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Practical Help for When You’re Overwhelmed (Part 1 of 2)

Practical Help for When You’re Overwhelmed (Part 1 of 2)

In a discussion based on their new book, Overwhelmed, Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory offer advice for reducing stress, organizing your schedule, learning to say "no" to unnecessary commitments and increasing your capacity for joy. (Part 1 of 2)

Opening:

Teaser:

Mrs. Kathi Lipp: “Overwhelm” is, I think really at its core, is a lot of circumstances and feeling that you have no control over.

Jim Daly: Okay.

Kathi: And so, when you’re caught up in somebody else’s drama or external circumstances or emotions that really you don’t have a way to manage, that’s the overwhelming feeling that tends to shut us down.

End of Teaser

John Fuller: That’s Kathi Lipp reflecting about what it feels like to be overwhelmed, and she’s with us today, along with Cheri Gregory, to help you deal with stress. This is “Focus on the Family,” with your host, Focus president and author Jim Daly, and I’m John Fuller.

Jim: John, the level of stress in a woman’s life today is deep and strong, and I see it in my own wife’s life, you know, just trying to keep it all moving forward and doing the right thing. And it’s real simple today. Our desire is to help you develop a game plan for those times when you feel overwhelmed. And this should be about 98 percent of the listenership, and I’m looking forward to bringing that kind of practical help and hope to the discussion today.

We have brought in a couple of wonderful women who have grappled with these same feelings. It’s Kathy Lipp and Cheri Gregory. Together they’ve written a book entitled Overwhelmed, and I think that title, John, says it all.

John: And you can order the book at http://focusonthefamily.com/radio or call us at 1-800-the letter A and the word FAMILY.

Body:

Jim: Ladies, welcome back to “Focus on the Family.”

Kathi: Thanks so much.

Cheri Gregory: We are thrilled to be here.

Jim: Let’s start with a word of hope. That might be the better direction, because we are going to concentrate on a lot of things that are probably broken or feel broken, so let’s start with that word of hope. Is it actually possible to not feel overwhelmed?

Kathi: Well, so maybe this doesn’t sound super hopeful.

Jim: It’s tripping you already.

Kathi: I would say “no,” but I believe there’s a game plan to get out from feeling overwhelmed.

Jim: To help manage it better.

Kathi: Right, because I think that, that overwhelm can come from anything from having to run extra errands that day to the illness of a parent. So you’ve got the whole gamut in between, but the feeling is overwhelmed. And so, that rises up in a million different ways every day, every week, every month, but there are strategies to not live in that place of overwhelm.

Jim: Right. Let me ask you this. The, you know, again, this topic of overwhelmed can be embraced by both male and female. Today we’re talking about how women particularly feel it, and it is interesting, you know, we’ve often had guests on the program, John, experts talking about men and their capability to compartmentalize. It’s why men may do better when they are under high stress and they, you know, they talk about men in a combat situation. They come home and Vietnam vets and World War II vets, they don’t talk about it. They just lock it away in this part of their brain and their memory and they don’t unlock that door. They compartmentalize it.

Where women, you guys are firing on both sides of your brain constantly. It seems like even the way the Lord has wired women it’s more difficult for you to put things aside and say, “Okay, that’s tomorrow’s problem. I think that women have great capacity. I wouldn’t call it multitasking, but having their fingers in a lot of pots. You know, that’s how women work.

Jim: And it gives you the feeling, you know, of being overwhelmed.

Cheri: Well, and so many women, I think the overwhelmed becomes their identity. They don’t say, “I have overwhelming circumstances.” They say, “I am overwhelmed.” And so that’s the hope that we like to bring today and through our book is that it is possible to go from “I am overwhelmed” to “There are overwhelming things happening in my life, but I am not overwhelmed. I am at peace. I am free and I have hope.”

Jim: Well, let’s start with the basics. What is the definition of being overwhelmed?

Cheri: You know the description in the dictionary is a description of a wave coming crashing over and turning you completely upside-down. And when I speak on this, I use a slide of an enormous tsunami wave. And that’s what it feels like, whether it’s an external overwhelm because of the outside circumstances or some of us it’s the internal overwhelm. We have huge emotions. I call it the “emotion ocean” coming up. But whatever it is, it feels like this force that is absolutely about to come over you and take over you and make it so that, I mean, if you’ve ever been tumbled in a wave in the ocean, you can’t breathe. You’re so disoriented, you don’t even know which way is up.

Jim: See and that may point to why I’m a sick person, because I love that. I love to be turned (Laughter) over in a wave in the ocean.

Cheri: But you, then, have a much higher need for stimulation.

Jim: Yahoo! Let’s do that again! At least that’s true when I was younger. But on the serious side, that is, that perpetual sense of being overwhelmed, you’re saying it becomes part of who you define yourself as.

Cheri: And do you like that when it blindsides you?

Jim: No, of course not.

Cheri: You like it when you choose it.

Jim: And it’s when I’m choosing it.

Cheri: Exactly.

Jim: I’m in the ocean with my boys and we’re body surfing and we’re in eight-foot waves and it’s kind of exhilarating and exciting.

Cheri: And so you’re on top of it, literally.

Jim: Well, yeah.

Kathi: And “overwhelm” is, I think really at its core, is a lot of circumstances and feelings that you have no control over.

Jim: Okay.

Kathi: And so, when you’re caught up in somebody else’s drama or external circumstances or emotions that really you don’t have a way to manage, that’s the overwhelming feeling that tends to shut us down.

Jim: Now you have also created, in your book Overwhelmed, a quiz that women can take to kind of help self-identify where you’re at. In fact, we want to post that online. With your permission, we’ll do that.

Cheri: Oh, absolutely.

Jim: But get to the point of the quiz. What does that help you see in yourself?

Cheri: The first quiz in the book helps them identify what kind of overwhelmed they are, whether it’s decision fatigue or maybe they don’t know their true self or they are not being true to themselves, doing too much with too little for too long. Having unexpected emergencies or being overwhelmed by worry and disappointment. I mean that was one of the things that you realized early on, Kathi, was that overwhelmed takes on so many different facets.

Kathi: What overwhelms Cheri doesn’t overwhelm me.

Jim: Okay, so it’s individual.

Kathi: Right, but what overwhelms me, Cheri can handle with her hands tied behind her back blindfolded.

Cheri: In fact, I enjoy some of the things that overwhelm me.

Kathi: Which is hard to be friends with somebody like that sometimes.

Jim: Aww.

John: Seeing them being overwhelmed.

Kathi: It is and that’s exactly why we’re good friends is because we can talk each other down. We can help unravel some of that. I think it is so valuable to have somebody in your life who can help you identify what your “overwhelm” is and really help you with a game plan.

Jim: So you would, if you felt overwhelmed, it’s possible you would call Cheri and say, “Help me.”

Kathi: Call, text, Facebook message. Yeah, we do it all the time. If you look back at like our texting and stuff like that, I was just on a family vacation. I love my family. I love them to pieces. But there were a whole bunch of cries for help, cries for prayer. Cheri calls it “pray-cessing,” so it’s processing through prayer, all of that, because having somebody look from the outside and saying, “I know it feels overwhelming, but here is your next step,” is a huge, huge gift.

Jim: I want to talk about those personalities in just a minute, but you mention decision fatigue.

Cheri: Yes.

Jim: And I’m just thinking of people close to me in my life and how decision fatigue, I see that one, it’s more prevalent in our marriage. What does that mean, decision fatigue?

Kathi: Well, this came, as we were writing this book I texted Cheri and I said, “I think,” I can’t remember if I said 80 or 90 percent of overwhelm is just decision fatigue. And she sat with it for a while, and she said, “You know what? I think you’re absolutely right.” We have so many more decisions we have to make here in the year 2017 than we’ve ever had to make before, because there are so many more things that are required of us.

And so, you know, I had a much simpler life when my kids were little, but there were a bunch of decisions that had to be made. But now, you know, doing business, friendship, relationships, online, there are a mult- . just look at how many channels we have on TV.

Jim: No, it’s true.

Kathi: Decision fatigue is everywhere.

Jim: It’s true, and I think we all feel it, but again, I think women feel it to a greater extent than men often do because there are so many things you’ve got to decide.

Kathi: Well, and this is so key in our time right now. We have so many more opportunities, you know. What were my opportunities 50 years ago for career and what I was going to do with my life? And now I look at [the fact that] I have just unlimited opportunities, but it also means unlimited decisions.

Jim: Yeah. Now let’s talk about those major personality types that you’ve uncovered. Describe each type and what overwhelms most women. And again, these things can fit with men as well, but let’s go through the personality types.

Kathi: So the first personality that I’ll talk about is the expressive, which is me. And I know we’ve talked about these?

Jim: You’re expressive?

Kathi: I know. (Laughter) It’s a shocker to everybody who knows me. And so, we are, we’re the starters. We’re the ones who love to get the ball rolling. We have ideas, we’re innovative, but we also, when it comes to overwhelm, we have some really key issues that overwhelm us.

Cheri: With an expressive, we become overwhelmed when life is no fun. And so, we will start to add the fun to our life and we’ll start new things in addition to everything we have.

Jim: Like too many new things?

Cheri: Oh, way too many new things.

Kathi: Way too many.

Cheri: Because all the things we already started have gotten boring.

Kathi: Or hard.

Cheri: Or hard.

Kathi: And when it’s hard, we don’t like hard. Hard is hard.

Jim: So discard hard and move on to the next fun thing.

Kathi: Yes, ’cause it’s fun to start things, but it’s hard to finish them.

Jim: So how does that come when it’s like paying bills?

Kathi: Oh, I’m not allowed to pay bills in our house because both Roger and I would end up in prison. I mean, I just know that. And so, it’s good to know what your strengths and your weaknesses are. And it’s great, you know, how amazing is it that God often gives us somebody who is completely our opposite, which Roger is to me. He can make sure that bills get paid and we’re not thrown out of our house. I make sure that we have a lot of fun in our relationship and it’s a good balance for us.

Jim: Okay, so that’s the expressive. What’s the next type?

Kathi: Okay, so the analytic. And this is more of what my husband is. He’s the one who makes sure the bills get paid on time, but there’s definitely, for an analytic, I would say there’s a process and a procedure to everything, and when those don’t go according to plan, that can be really frustrating.

Cheri: Yeah, the analytic becomes overwhelmed when life is imperfect, and almost always it’s the people in their life that are causing the imperfections. (Laughter)

John: It’s not the process? It’s the people.

Jim: So that gives you a little feeling of what Jesus felt like, right? (Laughter) Everybody around me is not perfect.

Cheri: Absolutely, absolutely and so, they have a hard time making decisions because it has to be the perfect decision, and telling them to make a good-enough decision, like their eyes will cross. That’s a concept they can’t understand, “good enough.”

Jim: So again, putting it in the context of the woman having that analytical gift, how does that work in the marriage? I mean what do you do if you’re married to a non-analytic and everything your husband’s doing is irritating you, because it’s not perfect?

John: It’s not perfect, yeah.

Cheri: You know, I have so much compassion for this particular woman, because in our society the expressive is admired. We want them at the party, but who wants the person who’s busy going, “Oh no, honey, that didn’t happen on Thursday; that happened on Friday. Oh no, it didn’t happen at 2 o’clock; it happened at 2:07”?

John: Are you saying there’s something wrong with that? (Laughter)

Cheri: I’m saying that that person is not generally popular at the party, but when you think about it, this is the woman who gains her sense of peace from having her home look beautiful. This was my mother. And having everything in the right place makes her feel not overwhelmed. And when she lived with a bunch of Philistines who could care less, she can get that house looking beautiful. Maybe she stays up till 2 in the morning, and then what happens at 6 o’clock? The people wake up.

Jim: The imperfect people.

Cheri: Yes, and they ruin everything because they don’t care. And so, you know, this is a hard position to be in. And to answer your question, she needs to be really honest with her husband and say, “This is important to me. Just like you having a good time at a party fills you up, these things fill me up.”

Kathi: And I think one of the biggest acts of service we can do to our fellow women is understand and recognize the strengths that they bring to the table.

Jim: Sure.

Kathi: I am about as far from an analytic as you could possibly get. There is no scale for how far I am, but I so appreciate [them], and it’s taken me years, because I thought they were just “fun-quelchers,” and what I’ve come to understand is I need those analytics in my life, and they need me. We need each other.

Jim: Well, and it’s a great point, you and Roger particularly, because you said he was more the analytic.

Kathi: For sure.

Jim: So the early part of your marriage—

Kathi: Oh.

Jim: –what kind of conflict did this create?

Kathi: Oh my goodness, I made him crazy. You know to him it’s obvious when you take the toothpaste, you know, lid off, you put it back. I’m like, “Why would—

Jim: You’re one of those? You and Jean. (Laughter) Oh no.

Kathi: –why would you do that? Because you just have to take it off again. You know, that’s the most basic example, but I … I know that it was frustrating for him to not do things in a particular way, but I’ve come to understand I’m one of the most blessed women in the world because my bed is made every day. It’s not made by me, I’ll be honest with you.

Jim: Oh, you are blessed.

Kathi: I am! I am. And so, when I learned to call out in Roger, thank you so much for taking care of the details because I know that’s what makes our lives run [well].

Jim: Do you know how many wives’ elbows just went into the ribs of their husbands because of what you said? I mean, ouch!

Kathi: Yeah. (Laughter)

John: The bar just got raised.

Jim: “He makes the bed, honey.”

Kathi: Well, but you know why he makes the bed? Because I appreciate that he makes the bed. When we look at [it], it’s the same things that attract us to our spouse that make us crazy later on. And so, when I came to understand I do appreciate all this, I have to learn how to live with it and I have to tell him how much I appreciate it.

Jim: Okay, we’ve only covered the expressive and the analytic. We’ve got a couple more.

Kathi: Okay.

Jim: But before you do that, though, I wanted to ask this: when you realized this, did you begin to naturally create even work lists between each other so you went to your strengths rather than your weaknesses?

Kathi: We absolutely do. So one of the things I’ve learned is Roger doesn’t want to feel like he is doing the bills by himself. He wants to feel like we’re in a partnership. So he does the bills while I’m sitting in the room organizing papers and stuff. He just needs to know that there’s a team member with him. But bills fall squarely in his bucket.

And, you know, we learned this in the kitchen. He is a master at getting the dishwasher loaded to maximum capacity. He has this figured out. I hate loading the dishwasher, so I do everything else, you know, putting things away, cleaning the counters. When we understood that, we stopped fighting about cleaning the kitchen. It’s such a magic key.

Jim: Okay, but in that context—and we will get to the other types—what do you do when you come to an impasse? Both of you hate the dishwasher.

Kathi: Right. Then we both have to suck it up and do it.

Jim: Okay.

Kathi: And I know that’s hard, but when you see yourselves operating 90 percent of the time in your strengths, that 10 percent becomes a lot less contentious.

Jim: That makes sense. All right, let’s go to the next one.

Kathi: Drivers! Okay, drivers are the ones who want to get things done. They’ve got a plan, and even if they have to leave dead bodies in the road, they are going to achieve that plan. And a driver just what overwhelms them is when life is out of control.

Cheri: Yeah, drivers do not like surprises.

Kathi: Yeah.

Cheri: Because if there’s gonna be a surprise, they want to be the one who actually causes the surprise.

Jim: Okay. (Chuckling)

Cheri: [For] a driver, spontaneity for them is like three weeks of planning. (Laughter) They do not like to have any surprises.

Jim: I’m thinking of some combos here.

Cheri &Kathi: Yes. Yeah.

Kathi: And then finally the amiable. This is the person who just gets along with everybody.

Jim: Finally.

Kathi: Yes, I know, I know. We need amiables. They’re the peacemakers, the peacekeepers. These … these are great people to have in your life. But the amiable becomes overwhelmed when life is filled with pressure from other people. That’s a huge issue.

John: So is the amiable a people-pleaser then?

Cheri: They can tend towards leaning in that direction. Their downfall is that they tend to make everybody else make the decisions for them, and they never express what they actually want. But at some point, all of that becomes cumulative and then they’ll end up blowing up and saying, “You never listen to me! You never do anything I want to!” And everybody around them’s going, “When did you ever tell us what you wanted?”

Jim: Yeah, okay.

Cheri: When did you ever give us input?

Jim: So what should that wife do, particularly, again talking in the context of women, if she’s an amiable married to a non-amiable?

Kathi: So she needs to have a safe place to be able to say what she wants, and she needs to get brave and say, “Here’s what I’d like. I’m willing to compromise; I’m willing to come to a consensus; but here is what I’d really like.” I think for the amiable sometimes they still have to figure out what they really want, and so that’s a self-discovery process that they have to sit in and pray in.

Cheri: Well, and I think a lot of women they know what they need, but even the idea of saying, “I want,” that feels so selfish.

Jim: That’s a hard thing to say.

Cheri: We’re so culturally engrained that self means ultimately selfish. And you know what I found with my husband, and I’ll dance around and never tell him what I need or want, and then I’ll get mad at him when he doesn’t do it. And he’s a good man. If I would just say it in one sentence, “I want this,” most of the time he’ll do it if I can say it clearly to him. But for me, it was years of coded communication. It wasn’t really communication because he could never figure out what it was.

And so, I’m slowly in the last few years, it’s been part of the Overwhelmed journey, learning to say, and it’s hard. It’s hard for me to find out for myself, and then of course if I don’t know, how is he gonna possibly know?

Jim: Oh, that makes such sense.

John: And we’re listening to Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory doing some self-disclosure on today’s “Focus on the Family,” (Laughter) and helping all of us, I think, identify a little bit more with what overwhelms us and how we’re wired. Just a reminder, we have a little web-extra quiz for you. You can take a self-assessment when you got to http://focusonthefamily.com/radio and find out more about their book, Overwhelmed.

Jim: Cheri, I appreciate that, that knowing, but are you 10 percent better at that now, 50 percent better in terms of expressing your desire to your husband so he clearly gets it? How often are you hitting it?

Cheri: I’m one who has to take the time to be able to think, “Okay, what is going on right now?” And in the past what I would do is I would just immediately try to change what he was doing. Let me give a quick example?

We were driving down for my father re-marriage, which was already a[n] emotionally fraught event for me. And my husband wanted to take his car in to be washed, and so I offered to do it before we left, and he didn’t want to do it that way. So I decided not to get into a big debate about it, but I was like, “Let me take it first.” I wanted to leave 20 minutes earlier.

Jim: Hey, I’m impressed you were ready to go that you could go wash the car. That right there gets me.

Cheri: Well, I was afraid we were going to leave late, and so I decided I’m not gonna say anything, and I realized after we got there what my real desire was had nothing to do with the car. My real desire was to not be the one to drive the last leg of the trip. I was afraid that I was going to get stuck driving from 9 to 10 to 11 to midnight.

And that did not turn into a big argument, but me realizing, hang on, I was talking about when to wash the car when my real thing that I should have said was, “Hon, I’m really afraid that if you have me driving from 9:00 to midnight I’ll get into an accident,” because I totaled his other car a few months ago.

And so for me to look at the I’m talking about washing a car, but my real need is to not be driving at night, and so that’s, I’m trying to kind of use that kind of as my template. Okay, I’m asking him to change what he said he’s going to do. What’s my real desire? What’s my real need here in this situation.

Jim: So you’ve hit the four, the expressive, the analytic, the driver, the amiable, all of them pretty self-disclosed. Lastly, though, you have a kind of a nuance for what you almost identify as another, but that’s the highly sensitive person, but I guess that would apply to any of the four.

Cheri: For sure.

Jim: But you possess that, Cheri.

Cheri: Yes.

Jim: What does the highly sensitive person react like and how does it fit with these other four?

Cheri: You know, the highly sensitive person, the first thing is they are very extra-easily overwhelmed, and sometimes it can be emotionally overwhelmed, it can be “sensorily” overwhelmed, it might be the woman sitting in church and she can’t concentrate because the drummer is beating the drum so loud. It might be the guy who can’t concentrate because the woman sitting next to him, her perfume is just giving him a headache. And so, they also tend to have been very deep processors. Like you say something and forget it. Five days later they’re still mulling over what you meant by that.

Jim: Yeah.

Kathi: She remembers things that I said three years ago. I’m like, “I said that?” But she remembers.

Cheri: I remember where we were when she said it.

Kathi: It’s crazy. And so I’m a highly insensitive person, apparently, but it’s true that they have to chew on things for longer; they need to process longer. It’s just there’s more.

Cheri: When I learned about this and I would go to a faculty meeting where they would want to bring something to an immediate vote, I started becoming the person to say, “Can we please have 24 hours? Can we please have 48 hours to think about this?” Because I don’t know what I think about something until I’ve had some time to “pray-cess” it, and usually it is 24 to 48 hours.

Jim: Well, and you talk about in your book the future you, to aim for that future you. Describe what you are getting at there, the future you. It sounds a little funny. But what are you aiming for, and then let me have a follow-up?

Kathi: Well, it’s talking about serving your future self. Who do I want to become? And so, one of the tools that we have in the book is a personal manifesto, and I love this. I’ve written out things and Cheri has too, about who I am at my best self and who I want to become. And so things like, you know, I love God, I love my people, and I love His people. I tell the truth but I tell it with love. These are the things that I don’t always do 100 percent of the time, but it’s what my best self does. And so, what I’m trying to do with God directing me and guiding me is to become the best version of myself in the future as I possibly can. I’m constantly working for that.

Jim: I would think that creating that “future you” perspective can be a little bit demoralizing at times. Let me just take an easy one. I struggle with this as well, but if you look out year, now we’re in January, I’m sure many people have just set their New Year’s goals, right?

Kathi: Right.

Jim: I’m going to lose 20 pounds.

Kathi: Yeah.

Jim: And this is a common one.

Kathi: Yes.

Jim: And you get to December at the end of this year going, “I’ve actually put five on.”

Kathi: Yes.

Jim: But that wasn’t my future you, and now you’re already disappointed in a whole [cycle of] recriminating yourself that you didn’t do what you set out to do. How do you not get trapped in that vicious cycle?

Kathi: Okay, first of all, I think, you know, we have these goals, and I think goals are important, but they come second to who do we want to become? So instead of saying I’m gonna lose 20 pounds by the end of the year, I say I have to earn health every single day. So what that means is today I need to go take a walk. It doesn’t mean I need to go prep for a marathon, but today I need to spend a little bit of time going for a walk. I need to take care of myself physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.

And so, when you really see that a lot of this future stuff is really self-care, it really changes your perspective on it. It’s not beating yourself up for those extra five pounds. It’s saying, “What can I do today to take really good care of myself?” And today all God is calling me to do is move my body, you know, to go out and take a walk and to go enjoy this whole great world that He’s provided for me. And when you change that perspective, it seems so much more indulgent at first, but it’s actually things you can stick with. What a concept. You can stick with going for a walk every day.

Jim: Well, and I want to come back next time. We are out of time already, but I want to come back and talk about that, how you say “no” in certain circumstances. And then also God’s joy and God’s peace. How do we actually tap into that? So let’s do that next time.

And I want to turn to the listener, the woman who is going, “Oh my goodness, this is me. I am living this way.” We want to put this resource in your hands. We want to help you. That’s why Focus is here, whether it’s counseling, which we have gifted, caring Christian counselors who can talk with you and we want you to call if that’s where you’re at, you need that kind of help. We’re here for you.

If you want to get a copy of the resource and say, “Okay, I want to take the quiz. I’ll go online, take the quiz, I’ll get the book,” do that. What we’ll do today is make the book, Overwhelmed, available to you for a gift of any amount as a way to support Focus on the Family to do its job and our way to support you in hopefully, bringing God’s peace into your life.

John: Yeah, we would encourage you to call. Our number is 800-A-FAMILY, or donate and help Focus on the Family’s ministry effort online at http://focusonthefamily.com/radio.

Jim: All right, this is your last chance. What is something today, as a woman, and you’ve just pierced my heart for the last half hour, what is it today I can do that’s really gonna help me?

Kathi: As a woman, I would say one of the first things you can do is take a look at your calendar and see what you’re spending time on that you don’t really value. I think a lot of times we’ve let other people decide our priorities, so what committees are you serving on that don’t bring you joy? What is it that you are dreading and you feel overwhelmed by? It’s a hard decision to say, “I’m not gonna do that anymore,” and it feels overwhelming to make that decision, but the freedom that comes after that, ah, it’s like Christmas. It really is.

Jim: Well, I’m looking forward to talking next time, so let’s do that.

Closing:

John: And on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team here at Focus on the Family, thanks for listening, and do join us again next time as we once again, help you and your family thrive.

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Overwhelmed

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Avoiding Shame-Based Parenting

Psychologist Dr. Kelly Flanagan discusses the origins of shame, the search for self-worth in all the wrong places, and the importance of extending grace to ourselves. He also explains how parents can help their kids find their own sense of self-worth, belonging and purpose.

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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.

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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