pressure to provide for her family and make a career for herself, Kim Cash Tate was surprised to feel God calling her to a ministry of staying home with her kids and later homeschooling them. 

She could have ignored the prompting and pursued her career, but Kim chose to “cling” to God and step out in faith. That decision took her to a lot of places that a law career never would. She became a fiction writer and led Bible studies and now writes and stars in a web series and in music videos.

But her focus isn’t about making a name for herself or reaching a goal. It’s always been about intimacy with God and following his leading in her life. 

If you feel stuck in your current season of motherhood or discouraged that you have dreams you haven’t seen fulfilled, Kim’s story can give you hope and expectancy that God is still writing your story. 

And as we choose to draw near to him, he is faithful to lead us to things that are better than we could’ve planned on our own.

Connect with Kim: 

Links Mentioned:  

Verses Mentioned:

You must follow the LORD your God, fear him, observe his commandments, listen to his voice, serve him, and cling to him. Deuteronomy 13:4 

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10

Featured Sponsor : PrepDish

Prep Dish meal plans were created by chef and dietician Allison Schaaf to help save you time and put home-cooked meals on the table. No meal time stress. No more answering the dreaded question, “What’s for Dinner?!”. Developed by chef and dietician Allison Schaaf, Prep Dish is a healthy, whole food based meal plan subscription service. Allison does all the planning for you- including easy-to-follow shopping lists and prep-ahead instructions so you know what to prepare and when. NOW offering KETO MEAL PLANS!

Imagine…all of your meals prepped and ready to go for the entire week. We like to call this meal time bliss! Get 2 weeks FREE go to Prepdish.com/dma.

Featured Sponsor: Connected Families

Your kids will mess up. So will you. Connected Families believes that the perfect time to build wisdom and GROW your relationship with your kids is during the messy times. They’ve developed an 8-session online course called Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart. It is only offered twice a year, so register today! https://connectedfamilies.org/dtc/online-course/ Use coupon code DMA15 for 15% off!

Jan 13, 2020
Declutter Like a Mother Allie Casazza Ep 268
40:36

Mountains of laundry, piles of toys and all the other “stuff” of life that comes into our homes can feel overwhelming, even to the neatest of moms with the best of intentions. We all love our families, but living with the messes and the clutter that comes along with them is a challenge.

My guest Allie Casazza knows what it feels like to be overwhelmed by constantly cleaning and picking up her house at the expense of enjoying time with her kids. A few years ago with four kids under the age of five, Allie had a moment of clarity with God as she sat crying in her bathroom.

If all I'm doing is cleaning up and it's just a bunch of stuff we don't really need, then what if we just didn't have stuff anymore?

That moment changed the course of her family. It also changed how she viewed motherhood and all the “stuff” that comes along with it. Now, she shares the practical ideas and the mental shifts that helped keep the clutter away to free up her life for what matters most. 

Connect with Allie: 

Links Mentioned:  

Featured Sponsor: PrepDish

Prep Dish meal plans were created by chef and dietician Allison Schaaf to help save you time and put home-cooked meals on the table. No meal time stress. No more answering the dreaded question, “What’s for Dinner?!”. Developed by chef and dietician Allison Schaaf, Prep Dish is a healthy, whole food based meal plan subscription service. Allison does all the planning for you- including easy-to-follow shopping lists and prep-ahead instructions so you know what to prepare and when. NOW offering KETO MEAL PLANS!

Imagine…all of your meals prepped and ready to go for the entire week. We like to call this meal time bliss! Get 2 weeks FREE go to Prepdish.com/dma.

Featured Sponsor: Connected Families

Your kids will mess up. So will you. Connected Families believes that the perfect time to build wisdom and GROW your relationship with your kids is during the messy times. They’ve developed an 8-session online course called Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart. It is only offered twice a year, so register today! https://connectedfamilies.org/dtc/online-course/ Use coupon code DMA15 for 15% off!

Jan 06, 2020
Broken Crayons Still Color Toni Collier Ep 267
45:54

Toni Collier’s short childhood ended in third grade when her mother had a stroke and she was practically left alone to care for her. Toni carried many heavy emotional burdens in her childhood and felt deeply that she had to protect herself because the world was not a safe place. 

Fast forward several years and Toni’s strength of will to avoid the emotional trauma she experienced as a child finally ran out. Now a mom and reeling from an emotionally abusive first marriage, Toni sought counseling and therapy for the healing she so desperately needed. 

“I was so blind to how unhealthy my life actually was, and the unveiling, the unwrapping of this emotional onion made me worse. But there was a healed Toni that I had to get to. Not just for me, but for my daughter and my new marriage. The only thing that brought me through was the hope that there is a God who said he could trade my weakness for his power.”

Toni opens up about the “treacherous” process of facing intense emotional trauma, the shame and stigma that surrounds therapy and what it’s like to parent in the midst of facing your own brokenness.

Now as a powerful communicator and host with North Point Ministries, Toni has learned that God can take our broken, painful pasts and use them to minister to others. 

“I hopped on stage at North Point and my entire life changed in weeks. It was the first time in a long time that I had been in a ministry that's celebrated my gifts, wasn't intimidated by them, and also welcomed my brokenness. It is as if I had experienced a new Jesus.”

Nov 25, 2019
Gratitude With Every Bite Melissa D'Arabian Ep 266
46:57

Melissa d’Arabian is a winner of “The Next Food Network Star,” a celebrity chef, author, and mom of four. She’s is an expert on affordable and healthy family home cooking who has inspired people with her shows on Food Network. 

A few years ago, God inspired Melissa to do a deep dive into scripture and prayer to evaluate the meaning of food in her life. What she discovered is our relationship with food reflects our understanding of God and his creation. 

In her new book, Tasting Grace, she invites readers to appreciate food as not only a gift from God but also as a deeper invitation into his love.

“Every meal we have can be an invitation into creativity, community, and patience. The fact that I could sit there and even for a moment and marvel and at least to honor everything that's gone into my food connected me more to God and it made me enjoy the food more.”

We talk about how meals can bring us closer to God and how he created a food system to nourish us and delight our palates. Melissa is passionate about separating food and body image and saying no to the negative perspective often put on food. 

“I want my children when they are young women going out there in the world to have the joy of a great relationship with food. And so if I talk about myself in a way that is unkind, not only are my kids hearing it, but God is hearing it. Speaking in terms of body image and all of that, I think it must make God feel sad when I reject the body he has given me. ”

Nov 18, 2019
6th Podcast-iversary Heather MacFadyen Ep 265
26:12

 

Wow! Six years into podcasting and the 265 episodes of this show have been downloaded 8.7 million times across 204 different countries. Today we are celebrating our podcast-iversary with a “best-of” show featuring clips from your favorite episodes. 

We’re also featuring testimonials from listeners who share how the podcast has helped them not mom alone. Like these quotes from moms:

“This podcast has really become my one-stop show for all things parenting. I love how you cover such a wide range of topics and how all of your guests are filled with grace and grounded in God’s word and his truth.”

“It has totally changed my perspective on motherhood. I’ve gone from feeling quite frustrated and alone to knowing that other moms are dealing with the same things. I don’t feel quite so lonely. All the encouragement is really changing my life.”

Thanks so much for listening to the Don’t Mom Alone podcast. I’m thankful it’s made an impact in your lives. When I started this six years ago, I couldn’t imagine where it would take me. As for the future? Well, we’ll just have to see where God takes us!

Special Production Help from Airr:

Ever wanted to share a specific quote or clip from your favorite podcast with a friend, but didn’t know how? This week’s sponsor, Airr, solves that problem by making it simple to share clips from specific episodes. 

I’m going to start featuring listeners “airr quotes” in my Monday email. Make sure you go to https://www.airr.io/dontmomalone to sign up and start listening and quoting. 

Nov 11, 2019
Compassion Changes Everything :: Jonathan Almonte [Ep 264]
47:17

Jonathan Almonte’s story shows how sponsoring a child through Compassion International (or other similar programs) can change the course of a child’s life. 

However, it is the compassion of the people in his story who loved him when he fought back and wrote him letters calling out his identity and inherent worth as a child of God that may have made the biggest difference.

“That letter changed my life. I was believing that I was a mistake. I was believing that God was not good for me. This letter helped me to understand that God provided a woman called Jamie thousands of kilometers away in a place called Michigan celebrating Thanksgiving. This woman wrote a letter to say, I am thankful for you. You are special, you're not a mistake.”

As a child of a single mom in the Dominican Republic, Jonathan’s prospects were greatly limited. From a young age, he worked to earn enough money for each day’s food. The cost of getting into a school, a uniform as supplies, was nowhere near his grasp. 

His mother applied for him to join the Compassion program and (after a wait) he was accepted. For the first time in his life, all of his educational, nutritional, medical, and physical needs were taken care of, and Jonathan felt believed in like he never had before. 

“I was selling juice on the streets. I was diving in a garbage area without hope. So this ministry for me meant my life. My life is before and after the ministry of Compassion in partnership with the local church in my community. ”

I hope this episode leads you to text "Heather" to 83393 and sponsor a child like Jonathan. 

Nov 04, 2019
Foster Care Story of Hope Victoria Petersen Ep 263
45:54

On the surface, Victoria (Tori) Petersen’s story doesn’t sound full of hope. Her growing up years were filled with abuse, a mom who struggled with drugs, and more than 10 foster homes with no hope of adoption.

But God’s heart for Tori wasn’t death; it was life. Through a series of relationships and her own study, Tori learned about God. She experienced sacrificial love and community in the church and through her foster parents. It changed her whole future.

“The encouragement, the support, and the ability to see that through their words, through God's speaking through these people and acting through these people in love showed me that I did have a future, that God did have a plan for me and that if I trusted in him, that plan would blossom into something.”

After emancipating from the foster care system, Tori’s life has had more ups and downs. But, she is confident in her identity in Christ and learning more every day. Now as a mom and wife, God is redeeming her story and using it to encourage others who are a part of the foster system.

“I think foster parents remembering that they are image-bearers and in those hard times to be able to humble themselves and say,’ I am weak and I'm going to call on God's strength to love this child.’ Also communicating to the child that they're made in God's image. They are loved despite any kind of behavior or any saddening event that they have been through. Identity in Christ is crucial to the relationship between foster youth and foster parents.”

Oct 28, 2019
You Deserve a Mentor Susie Davis Ep 262
45:23

Susie Davis is a mentor of mentors. She’s the author of several books and host of the Dear Daughters podcast. I’m so excited to share our conversation with you as she answers your questions about mentorship, marriage and meeting with God. 

“I think you deserve a mentor. I think it's God's will for your life to have an older woman that you can talk to who has wisdom for you and your specific situation.”

In her book and podcast, Dear Daughters, Susie seeks to bring together younger women and spiritual moms. Each of us has valuable insight for one other, but getting started with mentoring can be a hurdle. Whether you have a mentor, are a mentor or want to start, Susie shares encouragement and insight into establishing and maintaining a healthy mentor relationship. (including what not to say!)

We also talk about marriage and how to love your man without losing your mind about the little things that can drive us crazy. 

“I think marriage is the greatest opportunity for sanctification, which is just becoming more like God. It is the one relationship that is never supposed to end. You're ‘trapped’ in it and you have to work it out with them.”

Talking with Susie is such a gift. She shares a wealth of wisdom from the perspective of someone who has experienced a lot of growth in her own life and marriage over the years. Grab a cup of coffee and listen in as Susie mentors us all!

Oct 21, 2019
Racial Reconciliation Starts with You Latasha Morrison Ep 261
41:46

Racial tensions in America are as high within the church as outside of it. My guest Latasha Morrison believes Jesus followers must become the leaders in the conversation on racial reconciliation. That we must, “build a bridge” to bring justice, healing and transformation.

“It starts with awareness and then acknowledging the pain and brokenness. We didn't create it, but it is all of our responsibility to be a part of the solution. And no one gets an ‘out’ here.”

Latasha founded the organization Be the Bridge in 2016 to encourage racial reconciliation among all ethnicities, to promote racial unity in America, and to equip others to do the same. Now she’s written a book of the same name that comes out this week. 

We talk in depth about racial reconciliation, biblical justice and the diversity of God’s kingdom. It’s not an easy conversation, but it’s a necessary one. I pray you will listen with an open mind and heart for all God wants to do to bring unity to the body of Christ. 

“Every culture is an expression of who God is and not one ethnicity can represent the totality of who God is. We serve a diverse God. If you’re thinking that God looks just like you and talks just like you, remember, Jesus didn't speak English. Sometimes we need a reality check on that. Just because something is different doesn't make it wrong.”

Oct 14, 2019
The Window of Tolerance Charissa Fry Ep 260
39:43

As parents, we are keenly aware of the peaks and valleys of our kids’ emotions. Anger, sadness, excitement, and all the other feelings can make us feel like our child is on a roller coaster we’re just trying to slow down. 

It’s true that we all feel highs and lows throughout our day, but we rarely talk about what it feel like when we’re “in the zone” and feeling calm and ready to go. My guest today is sharing about the window of tolerance and how to regulate ourselves and our kids to help stay in that window. 

“If I am dysregulated, I cannot regulate my child. So if I'm in fight or flight and I'm yelling. There's no amount of yelling that brings my child back into the window. And sometimes parents think the yelling is working, but what you're doing isn’t getting your child in the window. They're going into collapse and into a place of fear.”

Charissa Fry is a Licensed Professional Counselor and believer. Her passion is to come alongside those who are hurting and struggling to help them find truth, hope, healing, connection, and growth. She shares some eye-opening information and statistics to get us on the path to helping our kids build resilience and stay in that window of tolerance. 

Charissa shares from a faith-perspective that we as believers are not alone. She reminds us that we can lean on God to regulate our emotions as we love on our kids and go through the hardships of life. 

“God himself through Jesus is the ultimate attachment figure. He is always reaching for us. He never fails to respond to our needs. He always loves us. He's never judging us and never shaming us. So to know that when we need to be co-regulated, that when I am feeling like I'm going to leave the window, I can remember the truth of who God is and I can reach out to him in prayer.”

Oct 07, 2019
The Enneagram, Marriage and the Gospel Beth McCord Ep 259
46:49

It’s a popular (and sometimes controversial) typology system that can help you understand yourself and others better, but how can we use the Enneagram in light of the gospel to help our marriages thrive? 

Beth McCord of Your Enneagram Coach is here to walk us how to look at our marriages and close relationships through the lens of the Enneagram and the Gospel. 

“With the Enneagram, you can see that we all struggle. We all need Jesus. It's just we need it in different ways. And he makes us more like him in different ways as well. It's called the body of Christ and we reflect Christ differently. We all need to bring our uniqueness to glorify him and bless each other.”

We talk about how using the Enneagram can improve communication and compassion in our marriages and what to do if your spouse has no interest in learning his type. (hint: the answer isn’t to bug him about it) 

Beth shares that no one pairing out of the 45 possible Enneagram matches in marriage is better than any other, but it’s our surrender to Christ that makes all the difference. 

“I can guarantee you there is not a combination that is better or worse. Any two types that are surrendering and depending on the grace of God through Christ’s work on the cross on our behalf will be a blessing to one another.”

Sep 30, 2019
Helping Your Child with Sensory Processing Issues Lynne Jackson Ep 258
44:18

When a child processes sensory information just a little differently than his or her peers it can mean BIG emotions, meltdowns and a huge struggle for us as parents. 

Often these kids are labeled as “sensitive” or “intense” and they might cause us to avoid playdates and public places because we’re never sure what seemingly small issue will cause the next explosion. 

Lynne Jackson of Connected Families joins me to uncover the mysteries behind our kids with sensory struggles and how we can help them thrive. We talk about Sensory Processing Disorder and the wide range of sensory processing symptoms.  

As a mom who had two kids with sensory processing needs and as a licensed occupational therapist, Lynne encourages us to become a student of our kids and try to understand their point of view.

“Imagine if the volume on all your sounds and the sensations in your body was turned up and you were to trying to fall asleep, that would be really hard. Car rides and meals are often torturous. So then what are the kids doing? They're trying to cope. They're jumping down. They're complaining about the food and squirming in their seats. They're trying to do something so they feel in control.”

We talk about what to do if you suspect a sensory processing problem in one of your kids and where to seek help. I share my story of working through this with one of my boys and why I wish we’d gone to see a therapist sooner.

Sep 23, 2019
Forgiving My Alcoholic Mother Sarah Mae Ep 257
47:02

Author, blogger and podcast host Sarah Mae joins me to share her story of working through the generational bondage of alcoholism and the verbal and emotional abuse she suffered from her mother. 

“I remember yelling out, 'I'm going to kill myself,' and her saying, 'Go ahead, I dare you.' And that was it for me. I just bawled because I felt so unloved and so confused.”

In her new book The Complicated Heart, Sarah takes us into her painful past and all she experienced with her mom. She also shares the hope and victory of how God wooed her heart and changed the direction of her family forever. 

“Dysfunction does not have to be your legacy. It does not have to be your identity. And you do not have to pass it on to your kids. It doesn't matter if you were born into it, married into it or you created it yourself. There is always victory on the table. We just have to be willing to pick it up.”

Throughout our chat, Sarah is candid and encouraging. She shares openly about the abortion she had at 16 and the healing she’s experienced from bravely speaking out against the shame of past sin and accepting God’s grace as all-sufficient. 

Sep 16, 2019
Porn-Proofing Our Kids Kristen Jenson Ep 256
47:45

Access to the internet is everywhere in our modern world. And that means access to pornography and sexual imagery is everywhere too. Rather than bury our heads in the sand or cross our fingers that our kids won’t see porn, we can choose to be proactive and to give them a plan for how to react. 

Kristen Jenson, the best-selling author or Good Picture Bad Pictures, joins me to share some simple ways to talk with our kids about porn and protect their minds. 

“Pornography makes a child more vulnerable to sexual abuse. So if you porn-proof your child by starting these conversations early, you are actually helping your child to be more protected from child sexual abuse. When you start these discussions it's not as hard as you think. And once you do, you've begun this journey with your child to trust you for answers. You tell them, ‘Don't go on Google to ask these questions. Come and talk to me.’”

This may feel like a super heavy topic, but I promise it’s worth taking the proactive approach now vs waiting till you have teenagers. Kristen shares a lot of resources and makes it easy to get started. 

Sep 09, 2019
Become What You Behold Ruth Simons Ep 255
37:31

My guest today is Ruth Chou Simons. She’s a mom of six boys and an author and entrepreneur. You may know her best from the beautiful watercolor prints and products she creates for her business on Gracelaced.com. 

In her newest book, Beholding and Becoming: The Art of Everyday Worship, Grace shares about how every day is an opportunity to be shaped and formed by what moves our hearts and captures our gaze. 

We dive into what that looks like in Ruth’s life and how choosing to focus on Christ changes everything from our perspective on our parenting and work to how we look to others. 

The most unhappy I get is if I get preoccupied with somebody else's story. And I don't give thanks and I don't jot down reminders of how he's provided for the ultimate story of redemption in my life. And also how he's working that out day by day and writing my story anew.

We talk about how our fast-paced, hustle culture steals the joy and the beauty away from the everyday faithfulness of growing in God. My favorite reminder she shared is, “You don’t have to be blooming to be growing.”

So true. How often do we start something and expect instant gratification and quick wins? We want easy-to-share glossy images of success. But God looks at our hearts. At the slow growing happening under the surface. We are all in process with God until we see him in heaven. 

Let’s celebrate the small wins and focus on turning our eyes toward God and away from the distractions and hollow gratification of social media. As Ruth reminds us, we become what we behold. Those small, unseen decisions really add up to who we are. 

Because at the end of the day, every action we have is really stemming out of our belief in our worship. And so how you think, and how you believe, and what you believe is the most beautiful and worthy of gazing at in your life will actually translate into what you do next. What your little moments every day are accumulating to be for a lifetime.

What we chat about:

  • Focusing on the beauty of what God has created vs comparing our lives to someone else’s on social media
  • At the root of dissatisfaction in our lives is an underlying struggle with identity. Is our identity found in Christ or is it found in everything going our way?
  • Growing our appetite for the things of God by choosing to fill our time with his Word.
  • The struggles women have with wanting to do something perfectly or not at all 
  • Celebrating the process of growing vs seeing immediate fruit in our lives
  • What you believe is the most beautiful and worthy of gazing at in your life will actually translate into what you do next
  • The goal isn’t just to experience God’s provision, but to trust that his presence in our lives is enough
  • “Nearness to God brings likeness to God. The more you see God, the more of God will be seen in you.” - C.H Spurgeon

Sep 02, 2019
Raising Worry-Free Girls :: Sissy Goff [Bonus]
24:05

For a variety of reasons, childhood anxiety rates are soaring, especially among girls. My guest Sissy Goff is here to share some of her insights on how to recognize worry and anxiety in your daughter and empower her to overcome.

We talk about tools we can use to help us understand why our brains are often working against us in times of anxiety and grounding techniques to slow and stop the emotional spiral that often ensues. 

“We always want her to know she's stronger than her worries and that she has a voice to talk back to the worry. A lot of people who work with kids call it the worry monster because that separates it out from her voice. We don't want her to think it's the truth, which is what kids are going to think when they have voices in their heads telling them things.”

This is a short, hope-filled bonus episode that just scratches the surface on all that we can learn about equipping our kids to work through anxiety. For more encouragement, follow Sissy and her team at https://www.raisingboysandgirls.com and watch for her book Raising Worry-Free Girls coming out September 17. 

 

What we chat about:

  • 1 in 4 kids are dealing with anxiety of some kind and girls are twice as likely to feel it
  • Anxiety is hard to recognize in kids. Sometimes it comes out as anger or meltdowns and other times it’s deeply buried
  • People whose personalities lean toward Type A tend to have baseline anxiety at all times. If your child’s personality leans that direction, it’s important to give them tools to deal with it
  • Anxiety is always an overestimation of the problem and an underestimation of ourselves
  • Techniques to help a child with anxiety calm down and redirect blood flow to their prefrontal cortex
  • Integrating our faith as we teach our kids to fight back against fear and worry
Aug 30, 2019
Adventures of a Boy Mom Monica Swanson Ep 254
52:34

Fellow boy moms, this episode is for you! This chat with Monica Swanson another mom of four boys and author of the new book Boy Mom dives into a lot of your questions about how to raise your boys to be godly men. 

We talk about encouraging strong friendships between brothers, teaching boys to be strong AND gentle, and about the importance of giving our sons ways to experience excitement and adventure while getting some of their natural aggression out in safe physical activities.

“I am a big believer that boys were made for adventure that they need to have some excitement in their lives I think is just how God wired them. They're little warriors who need to experience some thrills. A lot of the trouble boys can get into is related to when they're lacking authentic adventure, when they're not facing challenges and overcoming obstacles.”

Monica has two boys out of high school and two still in the nest, so she offers a lot of hope for those of us in the trenches of parenting to keep pressing into relationship with our sons and to make the practicals of faith an anchor in all that we do. 

“God is so big and so powerful and he can move mountains on behalf of your son. He wants your son's heart more than you even know. We get our boys plugged in everywhere we can. We want them to have so many positive spiritual models in their life that there's no denying that God is the best way to go. It about coming alongside them and saying, ‘This is for your best. God is for you. Let's walk this life with him.’”

 

What we chat about:

  • Monica’s four boys and working with very different personalities 
  • Building healthy brother relationships and dealing with kids who hit
  • Boys need to let out their energy with exercise and physical activity
  • Setting healthy boundaries for your kids with manners and learning to laugh with them about it too
  • Teaching boys how to balance strength and kindness by pointing them to the stories of godly men
  • The power of shoulder to shoulder conversations with boys and why to keep pressing into conversation with them
  • Motivating boys to get excited about school and finding hobbies and interests
  • Ideas for how to foster adventure for your boys and learning not to parent from a place of fear
  • Fostering faith in your sons through time in the Word, prayer and modeling
Aug 26, 2019
Summer of Mentorship 2019 Week Six Shontell Brewer
59:11

With the ability to connect with anyone, anywhere in the world, feels like we’re more isolated and ineffective than ever. But what if we worried less about making a big impact.  And focused more on doing the things in front of us with quality and depth?

I’m a big fan of this week's mentor, Shontell Brewer. She’s a wise mom to five kiddos. And she has an excellent sense of humor. More than that, she has discipled her children well to love and serve others around them.

Discipleship can be organic. Keeping your ministry small enough. To be present wherever God has placed you.

In this episode, which originally aired as Episode 140 (Oct 2016), Shontell and I talk about discipleship during dinner conversations. She shares her method of asking really specific questions. And giving her kiddos a challenge for the day to love others in tangible ways (e.g., encouraging a 4 year old to compliment his preschool teacher).

My most favorite thing we talk about is Taco Tuesday. The last Tuesday of the month, the Brewer family serves up meat & tortillas. They invite coaches, teachers, friends, neighbors (any one who interacts regularly with their kids) into their home.

 We love on our community one taco at a time.

I shared the idea with my boys and they wanted to do it the next night (“Taco Tuesday, but on a Monday”). I’ll let you know how that goes. We may go the Pizza Friday route (love our community one slice at a time).

Shontell also inspired me to help open my boys’ spiritual eyes. And to encourage them to fight over who is going to put the other one first.

What we chat about:

  • How women apologize for their carpet
  • Keeping your ministry small
  • Specific questions to ask during dinner time conversations
  • How Shontell helped her daughter minister to her Starbucks’ manager
  • Sending your kids to school with a basic challenge to bless someone
  • Setting the habit of conversation and other family “norms”
  • Learning to not be offended when our kids aren’t performing
  • Parenting small with intimate corrective conversations
  • The BEST idea to invite people into your home monthly–> Taco Tuesdays!

Aug 19, 2019
Summer of the Mentorship 2019 Week Five Lynn Hoffman
39:01

Being a mom reveals your most broken places.

I often think motherhood would be easy if my boys behaved better. Or maybe if I read one more parenting book. Or if I finally caught the magical contentment unicorn just beyond my grasp.

Of course, none of those options really pan out (especially the unicorn). It’s my own junk. Every day the yuck in my heart rises to the surface. But with the pace of life and needs of my people, it’s hard to stop and examine the “yuck” more closely.

Recently our small group has been attending a recovery program at our church. Through some honest self-examination and community, God’s been showing me where I’ve held wrong beliefs. And how they impact my relationships.

Today’s podcast guest, Lynn Hoffman, helped start our church’s recovery program 15 years ago. And God also led her to write “Steps into God’s Grace”, a bible study based on the 12 steps of recovery.

In this episode, Lynn shares her own struggle with performance, people pleasing and codependency. She gives insight into why recovery isn’t just for addicts. And she encourages us to identify our own emotions so we can teach our children to do the same.

Recovery became a safe place where I could go and be with other people who were willing to be honest. Stop pretending and start talking about the reality of the problems in their life. And lean on God to change and discover new realities in their life.

Aug 12, 2019
Summer of Mentorship 2019 Week Four Helen Smallbone
50:36

Ever want to hear from the woman behind rock star kids?

In this episode, Helen Smallbone, mother of 7 grown children including Christian music stars Joel and Luke Smallbone (For King & Country) and Rebecca St. James, shares stories of motherhood and practical advice she’s learned along the way. She and her husband moved their family from Australia to America more than 25 years ago. It was a faith-building journey that changed their family forever.   

“Sometimes when you face life crises what God’s doing is setting a new foundation. In this time, he took everything away from us,” Smallbone said. “We had no money, no resources, no family and no friends.  But in that refining process, he gave everything back to us, but with a new foundation where he was the provider. He showed himself to be faithful for providing all our needs.”

  • Stories of living by faith and God providing for the Smallbone family when they moved from Australia to America
  • Homeschooling a large family and fostering responsibility and work skills in your kids
  • Teaching family values while dealing with bad attitudes and behaviors in your kids
  • Taking a “time out” as a mom to pray for your children and waiting on the Lord for breakthrough for specific ways to resolve behavior problems
  • Focusing on the eternal value of building relationships with our kids versus the temporary focus on everyday tasks
  • Spending time with children who may be acting out because they need more attention
  • How quantity time often becomes quality time with our families
  • Taking a traditional naptime or quiet time after lunch with fill yourself up to finish the day strong as a mom
  • Keeping the communication line open with your children no matter their age.
Aug 05, 2019
Summer of Mentorship 2019 Week Three Kim Fredrickson
45:45

As a licensed marriage and family therapist and life coach, Kim Fredrickson counseled and taught others about self-compassion for years. When she received an unexpected terminal diagnosis of pulmonary fibrosis, a rare side-effect of the treatment she had received for breast cancer, she wrote a book to leave for her children on giving that same compassion to the grandchildren she will never meet.

On June 3rd, 2019, Kim passed on to be in the presence of her Savior. We are grateful for a way to honor her legacy by re-releasing her fantastic mentorship. (This episode originally aired in January 2018).

When people feel ashamed, they blame other people because they feel like if I really look at my shame then I’m going to collapse inside. That’s why self-compassion is desperately important because kids feel shame a lot. They fail at everything at the start.

What we chat about:

  • Kim’s story of receiving a devastating diagnosis after completing treatment for breast cancer
  • How she’s chosen to spend the years she has left with her family
  • The new book she wrote for when her children have kids called “Give Your Kids a Break: Parenting with Compassion for You and Your Children”
  • How it’s a process to develop a compassionate inner voice
  • Applying grace and truth to every situation in our lives
  • Variety of temperaments--some that are harder on themselves than others.
  • The difference between self-compassion and self-pity
  • Encouraging your children to practice self-compassion and reinforcing it by showing ourselves that same
  • Giving our kids the language to identify their failings and separate them from their self- worth
  • Moms have a really hard job. It’s ok to acknowledge that.
  • The importance of taking care of ourselves as moms
  • How to talk to your kids after you’ve been hard on yourself and reframing it with self compassion

Jul 29, 2019
Summer of Mentorship 2019 Week Two Lisa-Jo Baker
42:34

Oh friendship! A gift that can bring incredible joy and cause great pain. If female relationships weren't tricky enough, our wounded selves bump into each other causing even deeper hurts.

But what are we to do? How do we heal, move forward and develop lasting friendships?

Thankfully, my friend, Lisa-Jo Baker came on the show back in April of 2017 to help. With content from her book, "Never Unfriended", on episode 159 we talked about friendship wounds. And Lisa-Jo pointed us to Jesus, the only One who promises to heal and never leave us.

Jesus is never tired of me always needing Him. Instead, He is delighted by how desperately I need His validation and He never, ever withholds it from me. Or from you. - excerpt from "Never Unfriended" by Lisa-Jo

  • What do we fear most in friendship
  • How to include the new girl and ignore the "cool kid" lies
  • How to heal past friendship wounds.
  • Turning to Jesus for meat and potatoes soul filling.
  • Not blaming social media for our heart issues.
  • How do you survive a friendship break-up.
  • The hope of reconciliation and knowing when to let go.
Jul 22, 2019
Summer of Mentorship 2019 Week One :: Nancy Williams
40:20

The first guest in our mentorship series is Nancy Williams**. She is known by her 9 grandchildren & 4 great-grandchildren to label each family gathering as "the best ever". Her phrase perfectly summarizes this podcast.

The show first aired in February of 2014 (Episode 11) and was titled "Best Ever Life". Based on the title, you may be surprised to discover Nancy's motherhood journey includes many trials and heartache. But she views each challenge as an "opportunity" (her word) to see the power of God at work.

This interview is bursting with Truth and wisdom. Here's a brief summary of the topics we cover:

  • How to keep your thoughts and perspective in check when your husband works long hours.
  • Where to turn with your parenting questions.
  • How to respond when the consequences of sin enter your children's lives
  • How to share a simple family tradition of gratitude and love (fabulous idea!)
  • How to deal with mom guilt (a.k.a., the part of the podcast where I get emotional)
  • How to help your children turn to God when you can't meet all their needs.

SUCH good stuff.

I was most encouraged to hear this message from Nancy:

This can be the "best life ever", no matter the circumstances, if it includes eternal salvation for our children and unconditional love in our homes. 

Jul 15, 2019
Women Can Be All-In for Jesus Kat Armstrong Ep 253
52:20

Kat Armstrong, the guest from one of my most popular episodes is back on the podcast to share the message of her new book, No More Holding Back. The first question we talk about is, “Can a woman learn too much about Jesus?” A light topic, right?

“The greatest commandment says we have to love God with our heart, soul, mind and strength — all of it. And it's the priority. It's the priority over anyone's role in our home. We have to be all-in for Jesus. We can't let our fears, our insecurities, our roles, our titles, or anything to do with our spouses impede our progress to learn about Jesus.”

Kat shares powerfully about our role as an image bearer of God, the importance of elevating women’s voices in our communities of faith and living completely into the assignments God gives us.

We also talk about giving what we have to offer even if feels imperfect or broken in the same way that the widow in Mark 12 gave out of her need.

“If you have a broken heart, it counts. I have a broken heart right now about my dad. I still want to love God with it all and I don't have to have it all together or healed yet to apply it to the Great Commission. And if you have a weary soul and you're questioning your faith, you can give that to God and he counts it as worthy. If you have a confused mind. If you're struggling with anxiety, depression, decision making, and things don't make sense in your world, you can give that to God.”

Jun 24, 2019
The Ministry of Presence in a Broken World Tess Clarke Ep 252
57:22

After my recent trip to Oaxaca, Mexico, I’m so excited to introduce you to Tess Clarke. We process some of what we learned on the trip to visit refugees from Central and South America and hear about the work Tess and her husband are doing with their non-profit, Seek the Peace.

Tess feels called to a ministry of presence in the same way that Jesus enters into our lives. It doesn’t mean that the circumstances are changed, but He takes away our aloneness, our guilt, our shame and our fear by being present with us in those hard circumstances.

“The numbers are staggering and everyone knows that this is an overwhelming issue, which is why I think we can't become jaded and paralyzed, but we have to keep looking at it from a human point of view. When we were in Oaxaca, a lot of it was really about learning why people were fleeing and what their lives looked like and what they were hoping for when they came to the United States. Every person I had an opportunity to talk to said, I want to be safe.”

No matter where you may fall politically on the issues of immigration and the current refugee crisis, I think Tess’ perspective on entering into the broken places and loving the marginalized and lonely around us can bring us together as believers. It has made a big difference in my own parenting when I invite my kids into loving others.

“Something my kids and I talk a lot about is the line in the Lord's prayer, ‘Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’ And we asked Jesus, show us where heaven is not. Show us where heaven is lacking. Lead us there because we want to join you in that space and we want to do what we can to bring heaven there.”

  • Tess, her family, their non-profit Seek the Peace and her role at We Welcome Refugees
  • The work Tess and her organization have done at the border.
  • Seeking to understand the plight of refugees and the work and role of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
  • Family separation of refugees at the border and the humanitarian crises happening in Central and South America that are causing an increase in the number of refugees
  • Stories from refugee centers at the border of South Texas
  • Tess feels called to a ministry of presence in the same way that Jesus enters into our lives.
  • The trip Heather and Tess made to Oaxaca, Mexico to visit refugees there
  • A poem by Warsan Shire about why people leave their homes as refugees
  • The legal ways to enter America are being shut down by the current administration
  • Our experience visiting the unaccompanied minors shelter
  • Femicide, being killed because you are a woman, is a big cause of death in Mexico
  • Partnering with Jesus to love the marginalized and bring Heaven to Earth
  • The call of God to love the oppressed and care for the broken in Isaiah 58
Jun 17, 2019
Gospel-Focused Conversations Joel Fitzpatrick Ep 251
55:26

Just in time for Father’s Day we have a great conversation with Joel Fitzpatrick, a pastor and author, who encourages dads (and moms) to have gospel-focused conversations with their sons.

“There’s power in having conversations with your kids that opens up your relationship. It’s a freedom that gives your kids a safe place to talk to someone. But then it also gives you the ability to speak God's truth into their lives.”

We talk about the barriers that keep us from going deep with our kids and how to fight back against the fear and complacency that can become commonplace. Joel also shares how Jesus is the ultimate picture of biblical masculinity and how to be an emotionally safe parent for your son or daughter.

“We need to be very careful with our emotions when our kids come and they confess their sins to us. When your son comes to you and he's been angry, you need to be careful not to respond in anger, but to respond with love and with kindness and with using your strength to provide a place of safety.”

This is an episode that would be perfect to share with your spouse and the dads in your life. Joel shares a lot of truth for both moms and dads about how we can stay actively engaged with our kids and keep the gospel message at the forefront.

For more on this topic, Joel has a new book out called Between Us Guys. Also, my recent podcast with Vicki Courtney [Ep 239] has some more great information on having deep conversations.

As Joel shares, it comes down to setting aside intentional time to go deep with our kids. What step can you make this summer to have a gospel-centered conversation with your son or daughter?

 

What we chat about:

  • Joel’s background as a construction worker and as a minister
  • What are gospel conversations and how do we have them with our kids
  • How to fight against fear and complacency to continually engage with our kids
  • Biblical masculinity vs worldly masculinity
  • Working with a son who is displaying aggression and violence
  • Keeping our emotions in check when we’re having tough discipline conversations
  • Look at your kids’ lives as a timeline and not a snapshot
  • Learning to process emotions in a healthy way with our kids
  • Being aware of your sons’ emotions and actively engaged with how he is processing them
  • Teaching sons how to think about and interact with women in light of the gospel
Jun 10, 2019
Setting Healthy Boundaries with Family Dr. John Townsend Ep 250
49:33

As moms, we are like a life support system for our kids. To keep our families healthy, we need to be healthy. A key part of our overall well being is setting healthy boundaries.

But boundaries are hard. They require uncomfortable, direct conversations. We may need to put a limit on really good things or draw a line in the sand with our in-laws or parents.

My guest, Dr. John Townsend literally wrote the book on boundaries and he shares some deep wisdom on how to set healthy boundaries while honoring our family members and others.

You've got to take care of your energy, your heart and your emotions. You've got to take care of yourself and your health. If you don't guard that heart, then the wellsprings of life won't come out from it. Boundaries are basically about how to set healthy, loving limits in our life. So we have something to offer to our children.

Townsend answers your tough questions about set limits with in-laws, making healthy boundaries for the holidays and even models having a tough conversation with a parent about a boundary.

This is an episode packed with great information and Townsend has several books and resources available if you want to go deeper. Let’s make setting healthy boundaries a priority and guard our hearts and our time to bring life to our family!

What we chat about:

  • “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23
  • Setting boundaries is guarding our wellspring of life so we can love our kids
  • His book, Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life
  • Is setting boundaries biblical? YES!
  • The difference between hurting and harming someone when it comes to setting boundaries
  • Honoring vs obeying your parents as an adult
  • What it looks like to have a boundary setting conversation
  • Conveying love in hard conversations and not getting hijacked with emotions or blame
  • Giving three chances when you set new boundaries and how to have consequences when they aren’t respected
  • Turning to spiritual family when biological family isn’t what your kids need
  • Keeping the lines of communication open with grandparents and communicating boundaries in love
  • Looking for mild, moderate and severe reactions to suggestions and boundary setting
  • Suggestions for setting healthy boundaries for the holidays
  • The idea of people fuel and relational nutrients that help us fuel up