SMM 073: Widowhood + Cancer With a Focus on Jesus||Valerie Cuevas

Valerie Cuevas has maintained her focus on Jesus despite the many ups and downs she has experienced in her life.

How to Listen

Listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or Sound Cloud.  If you like the show, please subscribe and leave a review.

After being a pseudo-single mother with a husband going through medical residency, Valerie suddenly found herself facing her husband’s terminal illness and death.

She was diagnosed with breast cancer, her second time battling the disease, just six months after her husband’s passing. Valerie is now remarried and blending a family of six children. She continues to see her role as a mother shifting and changing.

Valerie tells how she has learned to embrace change and let go of expectations.

She talks about how her focus on Jesus helped her as a single mother. Even though she couldn’t always pinpoint the ways He was helping her, she knew He was there.

Valerie is real about the anger and frustration she felt towards God after her husband’s death. She is also candid about the way Christ continued to reach for her in her doubt and struggle. She discusses the many miracles she saw, especially after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

Through all of the changes of motherhood, one thing has remained constant for Valerie–Jesus Christ has been there for her. As she shared, “He shows up even when we aren’t asking.”

Show Notes

Listen to other Spiritually Minded Mom episodes about the death of a spouse or cancer.

SMM 008: Dealing with Cancer + Motherhood by Focusing on What is Most Important || Julie Monroe

SMM 053: How to Use Agency + Love to Point Children to the Savior || Becky Proudfit

SMM 060: Why You Can Have Joy in the Middle of Hard Things || Stephanie Piacitelli

Follow Valerie

Instagram: @_valeriecuevas
Instagram: @seekinggraceandtruth

Follow Spiritually Minded Mom

Blog: spirituallymindedmom.com
Instagram: @spirituallymindedmom
Facebook: spirituallymindedmom
Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes

SMM 072: Healing + Hope after the Death of a Child|| Erica Kiefer

In 2010, my guest, Erica Kiefer, and her husband experienced the death of their first child, Ty, who was only 4 1/2 months old, to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. In the interview, Erica shares how she found healing and hope and turned to God despite the grief.

How to Listen

Listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or Sound Cloud.  If you like the show, please subscribe and leave a review.

Personal + Unique Communication with God

Erica discusses how she used her talent for writing to feel healing and hope as well as the Spirit after Ty’s death. Her experience illustrates well God is a personal God. He can use our gifts and abilities to communicate with us in a unique way.

At one point, Erica felt abandoned by God. She shared the surprising way God helped her through a friend and a Disney movie. She expresses how Heavenly Father can use anything to help us, even an animated Tarzan movie!

How to be an Intuitive Friend

Throughout the interview, Erica mentions “intuitive friends” who were there for her. We discussed what it means to be a nurturing friend to someone who is grieving. Erica noted how helpful friends brought her into their spiritual life.

Healing Miracles

We discuss how Erica found the courage to have another baby and how becoming a mother again (four times) was both healing and fearful at the same time.

Erica talks about how her perspective on miracles has changed since losing her son. She said, “The miracle is just seeing that God lets you go through that journey and helps you to grow but also doesn’t let you do it without giving you the sustenance and the help along the way and so much love.”

Hope When You’re Grieving the Loss of a Child

Erica offers hope to others who are grieving. She knows life can never be the same after losing a child, but she has learned things do get better and healing is possible. “Healing comes in pieces.” It doesn’t happen all at once.

Ultimately, Erica knows God does His part to help her in motherhood. She knows she can turn to Him and He is there.

Show Notes

Listen to other episodes about grief and loss of a child:

SMM 002: Navigating Loss, Special Needs and Fostering as a Young Mom || Alie Jones

SMM 005: Choosing Happiness in Motherhood Despite Grief and Tragedy || Maralyn Nava

SMM 007: Turning to God Through Infertility, Adoption and Miscarriage || Kay West

SMM 013: Overcoming Anger + Showing Faith When Your Motherhood Plan is Not God’s Plan || Misty Trendler

SMM 058: Why Gratitude for Little Things Will Make Your Life Better || Heather Herbert

SMM 060: Why You Can Have Joy in the Middle of Hard Things || Stephanie Piacitelli

Follow Erica

Instagram: @ericakieferbooks
Instagram: @borrowedangel09
Facebook: Borrowed Angel
Website: ericakieferbooks.com
Book: Borrowed Angel

Follow Spiritually Minded Mom

Blog: spirituallymindedmom.com
Instagram: @spirituallymindedmom
Facebook: spirituallymindedmom
Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes

SMM 068: Taking Responsibility for Your Own Spirituality|| Miranda Anderson

A few months ago, I discovered Miranda Anderson through an interview on another podcast. I loved her positive approach to life and immediately binged episodes from her own podcast, Live Free Creative, and read her book, More Than Enough. I was thrilled when she agreed to be a guest on my podcast.

Living the Life you Want

In the episode, you’ll hear Miranda discuss how she learned to live the life she wanted. She shares key elements she has learned of contentment and gratitude as well as setting aside the message we are lacking in some way.

Miranda shared, “Today is the day that I want. The things that I have right now are the things that I want.”

A Year of No Spending

While attending a conference, Miranda heard these words, “You can do more of what you like and less of what you don’t like.” She went home with a new perspective that ultimately led her family to an experiment of no spending for a year.

Miranda realized she was in control of her life and she didn’t have to do what she had always done. She talks about the lessons her family learned from the experiment and how their takeaways were external as well as internal.

Overall, Miranda learned there is always something in your life that is good that you can be grateful for.

Creating Space

I loved discussing with Miranda how we can be responsible for our own spirituality. Miranda said, “It’s a lot more difficult to take full responsibility for our spirituality but it also makes it a lot more personal.”

Miranda also discusses how she has learned to create space in her life to do as the song says–search, ponder and pray.

She points to the example set by Christ when He took time to be away and “be.” Miranda believes “being” is as important as the “busy” things we do in the Gospel.

No Checklists in Spirituality

I was grateful to get to discuss a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately–there are no checklists with spirituality. Miranda pointed out that the shift in the church to a more home-centered approach is helping us to rely less on the structure and organization and be able to discover for ourselves what we need as spiritual beings.

Partner with God in Motherhood

Miranda talked about knowing who she is and how her divine identity translates to her role as a mother and in her relationship with God. She understands why she doesn’t have to be everything for her children. “My job is to get to know the divine beings that they already are and we learn together.”

How to Listen

Listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or Sound Cloud.  If you like the show, please subscribe and leave a review.

Follow Miranda

Instagram: @livefreemiranda
Website: livefreecreative.co
Podcast: Live Free Creative
Book: More Than Enough

Follow Spiritually Minded Mom

Blog: spirituallymindedmom.com
Instagram: @spirituallymindedmom
Facebook: spirituallymindedmom
Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes

SMM 067: How to Navigate Spiritual Differences with Your Spouse || Tim Trendler

In episode 67, I am excited to be interviewing my husband, Tim Trendler. We discuss how we have navigated spiritual differences throughout our 22 year marriage.

You will learn quickly in this episode that Tim is definitely the fun-loving, outgoing partner in our marriage. I am more intense and a deep thinker. We aren’t perfect, but we have learned to help each other develop spiritually and respect our different approaches to gospel living. Looking back, I can see how our differences actually make us a great team.

In the episode, Tim and I both share the spiritual promptings we experienced that led us to marriage. You’ll even find out why Tim didn’t talk to me for 3 weeks after we got engaged!

We also talk about our two very different perspectives on teaching a lesson at church and why both approaches work.

Tim discusses the positive side of having differences. He shares how our children have benefited by seeing two different approaches to spirituality.

In addition, Tim gives his take on the best thing you can do when you differ with your spouse spiritually.

Tim offers his answer to the final question I ask every guest and shares his perspective on how God has been his partner in fatherhood.

I will admit it was harder than I thought to interview my spouse. My goal was for this episode to be more of a conversation than an interview, which means we got off track a few times and I had to do a lot of editing. In the spirit of “keepin’ it real” I left a couple outtakes that you’ll hear if you listen to the end.

How to Listen

Listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or Sound Cloud.  If you like the show, please subscribe and leave a review.

Show Notes

Listen to other Spiritually Minded Mom episodes about spiritual differences:

SMM 065: Hope When You Don’t Live in a Perfect Family Proclamation Home|| Norma Zaugg
SMM 063: How to Embrace Agency + Increase Love as a Mother || Shelley Swapp
SMM 062: How to Show Unconditional Love When Loved Ones Don’t Share Your Faith
SMM 018: Divorce + Blending Families + Coming Back to God in Motherhood || Tarrin Pendergrass

Follow Spiritually Minded Mom

Blog: spirituallymindedmom.com
Instagram: @spirituallymindedmom
Facebook: spirituallymindedmom
Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes


SMM 066: The Privilege of Personal Revelation|| JoEllen Woods

My guest today is JoEllen Woods, a wife and mom to four who has spent the last few years following a prompting to move overseas and travel the world with her family.

In the interview, you’ll hear how JoEllen and her husband decided to travel full time with their kids and how they felt guided by God in the process.

Their prompting eventually led JoEllen’s family to New Zealand on a 30-month visa and then to full-time travel for 6 months.

After traveling to 17 different countries, The Woods Family was at a crossroads about what was next. Listen to hear the way Heavenly Father guided them to take a leap and seek for dual citizenship in Italy.

The stories JoEllen shares show over ond over you don’t have to have the full picture to follow God. She is a great example of following a prompting, acting and then asking what the next step is and continuing to move forward.

Overall, JoEllen’s experiences have taught her personal revelation is a privilege. She knows He is by her side and that knowledge gives her the courage and confidence she needs in motherhood and in life.

How to Listen

Listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or Sound Cloud.  If you like the show, please subscribe and leave a review.

Show Notes

Listen to other Spiritually Minded Mom episodes about personal revelation

SMM 041: Only You Can Receive Revelation for Your Motherhood || Michelle Gifford

Follow JoEllen

Instagram: @iamjoellen
Website: iamjoellen.com
YouTube: iamjoellen

Follow Spiritually Minded Mom

Blog: spirituallymindedmom.com
Instagram: @spirituallymindedmom
Facebook: spirituallymindedmom
Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes