021: Sara Olson-Smith - On Creating a Message of Care

Sara Olson-Smith is a pastor who approaches her speaking opportunities with care and intention.

In this episode of This Moved Me, Sara and I talk about the process -and more importantly - the responsibility - of communicating a message full of heart, intention and guidance for the people in her congregation. Sara is a walking example of someone who loves people - well, beautifully, and often. (Lucky congregation!) So it was wonderful to get her insight on how she brings that love to life as a speaker.

Listen to the podcast

You can listen in iTunes, Stitcher - or, if you're reading this via email, through our website!


In this episode we discuss:

  • Sara's process of producing a message nearly every week
  • The importance of pattern and discipline in creating messages
  • How a text (like, in this case, the Bible) can help us let go of control and help decide the way
  • How you can develop and grow, given the temporary nature of each talk
  • The importance of feedback from colleagues, and those who can help guide you
  • The trap of falling in love with our own words
  • The responsibility of speaking 'from the pulpit'
  • The challenge of the SAME audience vs. the SAME talk - a different challenge than most speakers face.


The "Like a Girl" commercial - and, in particular, watching that commercial with her daughter, and wondering what she was thinking...


I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode! If you know someone who would benefit from it, feel free to download and share it. And if you have two minutes -just two! - we’d really appreciate it if you would Subscribe, Rate, and leave a review on iTunes.  It's one of the key ways I can get this message out to those who are in need of it.


Let's keep this conversation going:

Have you struggled with sharing a delicate message?  How did you find the balance of bringing your voice to that moment, while not pushing your own agenda?  Send me your thoughts via Twitter, or share in the comments.

About Sara:

You can find out more about Sara by checking out her website, or through Twitter, @asplashofgreen.

Worship, people, and listening to stories form a framework for Pastor Sara Olson-Smith’s passions in ministry. She takes the lead in the church’s caring efforts and young adult connections. Sara grew up in Colorado and Wisconsin. She received degrees from the College of St. Benedict and Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.Before arriving at St. Paul, Pastor Sara Olson-Smith served two congregations in New Jersey. Prior to that, she served as a youth minister in Minneapolis, and chaplain for the Moscow Protestant Chaplaincy in Russia. In Denver, she worked with homeless Colorado youth through Urban Servant Corps. 

Pastor Sara and her husband Clark, also an ELCA pastor, are the parents of Susannah. They like to travel, read, walk, and discover the joys of parenting.