Merry Christmas! *2017 Year in Review*

We are so grateful to the Lord for his faithfulness to us in 2017! We had a big year. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • We put on our first Marriage Conference through Truth to Freedom [March].
  • Bethany graduated from high school [May].
  • I accepted the invitation to serve as president for North Carolinians for Home Education [June].
  • Bethany, Caleb, Josiah and I went on a mission trip to the Dominican Republic [July].
  • Bethany's team won the 2017 National Youth Club Championship in ultimate frisbee in Minnesota [August]!
  • Our family took a month long camping trip out West. As far northwest as Yellowstone and as far southwest as the Grand Canyon [September].
  • I finished writing my first book, Loving God: A Practical Handbook for Discipleship. It will be available next month [October]!
  • We enjoyed Thanksgiving with Dad and Mom, my brother Michael's whole family, and my sister Anna's family [November].
Merry Christmas 2017.jpg

When Should You Give Your Children More Freedom?

 Photo by  Bruno Nascimento  on  Unsplash

As our children grow up, one thing you can be sure to expect is that they will desire more freedom. An immediate difficulty we face is the common misunderstand of what freedom is and how one obtains it. Our culture teaches us (and maybe it is a natural assumption) that freedom is our ability to do whatever we want and that freedom is our inherent right. These things are not true. 

As you struggle with your pre-teens and teens in their fight for freedom, do you know how to teach them the true meaning of freedom and the legitimate way of obtaining it? Watch this brief video to learn more about the biblical economy of freedom and responsibility. This is Part 7 in the video series How to Help Your Children Become Self-Motivated.

When "Because I Said So" Isn't Good Enough

The most popular question that my children to ask is "Why?" I have to admit that I have allowed this question to irritate me at times. Often the best answer is "Because I said so." However, it doesn't work all the time. If we are working to raise our children to be mature, Christ loving believers, then we are going to have to come up with a better answer. We are going to have to tell they why.

 Photo by  Gaelle Marcel  on  Unsplash

Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

Part of being mature is being self-motivated. The key to being self-motivated, as opposed to only being driven by outside forces, is to know the "why" of what we are doing. We must understand the heart and purpose of our actions. 

One of the most important roles we play as parents is to help our children develop a biblical worldview in which the "why" questions are answered from God's perspective. Check out Part 6 of my video series How to Help Your Children Become Self-Motivated to dig a little deeper into how we can give our children the "whys" of the Christian life.

What Role Does the Scripture Play in Your Home?


Do you know how many Christian parents I know who believe in the importance and power of God's Word in our lives, and yet do not include Bible reading and teaching in the daily life of the home? Too many. I have also spent periods of my own parenting career neglecting this.

In this short video, I remind us of the importance of Scripture in discipling our children and give some simple tips for taking action. This is Part 5 in the video series How to Help Your Children Become Self-Motivated.

Why do you think that parents fail to read and teach the Scripture in their homes? What are the issues you have struggled with? How do you use God's Word in your home?  Please leave a comment and tell us about it!

The Power of Praying for Your Children


When I think back through life, I can see so many exits and off ramps that would have taken me away from Christ. One of the primary reasons I believe I am continuing to follow Christ and grow in the Lord is my mom's faithfulness to pray for me over many, many years. When I was two years old, she made a commitment to pray for an hour every day. That was almost 42 years ago, and she continues to pray faithfully.

Do you know how to intercede for your children? Are you doing so faithfully? Watch this video about the critical role of prayer in Helping Our Children Become Self-Motivated. This is part three of a series. 

Photo by Olivia Snow on Unsplash

A Boy at the Cross-Roads of Life


As a boy in middle school, I was right on the edge of heading in the wrong direction. There was a great battle going on for my mind and spirit. Then one critical day I hit a cross-roads. The Lord spoke to me and called me to follow him. You can hear the story of what happened in Part 3 of the video series How to Help to Help Your Children Become Self-Motivated.

We have all experienced this battle. Your children will too. What can you do to help them? What can you do to facilitate a one-on-one encounter with God for your child? 

In this video, we will explore the important difference between discipline (using external motivation) and discipleship (developing internal motivation). You can learn to successfully transition from discipline to discipleship and help bring about a true heart transformation in your children.

Can you remember a crossroads like this in your life? Can you remember the people in your life that helped you move in the right direction? Leave a comment below and tell us about it. 

Photo by Steve Halama on Unsplash

How to Get Control of Your Anger


On the very day I was working on a video on How to Get Control of Your Anger, I came across a video from Prager University on Anger Management. I usually like what Prager U puts out. However, in this video the main piece of advice given is this:

"No matter how angry you get, restrict the expression of your anger to the incident that provoked it." 

There are some good thoughts in this video on communication strategies. But that statement as the bottom line for anger management is . . . well, pitiful. Especially in light of a worldview that includes God and how he made us and how he satisfies our every need. 

Why do we become angry? What does our anger tell us about our needs and struggles? Instead of only trying to manage our anger, how can we get to the heart of our desires and learn how to trust God and follow his will regarding those desires? 

In this short video, I share what I have learned about my own anger and what it is telling me about my need for God. The insights that I share are from my dad's book, The Message in Your Emotions [Wayne McDill]. The book addresses many negative emotions that help us understand our need for God. In this video, I am referring to chapters 7-9 on Anger and Authority. 

Please comment below and let me know how these insights help you. Share and tag a friend who has anger problems. Just kidding! Just share it with all your friends. Most of them have anger problems anyway.

Photo by Andre Hunter on Unsplash