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Raising Godly Children in Today’s Culture

Raising Godly Children in Today’s Culture

Author Arlene Pellicane offers practical, nuts-and-bolts parenting advice in a discussion based on her book Parents Rising: 8 Strategies for Raising Kids Who Love God, Respect Authority and Value What's Right.

Opening:

Excerpt:

Arlene Pellicane: If you’re going to have the rules, you also have to have fun time, that you need that relationship with your child, that you have to ask yourself, are there times that I’m actually having fun with my child? Like, do we laugh together? Do we smile together? Do – you know, if I was my child, and I had to look at my face all day long, you know, would I be afraid, or would I be okay with this? And for a parent, you need to ask this question because it’s true. You do need the rules, but you must have the relationship, or those rules don’t mean a thing.

End of Excerpt

John Fuller: Our guest today on Focus on the Family is Arlene Pellicane. And your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly. Thanks for joining us. I’m John Fuller. 

Jim Daly: John, we all want to, uh, do the very best for our children – best schools, the best sports program. You want the honor student, uh, bumper sticker and all those good things. We’re trying hard to help our kids, not so much to have the advantage but to give them every opportunity to do well in this life. And I think that’s admirable. Uh, but God called us, as parents, to train up the next generation in a spiritual context, to stand for what’s right, um, to instill character and provide discipline that goes along with that, uh, parenting journey. And most of all, it’s to teach our children about him so that they can live a long and good life before the Lord. Here at Focus on the Family, we want to help you do that. That’s our main goal – is to give you those tools to do that job as best as you can. And that’s one of the reasons we’ve invited back, uh, Arlene Pellicane. She joins us today as we talk about, uh, Parents Rising: 8 Strategies for Raising Kids Who Love God, Respect Authority and Value What’s Right. I can’t wait to get into this.

John: And Arlene is such a popular guest. We always have a tremendous response when she’s here. And we just personally enjoy interviewing her. Uh, she and her husband James have three children. We’ve had them here in the studio, I believe. 

Body:

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: That’s right, taking pictures.

Arlene: They like it here.

John: And they are good kids, too. And the family lives in San Diego, California.

Jim: Arlene, Welcome back to Focus on the Family.

Arlene: It’s so good to be with you. Thanks for having me.

Jim: Arlene, uh, you share a great story about a young girl, uh, at your children’s elementary school, I think it was. Uh, what did she say that made you realize there’s a problem with…

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: …The way kids are treating adults these days?

Arlene: I was volunteering, and we were going to play a relay race, which sounds fun enough. And the…

Jim: Sure.

Arlene: …Kids were supposed to get in line. And I saw a volunteer say, “Please get in line,” and a little third-grader say, “Make me.” And…

Jim: Oh, yeah.

Arlene: …I thought, “Make me?” Can you imagine if your grandmother went to school and said, “Make me.” You know, there was no such thing. That did not happen in previous generations.

Jim: Them are fighting words.

Arlene: Them are fighting words.

(LAUGHTER)

Arlene: So that really made me think, “What has made this kind of attitude, this boldness in children, that they feel okay saying those kinds of things?” You know, I have been in church, and I have volunteered, and I have shushed a child just to have a child look at me, like, “Who are you to tell me to be quiet?”

Jim: Really?

Arlene: And, you know, you’re the one talking while the other person’s talking at the microphone. And so I have experienced this, and I’m sure many of our listeners have seen this bold change. Maybe you’re in education, and you see it in your classroom. You’re a mom or dad. You see it in your home. And so that’s what really made me think, “I want to address this in Parents Rising – that, as parents, we’ve got to rise up to show that, ‘Hey, this is not right. You need to respect authority,’ and that’s something worth teaching our children.”

Jim: Well, that’s a great point. Uh, let’s get to the basics though. Why do kids have that sense of entitlement? What is making that happen? Are we doing it as parents?

Arlene: We are kind of guilty of this. So we can say, “Oh, it’s the culture around them. It’s social media. It’s the music – that…”

Jim: Everything out there.

Arlene: “…Popular music. Everything out there is destroying my child.” And, yes, we live in an ungodly culture. But, you know, you look at these people, like Daniel in the Babylonian culture. I’m sure that was a lot harder to live back then than it is now. So my heart is let’s not blame the culture for what has happened to children. Let’s look at our families. And can my children respect me? And let’s start there. And so I think, for parents, it is this idea that maybe in generations past, the parent was really big, and the child was really teeny. So now we’ve made the child super big and the parent really teeny.

Jim: Oh, that’s fascinating, yeah.

Arlene: And we’ve got to swing that pendulum back to that balance of, “Of course, Child, you are to be heard and loved, respected, cherished, but I am the parent, and I’m the leader here and not the other way around.”

Jim: Yeah, I could see this nationally released motion picture – Parents Rising.

Arlene: That’s right.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: Imagine, you know, some good…

Arlene: A call to arms. Let’s go, Parents.

John: Yeah (laughter).

Jim: That is a great Ben Hur voice.

Arlene: And it’s like, you know, now we will use our ultimate weapon – no!

(LAUGHTER)

Like, parents who can actually say no.

John: In a world…

Jim: That’s it.

Arlene: In a world of yes…

Jim: We’ve got the voice-over.

Arlene: …We say no.

Jim: But, uh, in the book you talk about eight key strategies. We’re not gonna be able to cover them all. Certainly, you all can get a copy of the book here at Focus on the Family. Help us to do great ministry, along with, uh, getting a tool to help you do better parenting. But let’s take a look at some of them. Let’s – go ahead and give us the eight. And then I’m going to come back…

Arlene: Okay.

Jim: …And pick two or three.

Arlene: Sounds great. The first strategy is amusement is not the highest priority. Your life does not have to revolve around entertaining your child with a cellphone.

Jim: I’m guilty. That’s a tough one.

Arlene: Number two is parents call the shots. You are the leader, not your child. Number three is routine and boundaries provide security. Number four is the Bible and prayer are present daily, so not just on Sundays, and then we live like every other family on the block, but you see this woven into the fabric of our lives. You see the Bible. You hear us pray. Number five is marriage takes a front seat – that, you know, when kids come into the picture, the marriage can go in the trunk for 18 years. And so bring that marriage back as a priority relationship.

Jim: Some people are saying ouch…

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: …When they hear that because it’s so true.

Arlene: Right.

Jim: And it’s easy to fall into that one. We’ll come back to that.

Arlene: Yep. And number six is good food served on the table, so the food of conversation around a table and the nutritional food, so that we’re not living on chips and soda.

Jim: That’s good.

Arlene: And, uh, number seven is love is spelled T-I-M-E, and it’s that good ole time that you need to spend with your kids. And the number eight is launching adults, not babying children – that it’s not our job to keep them for life. It’s our job to send them off for life.

Jim: When you said that, at first, I was thinking the kids are launching the parents.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: We’re launching adults.

Arlene: Launching them to who knows where.

Jim: Good job, Kids, wait to launch your parents.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: You mean it the other way.

Arlene: The other way around.

Jim: That’s funny. Well, let’s look at number two, uh, parents call the shots. I’m just picking some here.

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: Again, if I’m not touching on the ones you’re interested in, get Arlene’s book or come to the website. We’ll post the eight there, and you can take a look at the definitions. But parents calling the shots, that can sound autocratic. Uh, describe for us what you mean by that. Give us a couple of illustrations of how that works.

Arlene: This is so simple. If we can just simply get Ephesians 6 – children obey your parents – and we just get that, and it’s what the word of God says – it is the Fifth Commandment – honor your father and mother, so that it will go well with you in the land that you’re living. And so this is how God has set it up. So even if we are more comfortable being on an equal plane, being a best friend, being, you know, your supporter and your buddy, if that – you know, but the Bible is telling us you are the authority figure. And that authority figure doesn’t have to be this means, strict, you know, awful – no, this is an authority figure that is loving, that’s providing guidance. Because I think many of us, as parents, we want to be chummy-chummy, instead of saying, “I’m not afraid to be unpopular to make decisions that I know are good for you.”

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: You know, so that whole idea of honor and bringing that back.

Jim: Boy, that’s good. That’s good stuff. Here’s the question of the day.

John: Okay.

Jim: You ready, John?

John: I’m dialed in.

Jim: This is it. The question of the day – how can we encourage obedience?

Arlene: That’s right. It’s like, “I want them to honor me. How do I get them to honor me?”

Jim: Yeah, right.

Arlene: Right? How do I actually get them to believe I have seniority…

Jim: This is…

Arlene: …In this relationship?

Jim: …The obedient part, right?

Arlene: So in the book, I outline four ways to help your kids obey. And I will say the overarching principle here is the belief that you are worthy of obeying. You know, if you’re second-guessing yourself: “Well, maybe they shouldn’t obey me, I’m not a really good parent, maybe I don’t know what I’m doing” – so it has to begin with you realizing I am to be honored, I am to be obeyed because I’m a parent. And, of course, as a parent, you’re trying to strive for them to obey you on good things, on good, healthy things for them. So first of all, you can set up clear expectations. Sometimes they don’t know to obey because they simply don’t even know what they’re doing. So before you go to grandma’s house, you say, “These are the things we expect. We expect that you’re not gonna run through the house because grandma and grandpa don’t like that. We expect that you will not fight because Grandma is 80, and that will really bother her. So don’t fight…

Jim: This is good.

Arlene: …With each other.”

Jim: This sounds like real life.

Arlene: “Do that – do that in the car beforehand.” You know, I’ve had my kids, like, be really loud in the car. I’m – “What are you doing?” “We’re getting ready for grandma.”

(LAUGHTER)

It’s, like, okay. So you’re setting up your kids to succeed in a new situation. “We’re going to a new Sunday school class. There will be strangers there. You won’t know anyone. And I just want you to look for one person, smile at them and befriend them.”

Jim: That’s good. It’s just teaching them.

Arlene: You’re giving them expectations…

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: …And have them obey that. The second thing is practice, practice, practice. So let’s say you’re having trouble in the grocery store because they’re loud or they, you know, want – they’re real whiny about what they want, etc. You go to the grocery store just for practice, not to get the stuff on your list, but just to practice this is how we go do the grocery store. And when they throw their fit, “Oh, we’re leaving.”

Jim: And you just go.

Arlene: And, you know, and there’s a punishment there.

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: And maybe if they did it well, it would be, “Hey, you get to pick something out because you did really well in the grocery store.”

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: So you’re practicing. The third thing is drama. So some of your kids love drama. And so it is the idea of, you know, “Okay, it’s the first day of school, let’s act this out. This is how – I’m the teacher. This is how you -” and use drama to act out this is how you…

Jim: Oh, that kind of drama.

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: I thought you were saying kids are just drama.

Arlene: Yeah, not the – not the other drama.

(LAUGHTER)

So physically use drama. “I’m your teacher. You’re at a new school setting. Here’s what we do. Here’s what we expect of you to obey.” And then the last may be the most powerful, and it’s praying specifically, “God, give my child an obedient heart.”

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: “And give my child a moldable heart, a heart that seeks wisdom, a heart that seeks knowledge. God, give them that.” And those are ways you can help your child be obedient to you.

Jim: Arlene, I want to make sure that we balance this with – I’m thinking of – we just pick a stereotypical situation, maybe the overbearing father to leave it in that kind of category. Certainly, moms can be that way as well. How do we recognize in ourselves that we – we’re not loving our children, we’re only about the rules, we’re only confrontational, we’re only demanding? Um, sometimes we can feel a little bit of guilt in that area, especially if you’re in the heat of battle there trying to get kids to be obedient. And then you feel guilty, like I was over the top. Uh, how do you know when you are too consistently over the top?

Arlene: And for that parent who’s listening, that – the book title may be better Parents Smiling. Like…

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: …You need to be more relaxed.

Jim: Yeah, not rising, but…

Arlene: You know, most – most parents – many parents they err towards being too gracious to their kids. But for the parents that you know, like, “Wow, I’m maybe too strict,” and that comes that strategy that love is spelled time – that if you’re going to have the rules, you also have to have fun time, that you need that relationship with your child, that you have to ask yourself, are there times that I’m actually having fun with my child? Like, do we laugh together? Do we smile together? Do – you know, if I was my child, and I had to look at my face all day long, you know, would I be afraid, or would I be okay with this? And for a parent, you need to ask this question because it’s true. You do need the rules, but you must have the relationship, or those rules don’t mean a thing.

Jim: Right.

Arlene: So you need both. And there has to be time for fun and levity because that paves the way for the rules.

Jim: I don’t think anybody has coined a better phrase than Josh McDowell with that.

Arlene: Yes.

Jim: The rules without relationship lead to rebellion.

Arlene: Absolutely.

Jim: And that’s a great formula for parents to remember.

John: Well, some super, uh, insight and encouragement from Arlene Pellicane today on Focus on the Family. And, uh, Parents Rising is the title of her book.

Jim: See it at a movie theater near you.

Arlene: That’s right.

(LAUGHTER)

I love that.

John: Or if you’re like the parent she was just describing, parents smiling…

Arlene: Smiling.

John: …Is the subtitle.

Jim: I like that, too.

John: Uh, look for Arlene’s book and a CD or download of this broadcast at focusonthefamily.com/radio.

Jim: And, Arlene, uh, kind of following that train of thought we were just talking about, strategy number three is how to get your kids introduced to rules and boundaries in the family. How are we gonna do that? How do we start talking to the kids about rules and this is the expectation?

Arlene: My husband, when he was young, he had this little poodle named Fluffy. And he remembers that Fluffy would only…

Jim: Is he still in counseling?

(LAUGHTER)

John: That’s the kind of dog…

Arlene: The next dog…

John: …That bit me.

Arlene: …Would be Rocky, you know.

Jim: Your husband’s dog was named Fluffy. Wait a minute.

Arlene: It sounds like a bunny rabbit, right?

Jim: It does. But that’s okay. It’s therapy.

Arlene: So sweet Fluffy knew where she could go in the house – that the linoleum was her territory, and the other parts weren’t. And James had this thought, like, if a dog can be trained where to go, surely my baby and – you know, as they grow up, can know where to go too. So we put the blue painting tape across the line of the kitchen when our babies started crawling. And when baby Ethan would come to the tape, we would stop, and we would do, in sign language, no, and we’d look very harsh and very mean. And we’d say no. And he got that really fast. Like, this blue line means no. So he would trot right up to the blue line – crawling baby – and stop. Now, when our kids – we’re like a circus show. When our friends came over, and we show them the blue line, they’d say, “No way, no way.” And then the baby really stopped. They’re like, “That’s ridiculous.” And then they said, “Wait till your child starts walking. That blue line will not stop your walking child.” But James had that stubbornness – that parents-rising stubbornness of, like, “Oh, no, my child will – can do that.”

(LAUGHTER)

And so when Ethan got bigger, he’d stop right on a dime. He’d walk right up to that blue line. And he knew the kitchen was out of bounds for him. And when he turned about three or four, we took off the blue tape. And we said, “You’re now free to enter the kitchen.” And he did it. And why could he do that? Because we had this expectation that this is your boundary. We enforced it, you know, when he was a baby. So when he was a baby, he learned I’m not supposed to do this. And it just carried over. It just stuck with him. And so with your kids, just know they’re really never too young or too old to learn the new boundaries you’d put into place. Maybe the new boundary is, “Hey, your cellphone is being charged in my room overnight instead of your room overnight” – to your teenager. And that’s a new boundary. And you can enforce that. And to young kids, you can teach them more than you think. Think of this little baby and the blue line. Your kids can do more than you think, and you can enforce boundaries early. And it makes your life easier as they grow up.

Jim: And he’s a teenager now.

Arlene: He’s 13 years…

Jim: So is he doing okay?

Arlene: Yeah, he loves the kitchen. So we certainly can find that. But you know what? Because the boundary was placed in his life as a young kid, now that he’s 13, the funnel can open up because he’s able to make decisions on his own because he had those boundaries young.

Jim: He knows how to do it.

Arlene: He knows.

Jim: The mechanism…

Arlene: So now he doesn’t need the blue tape. He can figure things out on his own, which is kind of cool.

Jim: That’s what you want. All right, strategy seven – love is spelled time. You’ve mentioned it three or four times. Be specific. People talk quantity, quality. Uh, you’re counseling me as a parent. What should I be aware of?

Arlene: So you know how kids do all these activities, right? You’re in sports. You’re in ballet. You go to all these things. And so parents – but our time is, like, chauffeur time a lot or just sitting on the sideline time.

Jim: Yeah, it is.

Arlene: So we Pellicanes are a little strange. So we thought, “If we’re going to spend time doing an activity, let’s do it all together.” And so…

Jim: Oh my.

Arlene: …It began because our daughter Noelle, when she was in elementary school, my husband saw a boy, like, pull her arm. And when she saw that, he was like, my girl needs to learn martial arts.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: Oh, no.

Arlene: Like, something, like, clicked…

Jim: Good.

Arlene: …In his mind. And so before I knew it, we were all in martial arts together, all wearing matching dragon T-shirts – parents included. And we, as parents, joined the kids class, which they allowed us to do. So it was, like, 20 kids and James and I in the back row. And we, my friends, have done this for five years, and it is because we believe in love is spelled T-I-M-E. So find an activity that you like together. So many families, we watch each other do stuff, but we don’t do anything together. And believe me, this is a stretch. I am so nonathletic. You know, I took bowling for my college sport, you know.

(LAUGHTER)

Arlene: So like, I am not…

John: No date. Hey!

Arlene: I am not…

Jim: …That’s an athletic event…

Arlene: Exactly. But, you know…

Jim: …Right there.

Arlene: …Obviously, I am not this amazing athlete. And so we have done biking. We have done rollerblading, skiing, whatever – all these things to be together as a family. It could be chess. It could be board games. It could be sitting at the library together. It could be learning how to cook together. But choose an activity where you can spend time – because that’s really good for boys. Boys don’t want to just, like, sit…

Jim: No.

Arlene: …And, like, talk to you, like, “let’s have coffee and talk.”

John: Even your face…

Arlene: They don’t…

John: Is sour.

Arlene: What boy wants to do that? But a boy will bike with you. A boy will fish with you.

Jim: Board games.

Arlene: A boy will do a board game with you.

Jim: We do a lot of board games.

Arlene: Yeah. So pick things that your family can do together so that you are actually spending time because that communicates so much love to them.

Jim: Here’s one I want to spend a little time with because I think launching your kids – you know, I – I don’t like the formulaic kind of connotation of it, but you can do some things that will enhance, uh, the outcome. It doesn’t guarantee it. You can…

Arlene: That’s right.

Jim: …Do everything right.

Arlene: Yep.

Jim: Mom and Dad, I’m telling you, don’t beat yourself up if the child chooses a different…

Arlene: Yes.

Jim: …Path. And I get that. But your strategy eight – launching adults, not babying children – uh, talks about that. We’ve all heard the term helicopter parent, and we’ve got all kind – mower – I mean, lawnmower parent, what have you. I don’t know what that one is, but, you know, it gets closer and closer, I guess. What are you driving at there?

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: And how do we launch effectively?

Arlene: Yeah, it’s the idea that don’t do for your kids what they can do for themselves. So you don’t have to pack your lunch for your eighth grader. You don’t have to do laundry for your high schooler. You don’t have to do those things. They can do that themselves. You talk about the lawnmower, the mower. So my husband James was teaching Ethan how to mow the lawn. You know, he’s upper elementary school. He’s teaching him how to mow the lawn. And so I go around the corner, and I see Ethan struggling with the big grass bag, trying to put it in our yard waste. And I just see him struggling, struggling. Oh, Ethan, I’ll help you. And I pull open the waste bucket so he can do it, right? James comes around the corner. “What are you doing?” I said, “I’m helping Ethan.” “No, no, no, no, no, don’t help Ethan.” And I’m like, “Why can’t I help Ethan?” Come to find out James had just had this talk with him, saying…

(LAUGHTER)

Arlene: …”You can do this. You just have to prop open the lid, and then you dump the grass in. You can do this. You got this. You can do this.” And then, of course, he finds that mom is hovering, fixing it – right? – doing the lawn.

Jim: Oh, yeah.

Arlene: So it was so funny. So a man will look at that and say, “My son is becoming a young man,” right? And then we moms can say, “Oh, look, at the poor baby. He needs mommy.”

Jim: He can’t do it.

Arlene: “He needs mommy to lift up the trash can for him,” you know. And so the roles can be reversed. But oftentimes, there is a person, usually the mom, that is like, “Oh, let me get this for you. You know, let me help you.” And of course you want to help your children. But when we hover too much, and we do too much – you know, I think kids have cellphones not just for the kids but for the parents. Because we want to know…

Jim: Absolutely.

Arlene: …Where is our child? What is happening? You know, we send our child, 13 years old, two miles on his bicycle without a cellphone to school every day, and he does just fine. Why do we do that? Because we want to teach him, like, self-reliance. You know, my husband would say, I’d go on my bike everywhere when I was a kid. If I got a flat tire, I had to figure it out. I had to learn how to fix that. And that’s what our son will do. You know, and that’s so foreign in this day and age where mom and dad come in, and we swoop in, and we rescue everything. And moms and dads, we have to calm down. We got to let our kids figure stuff out on their own.

Jim: Yeah, I can – I’m just laughing because I’m thinking of mom and dad who pack the backpack for the kid with green slime in case they get a flat.

(LAUGHTER)

You know, there’s a bottle of green slime they could fill the tire up with. I would think that’s a good idea, but maybe not. All right, let’s, uh, move to ROBS. You’ve got an acronym – uh, ROBS. What is it? And let’s touch on a couple of ‘em.

Arlene: The idea here is just finding out what those values are that are important to family. So as you launch those adults, what do you want your kids to remember from your home? And so we took this from coach Lou Holtz and kind of changed it.

Jim: That’s pretty good.

Arlene: Yeah, we figured that was a good source.

Jim: This is what he would teach his players.

Arlene: He would teach his players. So the R stands for right. Do what’s right. The O stands for do unto others – do unto others as you would have them do to you. The B stands for do your best – you know, work with excellence. And the S is smile. Like, go through life…

Jim: I like that.

Arlene: …And smile at other people. So as you go through life, and we’re launching these adults, you can talk about it, you know. And so if something happened to school, well, did you do the right thing? Did you think of others? Did you do your best? Did you try for excellence? And were you smiling? Were you pleasant, kind? So it just helps them guide that this is – these are the values that are important to us as a family. And so you can talk about that as a family. When your child leaves your nest, what are the things that – oh, that’s what – that’s what a Daly would do, that’s what a Fuller would…

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: …Do. You know, what are those things that you want your family to be known for?

Jim: I like that. I may print that out. We can post that at the website with your permission, Arlene.

Arlene: Absolutely.

Jim: Just those four. And that’d be something for your family to adopt or adapt…

Arlene: Yes…

Jim: …Right?

Arlene: …Absolutely.

Jim: Um, the big question at the end here is why is failure so important? What does it teach us? And there are so many biblical references to this. I don’t think you can find a strong character in the Bible that didn’t go through failure and through a valley. Let’s just think of King David.

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: Uh, but there’s so many others. Almost every person that God uses, He brings through a difficult time to teach them and train them. And why should it be any different for our children?

Arlene: I think what we have to concentrate on here is resiliency. So after the failure happens, how do we respond? You know, I have one of my children, and they are such an amazing child. But once, they signed my name on a field trip thing because they’d forgotten to do it, and it was due, so they just scribbled my name. But when the teacher asked my child, “Did you do this, or did your mother do it?” She got really nervous and said, “My mother did it.” And the teacher knew that was not…

Jim: Yeah, by the handwriting.

Arlene: …Was not right. And so that was a huge thing. And then restoring trust with that teacher who says, “I always trust you. But in this instance, you were not honest.” But I tell you what – that failure episode taught my child a lot – taught my child that you can find forgiveness and reconciliation because they totally reconciled with their teacher, taught that I can bring my failure to my parent, and my parent will not freak out. You know, I had my child write a very detailed letter of apology to that teacher, but that was what happened after that. And there was understanding. We didn’t speak of it again. I don’t think – I don’t think the other siblings know about it until now.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: Right. We’re just gonna speak about it on Focus on the Family.

John: Arlene reveals all.

Arlene: Until I say it.

Jim: Sorry.

Arlene: Yeah. So you know, have your children realize they’re not gonna do everything perfectly, and that’s okay. And if you don’t make the team, that’s all right because…

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: You know, don’t go in there as a parent saying, “Why didn’t my kid make the team? My kid’s the best one out there. You better put my kid in there.” No.

Jim: Wow, there is so much of that.

Arlene: Let your kid fail so that when they’re an adult, and they don’t get chosen for the promotion, they can handle that.

Jim: Yeah.

Arlene: When they ask the girl for the date, and she says no, they can handle that. It’s very important to teach your children failure so they can succeed later in life.

Jim: And that’s good. And sometimes you do well as a parent, and sometimes you swing and you miss. And I remember Troy, he did that. He went out for a basketball team. There were, like, 40 guys going out for 12 spots. And first night, he – he was feeling good.

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: He got back in the car, and he said, “I made it, Dad.”

Arlene: Yeah.

Jim: Because they cut, you know, 20 kids that night. And I knew the second that was gonna be a little more difficult. And he went. I was anticipating he may not make it. He’s a – jumps in the car, and he’s a little quieter than the night before. I asked, “You know, how’d you do? Did you make it?” And he said, “No, they – they cut me. But,” he said, “I was really glad I got this far.”

Arlene: Good for him.

Jim: So it was a good.

Arlene: See, that’s really good.

Jim: That’s a good response.

Arlene: Absolutely.

Jim: And I said, “Well, you know, you gotta learn in the off-season here, shoot some hoops and then maybe try again next time.” So…

Arlene: And that’s a great phrase, isn’t it? – after failure, learn in the off-season?

Jim: Right.

Arlene: So you didn’t get it, but there’s a lot to learn in the off-season. 

Closing:

Jim: Yeah, and it’s so true. And, you know, we live in such a wonderful country that if you apply yourself – really apply yourself – you really can do almost anything. And the Lord will open doors to you. Arlene, this has been terrific. It’s flown by. Parents Rising, the movie near you.

(LAUGHTER)

The parents rising – but, uh, what a great book and what terrific material for parents to help that resiliency – developing that resiliency in your children. Uh, that is so good. Let me also remind our listeners, we’ve got the seven traits of effective parenting assessment that they can get here at Focus on the Family. Just go to the website. It’ll show you where you’re doing well and where you need maybe a little help. And we have resources associated with that.

And, of course, Arlene’s great book is also there available for you – a wonderful tool to give you insights on how to help your kids get through the tough times but not avoiding them and so many other helps there. If you can make a gift to Focus on the Family, we’ll say thank you by sending it along to you. If you can’t afford it, contact us anyway. We’ll have friends that I hope will underwrite the cost of that.

But, Arlene, it’s been great having you back.

Arlene: Thanks so much for having me. 

John: And stop by the website to make a generous donation and get resources like Arlene’s book, Parents Rising, and while you’re there take the 7 Traits of Effective Parenting Assessment. It’s that free tool that Jim mentioned. All of this at focusonthefamily.com/radio. Or call 1-800, the letter A and the word FAMILY, and we’ll tell you more.

I hope you can join us next time. We’re gonna be hearing from Lisa Harper. She shares about how she came to grips with her own unhappiness and how she’s found true happiness in God.

Teaser:

Lisa Harper: I would paste a smile on my face and use happy inflection and all the while thinking: “I don’t know if I can keep hiking up this hill. It’s just too steep.”

End of Teaser

 

Today's Guests

Parents Rising

Receive Arlene Pellicane's book Parents Rising for your donation of any amount!

Recent Episodes

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Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence (Part 2 of 2)

Rhonda Stoppe explains how a mom with sons can shape them into becoming good and godly men. She offers moms practical guidance for spiritual training, effective communication, supporting the father-son relationship as a wife, and more. (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family Daily Broadcast logo

Mothers and Sons: Being a Godly Influence (Part 1 of 2)

Rhonda Stoppe explains how a mom with sons can shape them into becoming good and godly men. She offers moms practical guidance for spiritual training, effective communication, supporting the father-son relationship as a wife, and more. (Part 1 of 2)

Promotional image for Focus on the Family broadcast "Embracing Your Role as a Spouse"

Embracing Your Role as a Spouse

Pastor Kevin Thompson explores three primary roles in marriage – friend, partner, and lover – and explains how spouses can live out those roles optimally by investing in their relationship mentally, emotionally, and physically.

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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.

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!

Play Video

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!

Play Video

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!