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Avoiding a Midlife Crisis

Avoiding a Midlife Crisis

Radio host and counselor Stephen Arterburn offers encouragement and advice to men on how they can avoid the potential pitfalls of the middle age years and thrive during that season of life.
Original Air Date: August 23, 2019

Opening:

John Fuller: If you’re a man in midlife, you might be asking questions like, who am I? Where am I going? Or what is the meaning of life? And that’s not at all unusual because those questions do come up in the middle stages of life. Now, we’re going to address that today on “Focus on the Family,” with our guest Steve Arterburn.  And we’re going to comma – and we’re going to come alongside and help you avoid a crisis and really thrive. Your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly, and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: John, I don’t know if this qualifies for a midlife crisis. But the very morning – this morning, I was reading the book and prepping for the program with Steve today. And I had an overflow of the coffee pot. And I burnt my hand trying to fix this overflow. And I thought, “Lord, this is just like you to give me a midlife – is this a midlife problem?”

John: A kitchen disaster?

Jim: A kitchen disaster.

John: I don’t know. That could qualify.

Jim: I mean, I’m mopping it up in my hand. I burnt my hand on the coffee machine…

John: And hit your head coming up. Yeah.

Jim: Hit my head on the cabinet – and I’m going, “OK. I don’t know if this is midlife. But, man, I’m lost.” John: It’s a crisis of some sort. That’s for sure.

Jim: But I thought it was a crisis of some sort. Hey. Listen. We do want to speak to men today but also the wives who are married to hopefully these wonderful men. And both of you will learn so much from the program today. But I want to start with Scripture. And this is for all of us. But in II Timothy 3:16 and 17, it says, “All scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training and righteousness that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” And I love this idea of applying that journey…

John: Mmm hmm.

Jim: …That Biblical growth that we have over our lifetime to the middle years, because so often, vocationally, we are achieving things that we wanted to achieve. Maybe you wanted to start your own business, and you did it. And – or maybe you just wanted to make a good living for your family, and you did it. And you look around and go, “OK – now what?” And that’s what we’re going to talk about with Steve today – 6 Ways For Men To Thrive In Middle Life.

Body:

Jim: Oh, is it – OK – in – OK – In Middle Life – Steve, welcome back to Focus on the Family.

Steve Arterburn: Thanks. I love being here. And I’m so glad you started that scripture, because midlife crisis does not have to occur. It really can be one of the greatest things ever. I would say it’s the least written about, though, because we know about childhood development, adolescent development. We know about old age, but very little about the developmental stages in midlife. And it really doesn’t have to be a crisis. I made up a word called Lordular and…

Jim: Lordular.

Steve: Lordular – and that is…

Jim: OK (laughter).

Steve: …Let’s – let’s go into this with Scripture as our foundation…

Jim: Yeah.

Steve: …With an eternal perspective. And let’s become that godly man that we’ve always wanted to be. And we can be that man.

Jim: So what’s the definition of what a midlife

John: Yeah.

Jim: Most people don’t realize that. Midlife probably has that same kind of feel to it.

Steve: Mmm hmm.

Steve: Mmm hmm. The thoughts about midlife started with a book that referred to it as a midlife season. And then we started talking about midlife. And it’s a transition point. And you may rarely hear anything with the word gender in it that is positive. But here’s a great two-word combination – gender expansion. Midlife, for a man, is a time of gender expansion.

Jim: You better explain that one (laughter).

Steve: Yeah. In other words, we start to feel more compassionate to other people.

Jim: Oh.

Steve: We start to desire deeper connection toward midlife. So…

Jim: Is that because we’re getting older, and we’re understanding the importance of it? Are we just…

Steve: Absolutely. I…

Jim: …Thick-skinned we or thick-headed?

Steve: No. I think a lot of men think that relationships are optional and that the achievement is everything. And so, we start to expand our own definition of who it means to be a man. Now, there’s something else about this midlife thing that happens to a lot of men that do produce a crisis. If you were raised in a family where there was no father, or a weak father and a domineering mother, you start to have this fear creep up on you that you’re going to end up in that same kind of mode. Well, rather than react to that, you need to have a plan. And that’s why this is a manual for midlife. It’s not a manual to avoid a crisis. It really is a manual to be the man God has called you to be and address the issues that might prevent you from getting there.

Jim: Well, we’re going to hit some of those. But before we do, that bigger picture – I really want to paint it for the listener. How do you believe God sees the second half of life?

Steve: Hmm.

Jim: I mean, what is he expecting from us as 40, 50, 60-something men?

Steve: Yeah. I got to tell you. I’m seeing men in the – you know, midlife is – the target is 30 to 60. That’s pretty much where you’re going to have it. And yet some people never even launched out in their 30s.

Jim: (Laughter).

Steve: But I see men starting to retire from a career and starting to minister in ways that they never had time to do. I see a lot of people doing it right. From my perspective in, Scripture, I don’t find anybody retiring from being a disciple or – well, of course, they were killed before they could get to that age. But, there’s no retirement in my mind. There’s a shift. There’s a transition. And you can be preparing for that transition at age 40, 45. And it can be the greatest time of your life.  And I’ve got to tell you in this gender expansion, you also have on the other side women that are starting to feel more confident, more assertive about themselves. And the combination of the two of you expanding who you have been and really branching out – maybe that the nest is empty, and you’ve got some things you can do – that can create this abundant life that you’ve heard so much about that maybe you wondered, “Have I missed it?”

Jim: Yeah.

Steve: Now’s the time to find it.

Jim: And it can be – and I think that’s the right picture to paint here. It’s a very positive moment. It isn’t…

Steve: It is.

Jim: …Necessarily a negative moment…

Steve: No.

Jim: …Unless you paint the picture that way. Steve, in the book, you’ve summarized the changes that happen in midlife for men very well. You said, in fact, it seems as if everybody’s character in the show has changed. And nobody’s sticking to the script. The actions are not like anything we’ve rehearsed before. What were you getting at there? To me, it sounds like an expectation for life. It’s kind of moving along. There’s a certain rhythm to life that’s good. You fit with it.

Steve: Mmm hmm.

Jim: You and your wife are doing well. The kids are now probably 17, 18, 19. You’re about launch, or you’ve just recently launched. That usually is about when midlife is hitting you. What’s the change of the script? And why does that freak us out and make us panic?

Steve: Well, I think the younger our kids are the more predictable they are and the more control we have over them and the more control we have in life in general. And so, this shift of roles, we – all of a sudden, these people that we kind of predicted what they were going to do or say or be – now, they’re developing a new individuality. They’re separating from us. And we – if we don’t have some other men that we’re connected to, it can be a pretty scary experience. And so, one of the things that I say is, as you’re watching this happen, your script doesn’t apply anymore. Life changes. You need to be in a group where you can talk about this and get some insight from other guys.

Jim: OK. Let’s get down to the analysis.

Steve: OK.

Jim: Uh, the wives that are listening, for example – how do you know if your spouse – or how do you know as a husband or how do you know as the man that you’ve hit this midlife crisis moment?

Steve: Mmm hmm.

Jim: What are those signs?

Steve: Well, you know, if it’s not going well, one of the negative signs, of course, is kind of a depression, or an emptiness and a loneliness and a just wandering through.

Jim: What does that manifest like? I am thinking specifically of the wife to help her husband. So, speak to her. She’s coming to you saying, “Here’s my husband. This is what he’s doing.”

Steve: Mmm hmm.

Jim: “It’s a little different behavior than I’m used to.”

Steve: He’s shutting down.

Jim: OK.

Steve: He’s closing off to you. He’s afraid, really. I mean, that’s the basis of this. He’s afraid. He doesn’t know what he’s getting into. And so, he’s not going to walk in one day and say, you know, I’m scared to death of what’s happening. And one of the things that we have to do is learn to live with some new limitations and accept that and not be tremendously bothered every time we can’t do something that we used to do.

Jim: Do you think – does that kind of define a younger man, that limitations are only things to conquer? I mean, I…

Steve: Definitely.

Jim: I think that, you know, playing football and being…

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: …a sports guy, like I was, that was always the thing for us as guys. We’re in the huddle going, “OK. We’re going to get this first down.”

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: I mean, your whole life kind of develops in that way.

Steve: Right.

Jim: Climb the hill. Win the good job. Do the things you need to do to conquer. And then all of a sudden – OK, I don’t know if I can do that next one.

Steve: And then, there’s the other person who goes to work in a factory and does the same thing, puts the spark plug in – day after day, the same thing – so that, 20 years later, he can retire, so he can put his kids through college, so that he can provide for other people. And, you know, it – the mountain is just being consistent and continuing to do that, while all these other people look like they’re living this dream. And I feel for that guy, because he’s a hero.

Jim: Well, wouldn’t you – yeah – to me, when you say, it sounds like sacrificial manhood…

Steve: Absolutely. Great…

Jim: …If I could say it that way.

Steve: Great word – it’s humbling down into what I think Jesus calls us to do. And that’s to serve.

But I want to – I want to point out something that’s really a positive thing. In this area of limitations, when they tested 25-year-olds versus 40-year-olds, the 40-year-old is superior in verbal functioning, numerical functioning, reasoning and memory – all of those issues. The only thing that we’re not very – we suffer a little bit from is, uh, kind of a perceptual sense of something. In other words, it takes us longer to get a joke – big deal.

(LAUGHTER)

Steve: But all the other stuff…

Jim: Or to remember where your keys are (laughter).

Steve: Yes. It’s better. So, you know, we might not be able to run as fast, or whatever. But there are things that are happening that we’re really starting to peak more toward midlife than to go downhill.

Jim: Mmm hmm.

Mmm hmm. Steve, you painted a pretty broad picture of the midlife years. I’ve got a friend who’s in his mid-50s.

Steve: Mmm hmm.

John: And he’s been very faithful in working for 30 years at the same employer. And he’s got an option to retire early. What kinds of issues do they need to discuss to work through this?

Steve: Well, you know, if I was talking with him, I would encourage him absolutely to retire, but not to retire, but retread and keep rolling.

You can do about everything you ever dreamed of doing in retirement in about six months. And then…

John: Then what?

Jim: You get bored.

(LAUGHTER)

Steve: So what I would be saying to this couple is, hey, what’s the dream?  And get out there and do something that you’ve never had the time to do.

John: Mm.:

Jim: And that’s great advice. In fact, you mentioned four critical things men should do in this phase. I’ll hit ’em quickly. This is where you may want to write it down, or get to the website…

John: Yeah.

Steve: Mmm hmm.

Jim: …So, you can catch ’em again. But, Steve, you said re-evaluate, recalculate, remember and reinstill. So, hit those.

Steve: OK.

Jim: What does that mean?

Steve: Well, first of all, a reflective life is a sign of a mature man. And that’s something that we’re – we’re forgetting to do. You need to reflect back. And what has gone well, and what hasn’t? And you need to remember where you’ve tripped up, or – and you need to re-evaluate some things in your life. Are you using porn? Are you drinking too much? Are you doing anything that’s hurting you? Now, you need to stop that. But, you also need to start something else, and you need to develop the character. You know, I have these people with alcohol and drug problems. And they’ll say, “I was delivered from this addiction.” And I’ll say, “Well, were you delivered into total character and Godly manhood?” “Well, no.” “OK,” so, let’s get a program.” So when – and so in this area of “recalculate,” I say join a group in that recalculation.

John: Mm.

Steve: Don’t do this alone. This is the time to get in a men’s Bible study, get into a growth group with some other men. And you’ll find that men do become men in the company of men. And you’ll discover parts of yourself that God wants to use that you’ll never discover alone, isolated and just doing what you’ve always done.

John: Mm.

Jim: That’s good. That’s the re-evaluate part. I like that challenge, actually.

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: And then you go to recalculate. What – what does that mean?

Steve: Well, if I stay with what I’m doing now, where am I going to end up? Or, if I change my trajectory, I start to really serve. I start to study the scriptures so that I can be, quote, unquote, “‘Lordular” in all of my living. Then where’s that gonna lead me? And I think men are lonely, isolated, confused. And there are these healthy, caring, loving, other – a little bit older – men that want to come alongside you and help you step into kingdom living. But it takes a little bit of a risk to do that. But when you do, when you make that recalculation and then you make the adjustment and get into it, you never look back. You say – and I had a lady the other day. She said, “He’s gone a full day serving. But I’d rather him be gone that full day, and I’ll have him six then have all seven of the guy he used to be.”

John: Mm.

Jim: Wow. I mean, that’s true. When you serve, you tend to get so much more back…

Steve: Yeah.

0:16:19: Jim: …than person or people you’re serving, which is great. So you’ve got re-evaluate, recalculate. Let’s remember and re-instill.

Steve: Possible Next Day Promo: Well, remember what – what God called you to do. And let’s re-instill some new dreams within there. Let’s remember some of the things that really made you hum when you were younger, some things that excited you, and what could you do about that to bring that dream back to life?

Jim: Steve, what about the guy who says, “You know, my head was so down and hard-charging in my career – I don’t remember hearing that from God?” What would you say to him?

Steve: Start to listen.

Jim: (Laughter) That’s good.

Steve: And so you have to turn off the motors. And you have to have the…

Jim: Be still.

Steve: Yeah. Be still. Know that He is God, and He cares about you. And this is the thing. We’ve got to – wherever we are, many times, we’re waiting for God to do God’s waiting for us to do. So, you might be waiting for God to tell you something. Well, let’s just get busy. And let’s start moving in a direction and see if God blesses that or not. And then we can adjust. But when you’re standing still, when you’re stagnant, it’s hard for God to move you.

Jim: Yeah.

Steve: It’s much easier to move when you’re moving.

Jim: I love that analogy of the sailboat, you know? If the sails aren’t up…

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: …The wind’s not going to move the ship.

Steve: That’s right.

Jim: You got to have your sails up. That’s your part. And then the Lord will bring the wind.

Steve: Well, I like to talk about laying on of hands. We all love to be part of laying on of hands. I say, lay on your – lay on the hands of a steering wheel. And get your hands on the steering wheel, and drive yourself to a Bible study, a meeting…

Jim: (Laughter).

Steve: …A growth group, a recovery group. That’s the laying on of hands that can really start to your life.

Jim: Action.

Steve: You don’t – yes. And it’s faith in action, versus faith as a concept.

Jim: And that fourth one, again, re-instill – what are you driving at?

Steve: Well, re-instill in your life the values that you were born to live out. And that’s – that’s the value of companionship, of partnership, the values of Godly living and holiness. You were called to something special. You know, John 8 – John 8:31-32 says that “If you follow my teachings, you’re truly my disciple. Then you’ll know the truth. And the truth will set you free.” Start to follow. Just memorizing a verse doesn’t set you free. But following the Bible, you start to become the disciple. And then you experience the freedom that God wants you to experience.

Jim: Mm.

John:  We are talking about midlife, and specifically, how men can grow in their faith and in their mission statement for life. Obviously, as Jim said, this is for wives as well. This is a journey couples have to make together. And Steve Arterburn is our guest today. Stop by the website, and look for Steve’s book, 6 Ways For Men To Thrive In Midlife. It is an excellent little resource. And if what we were talking about a moment ago – if being quiet and listening to God is hard, this book can help. It really is an easy little read. It’s got some great content. And, we’ve got it here at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: Steve, in the book, you mentioned the macho man. And what are those big takeaways for men that are…

Steve: Mm hmm.

Jim: …living that kind of life?

Steve: Yeah. You know, I was overweight. And so, I called myself “Nacho Man,” but…

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: Nacho man.

Steve: But within – within all of us is – I think, every man – there’s this, uh, expectation that we can do more, conquer more, know more. We’re smarter, stronger and all of that. And OK. So that’s the extreme that’s unhealthy. But, what you want to be is not the extreme macho man. You want to become a competent man. I think every guy’s kind of asking, “Am I a man? And then, “OK. I’m a man.” But am I a competent man?

Jim: What’s the definition of that…

Steve: Well…

Jim: …If you’re doing the self-evaluation right now? The guys driving down the road listening…

Steve: You – you can…

Jim: How do you know your competent?

You can…you can do stuff, you can solve problems, you can fix things, and you can come up with creative ways to do different things. Don’t shut that down just…

Jim: Wait a second. Fixing things makes you competent? I’m in trouble (laughter).

John: No. You’ve got the right phone numbers to call.

Jim: That’s like the worst thing in my repertoire. I can fix hardly a thing.

Steve: But…

Jim: (Laughter).

Steve: …You know who to call.

Jim: OK. I do know who to call.

Steve: And there are other things, though, Jim that – obviously, you’re fixing a lot of things in people’s lives. You’re helping other people. And so, maybe that’s somebody better at putting a bookshelf together does that for you. But you’re – we are competent men. And so, don’t just abandon this fact that we are male. And it’s a pretty exciting thing to be. And we do have some competencies. Now, we want to use those to serve, not to lord it over somebody, or to abuse or control somebody. And that’s where we get in trouble. So, we want to go back to scripture where, you know, God is telling us to serve others, not to use our gifts to lord it over somebody else.

Jim: Yeah. No. That’s good. And that macho mentality – I mean, a male mentality – You’ve got to bridle that. Like Christ says, lay down your life.

Steve: It’s called restraint.

Jim: For your spouse…

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: …That’s a tough one.

Steve: It…

Jim: Think of that.

Steve: Yes. And I don’t think that – you know, we always start with Ephesians 4:22, verses 21 – because 22 says, “Woman, submit.” But 21 says, “Submit yourselves to one another.” And that’s what we want to see people do…is lay down your life the way Christ tells us to. And when you do that, you pick up a role in life that is very much like Jesus.

John: Mm.

Jim: Steve, let me hit this one, because again, if you’re around a group of men and I would think all of us men listening will acknowledge this, and some wives may be surprised by this. But the conversations usually start with, you know, what do you do?

Steve: What do you do?

Jim: Where do you work?

Steve: Right.

Jim: We don’t talk about the kids, if we’re just – you know, we’ll talk about the kids. But we don’t start the conversation there, typically.

Steve: Right.

Jim: You know, how many kids do you have? What are their ages? That’s not your usual golf-buddy discussion. It comes around that, usually because your kids are having some kind of problem, and it’s frustrating you…

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: …As a dad.

Steve: Right.

Jim: That’s how those conversations get started. But men usually begin to identify with each other by what we do.

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: Is part of this midlife crisis problem in that area of “I’m losing my identity”?

Steve: Mm.

Jim: I’m wrapped up in what I am. I’m wrapped up in my identity, because of what I do. How do we shake that noose?

Steve: You could be wrapped up in it. And it could be a very negative experience when somebody says, “What you do?” But I’d like to have folks consider a different answer. ‘What do you do?” “You know what? I work down at the auto plant during the week. But the thing I’m most excited about is I love my family. And here are some of the things that we love to do together. But when it comes to the kingdom of God, I have a ministry at the church. And this is the thing that just sets me on fire.”

Jim: So that becomes your identity?

Steve:  Yeah

Jim: I mean, that’s what we’re really driving at.

Steve: It’s an expanded identity, versus talking about “you don’t like it down there – the people” – don’t – just say – just tell them where you go to work. And then, if you’ve truly accepted the challenge of midlife according to this little manual here, if you accept that challenge, you have an expanded identity.  And, you know, I would just say this to women. If all you do is raise your children, the empty nest is going to kill you when it comes. So, you need to be more than – I mean, there’s nothing more valuable than a mother. But be more than a mother. Be planning for that time when they’re not there. Work on, develop skills, have your own life separate from the children and all that that entails, so you’re ready for your transition.

John: Mm.

Jim: You know, Steve, one area we really haven’t covered right at the end here – and that’s the relationship with your children. And, again, those ages are going to vary at this stage…

Steve:  Yeah

Jim: …in your life as a 40, 50-something. You can have – today, more common to have younger kids even. But how do you relate to your children? Let’s just assume they’re right at the point of going off to college. Or they’re already there or vocational training. They’re out of the home. How does a father relate to his children in this moment of midlife crisis?

Steve: If you’re still into correction versus connection, you’ve got it wrong. I think a lot of us men make mistakes. We blow it. And this time is the time for repair, to take and humble yourself, ask for forgiveness. Talk about the difficulty of being a dad, those kinds of things. And you can build the relationship with the older child that maybe got messed up during those high school years.

John: That’s hard to do, though. I mean, it’s…

Jim: Are you living the dream (laughter)?

John: I’m just saying – I’m just saying, experientially, in my own life. It’s hard to kind of not offer the instructive, hey, you know, have you checked your oil on your car lately kind of thing.

Steve: I know. And we are living that. We have three, One – two in college, one in graduate school. But, we have to be there for them not offer any kind of control or judgmental or shaming kind of belittling thing, because they’ve gone into young adulthood. And the more we honor them, well, it just frees them to make the best decision – the good decision.

Jim: Yeah. And it’s got to be so intentional because I think that works out of our habits. I mean, you’ll be, I think, pleasantly surprised after I read the book. One of the things I did this morning, in fact, was – my oldest, who’s 18, is away with his buddies at a cabin up in

Steve: Mm.

Jim: …Just having some fun with his – with his friends. And I could have texted a lot of things to him. Did you read the Scripture this morning…

Steve: Yeah – right.

Jim: …You know (laughter)? But I just said, you know, I want you to know I love you. I hope you’re having a fun time. And…

Steve: Great – wow.

Jim: …I think that’s a better way to go. But…

Steve: It really is.

Jim: But, really, you’ve pushed me to do that simply by reading the book. So, thank you for that. I want to end on the – perhaps, the highest of notes. And it’s the lowest, which is humility. You talk about that in your book. You say that humility is the biggest lesson that we learn as parents. Why is it?

Steve: Well, my wife’s phrase, “humbling down,” is one of the most difficult things but one of the most rewarding things. When we come down, think of what Jesus did. All creation is His. And He comes down to our level. We don’t have quite as far to go as Jesus did in getting down eyeball-to-eyeball with us. So, we can humble ourselves, admit some limitations, some mistakes. And then, I think true humility versus humiliation is to humble yourself and become the servant that God has called you to become. Use the talents that He gave you. Don’t cover up the problems that you’ve developed.

Jim: Huh.

Steve: And tell people you’re in process, and you’re working. That’s a true humble man to say, I still – at age 65 or 70, I’ve not arrived. I’m still working.

John: Mm.

Jim: Yeah. That is good.

Steve: God is not done.

Jim: You also mentioned the idea that thriving isn’t a right. It’s a pursuit. And in rights-oriented culture, I found that very provocative. Thriving is not a right. It’s a pursuit.

Steve: It is because a lot of people think, if I just make a lot more money, if I have a little more of this or whatever, that’s thriving. But, really, thriving is the pursuit of, what has God called me to do? What is he equipped me to do? – and to live that out. You know, Jim, I think I’m one of the most fortunate people in the world, because I have a wonderful family. And I get to do what I love to do, what I started doing in seminary. I love to see people change.

Jim: Mm.

Steve: Now, what is it that lights you up and ignites your soul? That’s what you need to be pursuing, versus looking and evaluating and comparing yourself to other people.

Jim: Yeah. And you know, Steve, the bottom line is we men – and I’m sure wives are going to say, “You’re right, Jim.” We kind of need it spelled out for us sometimes, because we’re – you know, we’re locked. We’re compartmentalized in our thinking.

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: And we need the roadmap…

Steve: Right.

Jim: You know, do this, then this. In that context, there’s nothing more important for a man in midlife than to be a man of God. You’ve said that.

Steve: Yeah.

Jim: But I want you, right at the end here – describe how you believe a man of God should live his life. Give me the one, two, three, four.

Steve: Well, he’s consistent. And he’s accountable, and he has character, and he’s connected to his wife, his kids and other men. And when you compare your life to that, if you’ve got nothing of that, God is the God that can bring something out of nothing. You’re right where God wants you to be. He’s the one that brings life out of death. So, there’s great hope for you, even if all you’ve got left is nothing.

Closing:

Jim: Yeah. That is so well said, Steve. That’s why I’m excited about this resource. You know what? This is a little book. But it’s packed with great wisdom. And, Steve, you’ve done a wonderful job pulling this together for us men that need the one, two, three approach. So, thank you for that. It’s called   6 Ways for Men to Thrive in Midlife. Thanks, Steve, so much for joining us.

Steve: Thank you.

John: And, obviously, even though it’s a small book, we couldn’t cover all the points in it. And, we’re gonna suggest you get it from us here at Focus on the Family. Give us a call, if you’d like. And our number is 800 – the letter A and the word family – 800-232-6459. Or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.  And as we often do we’ll send that book to you when you make a generous donation of any amount to the ministry here. We’re listener supported. We need your ongoing financial support and prayers. And so, please, donate today and get a copy of 6 Ways for Men to Thrive in Midlife.

On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for listening to “Focus on the Family.” I’m John Fuller inviting you back next time, as we once again help you and your family thrive in Christ.

Today's Guests

6 Ways for Men to Thrive in Midlife

6 Ways for Men to Thrive in Midlife

Receive Stephen Arterburn's book 6 Ways for Men to Thrive in Midlife for your donation of any amount!

Recent Episodes

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How I Found God Through My Abortion Journey (Part 2 of 2)

Cynthia Wenz shares her incredible testimony of discovering God’s love and forgiveness. As a teenager, Cynthia lived recklessly and strayed away from the Lord. By age 29, she had three abortions, numbing herself from the reality of killing her children. After realizing her mistakes, Cynthia became pro-life and experienced many years of turmoil and grief before undergoing post-abortion recovery. She now advocates for pregnancy resource centers across the nation. (Part 2 of 2)

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How I Found God Through My Abortion Journey (Part 1 of 2)

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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

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Mrs. Patti Giebink

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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.

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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

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

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

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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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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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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.

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 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!