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Christian Home and Family Radical Faith for Generations

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What would you give to know that your family will be faithful to Jesus over the long haul? And I'm not just talking about you and your children - but their children, and their children after them. What would you give?

The biblical picture of Christian faithfulness is radical faith, faith that is uncompromising and unrelenting in its desire to honor Christ above all things in the practical things of everyday life. That radical faith, passed down from one generation to the next is the only thing that will create generational faithfulness.

The Christian Home and Family podcast is my humble attempt to teach, challenge, and equip Christian families to take up the mantle of radical faith for the sake of seeing Jesus glorified in them and through them. It's not for the timid. It's not for the tepid or lukewarm.

Radical faith belongs to radical people. Will you be one of them? Will your family be one of generational faithfulness?


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Why Our Kids Don't Date and How We Accomplished It - Episode 105
Why our kids do not date This post is not about dating VS courtship... so you can relax. This post is about the wisdom (or lack of wisdom) that is inherent in the cultural practice of dating... and what can be done about it in YOUR family. When my oldest son was very small, my wife and I prayerfully decided that our children would not "date" in the typical sense of the word. Our experiences had not been all that great, and we knew there had to be a better way for a Christ-centered family to go about it. Before I tell you how we accomplished that in a way that all our children have willingly and even joyfully adopted it... let me tell  you WHY we made that decision. Reasons we didn't want our kids to date #1 - "Pairing up" as couples is for the purpose of heading toward marriage We really believe that. There's no other reason for a young man and young woman to pair up. So think it through... at what age is a young man or young woman actually READY to be seriously heading toward marriage? Twelve? Sixteen? Eighteen? What do YOU think? You absolutely MUST answer that question well if you are going to think about this issue well. When we allow eleven or twelve year olds... or fifteen and sixteen year olds for that matter, to pair up - it's premature. They are not yet of marrying age, so why would we allow them into a context where everything is heading toward marriage? They aren't ready for it... so it's foolish to allow it. We can talk about it in ways that prepare them for what's ahead... and we should. But we don't have to thrown them into dating in order for them to learn about it. #2 - Romantic relationships require a tremendous amount of maturity and emotional self-control in order to be healthy Even adults have a hard time handling the emotions that come with a committed relationship. There are vital, mature skills needed in order to make a one-on-one relationship like dating work - things like deep communication, consideration of others, insight into human nature, commitment to high moral standards, etc. How many pre-teen or teen-aged kids do you know who have those skills? How many adults? Why would we put our children into a relationship for which they are not prepared? When we do, failure is the only logical outcome... as well as pain that doesn't need to happen. Instead of putting them in the dating meat-grinder, why don't we use the time to build good character into them? Why don't we help them think biblically and maturely about marriage, relationships, and family? I think that goes a lot farther than the dating alternative. #3 Dating places far too much sexual temptation on the soul of a child who is not ready to bear it. Our culture sexualizes everything... dating most of all. From the moment a couple pairs up, the pressure is on to hold hands, get physically close, kiss, touch each other's bodies, and everything that naturally follows. It's unhealthy and unwise to put children in that context. So think it though... here are some questions for you to consider: Is this child ready for the responsibility of their own child? Is this couple ready for the responsibility of a family? If not... dating is a bad idea. #4 - Dating encourages emotionalism that can easily cloud sound, godly judgment. Every Christian parent wants their child to marry a person who loves Jesus and is impacted by their personal walk with Him. But how many times does that happen in the normal dating scene? Very seldom. Here's an example of what happens instead: A young lady is allowed to get involved with a young man who is not all that the parents hope. He's probably not even all the the young lady hoped... but he's paying attention to her, saying sweet nothings, making her feel special... and it's hard for her to think about all the things he's not. She feels too many warm fuzzies being around him to let herself consider such logical matters. This scene could happen with a young man just as easily as a young woman. I've seen it in counseling and pastoral ministry countless times. What has happened? There isn't enough spiritual and emotional maturity developed yet... they don't have a chance of stepping back, considering reality, and making a godly decision... especially in a culture that tells them relationships of this type are all about the feelings. Dating sets that up... makes it the most likely outcome. That's dangerous, and we don't want any part of it. Those are some of the more vital reasons we decided that our children would not date. To us, it seemed like inviting a hungry lion into a sheepfold... and we wanted our little lambs to live to see the day they had the opportunity to raise their own little flock. How did we accomplish our children happily not dating? It's not as hard as you might think... unless you've waited too long to get started. #1 - We started young When our children were old enough to understand that there were such things as girls and boys, we began talking about the wonderful differences God created in male and female. We began explaining the way a man and woman come together in marriage to create a family. We began telling them how much the LORD loves marriage. Then we began talking about how a man and woman come to be in love, how they have to be mature, healthy, and grown-up enough to love and take care of the needs of another person. We'd even talk about how far our children were from being ready for that responsibility. Without fail, they saw it as clearly as we did and had no desire to have a boyfriend or girlfriend, no matter how "cute" it might be at a young age. #2 - We continued the conversation When our kids were eight, nine, ten, and eleven, we began talking about dating itself... mostly through discussing what we observed going on around them. We pointed out teen couples and asked our children what they thought. We asked them if they thought it was wise for a couple who is not old enough or mature enough to get married, to pair up like that. Without hesitation, they said, "No." They began to see for themselves that dating early is a silly thing. #3 - We introduced our plan Before we started talking about dating-alternatives, we first talked about what it takes to be a good companion. Maturity, selflessness, wisdom, self-control, willingness to serve, desire to care for another person. We helped our children see that before they'd be ready to pair up, they'd need to be well on their way in those and other areas. From there, we told them that we did not think it was wise for them to date at all until they were of an age that they could "do something about it" (get married). They saw it the same way and agreed to it, no problem. #4 - We watched carefully and continued to talk All of our discussion and planning didn't prevent crushes and puppy-love from showing up in our home. It wasn't long before one of our kids got asked out or to be somebody's girlfriend or boyfriend. Let me pause here to say this... if you've not been consistently pursuing your children with good communication up until this point, this is where they may try to hide things from you. If so, you're in for it. The early years of your relationship with your children establish healthy groundwork for the teen years. You have GOT to work at developing closeness with your children all the way along. Don't wait until the teen years and then expect that you're going to be able to pull off a healthy dating policy. You'll get serious push-back. So, back to my description... We didn't allow the crushes and invitations from potential significant others to go underground. We talked about them. We asked the child what they liked about the person. We asked if they felt warm inside or happy inside when they were with them. We wanted our kids to know that we  understood what they were feeling. But we also asked them again if they were ready for marriage. We asked them if they were ready to love that other person the way that a committed relationship requires. This helped them see that what they were feeling was only feelings... not a true gauge of their readiness. Then we'd remind them... "This is why we decided that you wouldn't date... remember?" They did... and we'd move ahead in unity. And we continued to talk, almost daily, as long as we knew the feelings of attraction were still there. Typically it wasn't long until the feelings went away and they were once again happily non-dating. It was kind of funny... by the time our kids were fourteen or fifteen, they were saying to us and others (with great conviction) the very things we'd said to them about dating. What happened when they were old enough to date? The story has been told many times already about what happened when my oldest son met his future wife. He was 19 at the time, and had been going to a weekly western dance at a camp near where we live because one of his friend's dads ran the thing. One Thursday evening when he and his sister (two years younger) were getting ready, she said, in our hearing, "Aaron, did you tell Mom and Dad about Hannah?" You'd better believe we stepped through that door... He told us about this cute red-head he'd met the week before, but he didn't seem as excited as I expected. So I asked him, "Do you like her? Do you think she might be a person you would marry?" He said, "Yeah, maybe." That's when I said the infamous phrase he's repeated many times... "What are you going to do about it?" He said that's when he realized that I thought he was ready. It mattered to him that I thought he was mature enough to pursue a loving relationship with a young woman... and that he'd do well at it. And he has.
Loving The Personal Weakness of Your Spouse [Ep 104]
Our culture tends to be a really self centered. There is not much grace for the personal weakness of others. And so, in step with our culture, a lot of the things that you hear talked about when it comes to the difficulties of married life have to do with one of the partners being bothered by the actions or attitudes of the other partner. As a result we hear complaining - we hear wishes of the things that the other spouse would do differently - and I think while that’s totally understandable, it is NOT the approach we as believers in Christ should be taking. This episode is all about THAT - what do you do when it comes to your spouse’s personal weaknesses? My contention - you should love them not only in spite of those weaknesses, you should also love them IN those weaknesses. Listen to this episode to hear my explanation. Subscribe to the CHAF Podcast On Android | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Google Play | Podbean | Spreaker | Email What you’ll learn about loving your spouse’s personal weaknesses… [2:00] The different approach believers in Christ need to take when it comes to the weaknesses of others - including our spouse [7:20] The approach of proactive love in the areas of weakness your spouse experiences [8:54] Jesus is the perfect example of proactive love - like we need to express to our spouse What I've discovered about proactively loving the personal weaknesses of my spouse (and that she’s learned about mine)... It was 8 to 10 years into my marriage before Iearned a very important truth about the way I’m supposed to love my wife. It has to do with those things that my spouse struggles with personally. I'm talking about struggles here, things that give her a hard time in life - like in the securities and fears and doubts she feels, you know, those kinds of things that plague all of us but that we don't always readily want to admit to other people. You know you get to see those in your spouse better than you get to see them in anyone else. And as time goes on you get to learn what it is that pushes their buttons… Things that make them afraid Things that makes them doubt themselves Things that make them doubt God's work in their lives Instead of being bothered by those things, instead of being perturbed or irritated, or complaining - we as believers in Christ have a great opportunity to really care for our spouse in a proactive way when it comes to those things. Take the time to listen to this short episode to find out how you can do that - how you can help your spouse in those very areas of personal weakness that plague them the most - by your effective use of proactive love. Thinking ahead in light of your spouse’s personal weaknesses can help you help them through the power of love that never fails. Here’s how it works… Getting ourselves in a position where we're mindful of the struggles our spouses have, knowing the things that are hard for them is a great opportunity for us to help them overcome those very things that plague them the most. What we need to do is to love them in a way that tries to help them with those very issues ahead of time. I can give you an example or two from my experience - and my wife does not mind me sharing this with you because she shares this with people all the time. It’s one of the examples she often shares to enable others to understand what it is to be human and how we fight our own failings and our own insecurities day after day after day in order to better follow Christ. And so here's is the example when we first married. My wife had this tendency to be very very concerned about what people thought of her. You know… Did they approve of what she said there? Did they feel like she was being wise? Did they see her in some critical light or think badly of her? That may sound extreme but if we are honest we know that we all struggle with that sort of thing from time to time - we all have that sort of desire to please people. And with my wife, I had begun to notice that and how sometimes it became almost debilitating. She could be struggling with an insecurity, she could be struggling with some situation and it caused her to doubt herself - it caused her to to wonder if she was truly wise in the LORD. It caused her to have all kinds of questions about herself. When I began to notice how hard it was for her, the LORD gave me an idea. I was to help her know the TRUTH about what He was doing in her, about the gifts of wisdom and insight He had given her, by encouraging and affirming her in those very areas. It served as a counteractive force against the insecurities she was feeling so that eventually, she could begin to believe and act on the truth. This episode is about that - learning about your spouse’s weaknesses for the sake of helping them overcome them. Listen - please, listen. This could change your marriage. The love of Jesus (dying on the cross) demonstrates the way we are to sacrifice in order to meet the exact needs of others, especially those we love most When Jesus died on the cross, He did so in part to love us IN our weaknesses. Before we were even born - think about that - we were on His mind when He was on the cross. No, we did not deserve His love, we did not have any sense in which we were competent in and of ourselves - yet Jesus came to die for us, to love us ahead of time because He knew the need we were going to have. Our love for our spouse is to mirror the love of Christ for His church. We are able through His strength to NOT be irritated by our spouse’s personal weaknesses or insecurities, or the same old struggles that they might go through again and again and again. Instead, we have an opportunity. to minister to those areas of need, those areas of weakness - we have an opportunity to help for them overcome those things in a proactive way. I hope this concept is striking a home with you. Because I know we all, throughout the course of our lives, feel various times of irritation with our spouse. And it's in those moments that we have to learn, we have to remember, that Christ in us wants to help our spouse, He actually wants them to grow out of the struggle to be a person who overcomes BECAUSE OF His power in their life. And that can be done, in part, by the way we love the mess our spouse can be in at times. We don't give up on them just like Jesus does not give up on them. We don't resign ourselves to the fact that “That's just the way they are!” No, instead, we hold out hope for them. We rest in the fact that Christ is not finished in with the work He's is doing in them - and that we as their spouse are one of the primary tools He will use to enable them to overcome those very struggles that are so bothersome to us. Connect With Carey and Christian Home and Family Website: On Facebook On Twitter On YouTube

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    Podcast Details
    Jul 24th, 2012
    Latest Episode
    Mar 20th, 2018
    Release Period
    No. of Episodes
    Avg. Episode Length
    29 minutes

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