Custom CSS of Section contains Conditional Preview for See Life Campaign Elements

Focus on the Family Broadcast

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email

Bringing Gospel Clarity to a Feelings-First World (Part 1 of 2)

Bringing Gospel Clarity to a Feelings-First World (Part 1 of 2)

Abdu Murray, Senior Vice President of Ravi Zacharias Ministries, shares his story of how he converted from Islam to Christianity and offers insight into modern evangelism which faces the challenge of sharing the Gospel in a "post-truth" world where personal preferences often override logic and truth. He offers hope to Christians who feel silenced by cultural hostility toward their faith. (Part 1 of 2)
Original Air Date: February 27, 2020

Excerpt:

Abdu Murray: At one point I was saying, as a Muslim, “Islam is true, everything else is false,” so I identified with truth. But when I began to see the power of the truth of Christianity, I did not want to embrace it because my feelings actually mattered more than my stated love of truth.

End of Excerpt

John Fuller: That’s Abdu Murray. And he’s our guest today on Focus on the Family with your host, Focus president and author Jim Daly. And I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: Hey, John, the most important question we can ask ourselves is, what do I really believe to be true? And Jesus makes it perfectly clear in the Bible that he is our truth. In the New Testament, he says, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” And later in the Book of John, you know, after Jesus is arrested and questioned, he says he came into the world to testify to the truth. But, you know, as Christians, we can’t just memorize these verses and believe that’s all we need to do. We need to live the truth. We need to know the truth deeply in our hearts. And we need to know what it means that Jesus is truth. And we need to be able to lovingly communicate the hope of Jesus to a world that has made truth somewhat obscure and maybe you could say a dirty word, right? That’s why I’m so looking forward to our conversation today with our guest. His unique testimony and his experience evangelizing all over the world gives him quite an insight into the powerful ammunition of the Gospel and the clarity of the Gospel.

John: Mmm hmm. This is really going to be a great program. I’m looking forward to it. Abdu Murray is the senior vice president for Ravi Zacharias International Ministries and host of a radio program and podcast called The Defense Rests.

Jim: Abdu, welcome to Focus on the Family.

Abdu: Guys, it’s great to be here. Thanks for having me.

Jim: Great to have you for the first time. Uh, you’ve been a Christian, an evangelist, for many years, but for most of your life you were actually a devout Muslim. And that’s intriguing, obviously. And I’ve met many friends who have become friends who come from a Muslim background. We actually have an office in Egypt. A lot of people don’t realize that but Focus on the Family right there in Cairo. And it’s doing great work.

Abdu: Oh wow. That’s fantastic.

Jim: And it is fantastic to show the love of Christ all over the world. But let’s describe those years as you were growing up to help our listeners get an idea of that experience.

Abdu: Yeah, absolutely, I’d love to. Um, so I grew up in the metro Detroit, Michigan, area. And, um, the suburb I grew up in actually was – we lived in a very heavily Muslim-populated area when I was first born and all these. But then we moved out to a suburb of Detroit. And back then we moved there, it was largely, homogeneously white. I mean, there were a couple of pockets here and there of Arabs or Indians or African Americans. But largely it was homogeneously white, which made me exotic, so to speak. It’s like, oh, what do you guys believe? And they’d say things like, “What do you Muslims believe,” and that kind of thing. And it…

Jim: They were trying.

Abdu: They were trying. They were trying. But they wanted to know what I believed and why I believed it. Um, and it gave me amazing opportunities to share why I thought Islam was true. But it also gave me the opportunity to share why I thought Christianity was false. Um, and while there were people from different backgrounds, people who weren’t necessarily Christians or at least people who were Christian in name only, I would – I was an equal-opportunity, faith-knocker-outer-of-er. It didn’t matter who you were, what belief system you had, if it wasn’t Islam, I would eventually tell you why you were wrong, and I was right.

Jim: In – in that context, let me just make sure the listener is – is hearing that because as I read the book and looked at the material, it sounded like to me you were well-prepared. You had really studied the Quran. You knew what it is you believed better than many of the Christians around you.

Abdu: And I – not only did I know what I believed, um, but I knew in large measure what they believed better than what they believed as well because there was a nominal Christianity. You know – you know, today, when you think about the – the rise of nones, people – N-O-N-E-S – people who would describe themselves as none of the above or spiritual but not religious, it’s fashionable to give up the pretense of being Christian. But back then, when I was growing up, you could be a Christian in name only, and you’d still say you were a Christian. And what you meant was, I’m not an atheist. Um, but it didn’t mean you were really a Christian. But as a Muslim, you know, being a Muslim is a part of an identity. So, there are Muslims who don’t believe much of Islam or they don’t really follow Islam. They don’t read the Quran, or they don’t pray five times a day. But they would defend Islam in a verbal death match if they had to. And you’d ask them, “Well, why is it you care so much about this?” And the reason is that they don’t practice it, but it is who they are. It’s an identity. So, I translated that onto Christians. So, when you said you were a Christian, I thought you meant it. And sometimes they did. But a lot of times, they just did not.

Jim: See, that right there is a conviction, don’t you think?

Abdu: Yeah.

John: It is.

Jim: That, you know, we’re trying to talk to a world that doesn’t know Jesus. And sometimes when we do that, if we haven’t prepared ourselves, if we don’t know what it is, we believe – right to that opening question I mentioned a moment ago – it really comes across as flat – right? – at best.

Abdu: It did. And, uh, so a question I would often begin with – and I would have conversational discussions. I wouldn’t beat them over head with my Quran. I would never try to convince them in a mean-spirited way. It was very conversational. And so, I’d often open up my conversations somewhere in the beginning with this question, “Why are you a Christian?” And most of the time I got blank stares back or the question was answered this way. They’d say, “Well, uh, we go to the, uh, Presbyterian Church or the Lutheran Church,” whatever they’d say, and they’d say, “On Christmas and Easter, so I’m a Presbyterian?” And they’d have that little lilt in the voice, you know, that goes up. I’m like, “Was that an answer or a question? ‘Cause I’m not sure you even know why you are.”

John: Yeah, no conviction there.

Abdu: None.

Jim: Yeah, and again, that applies to just about every denomination.

Abdu: And every religion, by the way.

Jim: Right, and it just happens a lot of cultural influence, et cetera. But there did come a time when you were in college that you, uh, came face-to-face with two – what I would call convictional Christians.

Abdu: Oh, they were definitely convictional.

Jim: And they – what? They knocked on your door?

Abdu: They were going door to door – these two Baptist guys were going door to door…

Jim: (Laughter) God bless the Baptists.

Abdu: Indeed. Well, I was at the University of Michigan, which, if you know anything about Ann Arbor, it’s like Berkeley, California, but cold.

(Laughter)

Jim: Being from California, I get that entirely.

Abdu: Yeah. Exactly. Uh, so they would go door to door at the apartment complexes talking about Jesus. And people would close the door on them and all this stuff. Well, I was an apologist for Islam. So, when they came to the door, I was like, “Come on in, gentlemen. You guys deliver? This is fantastic.”

Jim: (Laughter).

Abdu: Um, so they came into the door. Dave and Pete were their names. Pete was this tall, skinny guy, almost stone bald. Dave was this short, squat guy, hair coming out of everywhere. I called them my walking number ten because that’s what they looked like to me, a walking number 10.

(Laughter)

Abdu: And I invited them into the – into the apartment. And I made them very uncomfortable for hours. But they were challenging me. They were responding to my challenges but offered some challenges of their own. So, this caused me to want to delve into Christianity more to prove it false. And the reason wasn’t just because I was a debater, although that’s how I’m sort of built. Um, it was because I actually grew to really like Dave and Pete. And they grew to really like me. They wanted me – clearly wanted me in heaven. They – I wasn’t on the evangelism scorecard. They wanted me in heaven, and I wanted them in God’s paradise. So, we had this mutual respect and admiration for each other.

John: And all this is developing during a short visit?

Jim: Well, hours.

Abdu: Well, hours.

John: OK.

Abdu: And then over time. So, these guys were like the – the Energizer Bunny or the Terminator, you know? No matter how many times I would knock them down with an objection, they would lumber back up and come at me. And I couldn’t get these guys to stay down.

Jim: You know, Abdu, I want to make a point or have you make the point here because wonderful Scripture in Romans 2:4 that says, “Don’t you know it’s God’s kindness that leads one to repentance?” And in that context, I really would like you to describe that emotional connection that you had with them that you felt like they had your best interests in mind and contrast to maybe some of the other conversations you may have had where it was more militant or how – however you would describe it…

Abdu: Right, yeah.

Jim: …with Christians, and why Pete and Dave worked so well ’cause I think there’s a good lesson in there for us.

Abdu: Oh, very good lesson. It’s – it’s – I think it’s not only – it’s a critical lesson because when I would make good points or make a point that I thought was good at the time and the Christian had no response because they weren’t informed. It was a lousy point, but everyone thought it was great because they didn’t know any better and neither did I. Um, they would get belligerent or defensive or they would go, “Meh, OK, fine. I believe what you believe.” But Dave and Pete knew what they believed. They knew what I had, um, in terms of Islam. And they were willing to listen. But they were also willing to disagree agreeably. And oftentimes, I mean, I can’t remember one time – and I would get heated, and they would never raise their voice.

Jim: Hmm.

Abdu: And it stuck with me. These guys are unflappable. I cannot get their goat.

Jim: (Laugher).

Abdu: Um, and they would come back, by the way, I think it was almost every Thursday for an entire semester. If I wasn’t – if I didn’t have a class or an exam, they would come back. And sometimes I could see them, sometimes I couldn’t, but they would come back. And one of the things they did for me was this – I would offer an objection, and they’d say, “You know what? I don’t know the answer to that. Can I get back to you?” And then they would actually get back to me, and they’d said, “We thought about it. And we asked a expert in this and thus and such. And here, what do you think of this?” And they would listen. And that’s how I got the feeling that they actually cared about me because they actually listened. I think an important precept we have to understand in communicating the Gospel is – and I think it was George Bernard Shaw who made the statement that “The greatest myth about communication is the illusion that it’s actually occurred.”

Jim: Right (laughter).

Abdu: “The greatest myth of communication is the belief that it actually has occurred” – when it hasn’t. People often listen to respond, not to understand. And Dave and Pete, though not perfect, they often listened to understand me. And then it was catchy. It’s a very catchy thing. You get infected with this sort of posture of listening to understand. And that started the journey. Now, that was at the beginning of a nine-year process.

Jim: Well, and the obvious question then is what was that moment. What was that conversation that you finally opened your heart and said, “OK, I – I believe”?

Abdu: Yeah, well, it was a nine-year journey. And it was not one specific thing. But the thing that started it was I was asking Christians, “Why are you a Christian?” They’d say, “Tradition.” I’d say, “Not good enough.” And then in order to prove Dave and Pete wrong, I was reading the Bible to try to find some contradiction. And I came across Luke chapter 3 verses 7 and following where John the Baptist is baptizing people. And he says to them, “Do not even think to say to yourself you have Abraham as your father” – as if that would save them – “for I tell you, God can raise up children of Abraham from the stones.” In other words, tradition doesn’t save you. Well, that’s what I was saying to Christians. Tradition’s not going to save you. Truth saves. Well, it was funny because this book that I didn’t trust, this Bible, which I now know has been preserved over 20 centuries by the power of the spirit, actually engages me in my college apartment and through John the Baptist’s words, what no Christian had ever asked me, John the Baptist asked me. He said, “Why are you a Muslim?” And my real answer was tradition, not just truth. It was tradition. That was the fundamental. I had to be this way because it’s who I was. That got me started on a sincere journey.

Abdu: But the moment that really, I think shaped the whole thing – and this is the power of God’s word. This is why I believe the Bible to be not only this propositionally true book that contains all these wonderful truths but it’s also existentially powerful, is that it gives those truths in immediately relevant ways to our lives. So, as a Muslim, I believed this phrase Allahu Akbar. We hear this all the time. Allahu Akbar. Unfortunately, we normally hear it on the news when something bad happens. The reality is what the phrase means is “God is greater.” So, for the Muslim, God’s greatness is the pinnacle of all of theology. So, I thought Christianity insulted God’s greatness with the trinity, the cross and incarnation. Like, how could God be three? And if God is three, then God the Father needs help from God the Son. And if God the Father needs help, then he’s not great. And if God was trapped in a body, he couldn’t be great. And if God dies at the hands of the very sinners he creates, how could he be great? I began to study these things. And I began to see that God is great because God is triune. God is great because God is incarnational. And God is great because he’s self-sacrificial. And that was the pinnacle thing for me. If God is the greatest possible being and Muslims believe this and Christians believe this, then he would express the greatest possible ethic, which is love, in the greatest possible way. And the greatest possible way is self-sacrifice. And I remember where I was when I read Romans 5:8, when I read those words, “For God demonstrates his love” – his greatest possible love – “in that while we were sinners, Christ died for us” -the greatest possible being expressing the greatest possible ethic in the greatest possible way. If I wanted to believe in a God who was truly great, the God of the cross is the God I should believe in.

John: Oh, wow. This is Focus on the Family with Abdu Murray as our guest today. And, uh, if what Abdu is sharing is news to you, if it’s stopping you in your tracks, then please call us or go to the website and, uh, ask us how you can know more about this Jesus and this truth that he’s talking about, that Abdu is sharing about. We’ve got a lot of resources, and we’d be happy to – to share those with you. Our number is 800-A-FAMILY. And online you’ll find us at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: You know, Abdu, it’s hard to let identity go. And you’ve done it, so it’s intriguing.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: For those of us that maybe grew up here in the United States where we had Christian culture all around us – I didn’t grow up in a Christian home.

Abdu: Mm hmm.

Jim: But even my mother, you know, taught us the golden rule. And we ate fish on Friday, which I always – she never answered the question why.

Abdu: Right.

Jim: It’s one of those things. You know, I’m an 8-year-old going, “Why are we eating fish and” – “Well, because Jesus did on Friday.”

(Laughter)

Jim: I was like, “Wow, OK.”

John: Quite possibly, he did.

Jim: I mean, that – that is part of the cultural experience here, is we can identify without really rooting ourselves in it. And that’s probably a very – it is a dangerous element where you don’t understand what you believe.

Abdu: Mm hmm.

Jim: But in terms of your experience of letting go an identity to embrace a new identity in Christ, and if you can’t apply it to, gosh, the identity politics of today, um, how do you let go and really embrace God that your identity is rooted in him?

Abdu: Yeah, and – and that’s – identity is this buzzword now, right?

Jim: Right.

Abdu: This is the, um – it’s the panacea for all things that allow you to be whatever you want to be. If you say I identify as, whatever comes after that phrase is perfectly legitimate. And if you don’t affirm it, you’re somehow a horrible person.

Jim: Well, you’re – you’re a hater if you don’t affirm that quasi-identity.

Abdu: Right.

Jim: I mean, we get that here at Focus.

Abdu: Well, absolutely. And, uh, I think that the – I understand that part of the culture. And I can really identify with a culture that elevates preferences over facts and feelings over truth because at one point I was saying, as a Muslim, “Islam is true, everything else is false,” so I identified with truth. But when I began to see the power of the truth of Christianity, I did not want to embrace it because my feelings actually mattered more than my stated love of truth.

John: Mmm.

Jim: Mmm.

Abdu: And that’s a human condition.

Jim: That is a big statement.

Abdu: And I think it’s every single person. I think if a Christian looks and talks to a person from a different worldview or who has – who experiences same-sex attractions or whatever it might be and you say, “Just change, just embrace the Gospel,” like, OK, it’s easy for you to say. But you’re giving your identity over, something that you really feel is – defines who you are. And I was doing that with Islam. I liked being a Muslim. Uh, I was liked as a Muslim. I liked being the guy who made Christians look a little silly. Um, so when I had to give that up, it was very, very tough for me. But this Jewish guy 2,000 years ago did say, “You have to die to yourself.”

Jim: Right.

Abdu: Um, and I believe Him. And the reason I believe Him is because He died and rose from the dead. He did give of Himself. And how can I say I want to hold onto my identity when He was so willing to give so much for me? But the trick here to understand is – eventually when you understand this – is that when the answers begin to creep in and they begin to take root in the heart, your identity begins to shift. And yes, there is a mourning of the loss of that identity no matter what. But there is an excitement for the new one. And it’s not even – I would even say it’s new. It’s actually true. It’s not just new. It’s your true identity because you forget something. And we all forget this. The Bible says, “We are made in the image of God,” no matter what our persuasions are, no matter what our beliefs are, no matter what our backgrounds are.

Jim: And no matter what our behaviors are.

Abdu: Exactly.

Jim: I mean, wow.

Abdu: Exactly. We can’t even take that away from ourselves. That’s how indelible it is in every human being that we’re made in God’s image. Christianity uniquely not only affirms that but then proves it. Jesus said, “You’re made in God’s image,” and how – why do I believe him and not Darwin, who says, “I’m made in the sort of image of my genetic ancestors”? Because Jesus died on a cross and rose from the dead. And guys who rise from the dead tend to have credibility.

Jim: Right. (laughter)

John: (Laughter).

Abdu: So, he speaks on this, and he says this is the case. So that true identity starts to come through. Not a new one. It is new to me. But I’m not uncovering something new. I’m discovering something true.

Jim: Yeah, Abdu, I don’t want to – uh, because of the learning moment that I feel like we’re talking to you and your perspective and what you’ve come through and what you embraced today…

Abdu: Mmm hmm.

Jim: …When you were that Muslim thinking, “OK, this is the truth, and there’s no other truth that’s valid.” Now you’re on the flip side of that saying, “Christianity is the truth.”

Abdu: Mmm hmm.

Jim: And frankly, not all roads lead to God.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: One does.

Abdu: Yeah. Yeah.

Jim: And Jesus said, “There’s one way, and I’m the way, the truth and the life.”

Abdu: Mm hmm. Yeah.

Jim: Now you have to defend that from a different perspective, right?

Abdu: Indeed.

Jim: And I don’t want to miss the opportunity to hear your heart on that.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: Because some that here that will say, “You’re just the same guy now. You were telling me before that Islam was the only right way. Now you’re telling me Christianity is the only right way. Are you that narrow?”

Abdu: Right. You know, that’s…

Jim: I mean, I’m being an antagonist, obviously, but tell me why.

Abdu: Well, I’ll tell you what, though, that – I’ve had that…

Jim: Yeah.

Abdu: …lodged at me before. I was in a conversation with a young man who was from a Muslim background but from a very mystical part of the Muslim world. And he was saying, “You know, you didn’t really change very much. You were an absolutist before, and now you’re just a different kind of absolutist. You didn’t really grow that much.” And I said, “Then you don’t understand, fundamentally, what it means to be a Muslim. It is who you are. And when you change that, you change everything about you. There’s – there’s consequences to this change.” I said, “It’s interesting because now you’ve become more New Age. So, you were mystical, and now you’re just a different kind of mystical. So, I could lodge the same charge at you, that you have exactly the same level of growth, which is almost none. You just call it a different name. So, let’s not do these ad hominems.” Here’s my heart on this, though – and I actually talk about this quite a bit, in my book and in other places. First, I think this happens. When I’ve spoken on and defended the notion that Jesus is the only way, oftentimes I get the “amens” in the crowd…

Jim: Sure.

Abdu: …And fist pumps. You know…

Jim: (Laughter).

Abdu: …That kind of thing, which is fine. But I often wonder to myself, why? Are we signaling to people that we believe there’s only one way, which is true, but we’re happy about it because it happens to be our way? In other words…

Jim: That we’re the club.

Abdu: We’re in the club and we’re proud that it’s our way. It’s not your way; it’s my way. When the reality is, is you ought to say “amen,” and instead of fist-pumping in a sort of a triumphalist notion, what we’re really doing is we’re raising our hands in praise that, thank God there’s even a way, and this is the one that found – that I found because Jesus pursued me with all he has. So, it’s not that Islam is false because I’m not a Muslim. It’s not that Hinduism is false because I’m not a Hindu. It’s that Jesus is true, and what he gives to me is the truth. And I embrace that truth to the exclusion of all others, not because it’s my truth; it’s because it’s the truth. And I just happen to be – I don’t think it’s – I think it’s providential that I happen to be a person for whom Christ died and that I know that truth now.

John: Hmm.

Jim: Yeah.

John: I appreciate that, uh, Abdu. Why – why don’t you go ahead and help our listeners understand, not necessarily your specific experience, but for the Muslims, since that is such a big part of the identity. What does it mean to the family and friends when that change comes? If they convert to Christ, if they say, “Oh, Jesus, he is Messiah, and that’s the truth. The Bible is the truth I’m going to follow.”

Abdu: Yeah. Well, there’s lots of consequences. I can recall a friend of mine – uh, I didn’t go through this kind of a thing, but I can – I know that there’s a friend of mine, uh, who became a Christian while he was in Iraq, and his brothers wanted to kill him. And his – his mother helped to get him out of the country. And as she put him on the plane to go – I think he was going to Turkey – she looked at him with tears in her eyes, trying to save his life. But then looked at him and spit in his face and said, “Now you’re actually dead to me.”

Jim: Ugh.

Abdu: So that’s the paradox, right? You have this intense love of a mother.

Jim: Yeah.

Abdu: Concerned for her son. And she won’t support him being killed or whatever, but she also has to disown. But there’s a varying – degrees here.

John: Yeah.

Abdu: There’s plenty of people who don’t have that.

John: But… But there are illustrations that show this is not an easy believism. This is a…

Abdu: No.

John: …significant undertaking for me to say, “My identity has been. But now…”

Abdu: Right. Absolutely. And – and that’s – there’s so many consequences. There’s communal consequences. Friends you once had look at you askance or they don’t look at you at all. Um, maybe the harsh words come. Uh, maybe the – there’s family consequences as well. And sometimes there’s job consequences. If you’re in the Middle East, there’s even more consequences to it, or in Asia, even. I found this to be a universal truth – and this is why I think we can learn from when Muslims convert to Christianity – is that there’s actually a universalism here in the sense that even the most embracing of religious systems, the Baha’is for example. Baha’is believe that all revelation of religions is progressive truth towards an ultimate truth; we’re not all there yet. So, in other words, they’re all equally valid. If you convert from Baha’i to something else, you’re excluded. So, it’s ironic that the inclusivists exclude the exclusivists.

Jim: (Laughter) Right.

Abdu: In other words, everyone’s an exclusivist when it comes down to it.

John: So, there’s a general, broad application here.

Abdu: Absolutely.

John: Is that it’s not an easy road that Jesus has said to follow him on.

Abdu: Atheists I know – absolutely.

John: Yeah.

Abdu: Atheists I know will tell you over and over again that when they became Christians, they lost something. And one of the reasons they feared becoming a Christian was because they feared the consequences of their decision. So, I think this is a universal truth.

Jim: But importantly, Abdu, as some of our listeners do not have a faith in Christ – we just know that from our research, and we hear from them. And I want to make sure, as they’re listening right now or watching on YouTube, just that they get the right impression that what’s amazing about Christianity as you’re talking about it is that it’s almost upside down to every other religion.

Abdu: You know…

Jim: If you want to be great in the kingdom of God, then be the least.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: Be selfless, like Jesus was selfless.

Abdu: Absolutely.

Jim: And it’s just upside down to our human nature. And it seems so many of the religions are expressions of our human nature – conquer, be on top, you’re the winner.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: And where Jesus comes along and says, “No, I’m going to come from a different perspective.”

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: Even the fact that he was born in a manger with straw and animal manure.

Abdu: Mmm hmm. (Laughter) That’s amazing.

Jim: Somebody once said to me, “Doesn’t that show you the humility of God?”

Abdu: Mmm hmm.

Jim: Don’t you think the Father could have created a room in the inn…

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: …for his son to be born? But he allows his son to be born in dirtiness as a sign of his humility.

Abdu: It’s so profound. It really is.

Jim: That’s profound.

Abdu: You know, I think of Augustine’s statement, uh, when he says that “He so loved us that, for our sake, he became a man, though he made all men. He became a man in time, though through him, all times were made. He was born aloft by hands he created. He was born of a mother he himself made.” And this line – I love this line where he says, “He sat crying, a – uh, a babe in wordless infancy – he, the word, without whom all human eloquence is mute.”

Jim: Wow.

Abdu: That is humble.

Jim: Yeah.

Abdu: But also exalting at the same time. Your point is so valid, Jim. When I look at the other religious systems – you know, it’s true; this is true – all religions are superficially similar and fundamentally different.

Jim: Yep.

Abdu: Except in one way. The one way all religious systems are actually fundamentally true is they believe that humanity can save itself. In Islam, if you do enough good works, you’ll earn God’s mercy. In Hinduism and, uh, Buddhism and all these other things, if you work off your karma through good words, good thoughts, good actions, you’ll eventually achieve enlightenment. Uh, even in atheism, essentially, if we educate ourselves enough and believe in human spirit, we’ll have a Star Trek-like existence one day where we’ll just talk to machines and food will pop out and poverty will be gone. That’s always a self-aggrandizement. Christianity’s upside down on this in that it’s the only religious system that tells you, “You are incapable of saving yourself. You need someone who’s not you to save you from you.”

Jim: (Laughter) That’s so good.

Abdu: And I think there’s so many truths there that if you’re going to be a revolutionary – especially in a world where counterculture is considered cool – you want to be counterculture? You want to be on the cool side of counterculture? Be a Christian because they’re the ones who are different.

Jim: Well, and it’s so true. And man, I want to continue this conversation…

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: …and come back next time and continue with you, but I’m really, uh, sensing that if you do not know Jesus Christ, get hold of us.

Abdu: Yeah.

Jim: This is what we call the good news. And sometimes we get in the way of that, as Christians, and we don’t express the good news. Jesus died for you and for me. Our sins were taken upon Jesus on the cross. And man, this is fundamentally the whole message of the Christian faith.

Abdu: Yep.

Jim: That our works are like filthy rags and that only Jesus, only the son of God, could come and save us.

Abdu: Indeed.

Jim: But we need to believe. It’s that simple. Do you believe?

Abdu: Indeed.

Jim: And we want to talk to you about that.

Abdu: Mm hmm.

Jim: So, call us. Get a hold of us. Get on the website. Uh, get in touch with us, and we will continue to talk to you about what it means to be a Christian. Abdu, I do want to come back next time, talk about post-truth and what that means for the culture and maybe get into some of the social issues of today – the issues of same-sex marriage and the way we are changing definitions that are so core to humanity and the impact on us. Can we do that?

Abdu: I would love to.

Jim: All right.

John: Meantime, uh, as Jim said, we have caring counselors who would be honored to talk with you and answer any questions you might have about the Christian faith. And we have Bibles as well. And, Abdu’s book, Saving Truth: Finding Meaning and Clarity in a Post-Truth World. All of that available when you call 800-A-FAMILY or stop by Focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller, inviting you back next time as we hear more from Abdu Murray, and once more help you and your family thrive in Christ.

Today's Guests

Saving Truth

Saving Truth

Receive Abdu Murray's book Saving Truth for your donation of any amount!

Recent Episodes

Focus on the Family Broadcast logo

Finding Space to Connect With God

Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory share ideas on how you can find the space and the place to spend time nurturing your relationship with God. They reflect on some of their imperfections and the abundant grace God offers to cover those shortcomings.

Focus on the Family Broadcast logo

Saving Your Marriage From Divorce (Part 2 of 2)

Dr. David Clarke shares that if you are struggling in your marriage that you are not alone and there is hope. He discusses the three main bad marriage types: “We’re unhappy but willing to work on it marriage,” “My marriage is stuck but my spouse won’t work on it marriage,” “My spouse committed a big sin marriage.” (Part 2 of 2)

You May Also Like

Being a Champion to Your Grandkids

Being a Champion to Your Grandkids

Pastor Carey Casey explains how grandfathers can utilize their unique role to have a positive and lasting influence on their grandchildren in a discussion based on his book Championship Grandfathering: How to Build a Winning Legacy.

Sara Hagerty, author of Every Bitter Thing is Sweet

Being Seen by God

Offering encouragement found in her book Unseen: The Gift of Being Hidden in a World That Loves to be Noticed, Sara Hagerty describes how we can experience God in ordinary, everyday moments, and how we can find our identity in Him apart from what we do.

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 1

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

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

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

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

How a Former Abortion Doctor Became Pro-Life

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

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

Mrs. Patti Giebink

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

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

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

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

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 2

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

Mrs. Meg Meeker

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

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

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

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

Cherishing Your Spouse Every Day

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

Mr. Gary Thomas

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

cherish front cover

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

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

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 2: Heroes Providing Hope

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

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

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

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 4: Sometimes the Choice is Hard

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

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

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

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 3: The Power of a Picture

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

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

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

Play Video

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

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

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

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

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 6: Families Helping Families!

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

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

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

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 2

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

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

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

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

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

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

Effective Habits to Embrace in Parenting

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

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

Dr. Randy Schroeder

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

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

Simple Habits for Effective Parenting

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

The Spiritual Battle for Your Marriage

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

Tim and Noreen Muehlhoff Cropped

Dr. Tim and Mrs. Noreen Muehlhoff

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

Defending Your Marriage

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

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 1

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

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

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

Revival Rising

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

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 2

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

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

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

Revival Rising

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

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 2

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

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

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

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

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

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

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage - Part 2

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

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

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

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

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

Embracing Your Role as a Spouse

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

Headshot of Kevin Thompson

Pastor Kevin Thompson

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

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

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

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

Sharing Your Faith with Grace and Purpose

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

Mr. Greg Koukl

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

Tactics front cover

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

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

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.

Play Video

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!