Focus on the Family Broadcast

Clearing Out the Clutter

Clearing Out the Clutter

Author Kathi Lipp explains how too much clutter can cause family stress and conflict, and offers practical strategies to get rid of what you don't need so that you can have the space and resources to serve God as He intended.

Original Air Date: January 8, 2016

John Fuller: This is John Fuller. And on today’s Focus on the Family with Jim Daly we’re gonna take a look at what it means to live clutter free. And it might be that home organization isn’t a problem for you or perhaps, like most of us, it’s the story of your life.

Teaser clip:

Husband: Oh, where is my tie? I’m in such a hurry. Honey, where is my green tie?

Wife: Oh, honey, I think you left it by your bowling ball.

Husband: How’s, honey, where is my bowling ball?

Wife: You know what, I think it’s on top of the dictionary.

Husband: Honey, where is the dictionary?

Wife: Behind the couch.

Husband: Behind the couch? What would it be doing behind the couch? Oh.

John: (laughs)

Jim Daly: All right. I don’t think it’s quite that bad at my house.

John: At least you could find the couch. I mean, that’s…

Jim: Well, right. That’s the key.

John: Okay.

Jim: I mean, how many times have you stood in front of a refrigerator, John, and said, “Dena, where’s the milk?”

John: You mean like in the past 24 hours? (laughs)

Jim: (laughs) Yeah, pretty much.

John: How many times, yeah.

Jim: Yeah. I mean, I’ve done that more than once.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: You know, the yogurt, whatever it might be.

John: If it doesn’t jump out and bite you, you’re not gonna find it.

Jim: Pretty much. I think there’s a gene that men possess that blinds us to something right in front of us (laughs)

John: Quite possibly. Yeah.

Jim: But you know what? I try to be kind of organized. I am…

John: No, you’re very organized, Jim.

Jim: …well, I don’t know about that. Very might be too generous, but I think if Jean were here, she would say (laughs) she’s quite the opposite.

John: She’s a busy mom.

Jim: She’s actually the definition of a perfectionist because it so overwhelms her that she just finds it hard to get started. And she does much better than when we were first married (laughs). But she’s not here to defend herself. So I’m gonna say my areas, I’ll throw stuff away. She’ll say, “Where’s that phone number I had on the counter?”

John: (laughs)

Jim: And I’ll go, “Ooh, it’s in the bottom of the trash.”

John: ‘Cause you efficiently came through and cleaned everything.

Jim: I’m a little too fast with that. That’s my problem.

John: You’re kind of quick at throwing stuff away.

Jim: (laughs) But today we want to talk about that idea of becoming clutter free. And this is one of the big issues in marriages. And if I’m not scratching where you itch, I think at the end of today’s program, you’re gonna feel, “Yeah, maybe I do have an issue here.”

John: And we have a clutter free expert with us.

Jim: (laughs)

John: Kathi.

Jim: Did you say clutter freak? (laughs)

John: (laughs) Well that could fit. I don’t know. Let’s find out.

Jim: I think you meant clutter free.

John: As we talk to Kathi Lipp, let’s just find out if she’s a clutter freak or a clutter free expert. So…

Kathi Lipp:  Is there going to be a diagnosis involved? Awesome.

John: Yeah. Well, you’re at Focus on the Family.

Jim: That’s

John: We specialize in that. No, it it’s great to have Kathi on. She is such a humorous, energetic, insightful person. And she could deliver bad news with a smile, and you’d feel good about it for some reason.

Kathi Lipp: (laughs)

John: I don’t know. She’s got this gift to make any idea, make sense. And you just want to try it. So I’m really looking forward for other people in my life to hear this project.

Kathi Lipp: (laughs)

Jim: Oh, come on. You are in bad shape, John. Kathi, welcome back to Focus.

Kathi Lipp: Oh, yeah. Best intro ever.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: And I love being with you guys, you know that.

Jim: I don’t know about that, but now you did not start…you didn’t come outta your mother’s womb all buttoned down organized.

Kathi: Uh, no.

Jim: You had to learn this the hard way.

Kathi: No.

Jim: So that makes a lot of people feel better right there that you’re not…

Kathi: Right.

Jim: … perfection.

Kathi: Oh, people get terrified when I’m coming over to their house. They’re like, “It’s the clutter free lady.”

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: I’m like, “You know what, let’s be honest. Your house may be more clutter free than mine.” I would say my journey has probably been more significant than most people. I actually was born to a hoarder and people use that term kind of lightly and funny. But really my dad was a hoarder.

Jim: What did that look like? ‘Cause a lot of people don’t experience that.

Kathi: Yeah. You know, people ask me all the time, “Have you seen the show? And I’m like, uh, no, that’s childhood trauma on TV for me.”

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: But my mom had to work really hard to keep him contained. So I remember growing up, he had the garage and he had what we called the office. Things were stacked up, I’m not exaggerating, probably four or five feet. And there was a path in the garage to his desk. He had a little desk out there. He was an electrical engineer. So he was soldering stuff and things like that. And a path to the mailbox, which was in our garage and up in his office, there was a path to his desk.

Jim: What created the path though? What do you put around you that, you know, that would…?

John: What would…

Jim: What will only allow you to walk in certain spaces?

Kathi: Well, it was very funny when I was writing this book, my editor said, “You know, you said that your dad had piles and piles of stamps.” He said, “Do you mean postage stamps?” And I said, “Yes.” He goes, “How could you have five-foot piles of postage stamps?” And so I sent him a picture because people don’t believe me, but it would be in binders and things like that. But so many postage stamps from all over the world, that was one of the things he collected. Electronics parts, National Geographic magazines.

Jim: (laughs) I like your dad.

Kathi: No.

Jim: That is awesome.

Kathi: You know, he was a guy who went deep in his interests, but he had a lot of interests. But I would say that a lot of his stuff caused a lot of barriers in our family, physical and emotional. Because my dad was so into his stuff. I’ll never forget when they moved houses. It took all of us. I’m talking my husband, my kids, my brother, his friends, to go through all that stuff. And it was a pretty traumatic experience for my dad.

Jim: Was that your mom’s plan to clean up?

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: Was to move house?

John: (laughs)

Kathi: Well, I think, you know what?

John: Forces the issue.

Kathi: It really was. It forced the issue and it got to a point where the only person my dad would talk to was me because he felt so attacked. And we weren’t attacking him, but we were asking about his stuff.

Jim: Well, let me ask you this, because growing up in that kind of environment, it can make you anti clutter.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: But you weren’t that.

Kathi: No, I didn’t really know how to deal with things. And I formed some kind of weird emotional attachments to things which I thought were weird at the time.

Jim: What does that, I don’t know, what does that look like?

Kathi: Well, I really think that clutter comes down to a couple of things. It’s well, three. Fear, guilt, and shame. Fear, “If I get rid of that, what if I need it later on?”

Jim: Like, maybe like four years from now.

Kathi: Right, exactly. And exactly. And to, to think about spending the money a second time on something…

Jim: mm-hmm.

Kathi: … is paralyzing. My mom was raised by, you know, people who went through the depression. And so this idea was passed down to me that we don’t waste. And so, if I could possibly use it again, then I would do it. So the fear, the guilt. Oh, “You know, Aunt Edna made that for me.” Now, I would never wear that, but she made it for me. So the guilt that is associated to stuff. And then shame, “I spent so much money on it. How could I ever give that away?” You know, “Those boots, well they pinch me every time I walk and so I don’t walk in them. But I spent so much money on them. I had to have them; I have to keep them.” And so that really built up a lot of my clutter.

Jim: Kathi, in your book you refer to a popular motto that existed in World War II. Jean and I talked about it. We failed to remember ’cause we weren’t here, but our grandparents, for example…

Kathi: Right.

Jim: … who knew what it meant to live in a rationed world, I mean…

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: … clothing, and food, and butter, and milk.

Kathi: Yeah. Right. (laughs)

Jim: You wouldn’t have six gallons of milk in your refrigerator.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: What was that motto and how was the attitude of people during that time?

Kathi: Yeah, the motto was, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

John: Mm-hmm.

Kathi: And what that really said is, we have limited resources. Whether it was because of the government, you know, whatever was going on there, there wasn’t enough finances, whatever that was. So they really had to either figure out how to do without it or use up what they had. You know, it’s very easy in today’s day and age to get disenchanted with your hairspray, so you go buy a new one. And then you have 16 bottles of hairsprays that are half used sitting in your bathroom. And so one of the things that Roger and I challenged ourselves to do, and it wasn’t as big of a challenge for Roger, let’s just be super clear…

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: … was to use up all the cosmetics I already had, the hair products. And if I said, “Oh, I’m never gonna use it again,” either pass it on to one of my girls or get rid of it. Because what was happening is, I felt like I didn’t have the stuff I wanted, but I had so much stuff. And so, I didn’t know what I had anymore because there was so much stuff. So, you know, just using it up, wearing out. I now really try. I buy expensive shoes, ’cause we talked about plantar fasciitis when we were talking earlier before the broadcast. My shoes are very expensive.

John: Your feet are important to you.

Kathi: My feet are very, very important to me. I kind of, I’ve grown attached to them. Yes.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: And so, instead of buying new shoes I have mine resoled, which sounds like such a 1950s kind of thing.

Jim: Oh, I’ve done that, yeah.

Kathi: Yeah. But so I’m going to wear it out. I’m gonna make do with what I have. Especially when my kids were in school. We would go to Target and buy all these supplies every time they had a project until you realize you have everything you need. And so, can we just make do with what we already have. And then can I do without? There’s something that happens for me and my friends when you get something new. It’s very fun and exciting for a second. But it’s not so fun and exciting when you’re buying it with a credit card, and you see that come through. Or you get home, and you realize I had something almost exactly like it. And so there is kind of a pride that I have now, when I say, “You know what, I’m good.” I don’t need to have that. I have everything I need. And I feel smarter because I actually am really trying to make things work that I already have. It’s a good way to live. It really is.

Jim: That that’s really good insight. You know, I remember Jean and I did a garage sale.

Kathi: Uh-huh.

Jim: And, you know, I was very aggressive in getting rid of all that I could get…

Kathi: Yes.

Jim: … rid of. Jean was, you know, holding some things back.

Kathi: mm-hmm.

Jim: But we put out, and it was well organized, let me tell you.

Kathi: I bet.

Jim: Clothes and books and all kinds of things, but unfortunately…

Kathi: mm-hmm.

Jim: … I had some books from friends.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: I had read the books I was done with the book, but it happened to be signed to me.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: Like, “Dear Jim and Jean.” (laughs)

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: And I put that out on the table for 50 cents or a dollar.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: I want everybody to read that fine book.

Kathi: Yes.

Jim: And then Jean had a scarf that she had received from a friend from Africa.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: And that was out there. And lo and behold those two friends came to the garage sale.

Kathi: Oh, whoa.

Jim: And they, they found their items out there.

Kathi: Oh.

Jim: Now, that may have been a big mistake. We didn’t know they were gonna come by.

Kathi: Right. Right.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: And, you know, I would say th of the stuff we hold onto is for issues like that. “What if this person finds out? They’re gonna be brokenhearted,” that kind of thing. I totally get that. So yeah, maybe the garage sale for stuff that people who live locally could see, maybe that’s a rethinking kind of thing.

Jim: (laughs) Don’t put their gifts out on display and for sale.

Kathi: Yeah. Yeah. But you know, I also think about it like this. One time when I moved, I probably gave away, I mean 2000 things, you know, to friends and stuff like that. And one thing I regretted, you know, one thing, and I kept beating myself up. “Why did I give it away?” It was a silverware basket. It was one of those little baskets when you’re eating outdoors, has a place for the fork knives and spoons, $15, not a big deal. But I kept regretting it. And then I realized, “Kathi, it’s $15. Wouldn’t you love to be free of all of those other things for the price of $15?” You have to think about that. You are gonna make some mistakes. Hopefully they won’t crush anybody’s spirits, but…

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: … you are gonna make some mistakes. But here’s the thing, almost anything can be bought again, almost anything. You know, and maybe next time, you know, you go through it together and you figure out, “Okay, what should we hold onto that’s not going to affect our dear relationships.” That’s my advice. Yeah.

Jim: Let’s talk for a minute about the impact on your marriage, on your family.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: Why is this inability to keep clutter free such an impact on a marriage just as an example?

Kathi: There are two things that come immediately to mind. One, the number one question I get is “How do I deal with somebody else’s clutter?” And two, I think about all the money that is spent re-buying stuff that you can’t find.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: You know you have it somewhere, right?

Jim: Yeah.

John: This is why we have four jars of mustard in the refrigerator.

Kathi: Yes. Yeah.

John: Yeah.

Kathi: Because you go to the store and you think, “I was out of mustard, like, six months ago, I bet we need some mustard.” And we buy stuff that we’re not going to use, or we re-buy things that we already have because we can’t find them. Our houses are so cluttered. Our drawers are so stuffed. And I think that’s why a lot of women end up buying clothes again, and again and again. Because they feel like they have nothing to wear, but it’s because they have so many clothes, things are stuffed. And I’m not just picking on women because guys ask me all the time, “What do I do about my wife’s clutter?” But then women also ask me, “What do I do about my guy’s clothes?”

Jim: So that works both ways.

Kathi: Yeah, absolutely.

Jim: Okay. Answer the question. (laughs)

Kathi: Okay. So, my first thing is, before you start pointing the clutter finger, look at your own stuff. Because our stuff, we know why we have all of that. We know what our treasures are. But then if somebody is really dealing with clutter with a spouse, I always say “Don’t fight about stuff, discuss space.” And so, what I mean by that is can we agree that your stuff, I’m not gonna tell you that your model airplane that hasn’t worked in 24 years is clutter.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: I’m not gonna go there because our stuff is very personal to us. “But can we agree that you get this gorilla rack in the garage, and I get this gorilla rack?” So, first clean up your own house, and I mean that in your relationship. Clean up your own stuff. And then two, agree on space. And so, even if it’s an extra room, maybe your husband has, and you say, “As long as I can close the door, that area is yours.” And it, when you start taking the emotion out of it, it becomes much easier to discuss.

Jim: But it is a highly emotional area.

Kathi: It really is.

Jim: Especially in marriage.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: In our current home, I remember when we moved in, and I got things organized and Jean was doing her part. But not long after I thought we could probably get one of those big, I mean, big flat trash bins that get delivered to your house…

Kathi: Right.

Jim: … for construction sites…

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: … and I think I could fill that up with stuff. So I ordered it. I did ask Jean if she thought that would be okay. She said, no, that’d be fine.

Kathi: Mm-hmm.

Jim: I started throwing stuff away. And it was so funny. Because at night I’d come back to the house after work, you know, working on the weekend. I had it for about two weeks.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: So I’m loading stuff in there.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: And there’d be stuff pulled back out of there. (laughs)

Kathi: Right.

John: (laughs)

Jim: And I thought, wait a minute, this isn’t accomplishing the plan.

John: Who were the trash fairies?

Jim: The trash fairies were Jean, Trent, and Troy.

Kathi: (laughs)

Jim: And they were working against my great plan.

Kathi: Right. Well, one of the things that I say to people is when you’re trying to discuss as a family, what you’re going to keep and what you’re not going to keep…, Cheri Gregory, who’s a good friend of mine, who’s helped me on this book. She went through her garage, and she finally came up with this motto, which I think is absolutely brilliant. “I’m going to keep what I care about and I’m gonna care about what I keep.”

Jim: Huh.

Kathi: And so instead of keeping all of our treasures locked away in a closet ’cause we’re gonna do something with them someday, what she did, this is brilliant. Her father-in-law served in the military, and they had the flag from his memorial. And it’d been in a box for years and years. Well, you know what happens to things when they’re in a box. There are rodents, all this kind of stuff. So what she did is she got that, and she had it mounted. She had it mounted in a display case and surprised her husband with it.

Jim: Ah.

Kathi: And he said, that’s the best gift that she had ever given him. Because she cared about what they were keeping. So all those things that aren’t working that you’re gonna get to later, if you’re gonna keep it, care about it. And if you don’t care about it, somebody will. Somebody would love to have that shirt that doesn’t quite fit.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: Or that pair of boots that hurts you. It won’t hurt them. They’ve got younger feet than you do. We wanna be good stewards with our stuff. And when we’re hoarding, hoarding can be just your closets are stuffed.  It doesn’t mean that you have rooms that are unusable. It means that you have, you know, closets that are unusable. I know that’s a very intense word for a lot of people, but I really do believe that oftentimes we are hoarding stuff because it’s a sense of safety. “If I give it away, I… ,” There’s a lot of fear attached to that. And what I’ve come to understand when we work with, especially women, in helping them get clutter free, the freedom comes when they give this stuff away. They were strapped down by it. And our little motto around our office when we’re talking about clutter free is, “We want to help people get clutter free so they’re free to go change their world.” God has a mission and a plan for each of us. And so many women are weighed down by their clutter that they’re not doing what they feel they’re called to do. And we want them to be able to go do that.

John: Well, quite an inspirational twist on a godly perspective of getting rid of stuff in your home. This is Focus on the Family with Jim Daly. I’m John Fuller, and our guest today is Kathi Lipp as she shares practical help from her book, Clutter Free. Request a copy of that and a copy of our conversation as well, the entirety of it, when you call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY, 800-232-6459. Or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. And as we return to the conversation with Kathi, I asked her a question about being prepared, you know, having stuff around your house for those what if situations.

Kathi: Well, and a lot of what ifs, and I’m not saying this about you, John. But let me just say, a lot of what ifs are a form of not trusting God. If I’m gonna keep everything around me, ’cause I’m gonna be prepared for every situation… And sometimes we are called to give our space, time, energy, and money. And some of us are hoarding some of our stuff and we’re spending so much of our money to maintain it, you know? The amount of storage lockers that Americans use…

John: (laughs)

Kathi: … in order to care for their stuff that they’re really never going to use is amazing. But we can justify it a million different ways. But when we think about the space, time, energy, and money that we’re spending, really on all of this stuff that we may never use again, it can sometimes be a way of saying, “I don’t need anybody else. I can take care of myself.” And as Christians, we really have to examine those motives.

Jim: That’s really good insight. You know, I’m thinking of the command that Jesus gave to the disciples to go and not to worry about what they take with them.

Kathi: Mm-hmm.

Jim: That he’d provide for them.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: That’s kind of the application there spiritually, isn’t it?

Kathi: Absolutely.

Jim: Go light because you don’t want to be burdened by a lot of stuff.

Kathi: It’s so true. Everything that we own costs us. Whether it’s insurance, or how we’re going to maintain it. Everything costs us in some real way. And I want to be in a place where if God says, “You need to move to Oregon because we’ve got ministry there for you,” I don’t want my stuff to be a factor in that decision. “I want you to go give to this family.” I don’t want my stuff to be a factor in that decision.

Jim: Kathi, in your book, Clutter Free, you talk about this visual aid or this visual concept.

Kathi: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Describe for us what you’re driving at. If we see it, it’s good. If we don’t see it…

Kathi: Right. For so many of us, the reason we have clutter is because we’re putting everything out…we feel like “If it’s outta sight, it’s out of mind.” And so we leave the permission slip on the counter. And instead of, you know, just signing that permission slip and putting it back in your kids’ backpack, you’re leaving it out to remind yourself. But when you have so many visual reminders that it becomes clutter then that’s a problem. And there was a study done recently that if you have six unrelated things on your desk, the distraction that causes is like loud music blaring in your ear. The visual distraction is as much as hearing Rock music when you’re trying to work. So that’s why having a clear workspace is usually a really good thing. There’s a small subset of really creative people. They kind of need a mess to be creative in, but for most of us, we’re using it as an excuse to never clean our desk.

John: There’s that old saying that a cluttered desk is a sign of genius, and we use that as justification, I guess.

Kathi: (laughs) Right. I think it’s also a sign of a cluttered mind.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: You know, here’s the thing. If your cluttered desk is working for you and you’re getting done what you wanna do, awesome. That’s great. But for most of us, clutter means that we’re distracted, and distracted is the big thing that we’re trying to overcome.

Jim: Let’s move to the strategies on how we cope with all of this.

Kathi: Yes.

Jim: I mean, we’ve got a bit of time to talk about that.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: You specifically encourage people to ask three questions.

Kathi: Right.

Jim: So what are they?

Kathi: Okay. The three questions are, “Do I use it, do I love it, and would I buy it again?”

Jim: Okay.

Kathi: And so if you can answer yes to all three of those questions…

Jim: Well, what’s the timeframe for, “Do you use it?” ‘Cause I might use it every three or four years.

Kathi: Well, yeah, if you have an intention in mind of when you’re going to use it…now, one of the things, one friend, her husband justified keeping a car that he’s had for seven years that doesn’t run.

Jim: (laughs) And why?

Kathi: Because he used it, because he worked on it, and he loved it. Now, that is a marital issue that needs to be discussed. But we can really eliminate a lot of clutter if we ask ourselves those three questions. Because, if say a scarf, let’s talk about a scarf, not to bring back bad memories for you, Jim.

Jim: (laughs) Ouch.

Kathi: But you know, “I liked it one time, it went with a couple of things. But do I use it?” No, “I don’t use it. I haven’t used it in a while.” “Do I love it?” Well, “No, I haven’t worn it,” you know? “That’s not my go to.” Would I buy it again?” “Definitely not.” “I need to let that go because somebody else would absolutely adore that.” Now, I do wanna say this. It’s great to give things away without any attachments. Because sometimes our parents try to give us stuff that says, “Well, I don’t like this anymore, but you should have it because it has a family thing, you know, attached to it.” “Your great Aunt Edna”… No, no, no, no. If you’re not willing to keep it, you’re not allowed to force it on family members.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: That is forbidden. Yeah. And so, if it’s not sentimental enough to keep to you, then you can ask your kids if they want it, but you can’t make them feel guilty if they don’t want it.

Jim: And Kathi, you have the “Do I use it, do I love it, would I buy it again?” That’s a good one for a lot of guys.

Kathi: Yeah, exactly. My husband likes a very particular kind of sweat pant.

Jim: (laughs)

Kathi: He’s a runner and he likes very certain things. And so I said, “Why don’t we get rid of all the sweats that you’re not using?” And he said, “Well, you know, I might use them again, someday if I ever stop running.” I said, “Would you buy those again right now?” “No.” “And can we close your drawer currently with the sweatpants you have?” “No.” And so, I didn’t wanna shame him into anything, these are very good clarifying questions. He said, “You’re right. We can give those away.” And I know, as a woman, who’s been a single mom, when I went into a thrift store, and somebody had cleared their clutter and I found a pair of Nike tennis shoes that my son wanted, and they were his size. With our clutter, and I’m using air quotes when I say clutter, that is somebody else’s treasure.

Jim: Ah.

Kathi: And I will never forget being able to buy those shoes. I think they were probably $8, but it meant that my son could go to school and have something that he was proud of. And that’s because somebody cleaned their closet. We can be a gift to somebody we don’t even know because we’re being good stewards with our own stuff.

Jim: John, I so appreciate that closing story from Kathi Lipp, because that’s really the point of our program today. Organizing your home and freeing yourself of all the stuff that tends to accumulate are good things to do. But the point is what Kathi said about being good stewards. Stewardship was one of the first commands God gave to Adam and Eve in the garden. Genesis 1:28 says, “Be fruitful and multiply. Subdue and have dominion over the earth.” God has given us so many blessings to enjoy. Homes to live in, food to eat, clothes to wear, and countless other comforts. Let’s steward our stuff well. Using it to bless others and further God’s kingdom in the process. And you can start with a copy of Kathi’s great book, Clutter Free. I wanna recommend you get it for your family or maybe a family that you know. This is a great resource, not only for home organization, but also for choosing the right priorities in our lives.

John: Yeah. And in addition, Kathi has her annual 2000 Things Challenge where she encourages us as families to identify and purge at least 2000 unnecessary things from your home this year.

Jim: I’m thinking of Legos.

John: (laughs)

Jim: It’s time to get rid of those things. And that sounds like a great idea, John. 2000 things, it’s hard to think you can come up with that, but how do we sign up?

John: Well, we’re gonna post a link to the 2000 Things Challenge on our website, where you can also request Kathi’s book, Clutter Free. Make a donation of any amount and we’ll send that to you. We certainly appreciate your generosity toward Focus when you contact us today. Just stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY. 800-232-6459.

Well, we hope you have a great weekend with your family and your church family as well. And make plans now to join us on Monday for a conversation with Dr. Justin and Lindsey Holcomb about children and body image.

Dr. Justin Holcomb: Your son’s more than handsome. He does need to hear that he’s handsome. Mom and dad need to tell him. But think of all of the other ways. “You’re so creative.” “You’re so empathetic.” “You’re so thoughtful.” Like, things that they actually do. Let’s pick some way better adjectives.

Today's Guests

Clutter Free: Quick and Easy Steps to Simplifying Your Space

Receive the book Clutter Free and the audio download of the broadcast "Clearing Out the Clutter" for your donation of any amount!

Recent Episodes

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Investing in Your Child for the Teen Years

A panel of parents join with Jim Daly and John Fuller to discuss preparing their children for the teen years and adulthood, providing a biblical perspective on sexuality, peer relationships and technology.

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The Heart Of a Warrior

War veteran Chad Robichaux uses a story of nearly being captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan to make an important point: when we are at a critical juncture in our life, we need to recognize that fact and then make a move. He calls it being “on the X.” Chad goes on to share how he almost committed suicide while suffering PTSD, and encourages his audience to fight against suicidal thoughts. He concludes by describing how a mission to save his Afghan interpreter turned into a huge evacuation of anyone targeted by the Taliban after American forces left Afghanistan.

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Taming Your Child’s Tongue

In a discussion based on her book I Can’t Believe You Just Said That!, Ginger Hubbard offers parents a Biblically-based three-step plan for dealing effectively with their children’s back talk, whining and lying. She also stresses the importance of dealing with matters of the heart, rather than simply addressing outward behavior.

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A Legacy of Music and Trusting the Lord

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

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Accepting Your Imperfect Life

Amy Carroll shares how her perfectionism led to her being discontent in her marriage for over a decade, how she learned to find value in who Christ is, not in what she does, and practical ways everyone can accept the messiness of marriage and of life.

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 2

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

Mrs. Meg Meeker

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

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

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

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

Cherishing Your Spouse Every Day

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

Mr. Gary Thomas

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

cherish front cover

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 2: Heroes Providing Hope

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 4: Sometimes the Choice is Hard

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 3: The Power of a Picture

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 6: Families Helping Families!

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

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

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

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 2

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

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

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

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

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

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

Effective Habits to Embrace in Parenting

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

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

Dr. Randy Schroeder

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

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

Simple Habits for Effective Parenting

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

The Spiritual Battle for Your Marriage

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

Tim and Noreen Muehlhoff Cropped

Dr. Tim and Mrs. Noreen Muehlhoff

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

Defending Your Marriage

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

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 1

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

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

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

Revival Rising

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

Reigniting Your Passion for Jesus - Part 2

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

Headshot photo of author Kim Meeder

Kim Meeder

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

Revival Rising

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

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 2

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

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

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

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

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

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

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage - Part 2

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

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

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

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

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

Embracing Your Role as a Spouse

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

Headshot of Kevin Thompson

Pastor Kevin Thompson

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

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

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

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

Sharing Your Faith with Grace and Purpose

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

Mr. Greg Koukl

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

Tactics front cover

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

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

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 1

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

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

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

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

How a Former Abortion Doctor Became Pro-Life

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

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

Mrs. Patti Giebink

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

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

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

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

Giving up Sugar, Tasting God's Goodness

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

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

Mrs. Wendy Speake

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

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

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

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

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 2

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

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

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

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

Reconciling Faith and Science in a Medical Crisis

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

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

Dr. Lee Warren

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

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

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

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

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 1

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

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

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

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

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

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

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 1

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

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

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

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

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

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

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage Part 1

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

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

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

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

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

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 1

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

Mrs. Meg Meeker

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

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 1: The Truth About Life!

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

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

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

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

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