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Motivating Kids to Reflect the Character of God (Part 1 of 2)

Motivating Kids to Reflect the Character of God (Part 1 of 2)

In this Best of 2019 broadcast, Dr. Kathy Koch offers practical advice for how you can teach your children positive character traits and strengthen your relationship with them in the process. (Part 1 of 2)

Original Air Date: March 6, 2019

Kathy Koch: I think that what parents need to understand is that kids are either motivated for apathy or energy. Motivated for obedience or disobedience.

Jim Daly: Wow.

Kathy: Motivated to be kind or unkind. Motivated to be seen or to be invisible. We are all motivated.

John Fuller: Dr. Kathy Koch joins us today for this Best of 2019 episode of Focus on the Family. Your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly, and I’m John Fuller.

Jim: This program hit our Best of 2019 list because Dr. Kathy is so good at helping us parents better understand and relate to our kids.

We all want our children to be successful adults, and that’s the goal. And here at Focus on the Family our mission is to equip you as a mom and dad with the tools and godly wisdom you need to raise your children from infants to adults serving the Lord, loving the Lord, and loving those around them.

Today, Dr. Kathy will help you understand the importance of your relationship with your child. And how you can teach and model godly character and then motivate the necessary changes in your child’s behavior and attitude.

She works so closely with parents and children, and she has a great perspective and the insights to share with us today.

John: Dr. Kathy Koch is the founder and president of Celebrate Kids, Incorporated. Is the co-founder of Ignite the Family, and has written a number of books, including the one we’re covering today, Start with the Heart: How to Motivate Your Kids to Be Compassionate, Responsible and Brave, Even When You’re Not Around.

And we’ll pick up, Jim, as you welcomed Dr. Kathy Koch to the table.

Jim: Kathy, I have so many – what I think – are great questions for you, I mean, really. And we’re going to try over the next couple of days to cover so much ground. But let’s start with the biggest one of all. Why is it imperative for us as parents to capture and keep our children’s hearts?

Kathy: Well, first, let me say thanks for allowing me to be back on the show because I love what you do here at Focus. And radio is an efficient way to be influential. And I do hope that moms, and dads, and grandparents, and educators, and aunts and uncles have stopped and are going to listen to what we’re all about today.

You know, the relationship matters, right? If kids don’t know that we care, they don’t care what we know.

Jim: That’s for sure.

Kathy: And you’ve heard that before. It’s not a T-shirt slogan. It’s a – it’s a very true statement. And so, the challenge I think for us in our busyness, in our – in our counterculture and we’re overwhelmed is, how do we let our kids know that we really do care about their hearts and that they matter to us more than their behavior. More than their obedience, they matter to us.

Jim: You know, Kathy, I’m thinking of the mom or dad, though, that we hear that, we’re adults, we can rationalize that, we love our children, and we want to love them beyond bad behavior. But I think the neon sign the child hears is, “It’s all about my behavior.” How do you realize that, as a parent, and still love your kid through bad stuff?

Kathy: Right. You know, it’s being ever-present. It’s a smile on your face. It’s, you know, a pat on the back. It’s grace and mercy. It’s, you know, we all have bad days. We all have bad days, right? Could we own that? Could we understand that parents have bad days?

We spill our milk, if you will. We, you know, get stopped at the red light and are running late and are frustrated, and we speak out of turn somewhere. So, we don’t always, 100 percent of the time, act consistently. So, let’s give grace and space to our kids to be who they are. Always wanting something more. And we can talk on broadcast here about how to communicate hope in the midst of that heartache…

Jim: And we’re going to.

Kathy: …Because I think that’s a part of the issue. Who do we know they are? Who do we want them to be? Do we understand imperfection is a part of life, right? And it doesn’t reflect badly on us. Like, a lot of parents I think are – when a child misbehaves, it’s like, “Oh, I’m a bad parent.”

Jim: Well, that’s the core problem, isn’t it?

Kathy: And then we parent out of that negativity and out of that fear and out of that guilt – right? When we could have been the best of the best, setting our kids up with beautiful boundaries and with healthy expectations and lots of practical strategies to encourage them. And yet, they’re not going to always behave the way we want.

Jim: Well, let’s – we’re going to take this step by step. Um, in your great book, Start with the Heart, you mention a child wants to be known. That’s kind of the core thing. How can we really know our children? And then what are some practical ways to zero in on that, especially if we have more than one child, I mean, a household of three or four kids, to know each child really well and intimately and then to parent accordingly rather than kind of efficiently?

Kathy: Oh, that’s a great way you worded that. Right. It’s spending time with them one-on-one and, you know, asking questions on a regular basis on the bad days and the good days about, you know – what turns you on and what ticks you off. And what are your interests, and what are your passions. And if you could go to the library and choose any book, what would you choose and why. And if you went to the mall or the shops in the area, what store would you go to and why? And asking a variety of questions about a variety of things – interests and talents, and strengths and weaknesses – and even taking notes and having the kid say, “Why did you write that down, Mom?” “Well, because I want to remember that you’re interested right now in that, so if I run across an idea related to that as I’m out and about, I want to capture that idea for you so we can talk about it more.

You know, I love knowing that about you.” You know, as kids are older, it’s essential when we look at high school electives and post-high school decision-making, do we know who they are? So, I think it’s, um, good questions. And it’s also letting them ask us questions.

Jim: Hm.

Kathy: So, it’s not an interrogation, but it’s the family dynamic. Do we know each other? And “Dad, when you were my age, what did you like doing in your spare time?” And are we available to their questions so that they also get to know us?

Jim: That’s good discussion. You also mentioned the critical nature of resiliency. I so appreciate that because I think for me and my childhood, that resonates. I had to be resilient, being an orphan kid and stuff I went through. And, you know, it probably is what gives me hope, even though my teen boys sometimes irritate me and do some things. I have a little more laid-back attitude about it. It’s probably because of my experience, you know, that resiliency counts. And part of the way you become resilient is you overcome obstacles, right?

Kathy: Exactly, Jim. So, resiliency, choosing to bounce back quickly from despair, trauma, disappointment, it’s a choice. It’s a part of character. And it’s learned. And it’s learned when you’re allowed to struggle…

Jim: Or have to.

Kathy: …Or have to. That’s true. So – right. So, parents who quickly rescue – and I get this, right? It’s not easy for a parent or an educator to watch a child struggle. You know, you don’t want your kids to be unhappy. I respect that. And yet, we know what we know. And that is that when kids overcome difficulties on their own and with the assistance of someone, they feel better about themselves. So, you discover character. You discover your strengths and your talents and the healthy part of who you are. And you know what? Because – and here’s the thing, you guys. I want children to overcome trauma in the safety of your home. And if we continue to rescue and never let them struggle, the day they struggle when they’re out and about, they’re going to crash and burn.

Jim: It’ll be catastrophic.

Kathy: It could be. It could be. And we probably all know those stories. So, I want to encourage the parents to, if you will, keep their mouths shut sometimes and sit on their hands and just let the kids suffer the consequences of the choices. And that’s powerful language, by the way. It was your choice to forget you had a test. No, no, no I didn’t mean – no, it was your choice. That’s a very powerful word. And that’s a theme in the book, is that to help kids own and be responsible for both the strengths and the challenges that exist in the world or in their situation. So, um, it was your choice to forget. It was your choice to rush. It was your choice – you know, those kinds of things are really, really important. And that allows us to have a deeper conversation, I think.

John: So, as we talk about character and motivation, I mean, you’re on it right there, motivating your child by saying, “You’re the person that has the choice. You’re the person that’s responsible for the decisions and the outcomes of your life,” instead of me stepping up. That’s hard to do, though. There’s a price for me as a parent when they mess up.

Kathy: Exactly. So, your ego is at risk, right?

John: Well, my time and the judgment I’m going to get, the anger I’m going to get from them because it’s somehow still is my fault, even though it’s theirs.

Kathy: Oh, man. And this is where you look them in the eye and say, “Man, I’m listening, but you’re wrong.” Let’s call wrong wrong, right? Let’s be brave. Here’s the thing, guys, I say in the book, “Parent so that they’ll want to be your friend when they’re 25 years old.” Don’t parent so that they’ll be your friend today. Parent so that they want to hang out with you later and you have a multigenerational, long-lasting family. What a powerful, beautiful thing that is. And that comes about when we’re honest. They’re not going to ask us to be honest in those ways, John. But I know and you know that there’s a blessing there. And you got to parent long and strong and believe that it’s going to come back for you.

Jim: And that’s really the theme of the whole book, is how to do that well, how to launch them well, how to be a friend at 25 still as a parent. But the nitty-gritty is the nitty-gritty. One of the things I know in my own experience, a lot of our parenting discussion with Jean, it’s about, how do we continue to build character into the boys? Especially, I think for Christian homes, this becomes job one. We want our kids to have character – good character. We want them to make good decisions, et cetera. So how can we help our children become better in that character area?

Kathy: Yeah. Thanks for asking. No one might like what I’m going to say, but it does start – this does start with us, again, right? Kids tell me all the time, hypocrisy doesn’t work. So, are we kind and gentle and generous and outgoing? Humility. Let’s start with humility. I make the claim that I think humility is the first and most important quality to have because it can motivate all the others. And so, the opposite of pride, right? So not – not, “I’m worm on the ground,” but “I’m important. I have worth because God chose to make me, and He made me, me, and I’m created in His image, and it’s amazing. But I’m no more important than anyone else.” When I’m humble, I’m teachable. When I’m humble, I don’t have to win every argument. In fact, I won’t even argue because I don’t need to. I always have my authority, um, at the forefront, if you will. So, humility is very important. If you’re a prideful mom or dad and you’re always right and you never make a mistake and you’re never responsible, I’m sorry; they’re not going to feel safe with you being humble, the very thing that you claim that you want them to be. So that starts with us.

Jim: I like that, the humility factor. What are some of the other character traits we should point our kids toward?

Kathy: Self-respect because self-respect motivates us to want all those other qualities again. And self-respect is an essential preventative to bullying and things like that. Respect for others and self-control – I put them in that order. If I’m humble and if I have self-respect, I will want to have other healthy Christ like character. If I have self-control, I’ll be able to have those qualities, like patience and generosity and kindness and goodness. And then if I respect others, I will want to exhibit those qualities. So, in our home, if they’re not exhibiting healthy character, it might be because they don’t respect us. Maybe we’re not listening to them. Maybe we’re not present with them in the midst of challenge. Maybe we don’t celebrate their successes and so they don’t think that we know them, so they don’t care.

If you have kids who you find out are very different outside of the home from in the home, that’s a challenge, right? Sometimes unconditional love in the home allows them to challenge you because you’re always supposed to love them.

Jim: Yeah.

Kathy: That’s role of dad, right? And I praise God for dads who are willing to step into that reality. But I would also say that it could be a respect issue.

John: How much of that, though, Kathy, comes from a child’s lack of self-respect? In other words, “I don’t respect myself, and so I can’t really give you any respect.”

Kathy: Right, which is why that’s the second quality that I make the argument for because you’re exactly right. So – and then, John, how do kids learn to respect themselves? By being respected, right? It’s – there’s very much a double-sided arrow there. So, again, do we know them – strengths, weaknesses, challenges, delights, hopes, focuses, purpose, fears, grief, loss? Do we know in the knowing of our knowing what’s really going on there? And, John, as you were saying before, this takes real investment. That we have to slow down. You know, some of us would rather go and run an errand by ourselves and have a little bit of quiet time. I respect that. But take your sons with you. Boys always talk more when they’re busy doing something than when they’re sitting at the kitchen table being interrogated.

(LAUGHTER)

Kathy: So, you need to go to the store and buy, you know, a piece of plumbing to repair something, take your boy with you. And you’ll have a stunning conversation about something. And you can turn it towards self-respect in a surprising kind of a way and kind of surprise him with, “Man, I’m so impressed that you’re curious about this. That means that you’re capable of learning, and that’s a respect issue – really proud of you.”

Jim: You know, it’s interesting in that regard, and, John, you have the daughters here so you can speak to this, but what I find – and it’s so hard – is my boys usually want to talk at night. And I’m a morning person.

(LAUGHTER)

Kathy: Oh, dear.

Jim: And, boy, I mean, I’m talking about they’re back from seeing friends 10, 11 o’clock at night and I’m going, “Really?”

(Chuckling)

Jim: I mean, it’s hard. I can barely keep my eyes open. But that’s the moment, right? You’ve got to find the ability as a parent to engage. Thankfully, Jean is much more of a night person, so when I doze off, she can carry on the conversation.

Kathy: Well, that’s an encouragement to me that you put them first, and you sacrifice for yourself. You know, you sacrifice for them…

Jim: Well, we try.

Kathy: You try. You know, we’re not perfect at it, for sure. But, yeah, kids love talking in the dark. They tell me all the time that whether that be – mostly, that is at bedtime. And they like the dark, Jim, because they don’t have to look into your eyes if they’re going to tell you something that might hurt your heart.

Jim: Well, I think of that.

Kathy: Yeah, and then kids also tell me they like the car for the same reason, which is another reason to run errands with them because – or even to go for a drive in the country on a Saturday…

Jim: You don’t have to look eyeball to eyeball.

Kathy: Exactly, exactly.

Jim: That really works for boys. Kathy, this integration of the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, goodness, kindness. These are great attributes.

Kathy: Absolutely.

Jim: This is coming right from the heart of God. If you’re of God, you will express these attributes – if you’re in Me, basically. And how do we help our children to understand that? It’s not just because it’s virtuous to be humble. It’s because God is humble.

Kathy: Yes.

Jim:  And we’re made in His image.

Kathy: I love that. We have to teach them who God is.

Jim: Right.

Kathy: Some of us need to stop teaching what I would call – oh, I don’t know if I can say this.

Jim: Say it.

Kathy: You know, irrelevant truth. So, here’s the thing. The whole Bible’s relevant. The whole Bible is for us. The whole Bible’s true. It’s the inerrant word of God, Genesis to Revelation. I am not saying that it’s irrelevant. However, when I look at the counterculture, messy people, questions kids are having today about life, we have got to be teaching them things from the Scripture that matter to them in their circumstances – the names of Christ. The names of God. The attributes of God. The faithfulness, full of faith. And, “Let me tell you a time in my life when He was faithful to me. And, Jeremiah, last week, God was faithful to you. Do you know what I’m talking about, Jeremiah? Do you remember a time last week when God was on your side?” And let Jeremiah go, “Oh, Dad, I remember now. Was that God?” We have got to make the kids know that God was there in their moments, right?

Jim: Help them make it personal.

Kathy: Absolutely. And – and that God, Jesus, the Spirit, He is for them, He is with them, He is on them. And it’s attributes, it’s names, it’s – there’re stories, certainly, that we can share. I’m a huge advocate of the names of Christ, the names of God, um, I think because that’s who He is. And we are made in His image. And we are called to become more like Christ. So, the other thing I would say, Jim – I love your question – it’s discipleship. Just because a child comes to faith in Christ and might even choose that obedient act of baptism, if they’re not matured in their faith and discipled in the things of faith, there is no guarantee that the fruit of the spirit shows up in the daily walk because we still have a sin nature, right?

Jim: Absolutely.

Kathy: And so, are we teaching? Are dads and moms carving out precious time to teach the truth? Is the word of God open on a regular basis? Do they see us turn there when we have questions that we want answers to? Or is it just a Sunday morning, Wednesday night ritual?

Jim: Yeah, those are excellent points.

John: Great encouragement from Dr. Kathy Koch today on Focus on the Family. And you can get this conversation on CD or as a download from our website, along with Kathy’s great book, Start with the Heart: How to Motivate Your Kids to Be Compassionate, Responsible and Brave, Even When You’re Not Around.

Jim: Sounds good to me.

John: Look for these resources and more at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: Kathy, I want to speak to that difficult situation, the child that he or she doesn’t seem motivated or care or concerned about these attributes. You know, a well-intentioned parent is trying to do their best. And hopefully, they’re expressing these attributes of God – humility and kindness and mercy – and it’s there. But their children – maybe due to peer pressure, maybe it’s junior high – oh, my goodness, junior high – who knows the influences that are upon them? What can you do in that case when you’re laying down side by side in bed at night and the discussion is all about Bob? Little Bobby, or little Mary. Something’s not right. She’s not connecting. He’s not connecting with this. What is going wrong? So, in that context, what kind of evaluation can a parent go through to say, “Okay, where are we missing it, or where is our child needing help?”

Kathy: The first thing I want to say is that every child is motivated. I think that what parents need to understand is that kids are either motivated for apathy or energy. Motivated for obedience or disobedience.

Jim: Wow.

Kathy. Motivated to be kind or unkind. Motivated to be seen or to be invisible. We are all motivated. The wrong question is, “How do I motivate my child?” The right question is, “How do I redirect their motivation to the things that I want them to value, the things that matter?”

Jim: Yes.

Kathy: That changes the conversation.

Jim: Okay, so in this case, some parents use the wrong tool. They think if they concentrate on behavior, they’ll get good behavior. But the reality is sometimes that doesn’t work that way. And you have to back up and do it differently with that child who will not respond to your nagging when it comes to behavior. So, what’s a different tact a parent can use that is often successful – maybe not always – but just in that context where you have misbehavior and you’re drumming the drum, bang, bang, bang?

Kathy: Right, assuming that, you know, another reward would work or another punishment, if you will, will work…

Jim: All about constant – you know, the whole thing about risk and reward.

Kathy: Right, right. So, I would love the parents to step back and observe longer and ask themselves, “What is motivating my child to move in that direction? Is it peer acceptance? Is it peer pressure? Is it – I know of some kids who self-sabotage and they don’t want the pressure of excellence because it’s easier to be average. I can be average.

Jim: Interesting.

Kathy: My goal is average. I can be that. So now I’m successful. So now I feel good. If you perceive that that’s what’s going on and they’ve lowered their expectations of themselves, then you look for the opportunity for the teachable moment to have a conversation, and you prove to them that they’re capable of more. I use the phrase, “I know because” – like, what’s the evidence? “I know you’re capable of a B-plus. I know because for – I’ve tracked your records, and for a month, this has been the score. So, you’re not that far away from a B-plus. I know you’re capable with a little bit more effort or a little bit more diligence…”

Jim: Discipline.

Kathy: …Or concentration or focus or ask for help or something like that. Back to your question – I don’t want to hijack the conversation. You asked a really important question, Jim, about trying to, you know, enter into it getting to know what’s going on there. Listen longer. We just need to be quiet.

Jim: That’s so hard. Why is that so hard for us?

Kathy: Oh, it’s so hard because we want to problem solve.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: We do.

Kathy: And what – you know, what I believe and so many of us believe is that if a child feels like a problem you’re trying to solve or a project you’re trying to finish, they don’t feel safe with you. They’re not projects to finish and problems to solve. Children are not problems. Children have problems.

Jim: Oh, interesting. Wow.

Kathy: But they’re not problems. And it’s very easy for kids of all ages to feel like they’re the problem. I get that. No parent listening to us wants that to happen. Parents have the greatest goal of rescuing their kids from pain and heartache. I respect that. We need to listen longer. What’s really going on there?

Jim: I would only say though, Kathy – and I’ve done it – many of us do project, I think, unfortunately, “You are the problem. If you would just change your behavior, you would have a better outcome. So, you got to change. You are the problem.” We don’t say it that directly. But it’s kind of oozing out of us in different ways. And the kids get it. They feel it, don’t they?

Kathy: Oh, yes. They tell me they do.

Jim: Yeah. You see thousands of kids.

Kathy: Right, and some of the kids will even say, “Dr. Kathy, I know I am the problem.” You know, and then I’m like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa, no, no. Let’s back up. No, you’re having problems. You’re struggling. You’re concerned about X, Y, Z. So, do you want to overcome those?” You know, and then you begin to look at the focus of change. So, and change, again, there’s a chapter in the book about change, um, and we can talk about that if you want. That’s an important thing that kids understand that you can’t just snap your fingers and have it all go away, like technology makes everything easy.

Jim: The question I wanted to illustrate – and you did a great job in the book – is a baby chick…

Kathy: Oh, yeah.

Jim: …breaking out of the egg. Because I think this is the exact spot where you got to let your children struggle a bit. It’s actually good for them. But in this, you know, kind of Type A, buttoned-up culture we have right now, we don’t want them to suffer. We don’t want them to expend negative energy overcoming an obstacle. But describe that analogy of the baby chick.

Kathy: Yeah. It’s kind of fun, isn’t it? When you – if you have an incubator and you see the egg begin to roll or, like, the chick has decided it’s time has come, well, if the chick, um, pecks once and it hurts and quits, it’ll die.

Jim: Huh.

Kathy: So, no pain, no gain. You know, no pain equals death. You know, if I’m not willing to walk through something that’s challenging, I won’t grow. I might actually die. Hello, suicide. Now, that’s a whole ‘nother – I don’t mean to be light about that, but that’s very relevant because you have to be willing to work hard, to overcome, to go through some maybe pain to get to the other side. The other analogy with the chick that’s so true is that the parent, the well-meaning adult, sees that egg roll, “Oh, I’m going to save that chick from all that effort.” And I pick up the egg and I – and I crack it open. And guess what, Jim? That little chick dies because it’s the effort that develops the lungs that allows it to breathe on its own.

Jim: Wow.

Kathy: So, if I rescue too soon, the chick dies. So, no pain, no gain, too much help…

Jim: Same outcome.

Kathy: …Same outcome, same outcome. And how we balance that in the home is what I think is the challenge.

Jim: You know, Kathy, at the end here, I think – and we’re gonna come back next time to continue this discussion – but at the end, let’s end on that note of help and something that parents can do tonight. So, when you boil this all down and the parents that are struggling – maybe the single parent, put it in that context as well – who is struggling with a child’s attitude or behavior, what’s the best thing they can do right now? They’re at the end of their rope. They don’t know what to do. Just put a child in your mind – a 12-year-old, a 13-year-old. What can they do tonight to help make a move toward a better direction?

Kathy: Think about what’s been going well lately and talk about that. Talk about strengths with your child because you have to know your strengths to overcome your weaknesses.

Jim: So, don’t concentrate on negatives at all?

Kathy: There are times for that.

Jim: Yeah, but the relationship has to be stronger for that to occur, so work on strengthening the relationship by concentrating on the positive things?

Kathy: Right, because the kid will want to be with you if he believes you might talk well of him. And he will run from you if he assumes that every time you empty the backpack, it’s gonna be like, “Oh, my goodness, what did you do wrong again?”

Jim: Kathy, man, this has been so informative and insightful. And you do it every time. You’re killing me!

(LAUGHTER)

But it is so good. And we’re both in that mode, John. I mean, with Dena and Jean, we’re parenting ourselves, so this is helping us, too. And I hope it is helping, you, the listener. That’s the goal. This is what we want to do, is to strengthen your ability to raise healthy, probably not perfect, I can almost guarantee that, children – but healthy, young people that are serving the Lord and taking care of those around them. That’s the outcome. And let’s come back next time, talk about the five core needs that are mentioned in your book and so much more. Can we do that?

Kathy: I would love to do that.

Jim: Okay.

John: Dr. Kathy Koch’s messages are always so very strong and elicit such great response from you, our audience. And, accordingly, this was one of our Best of 2019 broadcasts here on Focus on the Family. And I trust the conversation has inspired you to be more intentional in your parenting.

Jim: But Dr. Kathy always delivers insight and wisdom with such heart and gives us the tools we need to be better parents. And really, it all comes down to relationship. The stronger the relationship you have with your child the better off both of you will be. And that’s God’s wiring when it comes to the family.

And this is just part of what we’re all about here at Focus on the Family. We are here for you with the trusted parenting advice you need in raising your children.

But we couldn’t do this without you. Your prayers and financial support help us provide this kind of ministry and outreach to parents in order to strengthen families. Not just here in the U.S., but across the globe.

Here at the end of the year we really need to hear from you. This season seems to bring out the hurt and the need for so many. But you can help when you share the gift of family today.

John: And for your contribution of any amount, either as a monthly sustainer or a one-time contribution we’ll send you a copy of Kathy’s book, Start with the Heart. Those funds go right into ministry and caring for families like yours.

Jim: And now, thanks to some special friends here at Focus on the Family who have generously provided a “Gift of Family” match, your holiday gift will be doubled. And you don’t want to miss out on this. It’s a great opportunity to help twice as many people today.

John: Donate and find out more about Kathy’s book and our Best of 2019 set, either a CD or a digital download, details at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. Or call. Our number is 800.232.6459. 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller inviting you back as we hear more from Dr. Kathy Koch next time, and once more help you and your family thrive in Christ.

Today's Guests

Start With the Heart

Receive Dr. Kathy Koch's book Start With the Heart for your donation of any amount! And when you give today, your donation will be doubled to support the Gift of Family.

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Becoming a Clutter-Free Family

Joshua Becker discusses the benefits a family can experience if they reduce the amount of “stuff” they have and simplify their lives. He addresses parents in particular, explaining how they can set healthy boundaries on how much stuff their kids have, and establish new habits regarding the possession of toys, clothes, artwork, gifts and more.

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.

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.

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

Giving up Sugar, Tasting God's Goodness

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

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

Mrs. Wendy Speake

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

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

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

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

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

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

Dr. Kevin Leman

Dr. Kevin Leman

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

Bundle of Why Your Kids Misbehave

Why Your Kids Misbehave and What to Do about It

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

Loving Your Spouse Through the Seasons of Marriage - Part 2

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Debra Fileta

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

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

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

Reconciling Faith and Science in a Medical Crisis

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

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

Dr. Lee Warren

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

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

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

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

Praying Scripture Over Your Child’s Life - Part 1

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

Headshot of Focus on the Family broadcast guest Jodie Berndt

Jodie Berndt

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

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

Praying the Scriptures Over Your Children

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

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence - Part 1

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

Headshot of Rhonda Stoppe

Rhonda Stoppe

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

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

Moms Raising Sons to Be Men

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

Identifying Triggers in Your Marriage Part 1

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

Headshot of Guy and Amber Lia

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Debra Fileta in the Focus on the Family broadcast studio

Mrs. Debra Fileta

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

Are You Really Okay?

Are You Really OK: Getting Real About Who You Are

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

Navigating a Toxic Culture with Your Daughter - Part 1

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

Mrs. Meg Meeker

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

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

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

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

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Newest Release - Episode 1: The Truth About Life!

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

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

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