2018 Podcasts
Show Archives
Special Guest Michelle Wuesthoff
December 28, 2018
Luann Prater & Michelle Wuesthoff
This week, Luann welcomes special guest Michelle Wuesthoff to the Encouragement Cafe. A wife, mother, leadership coach, and author, Michelle just released the book, "Grafted In: Leading Your Orphan Heart to the Spirit of Adoption." Join us at the Cafe as Luann and Michelle discuss how God often transforms our trials into great blessings.
Christmas Carol Countdown
December 21, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Get your holly on around the cafe table. Join Luann and Rachel as they reflect on some of their favorite Christmas carols and why they love them.
Try Something New
December 14, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Holidays are a time of traditions, and that can be so comforting. Sometimes we need to change it up - mix in some new activities with the cherished rituals. You just might find a new tradition you love. Join Luann and Rachel at the Encouragement Cafe as we "Try Something New."
When Helping Hurts
November 30, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
We often consider this to be a season of giving. Sometimes, while we may give with best intent, our giving may be more of a hurt than a help to someone. Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we share life together at the table. May we all discover how we can truly help others in the long-term.
Rattled in the Right Ways
November 23, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Life can often throw us curve balls - events and experiences that we just don’t see coming. These things can often rattle us and rock our world. Suppose, however, that we became rattled in a positive way? What are the things that grab our attention and set us moving? Join Luann and Rachel as we share in these experiences together.
Have You Got Any Gaps?
November 16, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Some days (most days) there's a gap between where we are and where we long to be, between our reality and our expectations. Luann and Rachel laugh about times they've fallen down, and discuss how to live with the gap, without losing hope.
Give Thanks for the Storm
November 9, 2018
Luann Prater & Lon Mortz
Miracles really do happen. Sometimes those miracles come in the midst of the storm, and it can be hard to be thankful for those storms that come our way. Join Luann and her brother Lon as together they share his story of how God gave His blessings through a storm.
Precious In His Sight with Brenda Page
November 2, 2018
Luann Prater & Brenda Page
Some of us may not feel as though we are as good as other people. We may not value ourselves as we should. This week, Luann is joined by special guest Brenda Page. Together, they help remind us that we are all "Precious in His Sight."
Lessons from Amazon
October 26, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
After listening to an interview with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Rachel and Luann discuss what they learned about making decisions.
Purpose Through Perspective with Sarah Seiz
October 19, 2018
Luann Prater & Sarah Seiz
This week, Luann is joined by special guest and author, Sarah Seiz. Sarah recently published the book "Purpose Through Perspective: 30 Letters of Encouragement." Hear the stories of how God led Sarah to write this special book.
My Purple Pants with Samantha Jackel
October 12, 2018
Luann Prater & Samantha Jackel
Funny how a symbol like purple pants can change your perspective on life. Have you ever thought your past is too bad to overcome? Luann talks with Samantha Jackel, author of "My Purple Pants," about God's transforming power.
Take Action
October 5, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
"I'll stop procrastinating tomorrow." How many times have we said those words? Maybe it's calling on someone or doing something that you've put off time and time again. Join Rachel and Luann as they talk about how to get it in gear and take action.
When You Can't Find Your Mustard Seed
September 28, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Sometimes big problems feel like they require big faith and yet in the face of a big problem it can be hard to muster even a little. Rachel and Luann talk about facing problems with faith.
Recovering Is Harder Than The Storm
September 21, 2018
Luann Prater & Rick Olsen
Storms of any kind are tough to get through, but sometimes even when the storm is over, it's not fully over. Luann and Rachel's husband Rick discuss how to handle the recovery period.
The Unexpected Path to Success
September 14, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Is failing ten times a sign you’re just not cut out for something? What about ten thousand times? Do you give up when success doesn’t come relatively quickly or relatively easy? If you wish you could find a surefire path to success, this episode is for you.
Headstands, Tassels, and How to Be Humble
September 7, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
It has often been said that "Pride goes before a fall" - even when that fall comes after our very best headstand! Join Luann and Rachel at the table as we share stories from life and from Scripture. Stories that will help to guide us in How to Be Humble.
Celebrating the Milestones
August 31, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Life is filled with cherished moments - the birth of a child, the first day of school, graduation, and marriage just to name a few. Between these milestones, we often find smaller, yet just as important, moments to cherish for a lifetime. Join Luann and Rachel as together we celebrate the many milestones in life.
Becoming a Satisficer
August 24, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Do you get overwhelmed with the number of items on your schedule, or the number of decisions you need to make? Find it hard to know which is the right choice? Worried you’ll regret your decision? Listen in as Rachel and Luann discuss this, and find out how to become a “satisficer.”
Green Acres
August 17, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Green Acres – Is it the place to be? Should we all be living a quiet life on the farm somewhere? Luann and Rachel talk about what the Bible means in the verses that urge us to live a quiet life, and work with our hands.
The Never-Ending List
August 10, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Got more things on your plate than you have time for? Having trouble focusing, and feeling guilty about it? Yep. Rachel and Luann talk about getting stuff done without overwhelming ourselves.
Get Off The Couch
August 3, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Get off the Couch, Buy the Tickets, Share Life - Do you ever wish life was more fun? That you had more friends? Or that your relationships ran deeper? The solution might just be getting off the couch and into the game. Rachel and Luann talk about how to connect with and do life with others in meaningful ways.
Special Guest Bill Shivers
July 27, 2018
Luann Prater & Bill Shivers
Each of us has stories of life experiences that have brought us to this point in life. Join host Luann Prater as she welcomes special guest Bill Shivers, vocalist with the Southern Gospel group, Brian Free and Assurance. Bill shares some of the stories from his past that have impacted his present.
Get Fresh
July 20, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
What would you like to do that you wish you’d started a few years ago? What did you start a few years ago that you never finished? Rachel talks about what it’s like as she starts a new endeavor. Join Rachel and Luann as they discuss what keeps us from starting (or finishing) and how to approach being a newbie.
Won’t You Be My Neighbor
July 13, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
The world according to Mister Rogers. We’d all like to live in his neighborhood. In his neighborhood you were seen, accepted, loved and empowered. Listen in as Luann and Rachel reflect on some of the truths they learned from Mr. Fred Rogers, who was an excellent model of Christ. Cardigan and sneakers optional.
How To Be A Mentor
July 6, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Do you desire to connect with others on a deeper level, maybe as a mentor or mentee? Luann and Rachel discuss how they approach mentoring and coaching. Rachel offers some key questions to ask (others and ourselves) to uncover the thoughts, desires and motives that are driving us or keeping us stuck.
Trash or Treasure
June 29, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Is worth as well? Listen in as Rachel and Luann discuss Jesus' direction to store up treasure in heaven and Luann shares how she views "treasure."
I Don't Care What You Think
June 22, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Luann posted a quote on Facebook that got a ton of shares and became the topic of today’s discussion in the Café. Listen in as Rachel and Luann talk about how to handle it when people think wrongly, or think ill of you.
When Plans Fail
June 15, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Luann and Rachel talk about how we respond when we’ve worked hard to make something successful, or expectations are high for all to go well, and then our plans fail.
There's No Time Like the Present
June 8, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Jesus said not to worry about tomorrow (or yesterday) but how hard is that?! Luann and Rachel talk about staying present in the moment
Who's on Your Naughty List?
June 1, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
If we’re honest we all have a list of people that we deem “not good” in some way. Maybe they have hurt us. Maybe they don’t believe correctly, or act politely. But Jesus never let anyone’s faults stand in the way of His love and grace.
The Secret of a Story
May 25, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Ever read something in the Bible you don’t understand? Ever feel like you need a secret decoder ring? Us too! Jesus tells us why He so often spoke in parables and why some don’t understand – but how they could. Tune in and learn the secret of a story.
The Green-Eyed Monster
May 18, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Envy visits us all from time to time, making us feel short-changed or somehow less-than. Luann and Rachel talk about their struggles with the green-eyed monster, and how to kick him off your ladder to success.
Remembering Mama
May 11, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
This week around the table Luann and Rachel talk about their mothers, their Mother’s Day experiences, and the ways we can all honor those who have mothered us.
Facebook vs. Face to Face
May 4, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Americans spend 53.5 billion minutes on Facebook in a given month! Many of us spend more time browsing, liking and commenting on social media than we do being “social” face-to-face with friends. Facebook is fun – you’ll find us there – but Luann and Rachel notice there’s something about being physically present in one another’s lives in real time.
Prepared To Be Called
April 27, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Have you ever wondered what your calling is? We believe everyone is called to ministry in some capacity! But maybe you don’t know what your gifts are. Listen as Luann and Rachel talk about their callings and how you can prepare for your call.
Can You Hear Me Now?
April 20, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Can You Hear Me Now? Adventures in Miscommunication - laugh with Luann and Rachel over some funny miscommunications and learn why listening carefully is so hard to do, yet such an important skill.
Easy Hospitality
April 13, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Does the idea of hosting a get-together send you into a stressed out cleaning frenzy? We get it, however hospitality doesn't have to be complicated. Today Luann and Rachel discuss ways to simplify, relax and enjoy opening our homes to others.
Don't Play the Fool
April 6, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
How can you tell if the decision you’re making or the course you’re taking is going to work out well, or be a bust? Where can we turn for wise counsel? Rachel and Luann discuss some foolish decisions they have made and how we can make wiser choices.
Walking In Someone Else's Shoes
March 30, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Have you literally tried to wear another person's shoes? It's not easy, is it? They often don't fit, and we find it hard to walk normally. This weekend, come to the table as Luann and Rachel discuss the often difficult task of walking in someone else's shoes. What can we as Christians do to better understand the difficulties facing many of our friends and neighbors? How can we better walk a mile in their shoes?
Ditching Your Ego
March 23, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Let's face it, friends. We let our foolish pride get in the way sometimes. Honestly, the hardest thing to do is admit when we're wrong. Think about this for a moment. Can our pride stand in the way of our dear friends and family? How will our actions impact their lives? Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we learn to ditch our ego and come together at the table.
Where's Your Motive?
March 16, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
There is so much in life that can throw us off-kilter. From time to time, we have to self-evaluate and find our prime motivation. Join Luann and Rachel as they share stories around the table at the Cafe. Together, we'll answer the question, "Where's Your Motive?"
Wee Little Man
March 9, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
As a child, were you ever treated poorly by your classmates? Did they ever call you names? Such might have been the case with the wee little man, Zaccheus. As a tax collector, he was hated by many and scorned for his actions. Yet, in the eyes of Jesus, he was someone special. Hear the story of Zaccheus along with others shared by Luann and Rachel at the Encouragement Cafe.
Kiwi or Carrot
March 2, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Think about the analogy between kiwis and carrots. If you slice open a kiwi, you'll find that the color and texture is different from what might be on the outside. On the other hand, if you were to slice open a carrot, you find that is the same on the inside as it is on the outside. This same analogy holds true with our own lives. How do people see us? Are we the same on the inside as we are on the outside? Which are you - a kiwi or a carrot?
Not Our Job
February 16, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Within our own friend circles, there are a number of unique personalities. Some of us love to laugh at life, while others take a more serious, ponderous look at life. How do we react, however, during those stressful moments of struggle in life? Join Luann and Rachel as we share life together and try to better understand the weight of our words.
New and Improved
February 9, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
They say that the only constant in life is change. Let's face it, friends. Change is not always easy. It's sometime hard to change, adapt, or adjust with the times. Yet, we often forget that change may be a blessing from God. This week, join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we share stories and experiences of how "new and improved" can be a good thing.
Speak to Yourself Like a Friend
February 2, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
We often have a kind word to say to our friend, neighbor, or co-worker. We do our very best to take care of others, but how well do we take care of ourselves? Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as they share their thoughts on how we ought to speak positively to ourselves. Learn this week how to "Speak to Yourself Like a Friend."
Jarring Conversations
January 26, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
If we were to take a moment, we would realize that not everyone sees things the same way. We all come from different backgrounds and different creeds; yet, how do we interact with other in light of our differences? Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we discuss those "Jarring Conversations" with others.
The Best Way to Sleep
January 19, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
Millions of Americans share a common issue - sleep deprivation. What is it that causes us to have trouble sleeping? While the cause may be different for some, there are a number of things that may help us to recover some of those lost hours of sleep. Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we discuss how simple acts of gratitude may help us get a better night's sleep.
Just Admit It
January 12, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
It's not the easiest thing to admit when we're wrong. Let's face it; as humans, we like to think that we are right and know what is best. The beauty of admitting our errors is that the admission often strengthens our relationships with our family, friends, and colleagues. Join Luann and Rachel at the Cafe as we share life together and realize that sometimes we just need to admit we're wrong.
One Word For 2018
January 5, 2018
Luann Prater & Rachel Olsen
We've all heard of New Year's Resolutions, but what if we decided to instead focus on one word - one word that would be our focus for the year. Join Luann and Rachel as they each share their "word" for 2018 along with experiences of how a single word changed their lives.