SMM 063: How to Embrace Agency + Increase Love as a Mother || Shelley Swapp

Welcome to the final episode of season 2. I am taking a short break from the podcast and will be back in September with more faith-filled interviews for you.

In episode 63, my guest is Shelley Swapp. Shelley shares what she hopes her children will remember about her as a mom.

Motherhood Challenges

She also gives insights into the challenges her family has faced in the past few years. As a mother, she has watched her children deal with moving, brain injury, physical special needs, mental health challenges and faith crisis.

No Checklist to Perfect Kids

Shelley shares how she always believed there was a “checklist” of things to do as a mom. If she could just check all of the things on the list off, like family home evening, scripture study, attending church and the temple, etc., all of our children would turn out exactly as she planned. But Shelley shares how she has learned that’s not what the Gospel is about. She gives her insights on agency, something we fought valiantly for before we came to earth.

Instead of a “checklist,” Shelley discusses how “The true test of motherhood is who I become and the true test of fatherhood is who my husband becomes and not who my children become.”

She openly admits she and her husband weren’t perfect parents but can honestly say they have always loved their children.

Preserving Relationships

Shelley shares how she has persevered her relationship with her children, especially as some have chosen to leave the church. She shares how realizing our Heavenly Parents don’t sit in heaven wringing their hands has helped her to avoid worrying as well. She knows her children are on their own journey and it’s not about her.

The Power of Scripture

Both the Book of Mormon and the Bible have been huge helps to Shelley in her life as a mother. She describes the Book of Mormon as an entire book about families who were fighting valiantly to keep their children in the Gospel. She attributes the stories of Jesus found in the Bible to helping her get to a place where she can love and accept her children where they are.

Her Son’s Perspective

In preparation for the interview, Shelley spoke with her son who has recently experienced a faith crisis. She shares the advice he would gives to family members who are struggling to understand why someone would leave.

Why Heaven is Close

Ultimately, Shelley shares her testimony that heaven is so close. We can recognize tender mercies and angels here on earth. She acknowledges God’s hand in her life and knows He is helping her and her children.

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

Light the Fight Podcast with Heidi Swapp and David Kozlowski.

Talk by Elder Robert D. Hales, With all the Feeling of a Tender Parent, April 2004 General Conference

Talk by President Henry B. Eyring, A Home Where the Spirit of the Lord Dwells, April 2019 General Conference

This is the quote by President Eyring Shelley referenced in the interview from the talk above.

“Some have tried with full heart for that blessing, yet it has not been granted. My promise to you is one that a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles once made to me. I had said to him that because of choices some in our extended family had made, I doubted that we could be together in the world to come. He said, as well as I can remember, ‘You are worrying about the wrong problem. You just live worthy of the celestial kingdom, and the family arrangements will be more wonderful than you can imagine.'”

Listen to Shelley’s daughter share her story on episode 6 of the podcast, Still Tripin’

Read more about Shelley’s motherhood journey in an article she wrote on the Awaiting Rainbows website.

Listen to a previous episode with similar stories: Episode 62, How to Show Unconditional Love When Loved Ones Don’t Share Your Faith

Follow Shelley

Instagram: @shelleyswapp
Facebook: shelleyswappsvintageherbals
Website: shelleyswapp.com

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SMM 062: How to Show Unconditional Love When Loved Ones Don’t Share Your Faith

Episode 62 shares the perspectives of 6 different people who have experience with a loved one who doesn’t share their faith. I am so grateful for each of these people who called in to share their thoughts and perspectives on a topic that isn’t always easy to talk about.

In addition to hearing from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who have had families members who have struggled with their faith, you will also hear the perspective of someone who left the church. She shares her advice for loving unconditionally and preserving the relationship no matter what someone else believes.

All the people who called in shared the overarching message that unconditional love, love like the Savior shared, is the most important thing we can give.

If you are someone who struggles with similar situations I hope you this episode will show you that you are not alone. I also hope you will listen to each of these perspectives and gain what you need from their words.

I am so grateful to the women who called in and were willing to be featured on this episode. Sharing our stories binds us together. I learned so much from each of them.

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

Read or listen to the entire talk by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf from October 2013 General Conference, Come, Join with Us.

Full quote by Gretchen Rubin: “It’s a Secret of Adulthood: I can’t make people change, but when I change, others may change; and when others change, I may change.”

John 11 – Story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead

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SMM 061: How to Eliminate Distractions + Always Have the Spirit || Darla Trendler

Today I am doing a solo episode talking about how to eliminate distractions and always have the Spirit. This content was originally a devotional I wrote and presented at a recent girls camp. Feel free to use this episode as a resource to help you teach your older children or other youth.

Can You Hear the Music of the Spirit?

I shared a story told by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf about a violinist dressed in jeans who plays in a busy subway. Elder Uchtdorf uses this story to illustrate how we might miss the spirit in our life. The story shows why it’s important to slow down, eliminate distractions and always have the spirit with us.

What the Still Small Voice Sounds Like

These three scriptures help paint the picture of what the still small voice sounds like:

  • 1 Kings 19:11-12 – Elijah hears the voice of the Lord as he hiding because Jezebel wants to kill him.
  • 3 Nephi 11:3 – The Nephites have just gone through great destruction. They hear God’s voice introducing the Savior.
  • Helaman 5:30 – Nephi and Lehi are imprisoned and fire encircles them. The earth shakes and the people hear a voice.

Ways You Might Feel the Spirit

I shared 9 possible ways (and there are many more) you might feel the Spirit. You can read the accompanying scriptures and ponder on whether you feel the Spirit in this way.

  • Feelings of love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, faith, meekness (see Galatians 5:22–23)
  • Thoughts that occupy the mind or press on your feelings (see D&C 128:1)
  • A desire to do good and obey the commandments (see Mosiah 5:2)
  • A feeling that something is right (see D&C 9:8)
  • Feelings of comfort (see John 14:26)
  • Feelings that “enlarge [your] soul” (Alma 32:28)
  • Thoughts that “enlighten [your] understanding” (Alma 32:28)
  • A hunger for more truth (see Alma 32:28)
  • Feeling constrained (encouraged) to take an action or restrained (held back) from doing something (see 1 Nephi 7:15; 2 Nephi 32:7)

(This article for youth on the church website that was the source for this list.)

The Constant Influence of the Holy Ghost

In coming days, it will not be possible to survive spiritually without the guiding, directing, comforting, and constant influence of the Holy Ghost.

President Russell M. Nelson

I talked about a time in my life where I learned the importance of eliminating distractions that were keeping me from the influence of the Holy Ghost.

How to hear the Holy Ghost and Eliminate Distractions

Here are some questions you can ask yourself.

What are the distractions that are keeping me from the still small voice in my life?

How can I eliminate those distractions?

The sacrament prayers give us clues of how we can eliminate distractions in our life.

See the prayers in D&C 20 verses 77 and 79.

“Always” Have His Spirit

“Always” is a promise we are given. I looked up the definition in the dictionary and it said this: “at all times, forever, at any rate, in any event.”  Then the dictionary listed the synonyms to the word always: consistently, constantly, continually, ever, forever, incessantly, invariably, night and day, perpetually, unfailing.

I shared another quote from President Nelson: “Does God really want to speak to you? Yes!”

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 the BYU Devotional by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Can You Hear the Music.

See the footage of Joshua Bell playing in the subway.

Go to Episode 44: Use God as a Guide to learn more about how to discover how you feel the spirit.

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SMM 055: How to Find Answers from a Position of Faith + Know Christ is a Champion of Women || Bergen Hyde

I am happy to welcome Bergen Hyde to the podcast. Bergen is the co-founder and creative director of WOMB, which you’ll more about in the interview. Bergen is married and has 3 children. Her number one passion is women’s issues, especially within the context of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and she loves helping other women claim their power.

In the interview, Bergen shares three amazing lessons she has learned in motherhood.

Lesson 1: I’m happier and more fulfilled when I am an agent in my own life.

Bergen shares about how she came to know that motherhood was a choice she was making and how she realized she could choose something different. I loved her thoughts about how choosing from a whole place and with God’s guidance helps things work out.

Lesson 2: I can engage the Lord in hard questions from a position of faith.

If you are struggling or have ever struggled with questions about God, you will want to hear what Bergen has to say. She believes when we ask questions from a position of faith and find answers, we can help to make changes. She asks questions with the assumption she has heavenly parents who love her. Our discussion also addressed dealing with feelings of not receiving answers from God.

Lesson 3: Christ is a champion of women.

Bergen shared her own story of letting go of the darkness she felt inside. She talks about how she learned to feel the feelings and let them out but how she still did not feel whole.

She shares her experience of filling the hole she felt inside by turning to Christ.

No matter what wounds we have. No matter how dark. No matter how deep, Christ can heal them. … Christ is the only one who can fully heal those things for us. … His arms were always stretched out to me.

Bergen Hyde

Bergen’s story illustrates so well that learning to come to the Savior is a process. Her story gives hope to anyone who is struggling.

This episode also emphasizes how sharing our stories helps us remember we are not alone and offers hope. Bergen encourages other women to create the conversations they wish were happening.

Ultimately, Bergen shares how she knows the Savior “softens everything and sweetens everything and makes things holy.”

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

Womb Sisters is holding a retreat on June 8th. You can go HERE to find the details.

Bergen and I will both be speaking at the upcoming SALT Gathering in Salt Lake City on September 14th. You can get details and buy your ticket HERE. Use the code “Darla10” for $10 off.

You can go HERE to listen to my interview with the creator of the SALT Gathering, Elise Curtis.

Follow Bergen

Instagram: @womb_sisters

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SMM 054: My Yoke is Easy, My Burden is Light || Darla Trendler

Listen to episode 54 and hear about an experience I had recently in my life. I talk about how I learned more about the enabling power of the atonement of Jesus Christ. I also share how the Spirit taught me to give my burdens to the Savior.

Thus the enabling power of the Atonement strengthens us to do and be good and serve beyond our own individual desire and natural capacity.

David A. Bednar

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 the full talk by Elder David A. Bednar called, In the Strength of the Lord, a BYU Speech given October 23, 2001.

You can go to Brooke Snow’s website for more info on her course, Christian Mediation, I mentioned in the episode.

The scripture “My yoke is easy and my burden is light” can be found in Matthew 11:30.

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Podcast: Spiritually Minded Mom on iTunes