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Focus on the Family Broadcast

Raising Mission-Minded Kids

Raising Mission-Minded Kids

Shauna Pilgreen, author of Love Where You Live, discusses her family's experiences with church planting and describes how listeners can become missionaries right where they are, while teaching their kids to do the same.
Original Air Date: September 9, 2019

Sam Pilgreen: “God never promised that it’s going to be easy. It’s going to be the opposite of that, it’s going to be hard…so we won’t have to have this fixed mindset of, “I don’t know if I can do this, because then someone might laugh at me, or I’ll get in trouble. No, I think the mindset we need to have is that ultimately the glory of God and what we’re doing for His kingdom overrides that any day.”

John Fuller: That is some tremendous wisdom from a middle schooler, Sam Pilgreen, and, uh, his mom is actually here as we talk about the importance of sharing Jesus with others and honoring God in those everyday moments of life. This is Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller and your host is Focus President and Author Jim Daly.

Jim Daly: Wow, John. Uh, man, I wanna have the same attitude Sam does, right?

John: Yeah.

Jim: That kind of eagerness to say, “What I do for the Lord is the most important thing in my life.” You know, as Christians, uh, we’re called to go and make disciples. But in the day-to-day monotony of waiting at stoplights and going to work and vacuuming floors and paying the bills, it’s so easy to forget what our main thing is as believers in Christ. Just like Sam said, uh, that furthering of God’s kingdom is the most important thing we’ll ever do, ’cause we’re talking about eternal souls being saved. Uh, for me, the most convicting thing about forgetting my purpose on earth is that my kids may forget their purpose if I don’t model for them, what it means to be a believer and a follower of Christ, in sharing the gospel with others. And that’s why we started a program here at Focus a few years ago called Bring Your Bible to School. And that’s a day every year, and this year it’s October 6th, and uh, we encourage parents and their kids to be involved, to take their Bible to school. They have every right to do it, but it’s not an antagonistic thing.

John: No.

Jim: It’s a thing of simply being brave enough to say, “In this country, I have the right to be a believer and to share that.” And we provide that opportunity. We’ll speak more to that later, but what a wonderful example we’re gonna talk about today with Shauna Pilgreen.

John: Yeah, and she’s a mom of four kid, and uh, we heard from Sam, one of those kids there. Uh, she’s a church planter, and as you’ll hear, she’s got some very creative, some even out of the box ways that your family can live on mission for Jesus. And uh, she’s captured all of this in a book called Love Where You Live: Living Sent in the Place You Call Home. We’ve got copies of the book and details about bring your Bible to school at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: Shauna, welcome. This is your first time at Focus.

Shauna Pilgreen: This is my first time.

Jim: I love it. Welcome to Focus on the Family.

Shauna: Thank you.

Jim: We-

Shauna: Thank you.

Jim: … so appreciate you taking the time and the energy to get here. I love your story. I mean, even hearing your son, Sam, I’ve just, I’m giddy about it because man, you were proud too sitting there listening.

Shauna: Wow. Right, tears forming in my eyes, even though I was there during the interview when it was, the phone call came in at home, but so proud, so proud.

Jim: Well, let’s get into this, ’cause this is a, a humorous God story. And I do think God has a wonderful boundless sense of humor.

Shauna: I agree.

Jim: Someone once asked me, what do you think God’s belly laugh will be like? And I think that’s part of what we’re gonna talk about today.

Shauna: Yes, yes.

Jim: You and your family were enjoying this normal, if I could call it that, safe, comfortable life in Missouri, when your husband made a suggestion, uh, that turned your life upside down. What did he say to you in that nice, cozy, big yard, Missouri home?

Shauna: He said, “I think God is leading us to start a church in one of the most strategic cities in the United States.”

Jim: How did you translate that as a, want to be missionary since you were a little girl? (laughs).

Shauna: Well, being sent and going and doing for God wherever he calls us has always been just in my family DNA. But a strategic U.S. city did not seem to be what I was thinking.

Jim: Well, and that’s the new news. I mean, you thought originally-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … Africa, maybe somewhere in deep Asia-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … saving people in the village.

Shauna: Yes. And were in-

Jim: … but now he had a different idea.

Shauna: Right. And we were in an amazing church in the Midwest, a church that was constantly sending people out nationally and internationally. So I’m thinking, “I think we’re doing pretty good at doing our part here and sending other people.” So it definitely caught me off guard.

Jim: So then, how did you select the city that you landed at here in the U.S. to be that missionary couple?

Shauna: Well, I first asked if he would gimme a few days to pray about this? And this is, um, you know, while raising little kids.

Jim: Yeah. You, how old were your children at this point? That’s a good-

Shauna: They were one, three and five.

Jim: Okay. So your husband agreed, let’s pray about this.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: And then how did you come up with San Francisco?

Shauna: Well, we narrowed it down through some research, what are the five most strategic unreached cities in the United States? San Francisco being one of them.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: And-

Jim: One of the top five.

Shauna: One of the top five.

Jim: Wow.

Shauna: And as we reached out to just organizations and people that are serving in those cities, San Francisco was the city where people were actually responding to emails and phone calls.

John: Hm.

Jim: Interesting.

Shauna: And so, there wasn’t a formula. There wasn’t a, how-to book on how to figure this out. But it really was someone returning calls that said, “We really need more people out here.”

Jim: Wow. Let me, uh, we have a, a film series here that’s, uh, authored by Ray Vander Laan called That the World May Know.

Shauna: Hm.

Jim: And one of the points that he makes in that series and in-person, when you take a trip to Israel with him, and he gets very dramatic about it is that the west is captivated by the residual effects of the Roman Empire and Hellenistic thinking in that, our pursuits are comfort and leisure.

Shauna: Absolutely.

Jim: And you make that same point. You say a life of comfort is a win for the enemy.

Shauna: Absolutely.

Jim: Now, I’ve gotta tell you comfort is comfortable.

Shauna: It feels great, right?

Jim: Air conditioning is great. You know, being in a nice home and a big yard of Missouri, raising your kids with neighbors who know the Lord, most likely there’s a-

Shauna: Absolutely.

Jim: … cohesiveness. I mean, that’s comfortable.

Shauna: Oh, it was so good. Absolutely.

Jim: So why is this, uh, a win for the enemy if we’re moving toward comfort rather than toward discipleship?

Shauna: Well, when you’re comfortable, most of the time you’re leaning on your own strengths and what you can do and how you can take care of yourself, and you lean less and less away from God and what he wants to do and how he wants to stretch you.

Jim: Yeah, before we go too far, a lot of people watching cable news are gonna think about San Francisco. They’re in the news a lot, because of the needles, human feces everywhere. It seems out of control. And address that point about the bum rap or the true rap that San Francisco is getting. And, you know, of course, it’s in a political context.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: So it’s the leadership of the city that allows these things to happen. Just hit that quickly because people are thinking about it.

Shauna: Yes. I mean, it, a lot of it is what you see on TV, and we walk through it every day. We are us and the kids, we are stepping over needles. Our kids are passing by people in their sleeping bags on the way to school. We see it every day. Our city has a tolerance for everything, everything goes.

Jim: So for that Christian who’s saying, “Why would you put your children in that kind of risk?”

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: I mean, is that what God would want? How do you answer?

Shauna: Well, there’s two things we say. If at any point, our kids are no longer thriving in that city and danger seems to be winning, we will leave. It’s not worth it for the cost of our kids.

Jim: Wow, amazing.

Shauna: But by the grace of God and His hand of protection, nine years, we’re still there.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: Our kids are thriving. Our kids are growing a heart of compassion, because they’re not just hearing about it on the news. They’re walking by it.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: And our oldest, when we pray at night, his heart is so bent toward the people who have no home.

John: Hm.

Shauna: And he has that because he sees it every day.

Jim: Well, and again, the reminder there is you’re living with purpose.

Shauna: We are.

Jim: You’re not just moseying through life hoping good things happen.

Shauna: And we’re learning day by day and it’s hard. But that what we get to see, and who we get to pray for, and who we get to do life with, surpasses any comfort that we’ve ever had.

John: Hmm.

Jim: Right. And tell us about the day you were taking some food to a family when something scary happened. I mean, this is, you know, again, these things are all tied together. The more you risk for the Lord, I think the more spiritually you’re rewarded in seeing his actions. Right?

Shauna: Right. Well, and, of course, you know, just as much as God is alive and working in our cities, the enemy certainly is too. And so, this one felt definitely like an attack. But, uh, we had just gotten our new minivan, and, uh, the kids had deemed at the spy mobile ’cause it had, you know, dark windows. So we were driving the spy mobile downtown to take a meal to a family, and we scored a great parking spot, which is-

Jim: Hard to do.

Shauna: … hard to do in the city.

Jim: Mm-hmm. I used to work in the Bay Area-

Shauna: Yes, so you know.

Jim: … so I get that.

Shauna: You know, you know. So we were all high-fiving ’cause we got a great parking spot.

Jim: (laughs).

Shauna: We were probably inside the apartment for maybe half an hour. And as we came down, um, I did the little clicker on the remote and it should have made a sound and it didn’t. And as I looked closer, I thought, I think we’ve got a hole in our window. So as I got closer, we realized, yeah, someone had broken in and had taken our kids backpacks and made away with it.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: And here I am, three little kids, right beside me on the sidewalk, staring at brokenness and people walking by me as if this is just a normal part of life in the city.

Jim: Well, and unfortunately it is.

Shauna: It is.

Jim: I mean, that particular action is pretty common in San Francisco.

Shauna: Right.

Jim: And what did you do with those broken pieces?

Shauna: Well, so I called our friends that we had just taken a meal to, called my husband who was not where I needed him to be. He was on a work trip.

Jim: So did you talk kindly to him? (laughing).

Shauna: I’m sure so, yes.

Jim: (laughing) [inaudible]

Shauna: I was in a place where I needed help.

John: It always happens when we’re traveling.

Jim: I’m thinking of the husbands now, man. Help.

Shauna: Yes. And, I mean, there wasn’t much he could do.

Jim: Right.

Shauna: So, you know, called the police, filed a report, but I had to drive the van home with the glass and the missing backpacks. It was a dark moment. I wanted the windows closed. I wanted the door locked, and I didn’t wanna go outside for a few days.

Jim: What were you feeling?

Shauna: I was feeling, man, like something had just been taken away from me.

Jim: Violated.

Shauna: Violated.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: And so much. I mean, everything we do, the whole reason we’re there is to serve the people. And one of the persons in the city took advantage of that and it hurt. It really hurt.

Jim: Yeah. Did you translate into where were you God?

Shauna: Absolutely.

Jim: And how did that get answered? I mean, how do you, you’re out there doing so much good-

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … and trying to help people who are poor, who are broken, taking a meal to a family, and Lord, really? You let somebody break into my van?

Shauna: I’m learning that our battle isn’t with flesh and blood. So even though I was mad at the person, I call him the window smasher, even though I was mad at him or her, I realized that person is more broken or just as broken as I am.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: And so, tried to sleep that night, but the next morning I went and scraped up all the broken glass in the van. I think there were probably a few crunchy french fries and style Cheerios in the midst of that broken glass.

John: The safety glass leaves you with these pebble kind of things.

Shauna: It does.

Jim: But you did, you scooped it into a jar.

Shauna: I scrapped it up and I save it. And it is that reminder for me that we are where we are to be with the people who are broken. Because if we don’t live there, it’s broken with broken. Right? But we come with beauty that can only be found in Jesus Christ. And so beauty has to live among the broken.

Jim: It is so good, uh, Shauna. You really have captured. You and your husband have done such a great job with your kids. Um, when we talk about modeling evangelism for our children, uh, a lot of times we wonder if they’re truly watching or they’re just bored, especially teenagers. I mean, we’re-

Shauna: Oh, my goodness.

Jim: … I’ll come home, and, you know, I’ll share a story about something great that happened here at Focus. You know, somebody came to Christ through something that was said right here.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: And, you know, most of the time everybody’s excited with me, but sometimes it’s a little bit of, “Are you there?” To my teenagers. You know, “Did you hear what I said?” “Oh yeah, of course, dad.” Where’s the excitement? Where’s the enthusiasm? Um, you haven’t had to wonder, I mean, your son, Sam has really lived out his faith and what we heard at the top of the broadcast here.

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: What a wise young man he is. I mean, he’s a middle schooler. In fact, we have a clip of him talking about witnessing to a friend one day in gym class, and I want to play that and get your response.

Sam: I was in gym class one day, and I see a friend of mine on the ground and we were playing catch. I knew his family was going through somewhat of a hard time. So then I asked him, “Hey, is it okay if I pray with you?” And he said, “Yes, sure.” After I prayed with him, we talked a little bit, and I invited him to church. Two weeks later, he decided to become a Christian, which was amazing. And then he got baptized at our church as well with his older brother, which was amazing.

Jim: Wow. I mean-

Shauna: Right (laughs).

Jim: Yeah, fighting back the tears of joy of that.

Shauna: I know, I know, yes.

Jim: Parents that are hearing this, that have distant children spiritually, you know, we’re just going through the days and paying the bills like we talked about at the beginning.

Shauna: Yeah.

Jim: Um, it’s gotta throw your heart to see your kids are catching-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … what you’re teaching. And then the parents listening right now, they’re saying, “Okay, Shauna, I hear it. How did you do this?” So speak to all of that. What part is God, what part is your kids’ temperament and makeup? And what part is you and your husband doing such a good job?

Shauna: You know, the God piece is, He has a plan for all of us and it’s not just for the husband and the wife, the mom and the dad, it’s for the kids as well. And so, God’s part is to call us into something. And then our part is to step into that which he’s calling us into. And not, so that we set up a life of comfort, because he’s got things, he wants our kids to see. He’s got places he wants us to go, and he’s got things he wants us to do with the gifts he’s given us. And so, as we stepped out onto what has become an adventure into San Francisco, we went with the mentality that we’re gonna do this together. Part of it was, who wants to go at anything alone? So we set out learning the city, learning the public transportation, meeting the neighbors. But we saw it after doing this together, not by ourselves or, well, we’re gonna let Ben do it because he’s the church planter. And so, it was just all hands in.

Jim: Huh.

Shauna: And this does mean that our kids see things that are scary. Our kids, um, encounter emotions, and there’s a lot of debriefing at home, but isn’t that what we want?

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Shauna: For our kids to see things while they live at home with us, that we can help them process and understand and intercede for?

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: As opposed to waiting until they go off to college and are exposed to this for the first time.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: Or they go on a mission trip and are exposed to it for the first time.

Jim: You know, Shauna, it, that sounds so right. But I’m thinking of the fearful mom.

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: As you just mentioned that your kids are exposed to things that are, you know, not what many kind of Midwestern Christian families would want their kids exposed to, if I could say it that way.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: But you can certainly be that on the coast as well.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: A good, healthy Christian family. How did you get over that mama fear?

Shauna: It’s there.

Jim: And trust God?

John: Mm-hmm.

Shauna: It’s there. I think it lives in tandem with the courage that we have to have in Christ. It’s there.

Jim: But, man, you’ve gotta tamp-

Shauna: It’s there.

Jim: … that now-

Shauna: It’s there.

Jim: … ’cause that can roar up easily.

Shauna: Yes, yes. But at the same time, we’re not afraid to let our kids even see that fear.

Jim: Good. That’s good.

Shauna: We’re not afraid. And we’re gonna make mistakes. We tell our kids, like, we might end up on the wrong street or have taken the wrong bus. I parked at the wrong spot and got the van towed, and we had to walk back home. So our kids have seen us make mistakes. But I think it frees them that they can make mistakes too. And that-

Jim: Oh, that’s good.

Shauna: And yeah, we’re just learning it together.

John: Yeah.

Shauna: But the fear doesn’t go away. It comes back up all the time, so it’s learning how to push through the fear.

Jim: Well, and probably leave it with God, right?

Shauna: Right.

Jim: I mean, it sounds like a Christianese thing to say, but that’s part of it. You gotta say, “Lord, I’m gonna trust you.”

Shauna: Yes. And say, “I’m scared about what you’ve called me into, but we’re gonna go for it.”

John: Yeah.

Jim: Hm.

John: Well, we’re talking today on Focus on the Family with Shauna Pilgreen, and uh, we want to encourage you to get her book Love Where You Live. It really is a great resource, lot of good ideas in here. And it’s gonna encourage you to step out and, uh, to live, uh, right where you’re at for God on mission on point. And, of course, we have the book at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY. 800-232-6459.

Jim: Shauna, you describe circles in the book. Um, give the listener a little flavor of what you mean by operating in circles within your mission.

Shauna: Right. So if you’re living sent, you’re paying attention. You’re paying attention to what’s going on around you, realizing that you’re not seeing things just with your physical eyes, but there’s some things that God wants you to see with your spiritual eyes. So when I describe circles, I’m talking about, think about the groups that you’re a part of. Think about the circles that are formed in your life. Some you form, some you step into. For example, maybe your staff is your circle.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Shauna: Maybe you’re a part of the PTA, or you’re a part of a small group at church. Those are your circles. Those are the groups of people that you do life with. And most of the time, you have something in common with those people. So I talk about quadrants, circles and hubs, as these are places you are every day, and it’s people you’re doing life with every day. But we need to have this mindset that, again, we’re just not gonna take the road of comfort and say, “Well, it’s just people like me.” Know who are those people that you’re around, that God has placed in your circle to do life with, and then look for ways to have those conversations.

Jim: Yeah. You know, Shauna, in the book, you have so many creative ideas on how to do this, and that’s why we wanted to carry your resource.

John: Yeah.

Shauna: Thank you.

Jim: To get more people kind of opened up to this. It’s humorous though, in this one, I think you had a failed barbecue if I remember correctly.

John: (laughs).

Shauna: (laughs).

Jim: But you turned it into something proactive.

John: Yeah.

Jim: So what did you do with your fail? How do you fail at a barbecue, first of all?

Shauna: Well, you fail at a barbecue because you’ve already failed at an Easter egg hunt that you tried to do for your neighborhood. Um, we had all planned, uh, Ben was gonna grill. Elijah was gonna help him with the vegetables and all six of us had a different role in this. Well, the grill went out.

Jim: So this was a neighborhood barbecue.

Shauna: This was a neighborhood barbecue. We were putting it on. We were just-

Jim: Come one, come all.

Shauna: … bless the, bless the, uh, neighborhood.

Jim: (laughs).

Shauna: And uh, so we scrambled and last minute we just went to Costco and bought, I don’t know how many, maybe 20 pizzas-

Jim: That was a small version.

Shauna: … bottled water and-

John: That’s a good back up barbecue-

Shauna: … and cookies.

John: … kind of food. Yeah.

Shauna: Right.

John: Pizza.

Shauna: Yes. And my plan was to bring everybody into our tiny city patio, but the kids said, “You know what? They’re not gonna come in here. We need to go out there.” And again, it’s just something they’re learning and living in the city. So we set up the table right outside of our fence. And so many people came by, wanted to pay. Weren’t quite sure while we were doing it, and we got to meet so many people that way.

Jim: And people may not have caught what you said. You got all the barbecue stuff ready, and then you found out you had no gas in the barbecue. (laughs).

Shauna: Exactly, exactly. We’re out of propane.

Jim: Thank you to your husband ’cause that’s something I would do. (laughing).

John: (laughs). Oh.

Jim: Okay. So you’re out there on the curb handing out pizza slices, right?

Shauna: Yes. In the summer, and if you know San Francisco, have you ever been, you know that cold fog is just blowing at you?

Jim: Yeah.

John: Yes.

Shauna: So the pizza eventually, you know, lost its warmth pretty quick, but people stopped by, all kinds of people stopped by. And we live in a busy intersection where people are coming back from work. And so, we got to meet, you know, a family across the street that has a down syndrome kid. We’ve, they’ve never stepped out of the house where we’ve been, um, visible. Um, yeah, neighbors, people driving by. It was just amazing. Amazing.

Jim: You know, again, the combination at the top of the program, we talked about, bring your Bible to school. And we just thought this is such a good fit. Your content, the book.

Shauna: Yeah.

Jim: And then what we’ve done the past four years or so, we’ve had over a half a million kids participate.

Shauna: Incredible.

Jim: The biggest statistic that I love about it is about 32% of public schools have had students participate. That is big.

Shauna: It’s incredible.

Jim: And we’re simply trying to remind students, particularly, that you have every right to bring a Bible into school-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … not to be disruptive, but at lunchtime and free time, you’re free to read the Bible, have your friends read it with you, and do whatever you’d like to do. Pray together. The school administration has no legal right to prevent

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … you from doing that. And it’s not to wag a finger at people, but to say, you know, we’re gonna, we’re gonna exercise this muscle-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … we have called religious Liberty.

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: And I think it’s important for young people like your son’s age to realize that. I am shocked at how many school administrators and teachers don’t even know these fundamental rights.

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: And we work with Alliance Defending Freedom, and people can go to the website and download all this information. It’s a nice one-sheeter that the kids can print out. So when that schoolteacher comes up and says, “Hey, what are you doing?” They can hand this quick legal brief, and they read it. and usually the outcome is, the teacher goes, “Oh, okay. It looks like you’re fine to do that.” But they just don’t know. And it’s a wonderful way to embolden children to be, um, you know, positive about their faith, and to be, I guess, confident-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … in what they’re doing. And you’ve done this in the book. What are some other things that children can do? Young people can do that you’ve done with your kids?

Shauna: Well, we start by praying on the way to school. I think it’s a simple way. Mom and dad, whoever, the carpooling parent on the way to school, just pray, pray over the day, pray over what’s on their mind. I think that’s an easy way. We even encourage our kids that, you know, God’s with you throughout the day. You’re not alone.

John: Yeah.

Shauna: You can call on him at any point. And so, we even just keep tabs on that. Like, was there a moment today that you had to, you know, ask God for something? Just that reminder for them ’cause school’s overwhelming in so many ways. But for them to know that God is with you, as you walk through the day is huge. And then we just encourage our kids. “Hey, while mom and dad are out in the community, you’re out at school. Look for ways, eyes wide open, look for the person that’s hurting.”

Jim: Yeah. It’s good.

Shauna: We keep all the names of um, their classmates on our wall.

Jim: I saw that. I think that I regret that we did not do that. That is a wonderful idea. And then you have kids-

Shauna: Well, it’s tricky in middle school and high school because of the number of students.

Jim: But you just pick one child a night to pray for before they go to bed.

Shauna: Yeah.

Jim: I think that I was kicking myself when I read that going, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Because that’s a great idea.

Shauna: Well, and it teaches the kids to be looking for that person.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Let’s end with that recurring dream you’ve had about evangelism. Now, people are going “What, what, what?”

Shauna: (laughs).

Jim: Yeah. I mean the Lord’s been very effective working and dreams in your life. Describe what you see in that dream. And what does that teach us about sharing Jesus with others?

Shauna: Well, this dream came when I was little, far before I could see San Francisco or not seeing Africa where I thought he was gonna lead me. But the dream came when I was actually in middle school and high school myself, and just began to think, “God, what would heaven look like if the people that I get to tell my story to end up in heaven with me?” And so, the reoccurring dream is seeing myself walking the streets of heaven and looking to my left and my right and seeing the people that I got to share my faith with.

Jim: And Shauna, some people feel that is a burden, but what people need to realize, I think on average, it’s like 11 touches that a person receives before they make a commitment to Christ. So you might be touch number one-

Shauna: Yes.

Jim: … or 1 through 11. I don’t know. Or you could be that last touch where a person says, “Yes.”

Shauna: Mm-hmm.

Jim: “… I do want to know Jesus as my personal savior.”

Shauna: Yeah.

Jim: You just don’t know, but-

Shauna: You don’t know.

Jim: … the idea of planting, watering and reaping is the concept of God’s harvest.

Shauna: Yes. And Jim, I still get sweaty hands when I’m in conversations. And I know God is prompting me to share parts of my story.

Jim: Yeah.

Shauna: But it’s worth it. It doesn’t ruin our relationship with God. He just continues to give us what we need.

Jim: Well, it’s the main thing.

Shauna: That’s right.

Jim: And I’m so grateful for you and your family. How inspiring? I look forward to meeting Sam someday.

Shauna: You need to come visit.

Jim: Yeah, we’ll do that. (laughs) We’ll come to San Francisco, but uh, let me turn to the listener, and really encourage you to get a copy of Shauna’s great book, Love Where You Live: How to Live Sent in the Place You Call Home. It’s inspiring. And you heard the proof in the pudding. Sometimes you can hear from people and you’re thinking, yeah, it’s all theoretical. You heard Sam, their young middle schooler speaking so profoundly and was great wisdom for a young man. And uh, her book is packed with these ideas on how to engage your children in the community around-

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … where they live. And this is one of those resources that is very practical and will help you. And for a gift of any amount, uh, just contact us and we’ll send you a copy of Shauna’s book, and we’ll do that is our way of saying thank you for investing in the Focus ministry. If you can’t afford it, get ahold of us, we believe in the content so much, we’ll send it to you believing that others will cover the cost of that. And, uh, we’re delighted to do that for you.

John: Yeah, and our phone number is 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY or online, we’re at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. If you can make a monthly pledge, uh, that really helps even out the, uh, fiscal year for us. And, uh, that’ll be really helpful. If you can’t do that a one-time gift, or as Jim said, if you’re not in a spot to give, uh, just ask for the book and we’ll make sure it gets to you.

Jim: And remember, Bring Your Bible to school, it’s coming up Thursday, October 6th, a wonderful way to engage your kids in evangelism and to bring their Bible to school and participate. So many young people have written us afterward, uh, and said, you know, they did a little Bible study at lunchtime. They led people to Christ. I mean, it’s awesome. These are the testimonies that flow in.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: And, uh, you’re completely in your legal rights to do that as a student. So don’t shrink back. This is a good way to encourage your young person to, uh, exercise their religious liberties.

John: Mm-hmm. And, uh, we would encourage you to register for Bring Your Bible to School Day online so we can kind of count your voice among the thousands, the tens of thousands that’ll be participating in standing up for Christ in the school. When you register online, we’re gonna offer that free guide Jim mentioned earlier, some downloadable posters, activities and information on your child’s religious freedoms in the school. Register for Bring Your Bible to School Day and get a copy of Shauna’s book while you’re there at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

Jim: Shauna, again, thank you so much for the witness that your family is and for the courage to do what you do.

Shauna: Thank you. We love living where we live, and it’s a pleasure to share our stories.

John: Hm.

Jim: I’m gonna come visit.

Shauna: Please do.

John: And I’m gonna suggest our listeners pray for you tonight as they go to bed and, uh, just lift up your family so you can be more effective and have that covering of the holy spirit behind you. And have a great weekend, and plan to join us on Monday when we have the Christian comedy duo, The Skit Guys joining us, Tommy Woodard and Eddie James describing the importance of friendship in a man’s life.

Preview:

Tommy Woodard: You can spend your whole life doing the easy thing, but if you’ll take the chance, you’ll realize there’s something much greater out there for you.

End of Preview

Today's Guests

Love Where You Live

Love Where You Live: How to Live Sent in the Place You Call Home

Receive the book Love Where You Live and the audio download of the broadcast "Raising Mission-Minded Kids" for your donation of any amount!

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Dr. Kevin Leman

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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.

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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

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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!