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We're supposed to be completely honest in all of our dealings, right?But what about when telling the truth will be unnecessary? or harmful? Or illegal?Mark and I explore options that might exist when being completely truthful might not be a great idea.
God required that Gideon reduce the size of his army to a mere 300 people.This was so that God could show His power.Where is he doing this in our lives? Where might we feel like the bulk of our support has vanished, and how can we recognize the hand of the Lord in these instances?
Ep. 56: Feeling Deeply

Ep. 56: Feeling Deeply


Imagine your feelings as a number line. Zero is neutral.I think that if you're capable of feeling "bad: (which is really "uncomfortable")) at a -3, you can only feel "good" at a +3.If you're afraid to feel uncomfortable, aren't you also afraid to feel too positive?This week, it's just me sharing some of my thoughts I've been having over the past few weeks.Thanks for listening. You can reach me at  I love hearing from you!
Ep. 55: Feelings

Ep. 55: Feelings


"You have to feel it to heal it."I think there's truth in that. Having "bad" feelings (not really bad, but uncomfortable feelings) is a part of our life.But what about "Men are that they might have joy"?Yeah. That's true. But we're not supposed to have joy ALL THE TIME. There's a time for happy and a time for sad.Listen as Eddison, Allison, and I talk through when and why we should feel our feelings.
Family friend Catie (who is Latter-day Saint Friendly, but not a member herself) raised an interesting question.What if my blood relatives aren't people that I want around in my life? What does that mean for "forever families?"In this episode, we talk about ways that we can navigate some of those complicated relationships that--at least as we see them now--we don't want to have for eternity.
We are commanded to be a peacemaker, but what does that mean?How can we be a peacemaker without sacrificing our own needs and resorting to people pleasing?Is there a way to follow the command and be true to ourselves?
This week, we talk with Whitney (Sister) Durtschi, who is currently serving as a Service Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.Her experience from preparing for her mission, to receiving her call, to loving her mission has been a journey in learning how God is aware of His children.Listen in to learn part of Whitney's story
Life is hard.Sometimes we're confronted with mourning with others who mourn, or comforting those who stand in need of comfort.But interacting with someone who is needing comfort can be...well...uncomfortable.How do we put off our own discomfort and truly *comfort* others?
Ep. 50: But If Not

Ep. 50: But If Not


In an unrelated but totally related conversation with Carissa, she asked a question that tied in perfectly with last week's conversation with Heidi. So I told her to stop talking so we could record the conversation.Having "But If Not" faith may be a next step for some of us. What does that look like, and what does it mean?This is our attempt to address those questions...and more!
Ep. 49: Prayer

Ep. 49: Prayer


During a Family Home Evening lesson, favorite niece Heidi made a very insightful comment about prayer.As I tend to do, I asked her if we could have a more in-depth conversation and record it for the podcast.She's a recently-returned missionary, and hasn't learned to say "no" yet, so here is our chat.
We are instructed to "Counsel with the Lord," and for some of us, that has meant "Ask the Lord's opinion" or "Get the Lord's direction" for all of our major decisions.But not all decision are major, and what are the drawbacks or risks to counseling (or NOT counseling) with the Lord on smaller or less significant matters?And how do we make a decision when there isn't necessarily a "right" or "wrong" decision to be made?
What does it mean to "systematically include the Lord in your development?"I'm not one who prays to get inspiration for each choice I make on a daily basis, but instead, I tend to act in a responsible manner, hoping to do the best thing for myself and others.Elder Clark Gilbert addresses this in General Conference:'ve been pondering how I can systematically involve the Lord in my development. I would love to hear your thoughts, too.
Ep. 46: Grief

Ep. 46: Grief


Grandma Jan, my mother-in-law, passed away a couple of weeks ago, giving me a front row seat to how different people grieve.What does it take to give yourself (or others) the space to properly grieve?
The first stage of grief is denial.When does having and exercising faith and hope cross over into being in denial, and not allowing you to move through the grief process?I haven't figured this one out yet, so I'm asking more questions than I'm answering. But I'd love to hear your thoughts and feedback.Reach me at
Ep. 44: Why I Believe

Ep. 44: Why I Believe


This week, I make an attempt to talk about beliefs.What are they, why do we have them, and are they based on anything tangible?For example, how can you and I have vastly different beliefs about the same "truth?"I don't know all the answers, but I share some thoughts about why I believe.
Setting goals can be a little bit scary and a little bit intimidating. It's not always easy to decide and commit to doing something bigger than we've ever done before, and if we're not careful, we  open ourselves up to beating ourselves up a LOT for missing the mark.This week we chat with Geoff (Brother Brigham) who has a different take on setting goals...with faith.I learned some new things that I will start using as I set my next goals.Thanks for listening!
It's a few weeks after the new year, and statistically, your New Year's resolution is probably broken by now.Since we're not good at changing overnight, and I'm still the flawed, imperfect, mistake-maker today that I was yesterday, how should I handle when I mess up?This week, listen in as I share some observations about how to approach making mistakes and moving on.
"Men are that they might have joy." So why is it a problem to be positive all the time?Allison joins the conversation to talk about a listener request (Thanks Catie!), Toxic Positivity.We discuss what it means, how we engage in toxic positivity, and what the consequences can be if we're not careful.Thanks for listening! Please rate and review Chocolate Cake Bytes in your podcast platform.
A recent digital fireside got me thinking about ways that we can use our trials to become better...not bitter.You can watch the entire fireside at, listen here for my segment. Life is hard. I don't think it's meant to be any different way.So, we can use our challenges to become who and how we should be...or not.
In my haste to get a new episode published, I think I re-uploaded a previous episode.Probably because the message was SO important that I wanted you to hear it twice.Or, I just messed it up.Sorry 'bout that.  Here's the real episode:Life is hard sometimes, and it's supposed to be that way.I've  heard that our problems lie in our past and in our future, but our present? Well, that's the calm between the storms.Listen in as I remind myself to be present.
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