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Focus on the Family Broadcast

Effective Habits to Embrace in Parenting

Effective Habits to Embrace in Parenting

In a discussion based on his book Simple Habits for Effective Parenting, Dr. Randy Schroeder offers moms and dads practical guidance for leading their children in a loving, confident manner by building on the foundational family principles of relationship, routines, responsibilities, and rules.
Original Air Date: July 19, 2021

Dr. Randy Schroeder: That’s what parenting is all about is helping a child succeed without parents. And so the more-so the more decisions a parent gives a child at home because we know that once they hit the teen years, there’s gonna be some major decisions going on.

Jim Daly: Yeah.

John Fuller: Dr. Randy Schroeder joins us today on this last day of the year and this Best of 2021 Focus on the Family broadcast. I’m John Fuller and your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly.

Jim: You know John, parenting is close to the heart of Focus on the Family. I think in many ways, that’s how we were built to help equip parents to be the best parents they could be. And man, we want to love our children, guide our children. And most of all, we want our children to have a deep faith in Christ as we launch them into a world that will target that all the time.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Uh, it’s one reason we try to cover a number of parenting topics here on this program. And sometimes, uh, we like to examine, well, I guess what we’ll call the nuts and bolts of parenting. And we’re gonna do that today with our great guest. So sit back, uh, get a cup of something, uh, tea, coffee, whatever and let’s get into some great parenting content.

John: Mm-hmm. Dr. Randy Schroeder is a former educator and now has a successful counseling practice in Carmel, Indiana, where he lives with his wife, Jenny, and, uh, they have two married sons and six grandchildren. And, uh, Randy has written a book called Simple Habits for Effective Parenting: Specific Skills and Tools That Achieve Extraordinary Results in Raising a Child. And you can find the book at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

Jim: Dr. Randy, welcome to Focus on the Family.

Dr. Schroeder: It is my privilege and pleasure to be with you, Jim and John. And thank you so very much for having me.

Jim: It’s great. I could see you’re full of energy and you were a football coach, which we connected right away on that.

Dr. Schroeder: Well, we did.

Jim: (laughs).

Dr. Schroeder: Jim, I never realized you were an excellent high school quarterback and-

Jim: Well, I only-

Dr. Schroeder: … uh, enjoyed it as well.

Jim: Yeah, I- I say excellent. I really was par just, yeah, even with the rest of the guys, but, um, it’s so much fun. There’s so many good things that are learned through sports, right?

Dr. Schroeder: Oh, yes, sir.

Jim: Uh, you’re a counselor now after being that football coach and that teacher, I mean the sporting environment teaches you so much. In fact, even hiring here at focus, one of the things I’ll ask people when I get a chance to interview them is did you do team sports or individual sports?

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-mm.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: There is a difference, you know-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … people that did individual sports, they’re very much, they move in that direction.

Dr. Schroeder: Uh-huh.

Jim: They want that self-accountability and determination of their own destiny and team sports are very different. You gotta get along, you gotta execute the play and it does lend itself to a corporate environment.

Dr. Schroeder: Yes, it does. Yes, it does.

Jim: (laughs).

Dr. Schroeder: And- and- and, uh, in that regard, I, you know, a- a coach and being a former coach is a leader and a effective parent is a leader, uh, and wants to lead guide, nurture their kids in a very positive direction. And, uh-

Jim: You know, that caught me as I was reading the prep for this broadcast, ’cause I, you know, in terms of leading, I, you know, I was the quarterback and all that but-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … in parenting, I feel a little awkward thinking that I’m leading in that way, but you are as a parent, and you should embrace it.

Dr. Schroeder: Exactly, exactly. There’s actually Jim and John, the false belief by many parents that the goal of parenting is to control behavior. And, uh, in a sense, a parent can control behavior up until about the age of 12 when their eyes are on their child. But then after the age of 12, when they hit 13 on up into young adulthood, now, uh, kids are gonna have to make some major life decisions. What are they gonna do with cigarettes and vaping and marijuana and alcohol and drugs and sex? And so a leader parent wants to influence a child’s heart. I mean, what does Proverbs 4 say, above all else, guard your heart guard, your thoughts because that’s what’s going to lead, uh, a child to be a responsible, capable, confident, godly decision maker one day.

Jim: Yeah.

Dr. Schroeder: Uh, and so that’s essential.

Jim: Can I ask you about this, uh, CDC during the pandemic came out with a research project that they did. They identified that 25% of 14-to-24-year old’s, uh, that depression was up, anxiety was up that suicidal ideation had occurred in that group of people, 24% of 14-to-24-year-olds. That’s about seven to 8 million people that, that 25% represents. That’s an astounding number of young people who I don’t feel are getting that kind of feedback that I am worthy. That I’m good at something, that somebody cares about me and how desperately we as human beings need that fundamental feedback that you care about me. It’s built into our DNA.

Dr. Schroeder: What I have found Jim and John, is that desire alone to be an effective parenting is not enough. I think, uh, verbal, unconditional love needs to, and that’s acceptance. You know, God, through our faith in Jesus Christ loves us unconditionally. Kids need to be loved unconditionally. And I think that can happen Jim and John through three phrases that need to happen daily and if not daily, regularly. And the first one is I will love you even more tomorrow than I do today. Secondly, Jim and John is to ask a question, I’ve been doing this for over years. Having parents ask the question, do you wanna know a secret? And then come back with the phrase, I love you no matter what, and the three words that are key are not, I love you, but no matter what.

Jim: Hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: No matter what. And third, if there’s one question Jim and John that I hear over and over from teenagers that I’ve counseled over the years and have been numerous, Dr. Schroeder are my parents proud of me.

Jim: Ah, that’s amazing.

Dr. Schroeder: It is unbelievable how infrequently and again; I’m not being critical of parents. They don’t realize the importance of what to say, but that it is so important to say, I am proud of you-

Jim: Yeah.

Dr. Schroeder: … on a daily basis and especially when a child is not achieving or accomplishing anything.

Jim: Yes.

Dr. Schroeder: When- when they’re just in the car and a parent pats ’em on the leg, tousles their hair and say, “I am so very proud of you.”

Jim: Yeah. Let me ask you, and then I’m- I’m gonna get to the four R and then we’re gonna-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … work through more of the content of your great book.

Dr. Schroeder: Sure.

Jim: Uh, but in that context, uh, some parents are going, yeah, but you don’t know where my child’s at. You know-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … he, he’s not, or she is not doing the homework. They’re not getting the grades that I’d hope that they would have, it’s a conflict.

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: How do you, as a parent balance expectation of performance against loving them unconditionally, this is probably the age-old question, right? How do we let them know we love you; we care about you so that they could feel that? But hun, we still gotta get you going here. I mean, talk to me about that.

Dr. Schroeder: Jim, that is a great question. And what needs to happen, we need to go to scripture, the parable of the talents.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: Now I know in the parable of the talents that, uh, it could be a management of finances. Okay, but it also can be a- a management of talents and abilities. And so I think, and the parable of the talents, again, one got received two and five talents, they dealt with the talents and Jesus said, you know, “Good job, good and faithful.” The other buried their talent ability and Jesus said, “You’re wicked and lazy.” And so the focus by our heavenly father for the three of us, for everyone, for children is on effort and improvement. And so I continually stress to parents do not be concerned about achievement and accomplishment. In fact, I tell kids all the time, grades don’t matter. All that counts is giving a good, consistent A- effort with your talents and abilities.

Jim: Let, let’s move to the four R’s.

Dr. Schroeder: Okay.

Jim: Uh, describe what the Rs are and what they’re about.

Dr. Schroeder: The first R is relationship. The most important goal, the main objective for every parent is to build a strong parent child relationship. It all begins there.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: Think about for us as Christians, the stronger our relationship is with Jesus Christ-

Jim: Yes.

Dr. Schroeder: … the more we wanna live the Godly life, the more we wanna follow the 10 commitments, the weaker, our relationship with Jesus, the less concerned we are about living a Godly life and following the 10 commandments. Likewise, when a child has a strong relationship with their parent, Jim, and John, then they are willing to follow the lead, the guidance, the nurture, the encouragement by a parent toward a Godly life.

Jim: Dr. Randy, when you look at parenting and you break it down to the simple form, is that the most important thing to maintain in, especially I’m thinking the teen years maintain that relationship because that in the end will be what counts more than their performance, their behavior, where they’re at spiritually at 14 and 15, maintaining that relationship will be the right thing at 24, 25, 30, is that fair?

Dr. Schroeder: No- no- no, Jim, you hit the nail right on the head.

Jim: I feel that.

Dr. Schroeder: I- I mean, that- that is the main goal of parenting, a strong parent-child foundation and how to achieve that. A- and I talk about that in my Simple Habits for Effective Parenting book. It’s through simple, yet effective habits that so often parents don’t know what to do, how to do it. And specifically they need guidance.

Jim: Okay, we got relationship as the first R. Let me have John, uh, do the break and then we’ll come back to the second R.

Dr. Schroeder: Okay.

John: And you’re listening to Focus on the Family with Jim Daly and, uh, our guest today is Dr. Randy Schroeder. He’s written this great book as he is just mentioning Simple Habits for Effective Parenting. Look for a copy, uh, at our website. It’s focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

Jim: All right, we have relationship. What’s the next R?

Dr. Schroeder: The next R would be routines. And there’s a lot of healthy routines. There’s a morning routine of course. And research has found that, uh, when the first five minutes for a child are positive, that often leads to a positive day for a child. So avoiding the Cs complaints, criticism, correction, condemnation so important, but there’s bedtime routines, mealtimes, mealtimes are one of, is one of the most, uh, simple, yet effective habits that so often is missing in families and mealtimes together lead to a lot of positives. There’s prayer time together. Uh, I- I think one of the top 10 simple yet effective habits, Jim and John would be monthly date your child.

Jim: Mm-mm.

Dr. Schroeder: That is absolutely essential. And so many parents, hundreds and hundreds of parents have told me, Dr. Schroeder, that’s what turned around my relationship with my child is that monthly date your child. Uh, if I could tell one story just to kinda highlight how important-

Jim: Sure.

Dr. Schroeder: … that is. I saw a 15-year-old and his dad had a horrible relationship. And, uh, in fact, when they came into counseling, the 15-year-old actually gave his dad orders and said, dad, you sit in that chair. I’m sitting on the sofa. He- he-

Jim: Oh, that had to be interesting for counselor, for you.

Dr. Schroeder: He- he- he would not let the dad sit with him on the sofa.

Jim: Wow.

Dr. Schroeder: Uh, and so, uh, I found out, uh, uh, date your child by the way, I should say Jim and John is usually going out to eat for 45 to 60 minutes, there’s no problem talk all the way to the date during the date all the way home. And so it’s just a positive parent-child time. So I found out the teenager’s, uh, two favorite restaurants. One was in Italian. Uh, and I asked him, I said, “Will, you go out to eat with your dad on Saturday at lunch.” And I remember he looked right at me he said, “Dr. Schroeder, did you hear me, what I’ve been saying the whole session, I don’t like my dad.

Jim: (laughs), wow.

Dr. Schroeder: But I convinced him. He went out to eat lunch. I had the dad tell the son during the session, I will not criticize, correct, complain, or condemn the whole date. So halfway through the meal, the teenager picked up his spaghetti and meatball and stuffed it in his mouth.

Jim: With his hand?

Dr. Schroeder: With his hand, (laughs), and he finished the meal with his hand.

Jim: He’s provoking his dad.

Dr. Schroeder: And- and his dad could hear me echoing, do not use the Cs. Well, the dad, actually, Jim and John had more self-control and restrain than I had, would’ve had.

Jim: (laughs).

Dr. Schroeder: Because if you can believe it, the dad did not correct him on the way home, nothing Saturday afternoon, nothing Sunday, nothing Monday, Tuesday, when dad came home, dad asked the son, “If you pick Italian restaurant, will you please use a fork next time?”

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: The 15-year-old smiled and said, “Sure dad.” Turned their relationship around. Now, the dad, uh, Jim and John used most of the simple, yet effective habits in Simple Habits for Effective Parenting made a huge difference. And they developed a strong parent-child relationship, but that date your child begin it. And so that is a huge routine-

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: … I think for every parent.

Jim: Responsibilities.

Dr. Schroeder: Responsibilities, uh, household chores and task build a child’s self-esteem, uh, help a child develop confidence and household chores and responsibilities lead to adulthood. Uh that’s what’s-

Jim: That’s right.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah, that’s what gonna happen as an adult in marriage, uh-

Jim: You gotta be able to do these things.

Dr. Schroeder: Exactly.

Jim: The last of the four Rs is rules. Uh, of course moms and dads, yeah, what are the rules? (laughs) yeah-

Dr. Schroeder: A- a-

Jim: … we love the rules.

Dr. Schroeder: And that usually you’re right. Usually, uh, Jim and John, that, uh, that’s the most, uh, focused area and- and yet can lead to struggles. And- and-

Jim: Oh yeah.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah. And- and, uh, and actually the rules, if a parent-child relationship is strong, rules are usually not an issue for a child. And if I could just mention quickly, the ours should be in this direction, relationship plus a healthy application of the rules equals a responsible, Godly decision-making child. However, what happens so often if rules are the primary focus minus that strong parent-child relationship, now we’re gonna see a child that probably becomes rebellious and defiant. So rules are secondary and the other aspect to that is most parents are not sure and are not able to lovingly apply the rules, uh, in an effective manner. And if we have time, we can get to how that can happen as well.

Jim: Well, hopefully we will. And I, you know, I think we can hit it right now. I think that balancing factor, you know, it’s, I, we think of it as a light switch rather than a dimmer switch, right?

Dr. Schroeder: Yes, sir. Yes, sir.

Jim: And we need to understand, I think parents do get tripped up on if I’m loving my child, if I’m developing my relationship with my child, then I can struggle applying the rules but give us the boundaries h- how to do both well.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah. I- in terms of applying the rules and, you know, giving consequences or taking away privileges, it begins with a question, will you please, so many parents use a sentence and that does not give a child also to make decisions. Children need to make decisions in the home. And so if I said to you, I could use the rule of courtesy Jim and John, and say, please switch seats. Well, even though I use please, that’s a sentence which is a command to demand an order to do it, I didn’t give you a chance to say no thank you. And that can create friction in a parent-child relationship. So what needs to happen is I ask you, “Will you please switch seats?” Now you have the freedom of choice. You can say, sure, we’ll switch or no, thanks we’ll stay where we’re at. So the first step is always to ask, will you please? Most of the time, it needs to be a question. Yeah, every once in a while, it can be a sentence with a please, but 90 to 95% of the time it needs to be, will you please?

Jim: Now I- I could see myself when the boys were younger going, will you please switch seats? (laughs) That’s not what you’re saying.

Dr. Schroeder: That, that’s actually my, in uh, effective parenting Jim you’re right (laughs). Uh, there needs to be, the will you please needs to be a loving, encouraging can be strong.

Jim: Sincere.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah, can, sincere but yeah, it needs to be loving and encouraging. Will you please?

Jim: Okay. So the child says no.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah. So let’s say that the parent says, will you please be respectful? Okay. Then it goes to either, or you decide.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: Either be respectful or go to your room for 10 minutes, you decide.

Jim: Do a timeout.

Dr. Schroeder: Do a timeout. And if the child still continues to be disrespectful, then the parent, and this is what’s absolutely essential. And this, I think causes more rebellion and defiance in a home as much as anything is that a parent not use the pronoun I, I’m gonna send you to your room. I is controlling. It’s not being a leader. It’s being a boss, micromanaging. And so what needs to happen, the parent needs say, you decided to go to your room because you’re being disrespectful.

Jim: Put it on the child.

Dr. Schroeder: Uh, and so it’s the child’s decision.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: The parent doesn’t need to feel bad; they were not being disrespectful. And so it’s always, you decided because the other thing that happens frequently, even with the pronoun I, so many parents use the word punishment and I’ve had hundreds and hundreds or over a thousand parents say, I never realized that punishment was not a healthy word and it’s not, it creates defiance. And so, so many parents say, I’m gonna punish you by sending you your room, being, for being disrespectful. I’m gonna punish you by not letting use your cell phone. It needs to be, you decided because, and I can tell you, Jim and John, it took p- many times of practice to learn. Will you please either, or you decide, you decided because.

Jim: Mm-hmm, right. And I, again, these are great concepts that you covered in Simple Habits for Effective Parenting. Th- that one, right there, either do this, or you can go to your room for your time out. I mean, I wish I would’ve had that tool. I think I; you know, I didn’t deploy it ’cause I just didn’t know that.

Dr. Schroeder: Yes s-

Jim: And uh-

Dr. Schroeder: Yes sir.

Jim: … you know, it does help the child, especially the thinking child to realize, oh, I actually control this.

Dr. Schroeder: Yes.

Jim: And that’s a good thing.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah. That, I mean, that’s what parenting is all about is helping a child succeed without parents. And so the more-

Jim: (laughs), yeah.

Dr. Schroeder: … so the more decisions Jim and John a parent gives a child at home because we know that once they hit the teen years, there’s gonna be some major decisions going on.

Jim: Yeah. And they need to be equipped to make those decisions.

Dr. Schroeder: Yes sir.

Jim: You- you talk about something called grandma’s law.

Dr. Schroeder: Oh my goodness.

Jim: What’s grandma’s law? I gotta know grandma’s law.

Dr. Schroeder: That- that probably, I- I would say it’s an easier one to learn. And that probably de- has de-stressed more families than any other simple, yet effective habit in Chist- in the effective parenting book. And grandma always say to us, “When you have eaten your vegetables and chicken, then you may have a piece of the pie I baked you.” So its grandma’s law is when you, then you, okay?

Jim: When you, then you.

Dr. Schroeder: When you, then you and it, a lot of parents will use if you, then you, if you then you actually does not display confidence in a child.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: So I best story I- I have, uh, I saw a dad who came in, came in without mom actually seeking simple, yet effective habits. And he said, “We can’t get our 15-year-old to clean her bathroom.” And I said, “Dad,” I said, “you’re gonna love this.” I said, uh, grandma’s law when you, then you, I had him practice it, go home, ask your daughter, will you please, he said, and by the way the dad said, we have threatened, we’ve intimidated, we bargained. She just won’t clean her bathroom. Aa I said, when you go home, again, like you said, Jim it needs to be loving, “Will you please hand me your cell phone?” Got the cell phone said, “When you clean your bathroom, then you may have your cell phone.” Back and then dad walked away.

Jim: Yeah, don’t negotiate.

Dr. Schroeder: Yeah. But- but didn’t negotiate, but it’s whose decision, it’s the daughters determines when she gets the cell phone back. About 15 minutes later, she said, “The bathroom’s clean.” Daddy went in there. The sink was still a little dirty. He said, “When you clean the sink, then you may have your cell phone.” He walked away again, about five minutes later, he went back in sink was clean and, uh, gave her, her cell phone. I remember he came in and- and he had a big smile on his face, and he said, “Parenting is gonna be so easy.”

Jim: (laughs).

Dr. Schroeder: And I said, “Parenting is never easy.”

Jim: Yeah, right, (laughs).

Dr. Schroeder: Wa- wasn’t easy for my wife and I, it’s not easy for anybody. But I said the, when you, then you will, de-stress your relationship with your daughter.

Jim: Mm-hmm. Why do you think these phrases are so effective? Why do they work?

Dr. Schroeder: Well, they work because they put the responsibility on the child.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Dr. Schroeder: The child needs to make decisions. And I can tell you when I’ve had numerous parents tell me, a- and this is when a parent knows they have the tools down is when they hear their child saying to them either, or you decide either, or you decide when you, then you, when you, then you, I am tired of making all these decisions in the home. That’s when parents know that the child is, it’s sinking in that they’re having to make decisions. But there are again, significant decisions in the teenage years and the young adult years.

Jim: One thing I wanna make sure we capture here at the end; you do stress the need for humor in your relationship. Laughter, smiles, et cetera, ’cause it can get a little daunting for some parents, they feel they’re always the police officer.

Dr. Schroeder: Yes.

Jim: They’re always the judge, they’re always the jury.

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: And uh, you wanna make sure life has some high moments, some fun some laughter’s some, uh, smiles, just as you said. So how do you as a parent, make sure those moments are occurring?

Dr. Schroeder: You hit the nail on the head Jim. Positive humor increases relationship, parent-child satisfaction. And just, it enhances the whole family atmosphere. Laughter exercises muscles, laughter reduces blood pressure, laughter uh, increases oxygen to tissues. And so, you know, parents need too often. One of my suggestions for parents when they come in for counseling with their youngster, when a youngster’s struggling is that they watch comedy movies, comedy TV shows, and I encourage, you know, parents and child to laugh out loud.

Jim: Let me end with this question Dr. Randy, because, uh, for the parent that struggles, I mean they have had this fight going for maybe a few years now, maybe that son or daughter of their started at seven and started displaying this controlling defiant behavior, et cetera. And now it’s 13, 14. And some-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … of those big decisions like you’ve described or occurring. You know whether it’s poor habits of vaping or drugs or pornography, whatever it might be.

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Um, how does that parent mix all of this together and try to really change the trajectory of their relationship first, all the four Rs that you mentioned and there’s this nagging in the back of their mind that if we don’t get this right, and it’s hard to find humor in that moment when the pressure is on when your child is misbehaving to the point of destructive behavior-

Dr. Schroeder: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … how you can find the lighter side of life and God’s heart for this child when it’s nothing but pain right now. That’s a big question.

Dr. Schroeder: Well, it is a big question and- and something we do not have time to talk about are the- the A of affection and attention appreciation and- and so, uh, those can make a huge difference, especially positive labels. But I think parents need to, my- my favorite sentence in life is I am forever forgiven.

Jim: Yeah.

Dr. Schroeder: The three of us are forever forgiven through the blood of Jesus Christ and we’re gonna have eternal life in heaven. Parents need to say I’m forever forgiven for the mistakes that I’ve made. My wife and I made mistakes that we are forever forgiven for. And parents need to give that forever forgiveness to their kids as well.

Jim: Yeah, and that’s the parallel we need to think about. Uh, and the Lord makes it so simple for us. Marriage, parenting, how does God interact with us? How do we perceive the Lord, our Father in heaven? And those are the attributes that we need to in our own marriages and in our parenting.

Dr. Schroeder: So well stated.

John: There were so many great takeaways from Dr. Randy Schroeder on today’s Best of 2021 Focus on the Family. And I do hope you’ve been encouraged to start, uh, implementing some of those effective habits in your own parenting, especially as we start the new year.

Jim: Uh, this is core stuff and such timeless solid concepts for raising children. Uh, you know, here at Focus on the Family, we wanna help you be the best parent you can be. Uh, we’re here for you. That’s one reason we created our seven traits of effective parenting assessment. It’s a quick little online quiz that will help you determine your strong points in parenting as well as some of those areas, uh, that need some growth. We also have lots of other resources to help you. In fact, Dr. Randy’s book, Simple Habits for Effective Parenting is a great place to start, and you can get that through Focus on the Family. And when you do the proceeds go right back into ministry, giving families hope every day.

John: And we hear from so many moms and dads who need answers. Uh, we do count it a privilege to be able to help. And I’ll share this note that we received from an anonymous listener who wrote, thank you, Focus on the Family. I’ve been listening to the Focus podcast every day, and it’s been a blessing for my family and me. Two years ago, I was in a really bad place in my marriage and in my relationship with my kids. I was disconnected and my relationship with God was bad. Then I started listening to Focus and I applied the solutions and principles I heard to my marriage and with my kids. And now we are in a better place, a healthy place. Our relationship with God is much better. Thank you. Keep up the good work. God bless Focus and the ministry you’re doing.

Jim: And that is the very reason Focus exists. Uh, but we couldn’t help families like that without your help. We’re doing this together and here at the end of the year, your support provides scripture-based resources and programs to save and strengthen these families. And when you give a gift of any amount today, we’ll send you a copy of Dr. Randy’s great book, Simple Habits for Effective Parenting as our way of saying thank you.

John: And through a special year end matching opportunity, your gift will be doubled, which means you’ll have twice the impact toward saving marriages, rescuing moms and babies from abortion, equipping parents to raise children boldly in faith, redeeming broken families, offering emotional peace to those who are struggling, caring for children in foster care and so much more.

Jim: Let me add too, your prayers and financial gifts are critical so that we can finish the year strong and plan to reach even more families in the coming year. And I’m eager to see how God will work through you and Focus on the Family to touch so many in 2022.

John: Donate today, take that assessment, and get your copy of Dr. Randy’s book, Simple Habits for Effective Parenting. All the details are at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 1 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY. Well happy New Year, have a wonderful and safe weekend and join us Monday for another Best of program as we hear from Wendy Speake, she’ll encourage you to fast from sugar.

Preview:

Wendy Speake: And it’s really powerful.  When you diet, you say I’m gonna crowd out that sugar with more healthy food options, but when you fast, you say, I’m gonna crowd out what I’m running to, what I’m turning to- … by turning to Christ.

End of Preview

John: On behalf of Jim Daly and the rest of the team here, thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller, inviting you back as we once more help you and your family thrive in Christ.

Today's Guests

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Simple Habits for Effective Parenting: Specific Skills and Tools That Achieve Extraordinary Results in Raising a Child

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Roe v. Wade Overturned: Now What?

In light of the landmark decision of the Supreme Court on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, Professor Helen Alvaré and Dr. Al Mohler provide analysis, discuss the implications, and explain how believers need to continue to be involved in the fight to preserve life as the battle heads to the states.

Focus on the Family Broadcast

Understanding How Birth Order Impacts Your Marriage

In this broadcast, Dr. Kevin Leman explains how birth order affects your relationships with your spouse, and offers advice on managing challenges in your marriage that stem from your placement in your family of origin.

Focus on Parenting Podcast

Encouraging Healthy Femininity

Our daughters are constantly fed lies from the culture on what it means to be strong. But even with so many mixed messages, you can model a better way for her. John and Danny offer some encouragement on how you can show your daughter what true strength is. Featuring Dr. Meg Meeker.

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A Legacy of Music and Trusting the Lord

Popular Christian vocalist Larnelle Harris reflects on his five-decade music career, sharing the valuable life lessons he’s learned about putting his family first, allowing God to redeem a troubled past, recognizing those who’ve sacrificed for his benefit, and faithfully adhering to biblical principles amidst all the opportunities that have come his way.

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Abortion Survivors Tell Their Stories (Part 1 of 2)

Our guests share their dramatic stories of surviving the attempts to end their lives while in their mother’s womb, providing a stark and undeniable counter argument to pro-abortionists who argue that a fetus is not a living human being. (Part 1 of 2)

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Abortion Survivors Tell Their Stories (Part 2 of 2)

Our guests share their dramatic stories of surviving the attempts to end their lives while in their mother’s womb, providing a stark and undeniable counter argument to pro-abortionists who argue that a fetus is not a living human being. (Part 2 of 2)

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 2

As a pediatrician, Dr. Meg Meeker has seen thousands of girls come through her office through the years. They struggle with eating issues, sexual identity, social media…and many other challenges in this toxic culture. Dr. Meeker will encourage parents to invest love and time in their daughters and develop their character to give them the best opportunity for a bright future, all rooted in a spiritual foundation. The discussion also includes healthy feminism vs. toxic feminism

Mrs. Meg Meeker

Dr. Meg Meeker is a pediatrician who is widely recognized as one of the country’s leading authorities on parenting, teens and children’s health. With appearances on numerous nationally syndicated radio and TV programs, her popularity as a an expert on key issues confronting families has created a strong following across America. Her work with countless families over the years served as the inspiration behind her best-selling books which include Strong Fathers, Strong DaughtersStrong Mothers, Strong Sons and The Ten Habits of Happy Mothers

Cover image of Dr. Meg Meeker's book "Raising a Strong Daughter in a Toxic Culture"

Raising a Strong Daughter in a Toxic Culture: 11 Steps to Keep Her Happy, Healthy, and Safe

Meg Meeker has been a pediatrician for more than thirty years, is a mother and a grandmother, and has seen it all. She knows what makes for strong, happy, healthy young women–and what puts our daughters at risk. Combining that experience with her famous common sense, she explains the eleven steps that will help your daughter–whether she’s a toddler or a troubled teen–to achieve her full human potential.

Cherishing Your Spouse Every Day

Do you love your spouse, or do you truly cherish them? Gary Thomas encourages couples to make a daily effort to go beyond the ‘duty’ of love, and combat the natural inclination to drift apart, by choosing to see the best in their spouse.

Mr. Gary Thomas

Gary Thomas is an international speaker and best-selling, award-winning author whose books include Married SexSacred Marriage and Sacred Parenting. He has also written numerous articles for several prominent national magazines. Gary and his wife, Lisa, reside in Texas and have three children. You can learn more about Gary by visiting his website, www.garythomas.com.

cherish front cover

Friends, Partners, and Lovers: What It Takes to Make Your Marriage Work

“Most marriages survive by gritting teeth and holding on. But marriages can and will not only survive but thrive when husbands and wives learn to cherish one another.” Those are the powerful words of bestselling author Gary Thomas in his newest book–Cherish. And in a world desperate for marriage redemption, it is needed now more than ever. Thomas shows that although there are a countless number of marriages consisting of two people just going through the motions, there are real ways this pattern can be reversed: when husbands and wives learn to cherish one another in proven, loving, and everyday actions and words.

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Newest Release - Episode 2: Heroes Providing Hope

Discover the amazing work our PRC’s Directors, Nurses, and Volunteers are making in their communities! You’ll see firsthand testimonies of a PRC in action, and that there are other options outside of abortions! You’ll also discover how your family can support your local PRC!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

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Newest Release - Episode 4: Sometimes the Choice is Hard

Hear real life stories of parents who have made the decision to choose life even though the circumstances were overwhelming. You’ll see why “ALL” life is precious to God and why choosing life is always the right decision!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

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Newest Release - Episode 3: The Power of a Picture

Have you ever wondered what a baby looked like in the womb? With today’s technology, Moms and Dads can see the baby’s heartbeat, facial expressions, and movements! You’ll find out why more women choose life once they hear their baby’s heartbeat and realize it’s a real living human!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

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Newest Release - Episode 5: It’s Going to be Amazing!

After a couple has chosen life, hear the heartwarming stories of children that culture would have cast aside, yet are making tremendous impacts in their communities. Whether the diagnosis was adverse or the circumstances were difficult, these stories will inspire you to come along side of families who have chosen life!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

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Newest Release - Episode 6: Families Helping Families!

So, after all you’ve seen through the SeeLife ‘21 Episodic journey; what can you do now? We’ll share how you can partner with some amazing organizations that are making significant impacts in the pro-life movement! You want to Celebrate Life!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 2

Jodie Berndt loves to pray for her children. She’s been doing that for the past thirty years. Now she helps other parents to talk to God, asking for the salvation of their kids, and for wisdom, self-discipline, purpose, a future and much more. She offers fun and practical encouragement that moms and dads can put to work immediately in their daily lives as they prepare their children for a life in Christ.

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt is a public speaker, a Bible teacher, and the the author of 10 books. Find out more about Jodie and get some free resources (including printable prayer cards and calendars) at her website, jodieberndt.com.

Cover image of Jodie Berndt's book "Praying the Scriptures for Your Children"

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

You will discover how using the Bible to shape your desires and requests opens the door to God’s provision—and frees us from things like worry and fear in our parenting! This expanded edition of the bestseller features updated content on issues like technology and identity, and comes with new material designed to invite children into the family prayer circle. Purchase now and receive 10% off your product.

Effective Habits to Embrace in Parenting

To be an effective parent, you must be a leader in your child’s life, guiding with a gentle hand and setting a solid example. Dr. Randy Schroeder provides the insight you need to be a leader-parent. As he explores the foundational Rs—relationship, routines, responsibilities, and rules—you’ll better understand the role you play in your child’s life. You’ll learn great phrases to employ such as “Either/Or/You Decide” and “When You/Then You”. While there is no perfect parent, this nuts-and-bolts material will equip you to lead your child in a loving, confident manner.

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Dr. Randy Schroeder

Dr. Randy Schroeder

Dr. Randy Schroeder has spent more than four decades writing, counseling, speaking, and teaching. For nearly 25 years, he was Vice President of Student Personnel Services, Dean of Students, and a professor of pastoral counseling at Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind. He’s also led a successful counseling practice helping individuals, couples, and families to thrive in their lives and relationships.

Cover image of Dr. Randall Schroeder's book "Simple Habits for Effective Parenting"

Simple Habits for Effective Parenting

Effective parenting is now within your grasp! With this inspiring how-to comprehensive book, achieve extraordinary results in raising a child to be self-assured, self-reliant, and responsible! You will be able to successfully lead and lovingly encourage your child toward a Godly life!

The Spiritual Battle for Your Marriage

God designed marriage to reflect His love to the world; and because of this, the enemy wants to destroy God’s beautiful design. Based on his book, Defending Your Marriage, Dr. Tim and Noreen Muehlhoff share about the reality of spiritual warfare against marriages, and how to combat the enemy’s lies with the truth of God. Couples will be encouraged that they’re not alone in the fight for a godly marriage and better equipped to be a shining example for the world around them.

Tim and Noreen Muehlhoff Cropped

Dr. Tim and Mrs. Noreen Muehlhoff

Dr. Tim Muehlhoff is a professor of communication at Biola University in La Mirada, California where he teaches classes in family communication, interpersonal communication, apologetics, gender, and conflict resolution.  Tim and his wife, Noreen, are both on staff with Biola’s Center for Marriage and Relationships  where he is a co-host of The Art of Relationship podcast. 

Defending Your Marriage

Is your marriage under attack? Sometimes it can feel like the world is trying to tear your marriage apart. Internal conflicts or external pressures might make you wonder if something sinister is going on. How can you tell if you’re facing spiritual opposition? And what can you do about it? Tim Muehlhoff provides a straightforward resource for protecting your marriage from the threats of the evil one. He looks at what Scripture says about spiritual warfare and how our everyday struggles have deeper spiritual realities. And he provides practical steps for guarding our marriages with the whole armor of God.

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 1

For those of faith whose passion has waned over time, Kim Meeder will reinspire you in your relationship with Jesus Christ as she tells powerful, true stories about God that will spark renewed joy in your heart and encourage you to share the Gospel with others.

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder and her husband, Troy, are the co-founders of Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch, a non-profit organization in Bend, Oregon, that rescues abused horses and pairs them with hurting kids for mutual healing. Kim is a popular motivational speaker and the author of a half dozen books including Hope Rising and Bridge Called Hope, which feature inspirational stories from her ranch.

Revival Rising

With enthusiasm that will set ablaze your passion to reach the hurting, Kim Meeder encourages you to let the holy fire of God’s presence fill your heart, soul, mind and strength. As your fear and pride melt away, those around you who are losing their battle for hope will be transformed by encountering His redeeming love in you. This–this is revival rising.

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 2

For those of faith whose passion has waned over time, Kim Meeder will reinspire you in your relationship with Jesus Christ as she tells powerful, true stories about God that will spark renewed joy in your heart and encourage you to share the Gospel with others.

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder and her husband, Troy, are the co-founders of Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch, a non-profit organization in Bend, Oregon, that rescues abused horses and pairs them with hurting kids for mutual healing. Kim is a popular motivational speaker and the author of a half dozen books including Hope Rising and Bridge Called Hope, which feature inspirational stories from her ranch.

Revival Rising

With enthusiasm that will set ablaze your passion to reach the hurting, Kim Meeder encourages you to let the holy fire of God’s presence fill your heart, soul, mind and strength. As your fear and pride melt away, those around you who are losing their battle for hope will be transformed by encountering His redeeming love in you. This–this is revival rising.

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 2

Rhonda Stoppe describes her early motherhood challenges of raising a son, which was intimidating to her. She found help through group of older women mentors. She urges moms to see their role as ministry in shaping sons to be good and godly men. Rhonda outlines several practical suggestions to moms about spiritual training, how to communicate with boys, and supporting the father-son relationship as a wife.

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

Drawing upon 35 years of experience as a mentor, pastor’s wife, and homeschool mom, Rhonda Stoppe offers encouragement and guidance to women as an author and public speaker. She is popularly known as the “No Regrets Woman,” as she is especially passionate about helping women live life without regrets. Rhonda’s books include Moms Raising Sons to Be MenReal Life Romance, and The Marriage Mentor, which she co-authored with her husband, Steve.

Cover image of Rhonda Stoppe's book "Moms Raising Sons to be Men"

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

Mothers of boys have the special calling to shape future men of God. Popular speaker Rhonda Stoppe, mom to two sons, knows this opportunity is a challenge, a joy, and probably the most important work of a woman’s life. Drawing from years of experience, this inspirational resource will revive the faithfulness and fortitude a woman needs to partner with God as they shape the character and heart of a future godly man.

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage - Part 2

They were both convinced they had married the wrong person. From almost the very beginning of their marriage, Amber and Guy Lia experienced various tensions and personality clashes related to house cleaning, backseat driving, workaholism, and intimacy. In this two-day Focus on the Family broadcast, Amber and Guy discuss how they bravely faced the triggers head-on, and committed to working on their own relationships with Jesus. As you listen to the Lia’s story, you’ll feel hope that you, too, can see real marriage transformation!

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

Mr. and Mrs. Guy and Amber Lia and Mrs. Jean Daly

Amber Lia is a work-at-home mom, blogger, public speaker, and co-author of two best-selling books. Her husband, Guy, is a former TV, feature film, and VFX development and production executive who has worked on popular TV shows and films. Guy and Amber own Storehouse Media Group, a faith- and family-friendly TV and film production company based in Los Angeles,

Cover image of the book "Marriage Triggers" by Guy and Amber Lia

Marriage Triggers: How You and Your Spouse Can Exchange Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses

A husband-wife team offers practical advice for married couples to end the cycle of reactionary arguments by examining the most common issues that trigger disagreements and apply God’s Word to radically transform relationships.

What to Do When You're Not Okay - Part 2

Life can be pretty stressful. Between work, relationships, and other obligations, the pressure builds, and we lose sight of who we are. Counselor Debra Fileta helps you better understand your emotions, assess your mental, physical, and spiritual health, and intentionally pursue a path to wellbeing. In dealing with anxiety, depression, and panic attacks, Debra understands the importance of self-examination as well as the benefits of seeking professional help. She offers biblically-based advice, tools, and encouragement to help you get on a path toward healing and wholeness.

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

Debra Fileta is a licensed professional counselor specializing in relationship and marital issues. She is also a public speaker and the author of multiple books, including Married SexChoosing Marriage: Why It Has to Start With We > Me, Love in Every Season, and Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are, How You’re Doing, and Why It Matters. Debra’s popular relationship advice blog, TrueLoveDates.com, and her Love + Relationships podcast reach millions of people each year offering guidance on topics including love, sex, and marriage. Debra resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, John, and their four children.

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

In Are You Really OK? author and licensed counselor Debra Fileta challenges you to get real with who you are and how you’re doing spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically so you can recognize where you need growth and healing.

Embracing Your Role as a Spouse

As a spouse, you have three roles to play—a friend, a partner, and a lover. On this one-day Focus on the Family broadcast, Pastor Kevin A. Thompson explores those different roles and challenges you to live them out by investing emotionally, physically, and mentally in your relationship. As friends, he suggests we learn to play and laugh together. As partners, he equips us with solid ways to handle conflict and communication. As lovers, he offers some thoughts on how to bring back the sizzle. He shares five keys to saving your marriage: humility, respect, mercy, communication, and resilience. You’ll be encouraged to intentionally invest in your marriage.

Headshot of Kevin Thompson

Pastor Kevin Thompson

Kevin A. Thompson (MDiv, Beeson Divinity School) is lead pastor at Community Bible Church, a growing multi-site church with four locations in western Arkansas. Every year he meets with nearly one hundred couples with a range of needs, from pre-marital counseling to navigating the most serious betrayals. A marriage and parenting conference speaker, he and his wife, Jenny, have two children and live in Fort Smith, Arkansas. He blogs at kevinathompson.com.

Cover image of Kevin Thompson's book "Friends, Partners & Lovers"

Friends, Partners, and Lovers: What It Takes to Make Your Marriage Work

With engaging stories and clear, simple language, pastor Kevin Thompson shows how to live out three distinct roles in marraige. Using solid biblical principles, he helps you and your spouse grow your friendship, be supportive partners through the good times and the bad, and develop a healthy and satisfying sex life.

Sharing Your Faith with Grace and Purpose

You can confidently and lovingly share your faith—you just need to learn some new tactics to do so! In this Focus on the Family Daily Broadcast, apologist Greg Koukl outlines the “Columbo” tactic of asking questions, the “self-defeating argument” tactic to find holes in your opponent’s arguments, and other specific methods for engaging in faith-building conversations with others. Greg pulls from his over 30 years of experience debating atheists and agnostics to help you share your faith with grace and truth.

Mr. Greg Koukl

Greg Koukl is a writer, public speaker and talk show host who’s spent 30 years advocating for and defending the Christian worldview. Greg has written or contributed to 15 books, including The Story of RealityTactics, and Precious Unborn Human Persons. Greg has published nearly 230 articles and has spoken on 80 college and university campuses in the U.S. and abroad.

Tactics front cover

Tactics, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Game Plan for Discussing Your Christian Convictions

In a world increasingly indifferent to Christian truth, followers of Christ need to be equipped to communicate with those who do not speak their language or accept their source of authority. In Tactics, 10th Anniversary Edition, Gregory Koukl demonstrates how to artfully regain control of conversations, keeping them moving forward in constructive ways through thoughtful diplomacy. You’ll learn how to stop challengers in their tracks and how to turn the tables on questions or provocative statements. Most important, you’ll learn how to get people thinking about Jesus.

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 1

Debra Fileta has identified the four seasons of marriage that correspond with our natural seasons – spring (new life and new love), summer (things get hot!), fall (showing our true colors), and winter (long days ahead). In this interview, she will help couples better understand the four seasons of healthy relationships, what to expect during each one, and how to carefully navigate them for a stronger marriage.

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

Debra Fileta is a licensed professional counselor specializing in relationship and marital issues. She is also a public speaker and the author of multiple books, including Married SexChoosing Marriage: Why It Has to Start With We > Me, Love in Every Season, and Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are, How You’re Doing, and Why It Matters. Debra’s popular relationship advice blog, TrueLoveDates.com, and her Love + Relationships podcast reach millions of people each year offering guidance on topics including love, sex, and marriage.

Love in Every Season: Understanding the Four Stages of a Healthy Relationship

Every relationship goes through four life-changing seasons: Spring. Summer. Fall. Winter. Each season plays an important role in taking your relationship to the next level. And depending on how you navigate each season, your relationship will either flourish and grow, or it will slowly die. Whether you’re single, dating, engaged or married, join licensed professional counselor and relationship expert, Debra Fileta as she takes you on an eye-opening psychological and spiritual journey through the four seasons that she has observed in every healthy relationship.

How a Former Abortion Doctor Became Pro-Life

As an abortion doctor at Planned Parenthood, Dr. Patti Giebink believed she was helping women. Later, she began reading scripture and God gradually changed her heart on the abortion issue. Patti tells the story of her long journey from abortion doctor to pro-life and encourages listeners to share the message of life with compassion.

Headshot image of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Dr. Patti Giebink

Mrs. Patti Giebink

Dr. Patti Giebink is an OB-GYN who serves on the board of the Alpha Center, a well-known pregnancy center located in Sioux Falls, S.D. She also travels intermittently to work in mission hospitals in Pakistan and other countries. After completing her medical training, Dr. Giebink worked for Planned Parenthood from 1995-1997, during which she was the only abortion-provider in the state of South Dakota. She eventually experienced a radical change of heart on the issue of abortion after receiving God’s grace, forgiveness, and love, and she is now a passionate advocate for the pro-life movement.

Cover image of the book "Unexpected Choice: An Abortion Doctor’s Journey to Pro-Life"

Unexpected Choice: An Abortion Doctor’s Journey to Pro-Life

Unexpected Choice is told from the perspective of a doctor who actually performed abortions through Planned Parenthood. The book chronicles her journey from being a pro-choice physician to someone speaking on behalf of the pro-life movement.

Giving up Sugar, Tasting God's Goodness

As a latchkey kid, Wendy Speake turned to sugar for comfort. Every Friday, she would pedal to the candy show and use her allowance to fill her bag with candy. And one day, when she was older and a mom of three young boys, she came to realize that she was still “pedaling” away from her stress and using sugar as comfort, instead of turning to Jesus. She was joyless, worn out, tired, and in need of a change. In this interview, Wendy will challenge Christians to take 40 days to focus on fasting from something they turn to instead of Jesus for comfort. She invited people to break free from a dependence on sugar and taste the goodness of God.

Author Wendy Speake smiling as she holds up her book "The 40-Day Social Media Fast"

Mrs. Wendy Speake

With a background in Hollywood as a trained actress, Wendy Speake ministers to women as a bible teacher by applying the power of drama, poetry and comedy to the study of Scripture and real-life application of biblical truths. She has co-authored two books with Amber Lia titled Triggers: Exchanging Parents’ Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses and their latest, Parenting Scripts: When What You’re Saying Isn’t Working, Say Something New. Wendy is also the co-author (with Kelli Stuart) of Life Creative: Inspiration for Today’s Renaissance Mom.

Cover image of the book "The 40-Day Sugar Fast"

The 40-Day Sugar Fast: Where Physical Detox Meets Spiritual Transformation

Welcome to the 40-Day Sugar Fast, a fast that begins with us giving Jesus our sugar and ends with Jesus giving us himself–the only thing that can ever truly satisfy our soul’s deep hunger. On this 40-day journey you’ll learn how to stop fixating on food and other things you use to fill the voids in life and instead fix your eyes on Christ. Anyone who runs to sugar for comfort or a reward, who eats mindlessly or out of boredom, who feels physically and spiritually lethargic, or who struggles with self-control will discover here not only freedom from their cravings but an entirely new appetite for the good things God has for us.

Understanding the Root of Your Child's Misbehavior - Part 1

Often, children act out because they are used to getting attention through bad behavior. Dr. Kevin Leman offers advice to help parents transform their child’s behavior. He discusses the benefits of allowing your kids to learn from real-life consequences and describes the importance of understanding your child’s temperament based on his birth order.

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman is an internationally known family psychologist and an award-winning, New York Times best-selling author. He is also a popular public speaker and media personality who has made countless guest appearances on numerous radio and TV programs. Dr. Leman has written more than 50 books including The Birth Order BookHave a New Kid by Friday and Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours.

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

Tantrums. Talking back. Throwing toys or food. Meltdowns. Slamming doors. Kids know just how to push your buttons. You’ve tried all sorts of methods, but nothing seems to work. In this book, Dr. Kevin Leman reveals exactly why kids misbehave and how you can turn that behavior around with practical, no-nonsense strategies that really work . . . and are a long-term win for both of you.

Understanding the Root of Your Child's Misbehavior - Part 2

Often, children act out because they are used to getting attention through bad behavior. Dr. Kevin Leman offers advice to help parents transform their child’s behavior. He discusses the benefits of allowing your kids to learn from real-life consequences and describes the importance of understanding your child’s temperament based on his birth order.

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman is an internationally known family psychologist and an award-winning, New York Times best-selling author. He is also a popular public speaker and media personality who has made countless guest appearances on numerous radio and TV programs. Dr. Leman has written more than 50 books including The Birth Order BookHave a New Kid by Friday and Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours.

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

Tantrums. Talking back. Throwing toys or food. Meltdowns. Slamming doors. Kids know just how to push your buttons. You’ve tried all sorts of methods, but nothing seems to work. In this book, Dr. Kevin Leman reveals exactly why kids misbehave and how you can turn that behavior around with practical, no-nonsense strategies that really work . . . and are a long-term win for both of you.

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 2

Debra Fileta has identified the four seasons of marriage that correspond with our natural seasons – spring (new life and new love), summer (things get hot!), fall (showing our true colors), and winter (long days ahead). In this interview, she will help couples better understand the four seasons of healthy relationships, what to expect during each one, and how to carefully navigate them for a stronger marriage.

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

Debra Fileta is a licensed professional counselor specializing in relationship and marital issues. She is also a public speaker and the author of multiple books, including Married SexChoosing Marriage: Why It Has to Start With We > Me, Love in Every Season, and Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are, How You’re Doing, and Why It Matters. Debra’s popular relationship advice blog, TrueLoveDates.com, and her Love + Relationships podcast reach millions of people each year offering guidance on topics including love, sex, and marriage.

Love in Every Season: Understanding the Four Stages of a Healthy Relationship

Every relationship goes through four life-changing seasons: Spring. Summer. Fall. Winter. Each season plays an important role in taking your relationship to the next level. And depending on how you navigate each season, your relationship will either flourish and grow, or it will slowly die. Whether you’re single, dating, engaged or married, join licensed professional counselor and relationship expert, Debra Fileta as she takes you on an eye-opening psychological and spiritual journey through the four seasons that she has observed in every healthy relationship.

Reconciling Faith and Science in a Medical Crisis

Dr. Lee Warren is a neurosurgeon who has faced many heavy challenges in his life – from serving in the Iraq War to removing deadly brain tumors to experiencing the loss of a teenage son. He’ll share about his difficult quest to find answers to some of life’s toughest questions, while holding onto his faith in God and the sure hope of heaven

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Dr. W. Lee Warren

Dr. Lee Warren

W. Lee Warren, M.D., is a brain surgeon , inventor, Iraq War veteran, and author of I’ve Seen the End of You: A Neurosurgeon’s Look at Faith, Doubt, and the Things We Think We Know, winner of the Christian Book Award®. His previous book, No Place to Hide, was included on the 2015 U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff’s Recommended Reading List. Dr. Warren has appeared on The 700 Club and the CBS Evening News, and his writings have been featured in Guideposts magazine. His Dr. Lee Warren Podcast, which is heard in more than 60 countries, helps listeners use the power of neuroscience, faith, and common sense to change their lives.

Cover image of Dr. Lee Warren's book "I've Seen the End of You"

I've Seen the End of You: A Neurosurgeon's Look at Faith, Doubt, and the Things We Think We Know

This gripping inspirational memoir grapples with the tension between faith and science—and between death and hope—as a seasoned neurosurgeon faces insurmountable odds and grief both in the office and at home.

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 1

Jodie Berndt loves to pray for her children. She’s been doing that for the past thirty years. Now she helps other parents to talk to God, asking for the salvation of their kids, and for wisdom, self-discipline, purpose, a future and much more. She offers fun and practical encouragement that moms and dads can put to work immediately in their daily lives as they prepare their children for a life in Christ.

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt is a public speaker, a Bible teacher, and the the author of 10 books. Find out more about Jodie and get some free resources (including printable prayer cards and calendars) at her website, jodieberndt.com.

Cover image of Jodie Berndt's book "Praying the Scriptures for Your Children"

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

You will discover how using the Bible to shape your desires and requests opens the door to God’s provision—and frees us from things like worry and fear in our parenting! This expanded edition of the bestseller features updated content on issues like technology and identity, and comes with new material designed to invite children into the family prayer circle. Purchase now and receive 10% off your product.

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 1

Rhonda Stoppe describes her early motherhood challenges of raising a son, which was intimidating to her. She found help through group of older women mentors. She urges moms to see their role as ministry in shaping sons to be good and godly men. Rhonda outlines several practical suggestions to moms about spiritual training, how to communicate with boys, and supporting the father-son relationship as a wife.

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

Drawing upon 35 years of experience as a mentor, pastor’s wife, and homeschool mom, Rhonda Stoppe offers encouragement and guidance to women as an author and public speaker. She is popularly known as the “No Regrets Woman,” as she is especially passionate about helping women live life without regrets. Rhonda’s books include Moms Raising Sons to Be MenReal Life Romance, and The Marriage Mentor, which she co-authored with her husband, Steve.

Cover image of Rhonda Stoppe's book "Moms Raising Sons to be Men"

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

Mothers of boys have the special calling to shape future men of God. Popular speaker Rhonda Stoppe, mom to two sons, knows this opportunity is a challenge, a joy, and probably the most important work of a woman’s life. Drawing from years of experience, this inspirational resource will revive the faithfulness and fortitude a woman needs to partner with God as they shape the character and heart of a future godly man.

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage Part 1

They were both convinced they had married the wrong person. From almost the very beginning of their marriage, Amber and Guy Lia experienced various tensions and personality clashes related to house cleaning, backseat driving, workaholism, and intimacy. In this two-day Focus on the Family broadcast, Amber and Guy discuss how they bravely faced the triggers head-on, and committed to working on their own relationships with Jesus. As you listen to the Lia’s story, you’ll feel hope that you, too, can see real marriage transformation!

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

Mr. and Mrs. Guy and Amber Lia and Mrs. Jean Daly

Amber Lia is a work-at-home mom, blogger, public speaker, and co-author of two best-selling books. Her husband, Guy, is a former TV, feature film, and VFX development and production executive who has worked on popular TV shows and films. Guy and Amber own Storehouse Media Group, a faith- and family-friendly TV and film production company based in Los Angeles,

Cover image of the book "Marriage Triggers" by Guy and Amber Lia

Marriage Triggers: How You and Your Spouse Can Exchange Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses

A husband-wife team offers practical advice for married couples to end the cycle of reactionary arguments by examining the most common issues that trigger disagreements and apply God’s Word to radically transform relationships.

What to Do When You're Not Okay - Part 1

Life can be pretty stressful. Between work, relationships, and other obligations, the pressure builds, and we lose sight of who we are. Counselor Debra Fileta helps you better understand your emotions, assess your mental, physical, and spiritual health, and intentionally pursue a path to wellbeing. In dealing with anxiety, depression, and panic attacks, Debra understands the importance of self-examination as well as the benefits of seeking professional help. She offers biblically-based advice, tools, and encouragement to help you get on a path toward healing and wholeness.

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

Debra Fileta is a licensed professional counselor specializing in relationship and marital issues. She is also a public speaker and the author of multiple books, including Married SexChoosing Marriage: Why It Has to Start With We > Me, Love in Every Season, and Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are, How You’re Doing, and Why It Matters. Debra’s popular relationship advice blog, TrueLoveDates.com, and her Love + Relationships podcast reach millions of people each year offering guidance on topics including love, sex, and marriage. Debra resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, John, and their four children.

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

In Are You Really OK? author and licensed counselor Debra Fileta challenges you to get real with who you are and how you’re doing spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically so you can recognize where you need growth and healing.

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 1

As a pediatrician, Dr. Meg Meeker has seen thousands of girls come through her office through the years. They struggle with eating issues, sexual identity, social media…and many other challenges in this toxic culture. Dr. Meeker will encourage parents to invest love and time in their daughters and develop their character to give them the best opportunity for a bright future, all rooted in a spiritual foundation. The discussion also includes healthy feminism vs. toxic feminism

Mrs. Meg Meeker

Dr. Meg Meeker is a pediatrician who is widely recognized as one of the country’s leading authorities on parenting, teens and children’s health. With appearances on numerous nationally syndicated radio and TV programs, her popularity as a an expert on key issues confronting families has created a strong following across America. Her work with countless families over the years served as the inspiration behind her best-selling books which include Strong Fathers, Strong DaughtersStrong Mothers, Strong Sons and The Ten Habits of Happy Mothers

Cover image of Dr. Meg Meeker's book "Raising a Strong Daughter in a Toxic Culture"

Raising a Strong Daughter in a Toxic Culture: 11 Steps to Keep Her Happy, Healthy, and Safe

Meg Meeker has been a pediatrician for more than thirty years, is a mother and a grandmother, and has seen it all. She knows what makes for strong, happy, healthy young women–and what puts our daughters at risk. Combining that experience with her famous common sense, she explains the eleven steps that will help your daughter–whether she’s a toddler or a troubled teen–to achieve her full human potential.

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Newest Release - Episode 1: The Truth About Life!

In this episode, we will tackle tough questions like, “When does life begin?” and “What does the Bible
say about Life?” You’ll discover and understand the stages of pre-born life and that babies are more than
just a clump of cells!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Thank you for committing to pray for the pre-born!

Sign up below for your free seven-day prayer guide. This daily guide will help give direction to your prayers for the pro-life movement. We will be praying with you! 

Focus on the Family

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