The Open Door Sisterhood Podcast

Longtime friends and authors Krista Gilbert and Alexandra Kuykendall share relatable, practical and fun conversations on faith, motherhood and leadership. Often inviting another friend into the conversation, listeners will be inspired to take that next step, do that hard thing, and encourage their family and friends to do the same as we walk through the doors God opens. Let's be world changers for good right where we are!
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Now displaying: 2020
Jun 30, 2020

As we seek to hone our voice, there are some practical changes we can make in our communication. The queen of practical, Deborah Smith Pegues, harnesses her years of experience in corporate America to instruct the rest of us on what is helpful, and what is not. After a successful career as an executive, writer, and speaker, she has much to say about using our words for good.

Deborah talks about how we can be powerful and warm, how to embrace silence, and how we can leverage our natural tendencies for strong leadership.

Winsome and engaging, you will love this interview and will discover more tips on how to hone your unique voice.

Jun 23, 2020

Paula Faris uses her voice more than most in her professional work. As a former host of The View and Good Morning America, Paula knows that when she speaks, people are listening. She hasn't always felt qualified though. Her fear of inadequacy and intimidation of others' expectations made her hesitate to step in front of the camera. On this episode of The Open Door Sisterhood Podcast, we hear how she pushed through her fears and use her voice.

Once at the "top of her career", Paul was burnt out. A series of personal crisis made her realize she needed to slow down. She stepped down from her roles at The View and Good Morning America and now hosts the popular ABC podcast Journeys of Faith, taking with her the skills and passion she brought to television.

We cover faith calling vs. vocational calling, being tired vs. being burned out, and work vs. identity. If you are afraid to step into the places God is calling you, this conversation could give you the push you need to step into them regardless of your fear.

Jun 16, 2020

We believe at The Sisterhood that God has given us each a unique voice to use in the world. We are positioned in places with people to speak hope and truth over situations. We may feel this now more than ever.

In this new "Hone Your Voice" series we want to bring you both practical coaching and insights that inspire you to develop your voice for today. In this episode we feature Dr. Sasha Shillcutt who shares her journey of finding her center in her adult life, and how she began exercising her voice, especially at a table with mixed genders and high achieving professionals.

You will be interested in her insights about why women apologize, how female leaders are perceived, and practical ways to disagree with others while still respecting their viewpoints. An MD, author, and speaker, Sasha has an important message to share with women about finding their unique voice in the world, and overcoming fear to share it.

Jun 9, 2020

Our older kids had distinct hopes and maybe some pretty solid plans about how their summer would look. Enter COVID-19 and we're all adjusting to this new summer reality. With varying physical distancing measures in place around the country, and many group activities cancelled, we have an opportunity to help our older kids find purpose in their "new normal".

Enter Kristen Hatton and Greta Eskridge, two moms who are intentional about the everyday moments and stand out memories. With Alex and Krista in the mix, these four women have 15 kids between them! From work ethic to intentional rest, family books to managing food needs this is a great listen on the early end of your summer.

We recorded this conversation, full of practical COVID-sensitive ideas a few weeks ago. Because of this we don't cover protests, hard conversations, or citywide curfews, though these are likely topics of interest to our listeners with older kids at home. Here you'll find more discussion about quality time, making memories with our kids, and creating a sense that family is a place they will want to come back to. We pray these are timeless topics regardless of the day's headlines.

Jun 2, 2020

We're living in an interesting time. It seems just as we're getting through one piece of difficult news, another arises. As we head into summer, we want to acknowledge that life for us and our children feels heavy. Protecting mental health is vital as we navigate all that is before us.

Colleen Blake Miller, a registered psychotherapist and speaker, offers The Sisterhood wisdom and help on how we can protect and foster solid mental health in our children during these months.

From acknowledging feelings, to honesty in our communication, to replacing bad habits with good ones, we cover practical ideas that will help families as they move forward in a tough season. We also dive into ways to help your children grow spiritually this summer.

May 26, 2020

What do we do with kids who are too young to entertain themselves for days at a time but too big to be carried around in a backpack all day? Especially when a global pandemic causes most large group (or any sized group) gatherings to be cancelled for the summer? Well, we brought in the experts for you: Mia St. Clair and Crystal Miller are both moms of littles and they've got the ideas.

Let's talk practical when it comes to kids. We've got the everyday, the special, the food, and the crafty. From theme dinners to water play (when the pools are closed) Alex, Krista, Crystal, and Mia all chime in on this mom-to-mom conversation. When we say The Open Door Sisterhood is part practical, part inspirational, this is a practical-heavy episode.

We see you moms. We know you have some unexpected bumps this summer due to COVID-19. We're here to give a few ideas that might spur more ideas that meet your family's needs perfectly. So don't delay, press play, and then give us your best summer tips and hacks in the comments on the shownotes.

May 19, 2020

Because of COVID19, summer is cancelled for many of us. Okay, we realize it's not really cancelled, but it feels that way as camps, programs, classes, and vacation spots send apology letters and emails about why they can't open as usual.

Today begins a four part series we're calling, "Summer is cancelled: Now what?" We begin today with guest Jessica Smartt talking about perspective. How can we change our lens to see that our situation is no different than the hardships endured by many in our history, and to find courage in the stories of those who have gone before.

But we don't stop there. We also move into some practical ways we can re-structure our plan for summer by setting up a rhythm for our days, allowing opportunities for work, and using the extra time to build family memories outdoors. Join us for this helpful conversation! 

May 12, 2020

High school and college graduations around the world have been cancelled due to physical distancing requirements from COVID-19. We feel a collective disappointment because we know this is a marker and a celebration for graduates and their families. If you have a graduate in your circle, you are likely trying to figure out how to celebrate your senior within the current parameters for group gatherings.

Krista and Alex invite author and podcast host Monica Swanson on this episode to talk through why we should be intentional about creating both meaningful and fun experiences for our graduates and how we can do that with varying levels of restrictions in place. All three moms bring different experiences, personalities, school communities, and local distancing restrictions to the conversation, offering a variety of ideas. No matter your circumstances, there is an idea in this episode for you.

At The Open Door Sisterhood we strive to offer listeners content that is part practical and part inspirational. It's the how and the why. This episode is no different. You will be reminded that life markers matter and you'll be given ideas on how to creatively mark your graduate's transition.

May 5, 2020

Working moms, this one is for you. Do you find yourself in a new normal with the stay at home order? Are you struggling to get the same volume of work done that you did before? Do you need some new ideas to stay focused or motivated?

In this week's episode Alex and Krista discuss how quarantine has impacted the working mom. They discuss the value of limitations, the pressure of expectations, and what it might look like to pivot in our thinking and in our schedule.

This is a continually evolving and changing topic - the home / work balance. Let's work it out together!

Apr 28, 2020

Marriage during a pandemic is no joke! We know this is likely a unique season for relationships. Many have not experienced this much "together time" in recent years or ever! Perhaps financial stress is high or worries about the health and safety of a spouse or others we love is putting you on extra edge. No matter the "different" in our circumstances, it helps to recognize that every relationship goes through various seasons.

We brought relationship expert and therapist Debra Fileta to the sisterhood to talk about her newest book Love In Every Season. She describes the flow of relationships through various cycles and how working through each one well prepares you for the next. From the newness of spring, to the hot passion of summer, the colorful conflicts of fall, or the quiet of winter you can determine which season you are in these days and how it can build toward overall health.

Sister, we know this may be a difficult time at home simply because of the unexpected stress that life is throwing at you and your spouse. No matter your season you can make intentional choices to love each other well. You have agency in how you respond to each other. We pray this is an encouragement.

Apr 21, 2020

Yes, this life in a pandemic is new. Last week hosts Alex and Krista dove into their emotional responses to the situation. This week they look at the practical opportunities that arise because there is a virus that forces most of us to stay home. This is a unique moment, how will we make the most of it?

From teaching kids life skills, to TV suggestions, to how to love our neighbors during this time, to ideas for games to play, to how to celebrate birthdays, we look at how we can redeem this time for good in our homes and in our lives.

If you want to learn how to make more of your time at home focused and intentional, this episode will help.

Links from Today's Episode:

Lenore Skenazy

Intentional Chore Scheduling (DISH DUTY!)

The Tiger King

The Grizzly Man

Redeeming TV:
Just Mercy
Little Women
Mr. Rogers
The Greatest Showman
McFarland USA
Kit Kitridge American Girl

Loving My Actual Neighbor

Great Read Alouds for families:
Love Does by Bob Goff
Everybody Always by Bob Goff

Footloose Dance - you can learn too!

Vidhug website - makes video making a snap for the bday person!

See Krista's Mega List. of Games on her website

Code Names
Left, Right, Center
Crazy Powerpoints
Basketball Tournment
Nightly Trivia using CrowdPurr

Dr. Henry Cloud's Podcast

Morgan Tyree - Capsule Wardrobe Challenge & Organization Challenges

Apr 14, 2020

We are all experiencing something new, life under a pandemic. It is unique in its grief, its circumstances, its universal impact, its opportunities for connection. How can we capture this unique time for our personal growth and to grow closer to God?

Hosts Krista and Alex share a bit of their emotional responses during the COVID 19 arrival and spiritual practices that are helping them move through their days. An honest discussion of what keeps them up at night and how God is meeting them and inviting them to share in Christ's suffering.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, stuck, or simply exhausted, this episode is intended to ground you as we talk about "gritty peace" and the unchanging nature of God grounds us in a way our circumstances can't. We love you sister and we want you to know you're not alone. This episode is meant to be a place of rest and encouragement as you push through the quarantine life.

Apr 7, 2020

If you feel as if your emotions are wildly swinging during this unsettling time of the Corona Virus, you are not alone. Many report feeling a paralyzing fear one moment, anger and frustration the next, then an unexplainable feeling of gratitude and peace. Does it feel like whiplash sometimes? It does to us.

Sara Hagerty, well known author and speaker, assures us that this is not only normal, but necessary as we learn how to authentically name our feelings and take them to God.

If you have struggled though sheltering in place, and have wondered what to do with all of your emotions, especially in light of your faith, this podcast will help.

Mar 31, 2020

Anjuli Paschall knows what it is to escape the uncomfortable. However in this time of pandemic, when the walls seem to be closing in on us, it feels nearly impossible to escape where we are. Anjuli's invitation is to stay. Stay in your uncomfortable circumstances, feel the hard feelings, and invite Jesus into those place to experience his transformation.

In an honest, timely, and poignant interview we hear how this mom to five is "staying" during the pandemic. Though she may want to avoid, deflect, or escape the places of friction and tension, she is choosing to consciously be present so that God can do his work. For most of us who are literally staying at home because we have no other option, this mindset of choosing to stay gives us opportunity to grow and allow Jesus to meet us in our real moments of need.

From big griefs to small moments, this invitation to bring the holy into our reality may be just what you need to fully experience what God has for you during this season of "stay".

Mar 24, 2020

We’ve all heard about Wuhan, China, the birthplace of the notorious Corona Virus. What we haven’t heard as much is a direct interview with someone on the ground, in lockdown, on the twenty fifth floor of an apartment building.

Rebecca Arendell Franks wrote a Facebook post from quarantine in Wuhan that went viral. After lamenting their experience in several other posts, her husband challenged her to write about the good things springing out of their situation.

Alex and Krista asked Rebecca to come on the show to talk about what it has been like walking through the season of the Corona Virus from Wuhan. No matter where you are on your own journey with the virus, sheltering in place, or freely moving, you will find pieces of your own journey in Rebecca’s story.

Mar 17, 2020

We are living through an unprecedented global pandemic. We have not experienced anything like this in our lifetimes. As we consider the likelihood of weeks at home, kids off from school, and what it means to practice social distancing, we wonder what exactly we should do to prepare for the unknown.

Our guest Kathi Lipp brings us the "safe and sane" approach. We need to be prepared and wise about our choices, but not panic and operate from a scarcity mindset. We must remember to care for our neighbors out of abundance, control what we can control, and practice faith for God to carry what we cannot. Kathi brings us both practical next steps, empathy for where we are today, and most importantly hope that we will get through this together.

From shopping lists to mindset shifts, you won't want to miss this conversation so relevant for today's dilemmas. Where else are you going to get both the practical and inspirational as we face the unknown today that COVID 19 brings? We are here for you sister trusting God is with you and goes ahead of you.

Mar 10, 2020

The phrase "world changer" is thrown around on Pinterest memes, slogans, and yes, even here at The Sisterhood.  But what does it really mean to be a world changer?  

In this episode Krista & Alex break down The Sisterhood definition of what this phrase really means, and how we can start being a world changer in our actual lives, right where we are, today.  

Gena Thomas joins us for the second part of the interview to share her story of helping a Honduran five year old who was separated from her mother at the border.  This story helps us see how God can take small, faithful steps, and turn them into giant leaps of faith and hope.  

Find Alex Kuykendall on Instagram or her website

Find Krista Gilbert on Instagram or her website

Find Gena Thomas on her website or connect with her on Twitter


Mar 3, 2020

Kerri Pomarolli is a woman who likes to laugh. A professional comedian, she has appeared on The Tonight Show 29 times. From Comedy Central to church auditoriums, her reputation for clean comedy has taken her around the country. She sees her comedy as the assignment God has given her and though she doesn’t feel like a typical Hollywood gal, she is happy to work.

We laughed more than usual in this episode, but that doesn’t mean we only covered light topics. Kerri talks about her divorce, her unique co-parenting arrangement, and how she makes the most of circumstances she didn’t want or plan for. She focuses on what she does have rather than fixating on what she doesn’t.

If you want a little levity in your day, push play. Kerri makes us laugh while reminding us that no one’s lane is easy, but if we stay in the one God has given us we will certainly be most fruitful. A fun conversation that swings between the Girl Scouts as a mafia to ring to going through divorce while in the public eye, it is filled with honesty and truth. Kerri Pomarolli is now the sisterhood’s comic.

Feb 25, 2020

Do you ever feel like you aren’t fully enjoying your life? Or that you don’t like the person you have become? Do you sense that life is moving so fast that you are missing it?

In this interview, John Mark Comer (one of Krista’s favorite teachers) shares the secret to discovering a full and meaningful life. It isn’t an intuitive answer, yet one that holds great power if we take hold of it and put it into practice.

You will be challenged and delighted by the wit and wisdom shared in today’s interview – don’t miss it!

A Community of Honor in a Culture of Contempt – sermon on Bridgetown Podcast (one of Krista’s all time faves)

Feb 18, 2020

One of the frightening aspects of human trafficking is it can happen to anyone. While we may have the vision of a woman being kidnapped, drugged, and forced against her will, this is often not the scenario. More likely it happens very slowly and subtly, with someone a victim knows.

Rebecca Bender has such a story. A normal, small town teen, Rebecca was a high school athlete and honor roll student. After meeting a man she fell deeply in love with, her projected future of happily ever after turned into a living nightmare.

This is a sobering account of one woman's story into the world of human trafficking, and how God plucked her out and gave her the intelligence and skills to help FBI, homeland security, and police forces around the globe, as well as those recovering from exploitation.

This is an interview you don't want to miss.

Feb 11, 2020

It’s that time of year again. As a tribute to Valentine’s Day and all things practical, Krista and Alex talk about things they are loving right now.

Are you looking for a great movie? Recipe? Perfume? How about a tip that makes their days go well? At the end of Sister Interviews we hear what podcast guests use to make their lives work well. We hear what they can’t live without. This is the episode where your hosts share their best collection of favorites from the last year.

As the sisterhood we are part practical, part inspirational. This episode lands in the practical.

Feb 4, 2020

Have you ever had a season where you doubted God? Do you fear that one of your children will never come back to faith? Do you wonder if God is angry at you for asking hard questions?

Today Robin Dance joins us to share how God brought her through a long season of doubt, and how she ultimately ended up on the other side of it.

If you’re struggling through darkness today and don’t know where to find the light, this interview is a great place to start.

Macon, Georgia

Berghausen, Germany

Berghausen Castle

Neutrogena Make Up Wipes

EOS lipbalm

Mint Ice Breakers Gum

Max Lugavere – Genius Foods

Samin Nosrat – Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat

Becky Keife – No Better Mom for the Job

Richella Parham – Mythical Me

Sarah Mae – The Complicated Heart

Steven Pressfield – The War of Art

Valentine Tea Party

Robin Dance’s Apple Pie

Melanie Dale



Jan 28, 2020

Understanding how we operate and how others operate can move us toward relational health. The Enneagram is a popular tool to understand people's motivations and behavior patterns. It seems fitting to look at this paradigm as we finish our 2020 Healthy Way series on The Open Door Sisterhood Podcast.

Enneagram expert Marilyn Vancil walks us through our authentic and adapted selves and how we can move from unhealthy patterns to more integrated selves. It is here we will find freedom to live out of who God made us to be. Marilyn shares the "suffering" of each Enneagram type when they live from their adapted selves. She offers a guide to pivot toward health in each pattern.

Here's to a healthy 2020 sisters! We know that our bodies, souls, and minds can be renewed as we head into the new year. Sometimes it's a matter of simply taking that next step and doing that hard thing so we can be healthy enough to be world changers for good right where we are.

Jan 21, 2020

It's week #3 of The Healthy Way Series and we think it's time to cover a topic that profoundly impacts our souls: how we engage with the Bible.

Have you ever struggled to make reading the Bible a regular part of your life? Do you sometimes wonder what makes the truth in the Bible the absolute truth over every other individual truth out there? Have you been hurt by a Christian and refuse to engage because of the hypocrisy you see and experience?

In this interview, Lauren Green McAfee, PHD student of public theology and founding member of the team who started Museum of the Bible, tackles all of these tensions and also helps explain why it is critical we take our engagement with the Bible seriously.

If you want to get healthier spiritually this year, this is a great place to start.

Not What You Think: Why The Bible Might Be Nothing We Expected Yet Everything We Need

Museum of the Bible

U Version Bible App

The Bible Project

The Lumo Project 

The Bible Re-Cap Podcast – Tara Leigh Cobble

NIV – MESSAGE Dual Translation Parallel Bible

NRSV translation of the Bible

Seeds Family Worship

Blue Letter Bible App

The Organizing Box

Jan 14, 2020

We feel we're in a constant struggle with technology. We see the benefits (it's so helpful when it's helpful!), but we also experience the consuming nature it can have when overused. Psychologist Dr. Doreen Dodgen-Magee trains young people and adults around the country on how to manage technology. She is realistic, funny, engaging, and understanding. She helps us see our need for controls without shaming our tendencies to use.

If you've wondered if technology is affecting you, (hint: it is!), you'll want to listen to this incredibly helpful conversation. Dr. Doreen helps us remember that we are embodied souls that need to be present where our bodies are. Technology is not going away, we must find a way to manage it so it doesn't manage us.

We know this episode will go down as a sisterhood favorite. Part practical, part inspirational, it will help you to take that next step, do that hard thing, to be a world changer for good right where you are.

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