Posts

Out-Loving Your Spouse

Jesus was a good son. Bill and I recognize a good son; we enjoy having three good sons. A good son carries out the will of his father. A good son represents his family well and moves the family legacy forward. Good daughters would do the same. We meet people each week and many of them are those who value the heritage that have been handed to them and they build upon that strong foundation.

While writing our newest devotional book, A Couple’s Journey with God,we had the opportunity to stay on a beautiful farm. Within minutes of meeting John and Barb Schaller, we knew they had an unusual love. Barb found it easy to gush about how blessed and fortunate she found it to be married to John. John found it easy to compliment a wife he was obviously endeared to by the gleam in his eyes. They are our peers in marriage, married about the same amount of time as Bill and I – over three decades! When I asked Barb the secret of their long-lasting love, she said, “My husband forgives easily. He is full of grace, mercy and forgiveness.” When we asked John the same question, his reply was similar: “My wife knows how to keep giving love when people are hard to love. She love unconditionally and tenaciously.” Notice it is really just two sides of the same coin: he loves without limits and she is limitless in her love.

They are the owners of Morning Star Dairy. They live in the home in which John was raised. John is the youngest of twelve so he had the good fortune to watch his parents have a lifelong love. Love is a rich heritage on Morning Star farm. John describes his mother as a saint who loved lavishly, never uttered a harsh word, and had a servant’s heart. Her heart of love was often expressed toward her husband as she darted about the kitchen waiting on him with an affectionate, “On the way, Daddy Baby.” And that legacy of love continues as one will sometimes hear Barb call John, “Daddy” and with a twinkle in his eye and sheepish grin he will tease back, “That’s Daddy BABY to you.”

How does one go about building a legacy of love that passes from generation to generation? Follow John and Barb’s pattern and the example they saw in action: simply outserve one another. Love is an action verb and it is best expressed with a servant’s attitude. What is a servant’s attitude? Phil 2:3-7 captures it best when it simply says:

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant...(Phil 2:3-7)

This year, make the commitment to simply have a “you first” attitude and seek to place your mate’s needs as a priority on your heart. The plus side of having a servant’s attitude is your children are watching, and perhaps you will be laying a foundation of a family that all seek to out love the other!

Pam and Bill Farrel are international speakers, relationship specialists and the authors of over 35 books including best selling Men Are Like, Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti. Find more information on the Farrels, their books, videos, audio and even free resources to help people be “Love-Wise” at www.love-wise.com 

Kids spell love “T-I-M-E”

It’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons and earlier this week, my son Nathan and I started working on his pinewood derby car for cub scouts. We went to Lowe’s along with his cub scout pack and started cutting
and sanding. We’ll be working on their “derby cars” for the next few Monday nights. Here’s what his car looked like at the end of the night. When was the last time you took some extra time to work on
something special with your children, and what was it?

How are you “Walking-Out” 2013 differently than 2012?

Hey it’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons and it’s another”Walk-It-Out-Wednesday!” How’s your 2013 going?  What’s one thing that you’ve already done differently to “walk-out” 2013 differently from 2012?  Even if you feel like you’re off to a rough start, you can make that one decision to “walk-it-out” today!

Before You Live Together

Dear Dr. Bill,

My boyfriend and I are talking about marriage.  We live in different states and would like to save money for our wedding, so we’re thinking about sharing an apartment.  I have a 6-year-old daughter who loves this man dearly.  The plan is for my boyfriend to have his own room and I would share the other with my daughter.  What do you think?

–Jessica

Dear Jessica,

If you and your boyfriend are Christians and are committed to purity, I think this plan is a bad idea.  Although your intentions may be good, you will be subjecting yourselves to a tremendous amount of temptation.  The bible tells us to “flee from sexual immorality” and to live in a way that is “holy and honorable.”

You also need to consider the message that this living arrangement would send to your daughter.  God’s design for sexuality is that it is a beautiful gift, meant be shared between a husband and wife in a life-long, committed marital relationship.

If that is the message you want your daughter to learn, you will be sending her a confusing, mixed message by living with your boyfriend—even if you are able to resist temptation.

If you and your boyfriend are already physically involved, you should know that the research on cohabitation isn’t pretty.  Couples who live together before marriage have a 60-80% higher divorce rate.  They have higher rates of domestic violence and are more likely to be unfaithful.

Also, if a couple lives together and the woman becomes pregnant, there is a high likelihood that the relationship will end within two years, leaving her to raise the child on her own.

Let me recommend an excellent book that will help you make wise decisions in your relationship.  It’s entitled “Before You Live Together” by Dave Gudgel.

Thanks for writing Jessica.  If you have a question for me about family issues or Christian living, click the “Questions” link on the Family Expert page.

Click here for the audio version of this article.

Mini-Resolution No. 6 – Reach Out To Someone Who Was There For You In 2012

Got another ‘mini-challenge’ for you today. It’s one of 30 to kick off 2013, all designed to make a difference in other people lives. Today, try reaching out to someone that was there for you in 2012! Some who stood beside you in difficult time, comforted you. ~ Kurt

Mini-Resolution No. 5 – Choose A Person To Pray For This Year

Pastor and author, E.M. Bounds spent his ministry with an emphasis on the importance of prayer. He said, “Prayer is God’s plan to supply man’s great and continuous need with God’s great and continuous abundance.”

He wrote numerous books on prayer that surrounded these basic four principles: God hears prayer. God heeds prayer. God answers prayer. God delivers by prayer.

Today, pick one person in your life pray specifically for them in 2013. For tips on developing your prayer life, visit here.

Mini-Resolution No. 4 – Game Night With Your Family

Restaurants are great places to gather with all your family, but they can get really expensive rather quickly!

How about a good old-fashioned game night. It’s so much fun to get together with your family and laugh the night away.

Here are 15 free or cheap ideas for your next game night.

Share your resolution stories with us by leaving a comment below or calling our studio line at 855-987-4463.

Food Allergies & Bullying

Does your child have a food allergy?  If so, he or she could be a target of bullies at school.

According to a new study reported by Medical News Today, food allergies can pre-dispose children to being bullied at school,

Researchers looked at 251 families from a New York City food allergy clinic.  They found that nearly a third of the kids have been bullied because of their food allergy.

Most of the kids said that their classmates had threatened them with the food to which they were allergic. They would wave it in front of them, throw it at them or tell them that they would sneak it into their food when they weren’t looking.

As you might expect, the study showed that bullying is associated with reduced quality of life as well as increased stress for the children and their parents.  Parents were aware of the bullying only about half of the time.  When they knew about it, the children’s quality of life improved.

The research team says that pediatricians and parents should screen for bullying in children with food allergies.

By the way, a separate study found that food allergies are associated with anxiety and loneliness in children. In fact, one out of five allergic children don’t attend classmates’ parties.  One in four of these kids say they always bring “safe food” with them.

To learn more about the new study and how you can help your child, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics’ website at aap.org.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Click here for the audio version of this article.

18 Point “Teenager” Phone Contract

1. It is my phone. I bought it. I pay for it. I am loaning it to you. Aren’t I the greatest?
2. I will always know the password.
3. If it rings, answer it. It is a phone. Say hello, use your manners. Do not ever ignore a phone call if the screen reads “Mom” or “Dad”. Not ever.
4. Hand the phone to one of your parents promptly at 7:30pm every school night & every weekend night at 9:00pm. It will be shut off for the night and turned on again at 7:30am. If you would not make a call to someone’s land line, wherein their parents may answer first, then do not call or text. Listen to those instincts and respect other families like we would like to be respected.
5. It does not go to school with you. Have a conversation with the people you text in person. It’s a life skill.
6. If it falls into the toilet, smashes on the ground, or vanishes into thin air, you are responsible for the replacement costs or repairs.
7. Do not use this technology to lie, fool, or deceive another human being. Do not involve yourself in conversations that are hurtful to others. Be a good friend first or stay the hell out of the crossfire.
8-9. Do not text, email, or say anything through this device you would not say in person.
10. No porn.
11. Turn it off, silence it, put it away in public. Especially in a restaurant, at the movies, or while speaking with another human being. You are not a rude person; do not allow the iPhone to change that.
12. Do not send or receive pictures of your private parts or anyone else’s private parts. Don’t laugh. Someday you will be tempted to do this despite your high intelligence. It is risky and could ruin your teenage/college/adult life. It is always a bad idea. Cyberspace is vast and more powerful than you. And it is hard to make anything of this magnitude disappear — including a bad reputation.
13. Don’t take a zillion pictures and videos. There is no need to document everything. Live your experiences. They will be stored in your memory for eternity.
14. Leave your phone home sometimes and feel safe and secure in that decision. It is not alive or an extension of you. Learn to live without it. Be bigger and more powerful than FOMO — fear of missing out.
15. Download music that is new or classic or different than the millions of your peers that listen to the same exact stuff. Your generation has access to music like never before in history. Take advantage of that gift. Expand your horizons.
16. Play a game with words or puzzles or brain teasers every now and then.
17. Keep your eyes up. See the world happening around you. Stare out a window. Listen to the birds. Take a walk. Talk to a stranger. Wonder without googling.
18. You will mess up. I will take away your phone. We will sit down and talk about it. We will start over again. You & I, we are always learning. I am on your team. We are in this together.

Mini-Resolution No. 2 – Send Your Pastor A Thank You Email

Today’s mini-resolution is to thank your pastor.  Send an email or drop a note in the mail to let them know you appreciate their leadership!

Share your resolution stories with us by leaving a comment below or calling our studio line at 855-987-4463.