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Focus on the Family Broadcast

Giving Up Sugar, Tasting God’s Goodness

Giving Up Sugar, Tasting God’s Goodness

Author Wendy Speake explains how she developed a closer relationship with God after overcoming her sugar addiction which she had been turning to for comfort in the face of life's difficulties, and challenges listeners to pursue spiritual transformation by overcoming their own addictions. Jim Daly's wife, Jean, joins the conversation to share her personal experiences.
Original Air Date: January 4, 2021

Preview

Woman #1: Cookies like Oreos and stuff, like those are amazing, and they’re just really good to like if you’re having a bad day, just to sit and have milk and cookies, like a couple of them.

Woman #2: Popcorn at the movie theater, this stuff is totally covered with butter.

Man #1: I can always go for like the chip stuff, yeah, chips are amazing. (laughs)

End of Preview

John Fuller: Well, if you’re like most people, most of us during the holidays, you ate a lot more cookies, popcorn and other junk food than normal. And today on Focus on the Family, we’re going to revisit a Best of 2021 program that has some great ideas for a fresh start related to food as we begin this new year. Your host is Focus president and health advocate, Jim Daly (laughing) and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: Hey you slipped that one in. Health advocate.

John: Yeah.

Jim: Wait a second here. Hey, a survey found that two of the most common New Year’s resolutions are to eat healthier and lose weight. Have you made your… (laughing)?

John: I don’t make resolutions.

Jim: (Laughing) okay. I think I’ve done that a few times, but, uh, I don’t know that I stuck with it, but we’ll talk about that later.

John: That’s another program.

Jim: You know, they are great goals. Uh, and as Christians I think it’s important to consider that relationship that we have with God, and what we have with food and what we need to do to commit to become closer to Him. And maybe not as close to the Oreos, that’s the way to go. There’s a reminder in the Old Testament that if we draw near to God, He will draw near to us. And that’s the goal of our discussion today. Uh, we often focus on marriage and parenting John, but today it is gonna be about food and diet and those things. I’m always uncomfortable, so I’ll hand it over to you John, go ahead.

John: Well here is a spiritual thread-

Jim: See you guys later.

John: Throughout the conversation today (laughing). Uh, we have a very popular guest, uh, uh, coming back to us today, Wendy Speake, who is an author and speaker, and a wife and mom of three boys. And we’ll be talking about her great book, The 40-Day Sugar Fast: Where Physical Detox Meets Spiritual Transformation. And we have copies of that book here at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800-A-FAMILY. And Jim we’re always happy to have your wife Jean with us as well and here she is.

Jim: Here she is. And I wanna say welcome to both of you.

Wendy Speake: Thank you, thank you so much. I’m happy to be here.

Jean Daly: Always a pleasure being here.

Jim: Now I wanna make sure people understand Jean, I did not invite you to this broadcast (laughing). Catherine, our producer-

Jean: Oh, sure.

Wendy: Oh, I thought you gonna say she invited herself. Catherine, the producer.

Jim: Catherine, the producer set me up a little bit here. Cause Jean will think what did you say that I needed to come to this program? (Laughing).

Jean: Right I need, I need a sugar fast.

John: It’s an intervention for Jean yeah.

Jim: So I just want every, everybody listening that it was not my direction that Jean should join today, but I’m, I’m really glad you’re here. And Catherine I’m glad you thought of that as the producer. But uh, you know, let’s get into it. Uh, you had the revelation Wendy one day that you were a bonafide sugar addict. Now, everybody except the drivers put your hand up if you can (laughing) identify with the sugar addiction that compels and grabs this culture? I mean it’s amazing. How, how’d you come to that realization and what happened when you posted about it online Wendy?

Wendy: Right. Great question and I think it’s a great place to start. I love that you said usually that we are here talking about parenting, and today we’re talking about really more a health topic. But I have to tell you that when I posted that my name is Wendy and I’m a sugar addict, I wrote it to the moms.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Wendy: And they all responded in mass, uh, me too. My name is Jenny, my name is Susan, my name is dot, dot, dot, you fill in the blank, I’m a sugar addict too. And I’ve been here with you guys before and we’ve talked about angry reactionary parenting. And it was in a group like that where I said what would happen if we set down sugar for 40 days? Physiologically what would happen? Would it make us calmer, kinder, more consistent with our kids, maybe even more Christlike? But instead of it just being a sugar detox, could it be a spiritual fast? And that’s where it started. And hundreds of people, and then thousands of people started doing it. By the second year we had thousands of people. By, I think the fifth year we had 15, 20,000 people fasting with us. And uh, now we have a resource, The 40-day Sugar Fast and that’s what we’re here talking about. That you can choose any time of the year. You don’t have to wait for me leading an online group to fast from sugar in order to feast on Christ, to stop turning to sugar highs to get us through our hard days but start turning to the Most High.

Jim: Well that’s I mean that’s a fair point. And, you know, some people might think this is a little silly talking about sugar, you know. Of course, I have sugar in my coffee, or I have sugar this way or that way. But our culture, our, our dietary culture is just dripping with sugar, isn’t it?

Wendy: Yes, it is.

Jim: I mean they put sugar in everything.

Wendy: They put sugar in everything. And people always wanna know yeah, but what exactly am I fasting from? And because it is a fast and it’s not a diet, you take it to the Lord and say God, I know there’s a stronghold in my life. And that’s, I love that word stronghold. God said so clearly to us throughout the scriptures I’m a stronghold. Run into Me when you’re having a hard day with your kids. Run into Me when there are struggles in your life and I will keep you safe and I will get you through this battle. And when we turn to anything to get us through our days that isn’t Christ, and we turn to it repeatedly, that thing often ends up as a stronghold. So I hear people say yes, I have got a sugar addiction it’s a stronghold in my life.

Jim: And we’re gonna get to that. And Jean you have a couple of stories and I think that’s why Catherine thought it’d be great to have you here, so we’ll get to those stories in a second. But Wendy, uh, you advocate for a complete fast from sugar really, really?

Wendy: Well, I don’t know if I would say-

Jim: What about that donut?

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: Just one donut.

Wendy: It is a complete fast from sugar, but there are people that have been ingesting sugar as their, think about that, that pyramid that we all saw in history class, I mean not in history class, nutrition class science class, when we were in, what was it? Sixth grade. And you’ve got the fruits and vegetables and the meat and cheeses, and then at the very top of the pyramid you have the, the fats and the sugars, right?

Jean: Right.

Wendy: And then we flipped our pyramid and we’ve got some of us really-

Jim: Well that’s true.

Wendy: We wake up and we have a leftover brownie with our highly sugared latte. And then we miss lunch, but we have some leftovers again, of the whatever treats our kids had for, um, you know, their snack. And then for dinner, well we have something sort of healthy, but we put the kids down for the night and then we have a bowl of ice cream. Just, you know, we need a reward for making it through another hard day.

Jim: Hey, have you been talking to Jean? (Laughing). What are you doing here? It’s terrible. You giving her intel.

Wendy: I know.

John: Now you’re not saying sugar is the problem.

Wendy: No.

John: But you’re saying it’s a very common thing that we can start to use to kind of reset.

Wendy: Yes. You know, God never asked us for a sugar sacrifice, He asked us for a living sacrifice. And so I think sugar’s one of those things getting in the way of living life for Christ. We’re so bound up either how the sugar is affecting us physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Or we’re distracted about living our life for Christ because all we can think about is that next thing that we want to get us through. Our, our appetite is our God, rather than God being our God.

Jim: Yeah. And I so appreciate it, I mean I have been reading quite a bit about the impact sugar has on your body. It’s really a poison to your body. I don’t know why that is something that tastes so good ends up being like the worst thing you could ingest, but it’s true. And, uh, the component about that emotional eating, and Jean I’m gonna come to you in just a second, because I want your perspective on that. But, uh, Wendy, how did that start for you that emotional connection to sweets?

Wendy: Oh, well I think it started way back when I was a kiddo. And I would get my two-dollar allowance on a Friday, and I’d hop on my little pink bicycle with a, you know, wicker basket in the front. And I’d, I’d ride to my friend Carrie’s house and pick her up and, and she’d hop on her scooter, and we’d go down to the corner liquor store. And we’d go in and you know how some of those doors they ring like a bell announces when someone like I can hear it in my memory so clearly. And I’d go and I’d, I’d grab all the candies, all the gobstoppers, and the now and laters, and the lemon drops. I mean all of it, whatever two dollars could buy, and we’d go back to Carrie’s house, and we’d just binge right (laughing). And, um, and I was also a, um, a latchkey kid. My parents divorced when I was very young, and I would come home as I was growing up to an empty house. And I was very well loved, I’m not blaming my parents’ divorce I’m just telling a story.

Jim: Yeah.

Wendy: And, uh, my mom sometimes had in the back of the fridge, one of those Betty Crocker, um, vanilla icing-

Jean: Oh yes.

Wendy: Tubs you know. And she’d sometimes for dessert spread it on a gram cracker or something like that. Well, I would eat it straight out of the can when I was by myself. I would just find whatever was there and I would eat it. And it filled the emptiness. Even before I knew there was sadness, it just filled the space and I felt happy. And you must know there’s a dopamine release right, when we have some sugar. And we’re adults and we see how it affects our kids, but is it possible moms and dads that it’s affecting us negatively as well?

Jim: Yeah, that dopamine, that points to addiction.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: Uh, Jean how are you relating to this when it comes to the emotional connection to eating?

Jean: Oh, I definitely relate to this. And I can think of an example when our boys were younger, and Jim was traveling-

Wendy: Yes.

Jean: I would put them to bed.

Wendy: Mm-hmm.

Jean: Grab some chocolate and sit down in front of the computer and do email. And this was happening so consistently I finally recognized this was an unhealthy pattern, you know, and really started asking myself why, why am I doing this? And why do I need the chocolate every time? And was able to process it and find some healthier alternatives to that. Which is, I mean that’s what your book addresses. That’s exactly what your book is talking about.

Wendy: Except we’re not looking for alternatives that are healthy food options. We’re talking about crowding out the sugar by ingesting, consuming, gobbling up more of enjoying God’s presence in our lives, turning to His sweet and satisfying word. And, um, it’s just been so cool because a diet it’ll change your body, it’ll change your eating, it’ll change your health. It’ll even change some of your behaviors and your emotions, but a fast will change your whole life. And it’s really powerful. When you diet you say I’m gonna crowd out that sugar with more healthy food options. But when you fast you say I’m gonna crowd out what I’m running to, what I’m turning to by turning to Christ.

Jim: Yeah. Wendy, you explain in the book you use the analogy of a candy cane and how that connects to sweets and a dependence in the wrong direction. I think you’re getting there right now, but what was the candy cane analogy?

Wendy: Candy canes, who doesn’t love candy cane? We just made it through Christmas, I love candy canes (laughing). Um, and I know-

Jim: I actually don’t like them that much (laughing).

Wendy: Okay. But I know a lot of people that love the candy cane creamer for their coffee.

Jim: Okay.

Jean: Oh yes.

Wendy: Okay now we’re-

Jim: That sounds like pure sugar.

Wendy: That’s just pure sugar, liquid sugar to sweeten your coffee. Um, so now that we’ve broadened the, you know, temptation of the candy cane. You know, candy cane we, a lot of us will teach it to our children, you know, it’s shaped like a, a shepherd’s staff, right?

Jean: Mm-hmm.

Wendy: It’s also shaped like a, a cane. And if you lean on the cane of sugar to get you through your days, it’s not gonna be able to sustain you. But God invites us, He says you come to Me when you’re heavy, uh, laden.

Jean: That’s right.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Wendy: You lean on Me, and I will get you through. I will give you rest, I will get you across the finish line, not only into the eternal glory, but through your days. He also said come to Me, cast your cares and your anxiety upon Me, and I’ll get you through. And when we turn to something else to get us through our days, it just doesn’t work.

John: Today on Focus on the Family our guests are Wendy Speake and Jean Daly. And, uh, we’re talking about Wendy’s book, The 40-Day Sugar Fast: Where Physical Detox Meets Spiritual Transformation. And we’ll encourage you to get your copy when you call 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY, or at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: Let me ask both of you, I’ll start with you Wendy. But in our society, you know, it’s very accepted, even encouraged for women to become obsessed with healthy eating and weight loss.

Wendy: Right.

Jim: And of course if anything’s taken to an extreme it becomes unhealthy even healthiness.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: And, uh, I really want to, uh, touch on that. Jean you, you had kind of that experience in college, where eating correctly and it kind of became the thing for you. Describe what happened?

Jean: Oh, absolutely. Uh, there was a time during college where I was at least borderline anorexic. And then a little after that struggled for a short time with bulimia. And two things that really stand out to me even today about that, was one how affirming society is to our rail thin bodies.

Wendy: Yes.

Jean: I mean it is-

Jim: What did that sound like? What did people say?

Jean: Oh, you know, have you lost weight?

Wendy: You look so great (laughing).

Jean: You look great. And I, I knew it. I, I, at that time I was younger I, I knew I looked good and that’s very affirming. But also the what’s really frightening is the amount of control I felt and how powerful that was.

Wendy: Yes.

Jean: I mean that’s a bizarre and frightening aspect of it, that I could control my body so much that I could control even hunger.

Wendy: Yes.

Jean: And, uh, and that’s so unhealthy that’s-

Wendy: No, but when life feels out of control and you need to experience some control, it’s a very, very typical, um, struggle. For women especially, but even for young men in this generation.

Jean: Yes.

Wendy: I’m seeing that anorexia is a response to feeling out of control and the need to be in control.

Jim: Right.

Jean: And even though I would say for at least a decade after that, even though my body was getting healthier, that I realized whether I was rail thin or, or healthy looking, I was still obsessing about food.

Wendy: Yes.

Jean: What I was eating, what I was going to eat, what I wasn’t eating. And coming to the realization that is not God’s best for us to be obsessing and worried about what we look like, what we’re eating.

Wendy: It took me a few years of leading this online 40-day sugar fast to stop feeling stressed about this one thing. I never talk about food. During the 40 days we don’t talk about food, I don’t give them a to-do or to don’t list. I don’t tell them what to eat, what not to eat. We don’t go from a food fixation, a sugar fixation to a sugar-free fixation. We fix our eyes on Christ because He’s the only one that’s gonna fix things. And so that really is what is the difference between a diet and a fast, is we are fixing our eyes on Him and not healthy eating habits.

John: I appreciate that. And you know, uh, Wendy Jim mentioned, uh, about this obsession with healthy, and I had a daughter who for a season was she was fixated on healthy.

Wendy: Mm-hmm.

John: And the doctor finally said you’re gonna have to hit a program because you are really underweight. And she was startled because she’s like but I’m healthy, I’m eating well. And in fact, she just starved her mind.

Wendy: Yes.

John: And was making bad decisions. How do we avoid that, uh, with regard to any food, sugar or otherwise?

Wendy: You know, I feel like we’re doing a little role reversal here John. Because I would love to take a moment to pitch (laughing) calling in right now if you have a loved one that you can tell that they are struggling with an eating disorder. Um, or if you yourself know that you’re struggling with an eating disorder and you need some wise biblical counsel, take a moment. John’s gonna drop all the info here (laughing), this is what we pay him for. And he’s gonna tell you what that number is later. Um, however, I actually just had a conversation with a friend of mine who has been on the admin team. And she said, “Wendy, um, my daughter is, uh, has been diagnosed with anorexia, and, um, she’s back home with us as she’s getting healthy. I don’t know if I’ll be able to do the sugar fast this year.” Meaning lead it with me. And I said, “I actually suggest that you don’t.” Because people who have struggled with taking things in a very strong way out of their diet for a season to practice control-

John: Yeah.

Wendy: Might not need that example in front of, even if you’re doing it for the right reasons. So, you know, there’s a lot of psychology there.

John: It, it was a really interesting season for us, and I did not know that there’s an orthorexia, uh, this obsession with being super healthy that, that can become quite dangerous.

Jim: Yeah. Let me go back to that snacking and feasting on God’s word. You’ve mentioned this a couple times now, but I wanna, you know, really put an emphasis I guess on it. Um, when you have that craving, you’re suggesting turn to God, maybe read His word.

Wendy: Right.

Jim: Um, I wanna be really clear so people that are hearing that as a behavioral pattern, that when I wanna sit down like Jean was doing, put the boys to bed, Jim’s on the road I can do my emails. Oh, but you know having that chocolate with doing the emails is kind of a treat and it’s a reward, I’ve worked hard today. I mean you go through all that justification. Take that example. I mean what’s a Christ-centered way to meet that craving?

Wendy: I think once you recognize that you’re turning to sugar for comfort or reward or companionship, or to heal a, you know, a decades-old wound. I feel neglected today, I don’t feel affirmed today, I feel ugly today. And so I’m gonna make myself feel good and ugly at the same time. I mean it’s really a deep, deep hurting place that a lot of people eat from. But when you start recognizing it and you start saying Lord, in those moments, I want to turn to You. Then I’ve heard people say that during times of fasting their hunger pangs become like church bells, calling them to prayer.

Wendy: And so I say to people when we’re fasting, you know, this isn’t just taking out sugar and replacing it with healthy food. Let yourself get hungry. Because food issues really is a hunger problem, but it’s not a hunger like I’m hungry and I’m eating the wrong thing. It’s we have misplaced hunger. We are turning to food to meet our deepest needs. Whether it’s companionship with a husband traveling or loneliness or heartbreak. So let us turn to Him with all of those emotions. What are your triggers for why you’re turning to food? Uh, you can answer that better than I can. And when you recognize those times, I oftentimes my biggest triggers are happiness. Oh, my kids are all home. Oh, we it’s someone’s birthday. Oh, we did well. Oh, you know, it’s-

Jim: Let’s bake a cake.

Wendy: Let’s bake a cake. I want to love on you, let’s make cookies. And, and we celebrate with sugar. Okay how can I do that in a way that will help us to remain physically, emotionally, even relationally healthy? And let’s make some different changes. And during the sugar fast is a great time to pinpoint huh, why am I havi- feeling that strong urge to turn to that age old thing that I’ve always turned to since I was, you know, seven years old on my little pink bike? What am I metaphorically running to sugar for right now, peddling to sugar for? And then making some different habits. I, in the sugar fast, there’s a story I tell where one day I put my Bible on my cake platter-

Jim: Oh, this is where I wanted to go.

Jean: I love that.

Wendy: Oh good.

Jim: I was gonna ask you about this.

Wendy: And it’s a reminder for me there that I don’t need to turn to food as much as I need to turn to my sweet savior. And for the moms listening, cause I know that’s really the lion’s share of this audience. What I found is that sugar doesn’t make me sweet, but Christ does.

Jim: That’s good.

Jean: That’s good.

Wendy: And so what am I gonna do? If I really say I wanna stop yelling at my kids, I wanna stop acting emotionally when they act emotionally. I wanna stop melting down when they melt down. Okay, well what are some practical things you can do? And really one of those practical things is more time in God’s word, less time in your pantry.

Jean: Oh, that’s good. That’s, that’s great advice.

Jim: You have, you have, uh, said these things a few times cause it’s rolling off your tongue.

Wendy: Yeah.

Jim: Let me ask you this, you’re talking about those crutches, those things that you lean into sugar for. I’m sitting here going maybe I’m missing the mark; I just like the way it tastes.

Wendy: I know.

Jim: I mean there’s nothing, I’m not seeing anything underlying the fact that a Snickers bar is pretty good.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: But I mean, am I missing it? Is-

Wendy: No, I think you’re also a man. And uh, (laughing) I, so and, and I’m not making a comment about men miss things (laughing). I’m talking about I think that men turn to food for a couple of reasons. One it’s just a fun part of their day.

Jim: Yeah.

Wendy: Right? It’s oh, I love a good meal. But also there is that dopamine release and it do- you do feel good at the end of the day. I know that my husband tends to when he’s struggling with work or relationships, he’ll even say to me, “I just need a win.”

Jim: Oh, that’s interesting.

Wendy: And sometimes that means that he’s in his, um, garage working on a car. That to him is a win. Or buying a car (laughing) for goodness sakes right.

Jim: Well getting sugar because you couldn’t get the nut in the screw (laughing).

Wendy: And for him it often is food.

John: There you go.

Jim: I got the bolt on there right.

Wendy: Right. And he’ll come in and just start looking for, for something to eat. And I’m like you’re just looking for a win. So aware or unaware it’s part of us.

Jim: No, I like that. Wendy, as we’re wrapping up here, um, speak to that person who maybe has tried to connect with God around this area, but, you know, struggles to feel like God’s even listening. It’s not connecting for them for whatever reason. What would you say to that person that feels that distance? They’d love to turn to Christ, but they’re not getting that dopamine hit let’s just put it that way. There’s something missing there and they’re continually beating themselves up cause they’re going back to, you know-

Wendy: Oh yes.

Jim: Something they shouldn’t eat to get that comfort rather than the word.

Wendy: I would say if you are convicted, whether in this conversation or you have been for years and years, you’re turning to sugar too often and for the wrong reasons. Matthew chapter six, God invites us, Jesus invites us. Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these other things that are concerning you today, I’m there with you, I’m gonna take care of those too. I’m in the midst of those struggles. But if you go to meet those needs first, just like seeking Me first will crowd out those struggles, going to those struggles first will crowd out Me. We know that God’s word says with Christ these things are possible. So if you have said, eh, it’s not possible. That’s a diet. If you say I lack self-control, I’m saying you don’t need self-control you need God control. And that’s the difference between a diet and a fast. If diets have not worked for you… You guys were joking at the beginning about have you made your New Year’s resolutions? I wanna encourage you don’t make a resolution, make a revolution. Invite God to do something revolutionary, new in your life. During these 40 days say I can’t do it God. So you asked me speak to the person who can’t do it, who’s tried and failed. You can’t do it, let God do it. And that’s the difference between the, the diet that you fail and the fast that is all about spending time, putting your full attention, leaning your full weight not on the sugar cane, not on the candy cane, but on the shepherd’s staff and on the shepherd. Throw your anxiety, throw your full weight upon me.

Jim: That is good. And it helps to put your Bible in your cake pan (laughing).

Wendy: Not your cake pan, your cake stand.

Jim: I love it. Your cake stand right. I just see that glass-

Wendy: You don’t have a cake pan if you don’t have a cake stand.

John: Bibles everywhere.

Wendy: Bibles everywhere.

Jim: But this has been so good. Thank you for what the Lord has shown you and putting it into this format of a 40-day sugar fast, and the book that, uh, goes along with it. And I, uh, really wanna encourage you to get a copy of the book. And you can get that through Focus on the Family, make a donation of any amount and we’ll say thank you by sending it along. If you can’t afford it, we’ll find a way to cover it, uh, the cost of that on our end. So just get in touch with us and we’ll get it to you. And Jean thank you. Thanks for being here, thanks for that vulnerability about those college years and what you went through. And Wendy the same for you in terms of, you know, for women that this is a very tender area.

Wendy: It is, yes.

Jim: Because it’s so wrapped up in image and what I look like.

Wendy: And the affirmation of the world I mean-

Jim: Absolutely.

Wendy: We get it.

Jean: But there’s hope.

Jim: Yeah.

Jean: There’s hope.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: Yeah. Well one, you don’t have to rely on that, our identity is in Christ.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: And let me turn to the listener. I think and I hope what you’ve heard here is that’s the ground floor. And we talk about that a lot. We can certainly make, uh, your family perform better. You can be a better parent; we’ll give you lots of tools to do that. But if you don’t know the author of the family, we kind of have we’ve missed the mark. And we always wanna start right there. About 800 people a day accept Christ through Focus on the Family. Over 300,000 people last year said Focus on the Family was the instrument God used to bring them to Christ. That’s pretty amazing.

Jean: That’s wonderful.

Jim: And uh, you know, we never really, we never give it that much thought, it’s kind of a byproduct. We wanna be more intentional in this year to say start there, start with your relationship with Christ.

Wendy: Yes.

Jim: And in doing so, so many things that you’re talking about Wendy will begin to line up, you know, that’s the beauty of it. And I wanna encourage you to call us, get ahold of us. Let’s talk about that first, where you’re at with God. And then in addition to that, how you can improve your situation emotionally, spiritually in every way with Wendy’s great book, The 40-Day Sugar Fast. And if you can give a gift of any amount to Focus today, I wanna send you a copy of the 40-Day Sugar Fast as our way of saying thank you.

John: You can donate and get the book and learn how to join Wendy’s annual sugar fast that starts today. Uh, just stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

Jim: Wendy and Jean thanks so much for being with us, and Jean thank you so much for sharing your, um, stories and Wendy you too, that vulnerability I so appreciate it. And you’re doing the fast, right?

Jean: I am. I am really excited to be doing this fast so thank you Wendy to you.

Wendy: I’m excited I hope others will join us yes.

Jim: And Wendy I’m not so excited (laughing). No I’m teasing. This is great, and I’ll do the best job I can do in supporting Jean.

Wendy: Yeah, my husband calls it the 14-day sugar fast because he makes about 14 days with me and then all of a sudden, I start finding rappers (laughing).

Jim: I gotta give him a call (laughing). That’s great. Perfect.

John: Well, on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team here, thanks joining us today for 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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The 40-Day Sugar Fast: Where Physical Detox Meets Spiritual Transformation

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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! 

Focus on the Family

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