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Experiencing a Fulfilled Marriage (Part 1 of 2)

Experiencing a Fulfilled Marriage (Part 1 of 2)

“Our marriage was totally dead!” In a dynamic message of marital restoration, Patricia Ashley shares her testimony of a painful five years with her husband, Vernon, and how the Lord worked a miracle in their hearts when they joined hands to pray for a friend. She encourages wives with practical ideas on how to employ biblical principles in their marriages. (Part 1 of 2)
Original Air Date: May 9, 1995

Excerpt:

Mrs. Patricia Ashley: But when you give your husband true compliments, it is like putting water on a plant. I know what I’m talking about. Do you all hear me? Even if they reject it, even if they act like it didn’t move them, believe me, if you walk out of the room and peek back at ’em (Laughter), they like it.

End of Excerpt

John Fuller: On this edition of “Focus on the Family,” Patricia Ashley shares her remarkable and rather humorous testimony of how God saved her marriage and she’s got ideas you can use in your relationship today. I’m John Fuller and your host is Focus president, Jim Daly.

Jim Daly: John, I think all of us would admit if we’ve been married more than a few years, no marriage is perfect, not one. And when that realization hits you, the critical question is, what do you do now? Do you choose to lovingly confront your spouse and work through those issues? Or do you ignore the problem and hope it just goes away? If the problem continues, then what? Today’s speaker has the answers to those tough questions and she’s sharing with us out of her own pain, from a marriage that was in terrible trouble.

But now Patricia Ashley and her husband, Vernon have been married 46 years and they are enjoying their life together. So, let’s roll it, John.

John: All right, here’s Patricia Ashley at a women’s conference in Indian Wells, California on today’s “Focus on the Family.”

Patricia: My testimony is that when I got saved, I didn’t know that God was gonna save my marriage. I thought He was just gonna save me. And it was like my marriage being saved was a by-product of me bein’ saved. It wasn’t as a result of anything that I did to develop my marriage to work on my marriage.

At the point where I was saved, I was sick of my relationship and my husband was equally as sick of his relationship with me. (Laughter) Do you understand me? (Laughter) We mutually say that to people. You know, we were literally at the end. Our marriage was dead, waiting to be buried. Do you all hear me? (Voices from Audience)

I mean, when I say it was dead–and some of you all are gonna relate to what I’m sayin’ if you’ll be honest–when I say it was dead, I mean that I didn’t love my husband. I didn’t hate him. I wasn’t glad to see him come. (Laughter) I wasn’t glad to see him go. (Laughter) It didn’t make a difference what time he came in or if he came in at all. (Laughter) Do you [understand]? That’s dead, huh? (Laughter) No feeling. He didn’t make me happy. He didn’t make me sad. (Laughter) He didn’t even make me mad anymore. (Laughter) That’s where our relationship was. It was dead.

And so, you know what that does to a marriage. And along with about five years of being unsaved, in the military with no one to be accountable to, we were literally at the end, burnt out. And we just had one thing in common. We both dearly loved our two children and that was what God used to hold us together. But after a while, that wasn’t reason enough, okay?

And so, I accepted Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior and as a result, I began to read my Word, not knowing what God was gonna do with that. And my husband, he accepted Jesus in our dining room and he began to read his Word and our lives were so isolated, we were so divorced emotionally, spiritually and physically, that he would read his Bible in one room and I would read my Bible in another room. And as far as I was concerned, he had his Jesus (Laughter) and I had mine. (Laughter) You understand what I’m sayin’?

Now were we at the end? I mean, even after getting saved, after so much hurt, after so much disappointment, after so much disillusionment, you understand, [it was] just dead. Now I don’t even want to feel good about you no more. (Laughter) Do you understand what I’m sayin’? Follow me now, ’cause we [are] gonna be real in here. (Laughter) I don’t even want you to make me feel good anymore. ‘Cause see, to feel good, then I gotta feel bad again. My emotions must surface and let’s just leave ’em alone and that’s where my marriage was.

And as we grew in the Lord and as we began to read the Word, not even trying to be friends with each other again, not even trying to develop a relationship, we just started reading the Word and loving the Lord and allowing ourselves to learn who Jesus was, God allowed a situation to happen in one of our friend’s lives and we had to pray together. And when I found myself with my husband at the foot of our bed, on our knees praying, we prayed and as we began to cry out and pray together to the same God, little did we know that when we raised up our heads and we looked at each other, God had quickened our dead marriage. (Shouts from the Audience) Do you all hear what I’m sayin’? He had quickened it and He had made it alive.

The God that we serve, He specializes in resurrecting that which is dead. (Voices and Applause) Some of us, rigor mortis has set up in our marriages. (Voices from Audience) And I mean, when we look at our marriage from the perspective of what God has designed for marriage, we’ve gone so far from what God intends for the marriage to be and we need God to resurrect it. We need God to make it alive again and with that will come healing, but it’s only at the feet of Jesus. That’s the safest place to get it, at the feet of Jesus, in His presence. Because as I grew in the Lord and began to read the Word and just focus on the Lord, I had no expectations of my husband, only of the Lord and God began to fill me with His love. And with that love, God started healing me.

Do you understand me, what I’m sayin’? Fifteen years ago, God resurrected my dead marriage and He started healing me and it didn’t happen because I wanted it to happen, but because I knew it could happen. My marriage is right now a bonus of my relationship with my God. (Applause) Come on now! Praise Him! (Applause) I’m tellin’ the truth! (Applause) It is. It is not because I had the sense or the wisdom enough to do the things that God required of me as a godly wife. Ladies, let me tell y’all, my husband got saved just ’cause God wanted him saved. I didn’t have sense enough to pray for him to get saved. Do you all hear what I’m saying? (Voices from audience) God just saved him, saved him.

And as a result of that, because we just both started growin’ in our relationship, God knitted our hearts back together. And now the love that we experience, it’s different. Do you all hear what I’m sayin’? (Voices from audience) The commitment is different. And what we began to do is, we began to go to the Word after we realized we liked each other again. (Laughter) That’s where we started at. We just [were thinking], “I just like you. Let’s not deal with all this other stuff and let’s not try to get romantic or you know, I just like you again. I respect you again.” Come on now. You know how you can do that. (Voices from audience) You lose respect for [him]. They lost respect for you. They become bitter and indifferent and cold and you become angry and hard and cold yourself. You know what I’m saying?

And what we began to do was, we began to invest time. When we saw that God had invested in our marriage, we made a commitment to invest into it. And then we went to the Word and we began to look at what the Word of God had to say about marriage. Because you see, what we found out is, all the way back over in Genesis, that marriage itself originated in the heart of God. It was in the wisdom of God. It wasn’t because somewhere in time, man found woman, woman found man. It wasn’t in the heart or the mind of man.

God didn’t just create man and woman and let them discover each other. He made them for each other. In the beginning, man, God said, “It’s not good for man to be alone,” or woman to be alone.

The Word says in Proverbs 18:22, it says that, “Whosoever,” meaning your husband, “findeth a wife,” meaning you, “he has found a good thing.” Hey! “And has obtained favor of the Lord.” So then ladies, I want you to go back home and tell your husband (Voices from audience), “Precious,” call him “precious.” (Laughter) Speak faith. “Sweetheart, you have found a good thing (Laughter) in me. And because you have me, I don’t care what you act like, but just because you have me, you have favor in God’s sight.” Hallelujah! (Laughter) Now that’s what the Word say[s]. You must say what the Word say. How many of you believe in sayin’ what the Word says? (Voices from audience) That’s what yougot to say. Now you might not think he’s worth it. (Laughter) Come on now; sometimes we don’t. We don’t think they deserve us as being a good thing.

And some of us have been so beaten down and so criticized and so unappreciated, that we don’t feel like that’s the heart of God. But God says, “Be healed today.” And get the mind of God. Think the thoughts of God. Know that your husband just don’t know and you have to tell him. I don’t care what he’s actin’ like, tell him, “You found favor with God, because you found me.”

Now what does that do to you? It puts you in a position where you’ve got to be a good thing. (Laughter) Meaning that his heart must be able to safely trust in you, that you will do him no harm, meaning that you are going to be sensitive to him and that you are going to adapt your lifestyle to what his needs are. Ooh! (Laughter) Ooh! (Laughter) Say what! (Laughter) That’s what the Bible says. If we can get the mind of God. I know we got to get healed and we got to get a new attitude, but if we just say what the Bible says.

The Bible says that when God looked at man, He saw that he needed a helper. And so, we as females, were created to be helpers. Come on now, now I know, in this New Age movement, where the god is within us, and [if] we believe it, we can achieve it. And you have to make sacrifices, so Honey, sacrifice your marriage; sacrifice your children and you have to achieve some of your goals in life, Honey, because when you sacrifice yourself and give your whole life to this man and to your children, they will all up and leave you one day. That’s the kind of foolish counsel that we get from the world and sometimes from sisters in the church. (Shouts from Audience)

And so, it’s necessary for us, when we’ve been hurt, when we’ve been mistreated, when we’ve been misunderstood, unappreciated, all of that is real, we must take that to the very feet of Jesus and let Him heal us. And we must allow God to strengthen us and to give us His attitude and to give us His wisdom as to how we are to handle the different situations in our lives.

John: Wise counsel from Patricia Ashley on today’s “Focus on the Family.” And you can get a CD of this program with extra content to listen to again or to share with a friend, when you call 800-A-FAMILY or stop by www.focusonthefamily.com/radio. Let’s return now to Patricia Ashley on “Focus on the Family.”

Patricia: For those of you that are married, you’ve gotta give an account for how you were a wife to your husband. It doesn’t matter how he acts. Do you understand what I’m saying? (Voices from audience) And the one thing I learned early, when I started askin’ God to show me, He showed me, He said, “No. 1, this man, you are not gonna stand as a couple in My face to be judged for your works. You are not gonna stand as a couple. You’re gonna stand as an individual (Voices from audience) and give an account. So, now you can make a decision to unconditionally obey Me as it relates to your responsibilities as a woman and as a wife.” How’s that? It’s a little tight, but it’s right.

Listen, I remember one day reading a book by this woman and I believe the title was Kneel by Him and it was a little book (Laughter) and it was 99 pages, penny a page, 99 cents. God couldn’t send anyone to me to tell me or teach me the principles of submission. I was that strong-willed and that self-willed and that determined. So, God allowed me to pick up this little book. And this little book is a hammer, okay?

When I read the book, I fell on my face when I got through with the last page and I cried out. I said, “Oh, God! You don’t know him.” (Laughter) Come on, now. I said, “Listen, if I do what this woman says (Laughter), he’s gonna have me doin’ all kind of crazy things.” (Laughter) But God took me back and He said, “Listen, I wrote this Book.” (Voices from audience) And what she’s sharing from her book is as a result of what she got from this Book. (Voices from audience) And heaven and earth will pass away, but I will not change My mind.” (Voices from audience)

And God really brought me to a point. He said, “It’s not an issue of your submitting to him. It’s an issue of your submitting to Me.” (Voices from Audience) He said, “‘Cause when you can submit to Me, you won’t fear submitting to him.” Do you all hear me? (Voices from audience)

And He said, “When you submit to Me, I can change his heart.” (Voices from audience) Come on now. He said, “Now certainly if I could clamp the mouths of the lions” (Shouts and Applause), He said, “If I could do that” and He said, “If I could open up the Red Sea (Shouts from Audience) and let the children of Israel cross on dry land, who is this little man? (Laughter) Who is he?” Come on now.

Now, ladies, look. I don’t want to paint a[n] ugly picture of my husband, because he is so precious,but he’s a man, man. Do you all hear what I’m saying? And bein’ in the military, he’s a military man. And they believe in order and structure (Voices from audience) and I told him, “God gave me to him to balance his life out.”

Audience: (Laughter)

Patricia: Hallelujah! But listen, when God dealt with me, I watched God change his heart and God began to soften him up and do you know, when God began to show me, me and that’s what we need to do. We need to talk to ourselves. We need to say, “Self, shut up. (Voices from audience) Self, sit down, listen.” And see, when we hear the word “submission,” we go way over to the extreme.

But I’m dealing with this because it’s an issue that kills God’s design for our marriages. And I don’t care how many books you read. You can go to secular counselors, but I promise you, because God designed marriage; it was in His heart, that the institution of marriage was ordained and created. And because He did it, it’s not until we find out what was in His mind as it relates to marriage, that we’re gonna experience fulfillment. So, we will never have a fulfilled marriage. You will have temporary satisfaction doin’ it the world’s way, temporary satisfaction.

You get you a friend. Get you a sister to be accountable to, a prayer partner that would like to invest in your marriage. I believe that we should choose people that [are] committed to our husbands. If your girlfriend will sit and help you criticize your husband, get rid of her (Laughter) or stop her. (Laughter) Stop her. I’m serious. Stop her.

And I think we should understand each other. We should let each other bleed. You know what I’m saying, in a safe environment, but don’t bleed on a woman if she is not committed to the success of your marriage. (Voices from audience) Come on now. (Voices from Audience) Don’t bleed on her, ’cause she’s gonna do one or the other. She’s gonna put your marriage asunder or take your husband. (Laughter) She’ll do one or the other. I know I’m tellin’ the truth. I would sit and listen to women and I do it now, because you know what? We need to do that.

I think that’s why so many marriages are falling apart now isbecause women don’t have those circles that they can move in, that they can [share]. We are so busy with our job. We come from work to home. We have to cook; we have to take care of the kids, get ready for the next day. Some of you all commute 20 and 30 miles and some probably more. And you don’t really have the energy and the kind of time that God requires of you to invest into your marriage.

And so, the first pressure or the first trauma that your marriage experience[s], it starts to fall apart, because you don’t have that network. You don’t have that support group, but God would have us to network in a safe godly environment, where you can leave here feeling, “I’m committed to the success of my own marriage first” and then begin to ask God to give you someone that’s committed to the success of your marriage.

I remember my mother telling me, when my husband first left to goin the military, I didn’t want to leave Alabama and follow him. And my mother said to me, “Honey, you better go with your husband.” (Laughter) Now listen; my mother gave me this counsel. I didn’t think it was so wise, but I didn’t understand what It meant at the time. I later learned. She said, “Now listen.” She said, “When your bed get[s] hard, just roll over.” (Voices from audience). I said, “What?” (Laughter) Tell her. (Laughter) She needs to break this down and interpret this. I don’t understand what that meant. (Laughter)

But what she meant was, look, when it gets tight and when things don’t go right, you be committed. You stay in there and you work it out. And for those of us that are born again, pray through. Pray through, but be committed to it. Listen, it says that we are the leave and cleave.

The Word says that in Genesis 2:24, that for this reason, you will never be fulfilled in your marriage if you don’t leave and cleave. Some of us still have emotional ties. We still have soul ties with mom and dad. Come on now. We do. Now my husband was the youngest child that his mother had. She calls him her “Million Dollar Gold Piece.” (Voices from audience.” Now can you imagine what position that put me in. (Laughter) I couldn’t top that if I wanted to. And that was the way she treated him.

And a large amount of our struggle in our relationship was because there was a soul tie between he and his mother. And that thing had to be broken, but it wasn’t until we got in the Word that we realized that I was now his wife and his mother was his daddy’s wife. (Cheers from audience) Hallelujah! (Cheers from audience)

And so, we had been married and saved a long time before we realized this. what we had to do is, on one of our trips back home, he had to go to his mother and say, “I want to ask you to forgive me for taking that place and requiring that.” He said, “And I want to release you now back to your husband.” (Voices from audience) And he had to do this in front of me and his daddy. And his daddy was a glad brother. (Laughter) “Give me my wife!” But do you know what healing took place between he [sic] and his father? And that was how that was broken and God began to use my husband to minister to his mother and use his mother to minister to him. It got godly.

John: And with that, we’ll wrap up this portion of a presentation from Patricia Ashley on today’s “Focus on the Family.” And Jim, she has been so honest about the struggles in her marriage and the hope she found in doing things the way God suggests or commands, however you take that. We’re gonna hear more from Patricia next time.

Jim: Well, she’s using humor in such a great way. Isn’t it amazing that when we as individuals, start to seek God wholeheartedly, we see the benefits, not just in our spirit, but in our relationships, our work and even how we’re doing physically. And I just love the fact that Patricia didn’t demand that god rescue her marriage. She just began seeking the Lord with her whole heart and then, her husband got saved. Their marriage got saved and even her husband’s relationship with his parents improved. That’s what we’re talkin’ about in terms of the Christian life. When you live it out in authenticity, the benefits are there for you.

John: Uh-hm, yeah, it doesn’t mean struggles don’t exist, but God does bless those steps of obedience. And I hope Patricia’s story has motivated you as a listener to take that first step of faith toward making things right with your spouse and then wait and see how God can work in your marriage.

Jim: Well, you know what, someone has to take that first step and that’s the hardest step to take. We can talk all day long, but if your heart doesn’t open up and you don’t reach out to your spouse, nothin’s gonna happen. Let me just say this. If you are in an abusive situation, it is so important that you get to a place of safety for yourself and for your children. But keep praying for your spouse and for their hearing.

You know, strong marriages make for healthy families where children can grow up in a safe and loving atmosphere. Here at Focus on the Family, we want to do everything we can to help couples improve their relationship, like Patricia Ashley talked about today.

In fact, our research shows that we’ve helped save an average of 355 marriages a day over this past year. That’s amazing! I’m so grateful to the Lord for that. And if you’re a financial supporter of our work here at Focus on the Family and I hope you are, you’re part of that success and part of that harvest. And if you haven’t given in the past, can I ask you to consider joining us today, especially if your marriage has been helped by this ministry. We would love to hear from you. And when you make a donation, we’ll send you a CD of this program with some extra content our way of saying thank you.

John: You can make a difference very easily just by calling 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY; 800-232-6459 and we’ll send that CD to you when you make a generous donation of any amount today. Or visit us at www.focusonthefamily.com/radio to donate and get resources.

And let me mention that if your marriage is in serious trouble, if you’re really struggling, please ask about our Hope Restored marriage intensive. It’s a four-day counseling experience in Branson, Missouri, that has an 85 percent success rate.

Next time be sure to join us as Patricia Ashley continues and explains why it’s important to decide that God is able to help improve your marriage.

Preview

Mrs. Patricia Ashley: You get out of your husband’s face and you get in the face of god. (Voices from Audience) You stop talking and pullin’ on your husband and you begin to talk and pull on God.

End of Preview

John: You won’t want to miss the next “Focus on the Family” program with Patricia Ashley, as we once again, help you and your family thrive.

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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.

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

Giving up Sugar, Tasting God's Goodness

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

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

Mrs. Wendy Speake

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

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

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

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

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 2

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

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

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

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

Reconciling Faith and Science in a Medical Crisis

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

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

Dr. Lee Warren

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

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

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

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

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 1

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

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

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

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

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

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

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 1

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

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

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

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

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

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

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage Part 1

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

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

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

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

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

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 1

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

Mrs. Meg Meeker

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

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 1: The Truth About Life!

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

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

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