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Focus on the Family Broadcast

Game Plan for Raising Well-Behaved Children (Part 2 of 2)

Game Plan for Raising Well-Behaved Children (Part 2 of 2)

Psychologist and best-selling author Dr. Kevin Leman explains how you can avoid common parenting mistakes and implement "reality discipline," in which real-life consequences teach children rather than you lecturing, reminding or rescuing them. (Part 2 of 2)
Original Air Date: January 25, 2018

Preview:

Dr. Kevin Leman: Kids can work you. They can play ya, like a violin. On the back of Making Children Mind without Losing Yours, it says, “We have seen the enemy and they are small.” (laughs)

End of Preview

Jim: (laughs). That’s for sure.

Dr. Leman: And they’re unionized. (laughs)

John: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: The ankle biter battalion is on the move, so you better have a game plan.

John Fuller: Dr. Kevin Leman describing some of the common challenges that we face as parents, and there are a lot of (laughs) challenges, aren’t there? If you wish, you could improve the way that you and your children interact with each other. Now just hang on, because we have more encouragement from Dr. Leman today on Focus on the Family. Your host is Focus president and author, Jim Daly, and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: Uh, John, we had a great conversation last time with Dr. Leman about where we are as parents and where we can get a little off track with how we’re raising our kids. Do you feel like that sometimes?

John: Multiple times, it seems.

Jim: (laughs)

John: Every day.

Jim: (laughs). Not a day.

John: Well, yeah, actually, every day sometimes.

Jim: (laughs). Multiple times a day. Well, we often try to, to make life easier for them. I am guilty of that. What little thing can I do? Sometimes that’s good. Kevin Leman, last time talked about that. If you missed the broadcast last time, get the download, get smartphone app. There’s lots of ways you can listen and we want you to hear it because we think it’s gonna improve your ability to parent, uh, the way you need to parent and the way God wants you to parent. That’s the key. So, uh, get that download, get it on the smartphone, whatever you need to do. Uh, it was a great discussion.

John: Yeah. And we’re talking once again about Dr. Leman’s book, Making Children Mind without Losing Yours. Um, at just in little print here at the top, Jim says, “More than one million copies sold.” I guess, it-

Jim: That says something.

John: … was pretty popular, wasn’t it.

Jim: (laughs) Yeah, that’s right.

John: It’s revised and, uh, it’s got some new content in it and we’ve got it at focusonthefamily.com/radio. Uh, or call us and, uh, we’ll be happy to send a copy to you. 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY.

Jim: There must be about 10 million more parents that need this, I would think. (laughs)

John: Something like that, yeah.

Jim: Kevin, it’s great to have you back.

Dr. Leman: Hey. Thank you, Jim.

Jim: Hey, last time, uh, we had a great discussion. I loved it and there were so many helpful hints there, uh, but you wanted to talk about the distinction between praise and encouragement.

Dr. Leman: Yes. You know, I call it vitamin E, encouragement. And everybody knows that praise is great for kids and you’ll see me on a network, uh, television program and they’ll introduce me as, “Hey, Dr. Kevin Leman’s coming up with, uh, why praise is destructive to children. Stay tuned. We wanna hear from this nut.” (laughs)

Jim: (laughs)

John: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: And, uh, I go out there and make a case for why praise is destructive with children. Now first of all, let me say this. If you wanna praise something, praise God. God is worthy of your praise. Your husband, your wife, your kids are not. You use encouragement rather than praise and you’re gonna see a tremendous difference. Let me give you just a couple simple examples. Your kid brings home five A’s on the report card, okay? You’re the traditional authoritarian-based parent. “Oh, five A’s? Oh, I am so excited. I’m calling aunt Sally and Uncle Jack right now. Oh, you’re the best kid in the whole world. Here’s four kisses and a $20 bill.” Now people are saying, “Hey Leman, what’s wrong with that? The kid got five A’s and I mean you’re happy and you’re calling aunt and grandma and, and they gave him a 20. What’s wrong with that?” A lot of things. Let me show you how to use encouragement in that same situation. “Wow, 5 A’s. You hit it out of the park. It looked like all that hard work you put in really paid off, honey. Congratulations!” And guess what, parent? You just saved yourself $20.

Audience: (laughing)

Jim: Doesn’t sound as fun. (laughs)

Dr. Leman: I want you to hear the takeaway. The takeaway for the kid is, “Somebody acknowledged the hard work I did.” It’s not blue smoke. It’s not the carrot on the stick and it’s just part of our society. That’s how we respond. Single mom coming home from a dental appointment on a Saturday morning and she’s thinking about everything she has to do. And if you’re a single mom, especially, you know what life’s like. I mean, you get one day to get everything done in life. And she’s thinking about her home and the kitchen and the dishes and Friday night’s dishes and Thursday night’s dishes are there. And she walks into a clean, sparkling kitchen and there’s her 13-year-old son with a dish towel over his table. The traditional mother. “Oh my goodness. Did you clean this up? You’re the best boy in the whole world.” Still kisses and there’s a $10 bill, okay? Encouragement. “Wow, did you clean this up, honey? What a thoughtful thing to do. I am so dead tired and have so many things to do. I appreciate that so much.” The takeaway goes right to the kid’s heart. Trust me. And so you wanna think in encouraging terms. Simple things like, “Hey, good job. Now you’re getting it. Wow.” Those are all encouraging words. Don’t overdo the praise.

Jim: Kevin, I gotta ask you this, because I think so many parents fall into this trap, which would be, “Hey, you did a, a pretty good job here.”

Dr. Leman: Oh, yeah.

Jim: “But you may have missed this spot or that spot.” And it’s age appropriate too. A, a eight-year-old, nine-year-old is gonna do a different job than a 15-year-old, but distinguish between those, uh, parenting approaches as well.

Dr. Leman: Well, there’s parents who are just natural improvers. They can improve anything. And I can relate this as a, as a husband. Um, we built one home in our entire marriage from the ground up and when you build a home, you have no money left for anything, okay? Especially landscaping.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: That’s the last thing. And our backyard was covered with weeds. I live in Tucson, Arizona. We got some mean weeds in that town. And one morning I get up at five o’clock, put a swimming suit on, went out in the backyard and weeded that entire thing. I was like a little boy at 10 o’clock that morning, waking Ms. Upington, my bride, to tellin her what I have done. And she’s a hard woman to get out of bed. Well, she struggled to get outta bed. She puts on her little bath robe, comes out with me and she goes, “Oh, Lemy, oh my goodness. It is wonderful.” Now, she’s a firstborn and she is capable of finding a flaw.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And I can’t make a story up like this. She looks down along the concrete patio and there’s a little weed, about two inches tall, that looks like he’s gonna grow up and become a week someday, okay? And she points to that weed. I’m telling you, if I had a gun she’d be dead.

Audience: (laughing)

Jim: Oh, no.

Dr. Leman: Uh, I mean it was just … It, it, it brought the carnal self out of me. I had worked five hours cleaning that thing and she found a flaw. And some of you parents are like that, you know? And s- and some of you husbands are like it. You’re lucky enough to have a wife who cooks dinner and you sit down to dinner and you say, “Hey, what’s with the carrots?”

Jim: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: Well, be careful. You might be wearing a carrot shortly, okay?

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And so it is with our kids. We can find the flaw. We say, “Uh, but if you did this …” And I call that should-ing on your kid. Don’t should on your kid, okay? And that should-ing says what? “You coulda measured up. You didn’t measure up. You want the kid to realize that his effort is what’s important. That’s the vitamin E. When you become the praiser, the evaluator, the critical-eyed parent, you’re setting your kid out for failure. Watch out for that critical eye. It’s called a carnal self. I remind you Saint Paul said … Called himself wretched. If he’s wretched, what are you and me? So we all are subject to that carnal self. Don’t bring it out on your kids.

Jim: That’s so true. And you’re hearing some of the laughter of the audience. Uh, we have about 20 people sitting with us in the studio and they’re gonna ask some questions a little later as they did last time.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: And, uh-

John: That was a really good conversation.

Jim: It really was. It as a dynamic to it. So, uh, Kevin, you also mentioned in your book, uh, Making Children Mind without Losing Yours, which I still am not sure you can accomplish that but I’ll read the book. (laughs) The, uh, the reality discipline. This idea that reality discipline is the right way to go. You touched on it last time. Let’s go there again. Give another example of what that means, because so many parents wanna save their kids from problems.

Dr. Leman: What’s great about this, it keeps you out of the daily battle with your son or your daughter. For example, 12-year-old is supposed to clean his room on Tuesdays and Saturdays, okay? And it’s Tuesday night. It hasn’t been done. A smart parent, without warning … Warnings are disrespectful acts. There’s another one that throws parents for a loop. Don’t warn your kids. Somewhere it’s written you’re supposed to warn them. I don’t know where it is, but it’s not good advice. Bush wack ’em.

Audience: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: Surprise them, okay? So hire 10-year-old sister to go clean 12-year-old’s room and pay for it out of 12-year-old’s allowance.

Audience Member: Ooh.

Dr. Leman: That’s what I call let the reality of the situation become the teacher to the child. To be real frank, he doesn’t care for his sister that much to begin with and for him to find out that creep was even in his room, he’s not a happy dude.

Audience Member: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: Now he loses $5 out of his allowance for housekeeping services rendered? You have his attention. But see, he has a choice, just like you have a choice. Run your car through the car wash for $10 or wash it yourself. And that’s why I call it reality discipline. You got a kid that doesn’t get up in the morning and every morning you do battle with this kid. Now, how do you feel once he gets on the stupid school bus half-dressed and without breakfast? Do you feel good about the conversation you had with your kid all morning, yelling and screaming and saying things you wouldn’t say in front of your friends? No. Well, don’t wake him up. Again, without warning. Let him suffer the consequence of being late. “Dear teacher, dear administrator, Pewford has absolutely no reason to be late for school today. He chose to sleep in. Do whatever you … you feel free to do whatever you think is right for kids who are tardy. Love, mom.”

Jim: (laughs) Love, mom.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And what you’ve done is you’ve taken the tennis ball life and put it back in whose court? In his court.

Jim: Yeah, I like that.

John: Uh, Kevin I like those a, a lot but in that first scenario, um, I can, I can hear some parents say, “Yeah, what I’m doing is setting up a big fight now because he doesn’t like his sister and I just gave him a reason to really not like her. How do I manage all of that emotional spillover?”

Dr. Leman: Okay, and there’s kids who will say, “Okay, let’s up the ante.”

John: Mm.

Dr. Leman: Just like John just said. And now he’s snarky and nasty to his mom and to his sister, okay? Within 20 minutes, the kid wants something and you give him vitamin N. “Mom, would you do this? Mom, can I do that?” “Uh, no, you can’t.” And they come back at … They just don’t put their hands in their pocket and walk away and say, “I lost that one.” Again, they’ll come after you with badger-like fierceness, okay? And let him work for it. Let him figure out why you’re not aqueous into his request. And a good answer is, “I don’t feel like doing anything for you right now. Turn your back, walk away.” Let him see visually that you are one unhappy dudette mom, okay? And when he figures it out and you tell him very matter-of-factly, “I didn’t like the way you talked to your sister and your mother,” and, and just let it go at that, he’ll catch on. So you’re remaining in authority, you’re not picking a fight, so to speak. Okay? But again, he’s trying to engage you in battle and you can … If this will help you remember, remove your sails from the child’s wind, ’cause the kids are gonna try to engage you in battle. Fighting is an act of … ready for it? Cooperation. When you’re fighting with your kids, you’re cooperating with them. You’re the adult here. You don’t have to go there. You can say it once, turn your back, walk away. And notice they’ll come after you-

Jim: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: … because they don’t like that. They wanna engage you in battle. If you get in a power struggle with your kid, guarantee, you lose.

Jim: Uh, Kevin, uh, you la- that’s great advice, first of all. Uh, last time you mentioned this idea of saving your kids. One of the things we’ve encountered is how many, uh, I think, as we observe school projects like the infamous science project-

Dr. Leman: Oh, yes.

Jim: … or whatever it might be.

Dr. Leman: Well, Jim did help a little.

Jim: I know. You know what? Jean and I … I told Jean. I said, “When our kids get to that point where they’re doing the science project, we are not helping other than encouragement and giving them just any kind of advice they might ask, but that’s it.” And so the first science project was hilarious. I mean, we … In this town, in Colorado Springs, we do have children who belong to astronauts-

Dr. Leman: Oh, yeah.

Jim: … and they come in with the (laughs) rocket ship. You’re going, “There’s no way that nine-year-old did that.”

Dr. Leman: Oh yeah.

Jim: (laughs) You know dad was on it.

Dr. Leman: Yes.

Jim: Um, but talk about that idea of bailing your kids out, helping your kids, doing their homework. It should not be done for all the reasons you’ve talked about. But be, be very specific as to why and what damage you’re doing.

Dr. Leman: Well, first of all, I’m gonna leave you the Leman five star for you and Jean staying out of that because it’s so easy to get into because we tend to project our unfulfilled dreams and wishes; now hear the psychologist in me; on our children and we want them to succeed. We don’t want them to fail. We want them to get in the right school and once you hit that area, we got college coming and it’s real easy to jump in. It destroys self-confidence, okay, in kids. That’s why routines are important. We got a question on yesterday’s show about what advice would you give to a young mom about to have a little firstborn and one thing I didn’t say is create routines. Routines for kids give self-confidence, okay? So again, when kids learn early that mom and dad are not gonna step in there and snow plow the roads of life for them, they build confidence in the fact that, “Hey, I can do this.” And as a parent, can you advise your kid? Yes, if they ask you a question. But one of the messages in Making Children Mind is guess what? Don’t ask your kids questions. That’s like asking a fire not to burn for parents. You love questions. “How was your day at school today, honey?” “Fine.” “What did you do in school today?” “Nothing.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And then they go to their bedroom, you know, and text their buddies like a woodpecker that had a bad case of ADHD.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: A- and, and they, and they just-

Jim: That’s a dramatic statement.

Dr. Leman: They do.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: But they just … They drive you away out of their life. And so-

Jim: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: … don’t do the parental a- … And I had parents say, “Leman, if I wouldn’t ask my kid questions, I’d never understand anything.” Uh, that’s not true. Just shut up. “Well, Leman, what do I say when I pick my kid up from school?” “Just drive home.” “You mean not, not say anything?” “Well, if he says something, respond to him.” “Well, what if he goes home and doesn’t say a word?” “Consider it a good day.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: You know, I mean don’t d- don’t get excited. Don’t force this. Let that … Let kids come to you. Kids look up … They, they wanna please you, believe it or not. Let them please you. Let them work. Let them get back to the family. Anybody who grew up on a farm need not read a Kevin Leman book because on the, on the farm you learn to get back with the family and you learn what cooperation is all about.

Jim: That is true. Kevin, one of those areas that can be cloudy for parents, particularly Christian parents, this idea of unconditional love. It’s a wonderful thing. We wanna live in that spot where we receive it and we give it. But when it comes to parenting, uh, that can also be real permissive and you don’t have a spine when it comes to the job of parenting. So distinguish between unconditional love from a parent to a child and the responsibility of raising a child, which sometimes requires conditions.

Dr. Leman: Yeah. You, you love a child for who is is, okay? You don’t love what he does lots of times. I think of my sweet mother who endured all the things, uh, she did in bringing up me and one of my favorite scenarios in life was when … as you get old and near death; this is a reminder for all these young parents around. When you get old and near death, they start giving you awards.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: You know, I mean, I … they gave me an honorary doctorate degree and the University of Arizona gave me their highest award they can give to one of their own. But I got a call and a letter from my high school. Now, this is the high school I graduated fourth from the bottom of the class.

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And they wanted to put me on their wall of fame. I said, “I’m there. I’m there. I’m going.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And my mother lived to be 95 years old. So here I am driving my 90-year-old mother up to school. Here’s the actual conversation. “Hey, ma, we fooled a few people, didn’t we?”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: “Oh honey,” she says, “I am so proud of you.” I said, “Remember the night the cops brought me home?”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: She said, “Oh, I do, but you were such a good boy.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: “Do you remember that time I got caught with the stolen sweaters?” “Oh, I do, but …” Her every answer to everything I brought up, everything I did, all the maladies of life that came to mind she had the same response. “But you were such a good boy.” And all I could think of was Romans 8:39 that says, “Nothing separates you from the love of Christ.” And that’s how a parent love is for their kid. Nothing sep- … Do you like what they do? Do you like some of their actions? Do you like their smart mouth sometimes? No, and that’s why you discipline them. But you, you guide. You know, I wrote a book called, uh, The Way of the Shepherd. A leadership book. Five star-rated on Amazon which means somebody likes it. But you know the shepherd goes out of their way to bring that one little lamb back in. You know, he uses the rod to guide the sheep. He uses the rod to separate the, the fur. He uses it sometimes to give them a little shot in the tail to move along when they need to move along. I’m here on the behalf of all the sheep in North America. They’re not stupid. They know the difference between real love and real appreciation and a phony. So you gotta be real with your kids. You love ’em to death. Yes, there’s times you’d like to string up every one of ’em for different things they’ve done, but that love permeates everything else. Love never fails.

John: That’s good.

Jim: Mm.

John: A good answer. All right. Well, let’s open it up, uh, to our guests around the table here and just give me your first name and state your question.

David: Hi, I’m David and I first wanted to thank you for your work. My wife and I have two daughters, 24 and 23 and they turned out pretty good and we’ve used a lot of your principles and, uh, you kept us laughing, kinda take the heat off. And no grandkids yet but we’re thinking about that. Do things change as you become a grandparent and using these principles?

Dr. Leman: Well, David, thank you for the question. Uh, let me point out one of those reasons why those kids turned out so well is if you ever read a Leman book, they underscore the daddy/daughter relationship and the mother/son relationship. When dads step up to the plate, be the dads they need to be, those daughters just flourish. So when those little … We have four grandchildren, okay? And, uh, it’s just … It’s a blessing. You know, the old adage is, you know, you can love ’em and give ’em back to their parents and then go on, enjoy life and shuffleboard is, is true to a certain extent. But you know what? I love to engage our grandchildren. I say things to my grandchildren sometimes that are sorta street education and I see my daughter sorta cringe.

Jim: (laughs) I can’t imagine that.

Dr. Leman: And, and-

Jim: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: But then she’ll come around and say, “Dad, I am so glad, I am so glad that I have a dad like you who cares about my kids to bring up these things, because I have an eighth grader now. Little Connor has got size 14 shoes.” And what’s going on today in seventh and eighth grade in schools parents need to know. I- it’s, it’s not like it was years ago. So it just deepens everything. I think a lotta parents who followed Kevin Leman through the years, they’re looking at their kids now and seeing how they’re rearing their children and they might be the ones to go out and pick up Making Children Mind and give it to their kids and say, “You need to read this book,” ’cause they’re scratching their head saying, “What’s happened here?” This isn’t how they were rai- reared. So young people today have their own mind about how kids ought to be reared-

Jim: (laughs)

Dr. Leman: … and it’s different, it’s different in many ways from how their parents raised them.

Jim: All right. Let’s move on to the next question.

Erin: My name is Erin and my question is what parenting pitfalls are there for two parents who were firstborn children?

Jim: That’s a good one.

Dr. Leman: Well-

Jim: Quickly hit the attributes of a firstborn. That will help the audience better understand.

Dr. Leman: Well, firstborns are reliable, conscientious, they’re achievers, they know everything there is in life. Um, I finally worked up enough courage to say to my firstborn wife; and this will help answer the question; I said, “You’re bossy.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: And without missing a note she looked at me and she said, “I’m not bossy. My ideas are just better than yours.”

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: So here’s the thing. You have to understand that firstborn tend to be perfectionistic. They have a need to be right and they’re the great correctors. They’re the great … I call the women Martha Luthers ’cause they’re the great reformers, okay?

Audience: (laughing)

Dr. Leman: They’re always reforming something. And it’s so easy to see your kids and see imperfection in their life and you just pounce on it. This kid … If you’re critical, okay? If you’re a critical-eyed parent; and most critical-eyed parents are firstborn or only born children; your firstborn is gonna pay for it. So here’s the caveat. Here’s the warning. Does your firstborn start a lot of projects and doesn’t finish them? Do they draw a picture and tear it up in front of you and say it’s no good? Okay. Do they say negative things about themselves and other people? Watch out because you have, what I call, a discouraged, defeated perfectionist. One who is gonna be great at doing themself in in life. It’s spawned from having that critical-eyed parent. Now let me ask you this. Is God a critical parent? Is he looking for imperfect people with the biggest Wham-O slingshot on record, popping them off one at a time? No. He says, “Come to me.” There’s gotta be a submission there. And there’s another word that people hate today. Submission. You wanna be a great parent? I think you have to live a submissive life.

John: And before we conclude our conversation with Dr. Kevin Leman on this episode of Focus on the Family, we’ve got one more question for him.

Jim: And here’s the question, Kevin. Um, so a parent has been listening, or maybe a grandparent that knows their grandkids and their adult children are in trouble in this area. Speak to both audiences. What can a parent do who has a 17-year-old, an 18-year-old? Uh, you know, an older teen, and they have been the authoritarian parent and they don’t see how to back up. Maybe they’re feeling that conviction right now that making them do everything perfectly has not won the day and there’s a lotta bitterness and a lotta anger in that relationship. What can they do to begin to retrieve that and to have a normal, healthy relationship?

Dr. Leman: Well, a complex question in many ways, but let me try to address that. First of all, you grandparents. You know, we just passed the Christmas season. In this day and age, how ’bout this? How ’bout making a, a DVD, a video of your life to each of your grandchildren, talking about the struggles you’ve had emotionally, uh, spiritually, the time that you doubted the very existence of God.

Jim: Mm.

Dr. Leman: Uh, how you came to turn to Christ, how your life changed, what advice you would give to them as they go through life. You wanna give your kids, your grandkids a real gift? One that they’ll treasure? If there’s a proverbial fire in the home, the one thing they’d grab is that DVD of grandma and grandpa. What a great way to keep your life active in your kids’ lives. For those parents who are struggling, you’ve been too authoritarian. You need to come to a place of forgiveness. You just start with a simple apology. Ask for some forgiveness. See what’s happened. Sometimes though, when you have those authoritarian, know-it-all parents, you end up with kids who are really, deeply divided from you. You got a 14-year-old, 15-year-old who’s four-letter wording you every day. Uh, life is hell on earth, to put it bluntly. What do you do? I would suggest toilet paper. “Wait a minute. Toilet paper?” I prefer two-ply. If you want one, that’s okay. But what I would do if I got a 14-year-old or 15-year-old that’s way outta control, I would just for effect get 18 jointed pieces of toilet paper. I would say, “Honey, I need to talk to you.” “What do you wanna talk about?” “Honey, I just need three minutes and then you’re a free man.” I’d hold up those 18, I would drop all but four off, assuming the kid’s 14-years-old. I’d have this direct conversation. “You have four more years to live in this prison. You’ve made it very clear that you don’t like living here and let me speak for your mother and myself. You have not been a real pleasure to be around for the first 14. It hasn’t been good. I’d like to see things change. I’m willing to meet you halfway and if you don’t, you need to understand this, that in four more years, you’re to leave this home and you’re on your own and we wish you the best.” Sometimes you have to bring it right down to s- to the street war, kinda thing. You have to lay things on the line. And again, would you rather slow leak that life to death or would you rather bring it to an explosion point? I’d rather bring it to that explosion point. Try to deal with it as best we can. You only do that with God’s help and with a presence of mind. Now keep in mind, there’s a balance here. So you sorta give him a, a tough shot, but you’re also opening your arms to say, “Hey, I’m willing to do some changing and meet you halfway.”

Jim: And that represents a big, a big discussion. If you’re facing a crisis like that in your marriage or family, Focus on the Family is here to help you. We have caring, Christian counselors and we’d be happy to put you in contact with a member of that team. Allow us, uh, to bring Godly healing and restoration to your family. It is a privilege.

John: Yeah, we’re a phone call away. And let me also point out resources like Dr. Leman’s terrific book, Making Children Mind without Losing Yours. And a free parenting assessment that we also have at our website. That’s focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call us for details. 800-232-6459. That’s 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY.

Jim: And I’m sure that many of you are aware that the strength of our nation and culture is built upon the strength of our families. So when our families are broken or weak, we’re in big trouble and that’s why Focus on the Family exists. To help strengthen and support today’s families, to rescue hurting marriages, equip parents, share the good news of the message of Jesus Christ and so much more. We’re inviting you to join us in this family building ministry. We’re looking for a 1,000 people who will commit to a monthly pledge so that we’ll have the funding and resources we need to respond to the hundreds of thousands of families who will contact us this year. Can we count on you for your ongoing partnership with Focus today?

John: Anything you can give will help. Uh, a monthly place or even a one-time gift. But we would like to hear from you really soon. Like today. (laughs) And, uh, when you make a pledge or send a gift of any amount, we’ll say thank you for being a part of the support team by sending a copy of Leman’s book, Making Children Mind without Losing Yours. Our number again is 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for listening today to Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller inviting you back as we once again help you and your family thrive in Christ.

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Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours

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Recent Episodes

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Organizing the Chaos in Your Home

Kristi Clover, mother of 5, shares quick and simple tips to bring joy into your home by getting more organized. From clearing the clutter to choosing your top priorities, you’ll learn some techniques to make housework easy and fun for the whole family!

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Encouraging Your Kids to Discuss Their Feelings

Feelings can be confusing for children to experience and express. In this upbeat message, Dr. Joshua Straub will equip you to create a safe environment in your home, so that your children can express what they are feeling and learn how to manage their emotions.

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Walking With God Through Trials (Part 2 of 2)

Michele Cushatt shares her story of walking through difficult times and how faithful God was throughout. She explores ten practices—concepts such as lament, humility, contentment, and perspective—that will help you build and strengthen your faith so you can weather those stressful seasons with God. (Part 2 of 2)

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A Legacy of Music and Trusting the Lord

Larnelle Harris shares stories about how God redeemed the dysfunctional past of his parents, the many African-American teachers who sacrificed their time and energy to give young men like himself a better future, and how his faithfulness to godly principles gave him greater opportunities and career success than anything else.

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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.