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Focus on the Family Broadcast

Charting a New Course for Your Marriage and Family (Part 2)

Charting a New Course for Your Marriage and Family (Part 2)

Pastor Ray Johnston and his wife, Carol, describe how they are striving to pass on a healthy family legacy to their children and grandchildren by modeling a thriving marriage. The couple also outlines seven ways listeners can find hope in God for the challenges they're facing in their own marriage and family. (Part 2 of 2)

Opening:

Promo Spot:

John: This weekend there’s a powerful movie coming, featuring the story of a singer-songwriter who’s just trying to catch a break. Once he records a big hit though, he’s thrust into a life of stardom and temptation that destroys his marriage. See what our PluggedIn movie review team has to say about The Song, when you stop by www.focusonthefamily.com/radio . It’s a thought-provoking film, loosely based on the life of King Solomon. Learn more about The Song at www.focusonthefamily.com/radio .

End of Promo Spot:

John: On yesterday’s “Focus on the Family,” our guest was Pastor Ray Johnston and he offered some very insightful thoughts about marriage.

Recap:

Ray: Marriage will not end your aloneness and it will not heal your brokenness. Two unhappy people does not equal one happy marriage, but at least now they have somebody to blame that on. Before the marriage, opposites attract. After the marriage, opposites attack.

End of Recap

John: Well, some food for thought about the union of a man and a woman and that marital relationship. And as I said, Pastor Ray Johnston and then his wife, Carol joined us as well, on “Focus on the Family” last time and they’re back with us again today. Your host is Focus president and author, Jim Daly. I’m John Fuller and Jim, the Johnstons are providing some real hope for families, for married couples who are without hope.

Jim: Oh, John, these are great friends of the ministry and Carol’s list she shared last time of how and Ray are so opposite, struck a chord for me, because it’s just so true. We do tend to be attracted to someone who’s opposite to us in many ways. If you didn’t hear part one last time, listen online or go get the download or you can do that on your SmartPhone, your iPhone and we’re trying to provide all kinds of ways for you to listen.

John: Yeah and if you want the CD so you can just pop it in the car, if your car still has a CD player, just give us a call and we can send that to you. Our number is 800-232-6459.

Body:

Jim: Welcome back to “Focus on the Family.”

Carol: It’s great to be here.

Ray: You bet.

Jim: You know, many of us didn’t have a good role model for what families should look like and I want to talk about both marriage and parenting today, because we need to think about the legacy we’re leaving for our children. I mean, they’re gonna see us and model their own behavior, not entirely, but somewhat after what they have been taught by us.  Too many times we’re not sure how to pick up the broken pieces of our past like we’ve all had and try to build a stronger family for the legacy, for our children and our children’s children. And that job can seem so overwhelming and maybe even impossible. You’re coming from experience.

Obviously, your whole family history suggests that you should not stay married. Sorry to say that, Ray and Carol. But you’re a pastor. You counsel people. Why is Christian marriage, particularly Christian marriage, why is it breaking down the way it is? What fundamentally is going wrong?

Ray: Several things. First one, one of the reasons I wrote the book, Hope Quotient and it took seven years to write it, but evidently I’m a slow writer. It’s the only thing ever written on hope that is not about hope. It is about the seven things that if somebody builds them into their life, builds them into their marriage, they build these seven things in, they’ll have hope. And I’ve seen it in my family. I see it in our churches. Discouragement precedes destruction. Discouragement arrives first and then destroys it and we wanted to write something that literally caused people to go, I’m going to build these seven things into my life.

Jim: Well, in fact, you say that in a way that personalizes it, you said, discouraged people become destructive people.

Ray: That’s right.

Jim: That really caught me, because I think again in our community of believers, our Christian community. That’s so true, when we walk around with hopelessness, we can become destructive. We—

Ray: Yep.

Jim:  — aren’t people of faith at that point, because we have no hope. Connect all those dots. It happens in marriage. It happens with your teenager. It happens as you engage the culture. All three of those areas, if you’re a destructive person, you’re probably a discouraged person.

Ray: Oh, it’s “Hurting people, hurt people.” Discouraged people tend to be destructive. And I just think it’s quicksand people fall into. And it almost happened to us. We were livin’ in Chicago. I was a professor. We’re pregnant for the third time—surprise. I’m teaching. She went to go and find out whether it was a boy or a girl or not. Came back. I met her and I said, “Well?” And she said, “We’d better go in the back bedroom.” (Laughter) And I’m thinkin’, well, that’s how we got here in the first place, but okay. (Laughter)

So, she goes, “You better sit down.” And I sit down and she pulls out Doublemint chewing gun.

Jim: Okay.

Ray: And—

Jim: That was clever.

Ray: –I look at her and I shook my head no.

Carol: It was the doctor’s idea.

Ray: And she said, “Yes, we’re havin’ twins.” And went through pregnancy, identical twin daughters. They’re spectacular. But the minute we went from two to four kids, that gave us four kids under 4.

Jim: Yeah. (Laughing)

Ray: And this is embarrassing to admit, but I got deeply discouraged.

John: Hm.

Ray: And part of it was, my family background, every person that came into our family generally caused more chaos. And this is embarrassing to admit. I fell out of love with God. I fell out of love with my family. I got distant and disconnected from Carol. And I …

Jim: All because of that?

Ray: It was just what happened is, I got deeply discouraged about the circumstances and all this stuff and all the chaos and I stayed that way for a long time. [We] went through nine months of pregnancy. As a matter of fact, it is six months after the girls had been born, I’m vacationing in Fresno, California and they have a revival at this guy’s church. And all week long this guy keeps tryin’ to get me to come to the church and I go, no. Finally, the last day I go to this church and I don’t know, if you’ve ever been a setting where everybody listens, but a setting where … like God’s speakin’ straight to you, this is it And I’m in the back row, where all the hard-hearted people sit.

Jim: Yeah, right.

Ray: And this guy’s speakin’ right to me and they give an invitation, one of those “come forward” invitations. And I actually am gonna walk out and I couldn’t do it. And I walk over and I begin the longest walk of my life up to the front.

So, I go up and I kneel down. And the guy that preached comes over and we talk for an hour. And I pour out the whole story. And he looks at me and he says, “My wife and I had three kids under 4-years-old and raisin’ those kids, have been the greatest joy of my life.”

Jim: Hm.

Ray: And I literally I walked out of that church and I have not been the same since. I haven’t been perfect. You can check that out with Carol, but I have not been the same since, because what happened to me in that church, God said to me, you thought your problem was your circumstances. You thought your problem was the number of kids. You thought the problem was cash. You thought the problem was all this kind of stuff. Your problem is, you got a hard heart. Your problem is you’ve got a deeply discouraged heart. And if you will let Me heal your heart, I will take care of everything.

Jim: That’s quite profound. I mean, you’re in the profession, right?

Ray: Oh, I’m sitting there goin’, I’m not goin’ forward. I’m the “comforward-er,” not the “comforard–ee.”

Jim: Yeah, you’re the pastor.

Ray: I am, but at this point I didn’t care, and so, when I looked at our marriage, stayin’ together, I look at our kids, flourishing to whatever degree they are, I look at this stuff and I go, I don’t know where we’d be if that night hadn’t happened.

Jim: ‘Cause you’re still livin’ a lie–

Ray: That’s right.

Jim: –if you didn’t have that confrontation with God. You talked about the seven underlying themes. Let’s touch on those. Um … what are they?

Ray: Oh, when we studied what causes people to be deeply discouraged or helps them bounce back out of it, No. 1 was, recharge your batteries, which …

Jim: So, take time.

Ray: Yeah, which means nobody, nobody does well runnin’ on empty—

Carol: Right.

Ray: –okay? And a lot of people, when I’m distant and disconnected from God, it’s going to affect my marriage and the problem is, I’m gonna blame my wife instead of going back, going I need to reconnect better with God.

Jim: Oh.

Ray: Second one was, refocus on the future. It’s interesting. There’s a word in the Bible nobody ever pays any attention to. And it’s the word Jesus said to the disciples and they were a mess, He said, “Follow Me and I will make you become fishers of men.” And it always captures me. Jesus is focused on what people can become instead of what they’re like right now. And I thought, show me a parent of a teenager focused on what their teenager is like right now, I’ll show you a deeply discouraged parent. Show me a parent though that somehow goes, I’m gonna stay focused on what my kids can become instead of what it’s like right now, I’ll show you somebody that is more encouraged and probably more encouraging.

The other one is there are seven of ’em., raise your expectations. Don’t go it alone, by the way, we have a whole chapter in there goin’, don’t go it alone. Nobody does life well as a lone ranger. Get every resource you can, including ministries like this.

The other two big things, the chapter that shocked us was “Play Great Defense.”

Jim: And what do you mean by that?

Ray: What I mean by that is this. There are some things, they are so toxic, the second they enter, hope and health exit. When bitterness enters, hope exits. When discouragement enters, when fear enters, you know, hope exits. And that’s a big deal. As a matter of fact, remember that letter that was on my desk?

Carol: Oh, yeah. I arrived at his desk one time in a previous church that we were in and there was a letter on his desk that was addressed to him. And at the bottom it said, “Personal and Confidential.” And I knew who it was from. It was from a female. And so, I opened it. (Laughing)

Ray: Which is a smart move.

Carol: Personal and confidential. So I opened it and I read it and we just believe that as a woman, I have more intuition regarding other women and he has more intuition regarding other men. And sometimes we’re clueless about the opposite sex in terms of the approach.

And so, as I read this letter, as I was reading between the lines, I felt like she was stepping over some emotional boundaries that weren’t very healthy. And thankfully, I have a husband who listens to me and I said, you know, I think you probably shouldn’t meet with this gal again.

Jim: No, that was good. That’s a good boundary to place.

Carol: Yeah.

Jim: Every couple can create those kinds of boundaries, right?

Ray: Yeah, we found out later, she did go on to have an inappropriate relationship with another pastor.

Jim: Oh, my goodness

Ray: And so, for folks that are listening, I would say, if your wife or your husband calls into question somebody’s motives, if you listen—

Carol: Uh-hm,

Ray: –to them—

Carol: Yeah.

Ray: — and act on it. It is that whole thing about playing great defense, I mean, we lock our cars. We lock our houses because they’re valuable. Our marriages are valuable and they’re worth protecting.

Jim: Worth locking down.

Ray: Uh-hm, that’s a great phrase.

Jim: Ray, what I like about your attitude, both you and Carol, is that transparency. And in the Christian community, we tend to polish the outside and ignore the inside. Wouldn’t—

Ray: That’s a great phrase.

Jim: –wouldn’t we do better revealing these troubles that we have? Because people also are having those same problems and then they can connect to the story and they can then connect to God, that we’re not perfect. We’re not here to be—

Ray: That’s right.

Jim: –perfect. We’re here to love the Lord, our God and to love our neighbor as ourself [sic].

Ray: Yeah, yeah.

Jim: If we could show that vulnerability the way that you have shown it in your book, The Hope Quotient, talking about where you struggle, wouldn’t we do better as a witness for Christ?

Ray: Exactly. And by the way, you guys are a great example of that. I mean, you’ve been at our church in our Thrive Conference.

Jim: (Chuckling) It’s exciting.

Ray: And the first time you spoke, I went, this guy’s real and what’s funny is, people don’t expect it.

Carol: Uh-hm.

Ray: (Coughing) Very interesting, I tell our church this about once a year, because I want them to realize, hey I’m just like you. I just have a different job. Carol and I, we had four kids and we had a minivan. And (Laughter) we’re driving across a thing called the Folsom Dam Road, to go over, so we had driven over this road with potholes and everything and it was Super Bowl Sunday, so we did three services on the Sunday morning with the Super Bowl. We’re driving home Sunday night and I’m driving too fast on this thing and four kids rolling and we hit these potholes from about 45 miles an hour. The front left tire explodes. The back left tire explodes. (Laughter)

I pull out on the overlook, overlooking Folsom Lake and I totally lose my cool, which happens pretty regularly. And I grab my cell phone and I call somebody and go, “Can you get down here and pick me up?” And then I called AAA and then I’m going, “What government bonehead can’t fix these roads?  Don’t we pay enough? It’s the White House’s fault.” It’s this … this …” And I totally lose my cool and then I feel like a jerk right afterwards.

So, I get out of the van and I walk over to the lake and I apologized to God. And then my son, Mark, who at that point, I think is 6, gets out and he comes walkin’ up to me. And I apologize to Mark. And I said, “Hey, son, I just want to say I’m sorry. This isn’t the kind of example I want to be to you. I want to be a dad that keeps his cool, so please forgive me.” And my son, Mark, 6, looks up at me and he says, “You know, dad, things like this happen.” (Laughter) Okay, thank you, son, you can disciple me later. (Laughter)

It gets better. I go back in the van and I told Carol about what Mark had just said and Carol said, “Oh, good thing.” And I said, “Why?” and she said, “‘Cause the minute you got out, Mark leans forward and said, ‘You know, Dad doesn’t handle stuff like this well, does he?’” (Laughter)

Jim: I gotta meet Mark. This guy’s–

Ray: Oh, amazing.

Jim: –very …

Ray: We were laughin’ so hard and so, I tell our church that story once every year or two because I want ’em to know, my son, he’s not gonna have a perfect dad and he’s not gonna inherit one.

Jim: And he won’t be one.

Ray: No. He also does not need a dad who tells him what to do and doesn’t model it. All that’s gonna do is produce bitterness and a ton of rebellion. My son, all he needs is a dad who’s honest and he needs to see God workin’ in dad’s life.

Jim: Wow.

Ray: That to me, you know, my definition of integrity isn’t perfection. It is God workin’ in my life.

Jim: Hm.

Ray: Because what’s gonna happen is, then when my kids go, “God wants to work in my life?” they’re gonna wake up and go, “Well, God changed dad, I mean, I oughta be easy.” (Laughter) And so, I just think a way better definition of integrity these days is God working in your life? Which means, it’s a question of for us, when’s the last time God changed my life?

Jim: Hm.

Ray: ‘Cause if that’s not happenin’ to me, Christians, we’re really good at runnin’ around, tellin’ everybody else to change and criticizing everybody else. We start goin’, man, maybe God wants to change me and then I think the world will wake up and go, maybe that’s what we need.

John: Well, that a great application there for marriage and for parenting. Now if you’re listening along and thinking, I need to know more, then get a copy of Ray’s book, The Hope Quotient when you stop by www.focusonthefamily.com/radio or give us a call, 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY. In fact, when you go online, you’ll find a list of those seven factors that can really raise your hope quotient and Ray, there’s a quiz that folks can take when they buy the book, right?

Ray: Yeah, the minute somebody gets a book, they get a code. Every book comes with a code that allows them to take the first ever online hope test. And it tests out whether they’re high, medium or low in each one of these seven key areas and it helps them develop a plan for how to strengthen everything that needs to be strengthened.

Jim: And you can get that from us here at Focus. Be one of the 2,000 or so people who contact us every day. I’m kind of curious to go do that. I think Jean and I will go check out our hope quotient and that’s important, ’cause you need to know if you truly are a hopeful person. As Christians, we need to be. And it’s a good thing to work on if it’s not there.

In fact, we pulled out of a phone conversation, someone who called just recently who said this. “My wife and I have been married for 31 years and I feel like we are growing further and further apart every day.” Now that sounds opposite of what you would expect, 31 years of marriage and we’re growing farther and farther apart every day.

He went on to say, “The only thing that holds us together is our children, grandchildren and our involvement in church. Other than that, we don’t communicate or talk much at all. What can we do to get our relationship back the way it was many years ago?”

I think there are many people livin’ in that place. It’s called “the greying of divorce.” They’re all about raisin’ the kids and then once it’s done, what do we do now? We don’t know each other.

Ray: If we claim to be believers, at some point we’ve gotta believe that God has better days ahead, even when it does not look like it.

Jim: Hm.

Ray: And one of my favorite stories, I tell it to our church, but a couple times a year usually, is a valley in Maine. And it was destroyed years ago. There was a stream runnin’ through this valley and they built a dam at the end of the valley. And what happened, they met with all these residents and said, “You can live here for the next year, but in about year this thing’s gonna start to back up and it’s gonna be under water, ’cause we’re turning this into a lake. And so, you’re either gonna need to move or get really good scuba equipment.”

And so, what happens is, six months later, a writer goes in and he said, “What was once a romantic beautiful hamlet had turned into a dilapidated ghost town.” He said, “Lawns went unmowed. The fences went unpainted. People’s relationships had broken down.” And he said it made sense. He realized, why paint a fence if there’s no future. Why mow a lawn if there’s no future. And then he penned this great line. He said, it’s interesting, “Where there is no faith in the future, there is no power in the present.”

Jim: Hm.

Ray: That that’s exactly right, which is why I believe what the psychologist told me. He said, “When a couple comes to see me, like this couple, doesn’t your heart break for those folks? But I would say, that’s the normal condition and a counselor told me. He said, “I don’t care how deeply damaged the marriage is when it arrives.” He said, “I have one goal. I want to get ’em five to 10 percent improvement.” Maybe the guy picks up his socks, five to 10 percent improvement. And then he had a great line. He said, “Because the minute somebody gets a little bit of improvement, then they get hope.”

John: Uh-hm.

Ray: And then he said, “And the minute somebody gets hope, anything’s possible.’

Jim: Ah, man, that is a good encouragement for everyone to always think in a Christ-like way, that there is hope to become what Christ intends for us. Ray, as we close, I’d like you to speak to those families who are in that dark place. They’re showin’ up at church every Sunday and they just don’t feel like their family is everything it could be. There’s a part missing and they know it. If you were counseling them, what would you say?

Ray: I would tell ’em about a friend of mine’s most emotional day of his life. It was his first day playin’ Little League baseball and he grew up in Iowa and he said, “Every single relative I had for 60 miles came to see my first game.” And he said, “It turned out to be a bad day.” He said, “I was 8-years-old, so I was tiny. The uniform didn’t fit,” and he said, “And I played right field.”

Jim: Hm.

Ray: He said … you know why you’re in right field?

Jim: It’s the worst position, I guess.

Ray: (Chuckling) No kidding and he said, “And it got worse. I struck out three straight times, never even touched the ball, I was so scared. I didn’t swing; I was so afraid.” He said, “And it got worse.” It was the seventh and last inning of the last game of the day, bases are loaded. There are two outs and I’m up. He said, “We were behind by one run.”

Jim: (Chuckling) Oh, no.

Ray: “All I need [to do is] to get a hit and I’ll be a hero, but I strike out and I lose.” He said, “I walked up to the plate.” He said, “The stands were packed, 200 people on each side, what it felt like, including all of my relatives and they’re starin’ at me. And he said, “And the minute I got in the batter’s box, I looked out at the mound and I realized, I had no shot, ’cause the pitcher was 6’8″ and had a beard.” (Laughter) At least that’s how a 10-year-old looked to an 8-year-old.  And he said, “He wound up,” and he said, “This pitch came flyin’. I didn’t even see it. All I heard was the umpire say, ‘Strike one.’ Same thing happened. Second pitch comes in, strike two. He said, “I got out of the box just to, I don’t know, think.” And he said, I made the mistake of lookin’ around.”

He said, “Two hundred people on their side are screaming for me to strike out. And 200 people, including every relative I’ve got, are screaming for me to get a hit and win the game.” He said, “If I don’t get a hit, my game’s over; my life’s over.” He wound up and I started swinging during his windup. (Laughter) He said, “For the first time ever, I saw the ball and I swung as hard as I could and missed.” He said, “The umpire said, “Strike three, you’re out, game over.”

And he said, “This massive cheer from one side came out.” And he said, “And then I heard somethin’ I will never forget as long as I live, an audible groan from my side and I knew I’d struck out and I lost and I would never be the same.” I dropped the bat at home plate and I started the the longest walk of my life down the first-base line.” And he said, “You know how sensitive, 8-, 9-, and 10-year-old boys are. They’re going, “You jerk. You lost the game. You moron.” He said, “That made me cry more. I went in the dugout. Pulled my cap down, put my jacket over and just sobbed and sobbed for what felt like forever.”

And then he said, “After about 15 minutes, I heard a voice, ’cause everybody’s gone by this time. The sun’s settin’. Heard a voice and the voice said, “Hey, son, get back up. The game ain’t over.” And he said, “I heard it again, ‘Hey son,’” a little stronger, ‘Get back up; the game ain’t over.’” He said, “I lifted my cap, lifted the jacket” and he said, “It took a while to adjust.”

And then he said, “Then I saw there on the pitcher’s mound was my dad. And he had a ball and he said, “Hey son, get back up; the game ain’t over.” And I realized, none of my relatives have left. He said, “They’re all in the field, little toddlers runnin’ around, Aunt Anne was on the left.” He goes, “My blind uncle’s tryin’ to find right field.”

Jim: (Laughing)

Ray: Walkin’ around there. And he said, “So, I walked up to home plate. The bat was just where I left it and he said, “My dad was awesome. He just kept smilin’ and sayin’, “Hey, son, told you; game ain’t over.” ‘Bout the 10th pitch he goes, “Whack, down … ” he goes, “I hit a line drive on the left field.” He goes, “Yes!”  And my dad goes, “What are you doin’? Run.” Okay, where’s first base? Never been there. He goes, there it is! He goes, “I run down to first base just in time for the center fielder, the left fielder had throw[n] the ball in the center. He goes, “I go, cool, run,”

He goes, “The center fielder threw it to right field.” He goes, “As I’m runnin’ to third,” he goes, “even at 8-years-old, I think I knew, they were messin’ up on purpose to make sure I got …” He goes, “I call it a conspiracy of grace to make sure I got home safe.” But it—

John: Hm.

Ray: “So at this point, all I know is they’ve thrown the ball to the blind guy. I’m gonna score. (Laughter) I round third base,” and he goes, “I dive across home plate and I jump up and I dusted myself off.” And he said, “Then I saw him. On one knee, so we’re the same height, is my dad. And tears are streaming down his face. And he thought, “I thought that’s interesting. Now I’m laughin’ and he’s cryin’.”

And he said, “My dad held out his arms that day and I threw myself into his arms and my dad said, ‘Son, you’re safe at home.’”

Jim: Oh.

Ray: He said, “He wrapped his arms around me and he picked me up and all the relatives came running in and my dad kept saying to me over and over again, I told you the game wasn’t over. I told you the game wasn’t over.” And he said, “And that turned into the best day of my young life, because as the sun set at this little baseball field in the middle of nowhere, Iowa, all my relatives carried me off the field, cheering.

Jim: Hm.

Ray: So, anybody that’s listening to this, what I would say to them is this, if Jesus walked up to you right now – just you and had a conversation, most people secretly think He’d say, “You’ve been strikin’ out a lot and I got this list,” you know. And He’d say, “No.” He’d say, “I want to say to you, “Even if you’ve struck out, that’s your past. Your past doesn’t matter. Get back up. The game ain’t over.”

Jim: Wow. That is well-said and a good word for anybody that’s discouraged and feelin’ like the game is over. So, thank you Ray and Carol for bringin’ that word and for the discussion that we’ve had. Your book, The Hope Quotient, what a great read to inspire, to encourage couples to stick with it and uh … finish the game. Thanks for bein’ with us.

Ray: It’s an honor.

Carol: Thank you, thanks.

Closing:

John: Well, that is such a memorable example of how we, as families, can provide the right environment for our children. That line that you said there, Ray, “You’re safe at home.” Jim, that’s encouragement right there.

Jim: John, that’s why we do what we do here at Focus to help parents and married couples get back up when they feel down. The game’s not over. That is really a Christian anthem, isn’t it? That’s something that fits with the life of a Christ follower. I loved that story, because I want to cheer that little boy on goin’ around the bases, don’t you?

John: I do. I’ve got a …

Jim: That’s a–

John: It would’ve been great to be there.

Jim: –that’s a parent. You want to say, “Yea, that is great.” When you’ve got 60 or so relatives, I’m sure he felt like a million bucks. I mean, I’m sure that encouraged him to no end.

And when you think about it, that’s what happens when you become a monthly supporter for Focus on the Family. You’re like one of those 60 family members, out on the baseball field, cheering on the next generation or that family that is struggling. And Focus exists to say, get back out there on the field. The game’s not over.

John: And Jim, in one sense, we’ve got relatives who have supported the Focus on the Family effort over the years, faithful friends who have prayed for the ministry and contributed to the ongoing work here. They’ve cheered us on and cheered on the kingdom.

Jim: Absolutely and I want to thank those who are already on the field, those who are signed up and uh … are helping us monthly.

John: And if you’re able to, but just have never contributed to the work of Focus on the Family, I’ll encourage you to sign up as a monthly donor. When you do, you can select a thank-you gift–Jim’s book, The Good Dad or an audio CD set. Just sign up and then receive that thank-you gift and some ongoing books, CDs, and offers throughout the year to help your family thrive on a regular basis.

And your monthly donation actually helps us make budget planning a little bit easier, knowing that we can count on you to help families in need. So, please, if you haven’t already done so, sign up today as a Friend of the Family and we’ll get that first resource to you in the mail just as soon as we can, to say thanks. Our number here, 800-232-6459 or you can sign up as a monthly donor at www.focusonthefamily.com/radio .

Our program was provided by Focus on the Family and on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team here, thanks for listening in. I’m John Fuller, inviting you back tomorrow. We’ll have Dr. Walt Larimore join us to share trusted advice about ways you can talk better with your daughter about puberty and help your family thrive.

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Celebrating the Journey to Becoming a Dad

After a successful football career in the NFL, Benjamin Waston has turned his attention to celebrating fatherhood by encouraging first-time dads to be the man their wife and children need them to be. Benjamin speaks into the crisis of fatherlessness and the necessity for men to step up and take responsibility. A father’s role is a cornerstone in the family, and men must be ready to be physically and emotionally present. Benjamin walks through practical steps that dads can follow during the pregnancy all the way to raising newborns. Parenting kids is a full time commitment and can be chaotic at times, but Benjamin reminds us that all children are a gift from God.

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Affair-Proof Your Marriage (Part 1 of 2)

Pastor Dave Carder offers couples practical advice for protecting their marriages from adultery in a discussion based on his book Anatomy of an Affair: How Affairs, Attractions, and Addictions Develop, and How to Guard Your Marriage Against Them. (Part 1 of 2)

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Affair-Proof Your Marriage (Part 2 of 2)

Pastor Dave Carder offers couples practical advice for protecting their marriages from adultery in a discussion based on his book Anatomy of an Affair: How Affairs, Attractions, and Addictions Develop, and How to Guard Your Marriage Against Them. (Part 2 of 2)

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Balancing Gender Differences in Your Marriage (Part 1 of 2)

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