Helping Your Kids Get Ready for Marriage

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Happy engaged couple relaxing by a river bed

Who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned roller coaster? Yet, as exciting as they are, even the most ardent thrill seekers wouldn’t choose to ride one every day for the rest of their lives.

Sadly, we hear from many husbands and wives who feel as if their marriage has become one long, scary, roller coaster ride. Things are up and down, unpredictable, unstable, and just not fun anymore. And many of these couples are looking for a way out.

17 Pearls of Wisdom

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Grandfather laughing with grandson

I asked several of my colleagues here at Focus for their best dose of homespun parenting counsel. It should be a given that we’re to introduce our children to the Lord and disciple them throughout their childhood and beyond. I was mainly asking them for some very practical nuggets of wisdom.

Here is what they told me they regularly tell their children:

It’s never as good as you hear or as bad as you feel.
Learn to remember names.

Too Busy to Rest?

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Exhausted woman pausing to rest while doing the laundry

I often feel like I’m burning the candle at both ends. I imagine the same may be true for you.

No matter how much we get done, there’s always one more thing to do.

And rest? There’s hardly time for that, is there?

I confess I’ve had moments where relaxing seemed like a waste of time. It felt like the absence of something – like an empty space where productivity ought to be – rather than an active and beneficial component to my life.

Race, Resentment and the Pathway Towards a Colorblind Society

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Man holding Bible

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about a day I don’t remember, but a day that’s had an impact on my life, and likely on yours, too.

I’ve been thinking about August 28th, 1963 – exactly fifty-one years ago tomorrow, in fact.

I was just two years old and living in West Covina.

Life is simple for a two-year-old, but 3,000 miles away in Washington D.C., a dramatic moment was underway. There, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Does Your Child Have a Bad Attitude? Try These 3 Things

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Child folding arms in defiance of his dad

With school back in session in many parts of the country, it might be necessary to tweak our child’s attitude. After all, going from a life of leisure to the rigors of the classroom can be a bit jarring.

According to our counselors here at Focus, a common motivation for a child’s negativity is simply to get attention.  If you suspect this is your child’s goal, there are a few ways to teach him or her not to complain.

Christian Women and Porn

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Black & white photo of a woman reading a book

Does it surprise you that, in a recent poll, Christian women voted Fifty Shades of Grey to be their favorite book of the year?

In some ways, we shouldn’t be shocked, after all, we have an Enemy who is determined to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10). Because his desires are rooted in his hatred for the image of God, he attacks our most intimate and meaningful relationships with fierce intensity. After all, the union of husband and wife potentially produces more human life created in God’s image.

Praying for Our Christian Family in Iraq

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Man upset, praying

If you’ve had an eye on the news lately, you’ve no doubt heard reports about the terrorist group ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), more recently known as “The Islamic State.”

They’re a well-armed Muslim extremist group sweeping throughout Iraq, exercising both military and political control over the regions they conquer.

Just the other day we saw grisly images of the beheading of the American journalist, James Foley. ISIS claimed responsibility for his murder.

Beyond the political complications usually addressed on the nightly news are disturbing accounts that hit much closer to home for all of us who profess the name of Christ.

Of Girls and Boys and Baseball

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Mo'ne Davis on the cover of Sports Illustrated

Like many of you, I’ve been fascinated this past week by the rise of Little Leaguer Mo’ne Davis, the 13-year-old female pitcher for the Taney Dragons of Philadelphia. At 5-foot-4 inches, the eighth-grader became the first girl to ever throw a shutout in the Little League World Series.

For her accomplishment, she was also featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated this week, another first for any Little League player.

Pitching last night, though, Mo’ne proved mortal.

Guest Post: Have You Heard About the “Fire Challenge”?

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Teen boys walking while silhouetted by sunset

As I was driving home from work the other day, I heard a disturbing news story on the radio that instantly grabbed my attention.

A new and life-threatening social-media trend has gone viral among teens.

It’s called the “fire challenge.”

In short, teens are daring one another to use flammable liquids to set themselves on fire, quickly douse the flames and then post a video of the entire incident on YouTube or Facebook.

As this story reports, the trend has become so popular that it has resulted in tens of thousands of horrifying “fire challenge” videos appearing online—in addition to emergency room visits across the country.

Why I Don’t Want Perfect Children

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Two male toddlers sticking out their tongues

These first few days of school remind us that our children grow up quickly. In the midst of those early years, the long nights, the crying and the diapers, to name just a few passages of early life with kids, it seemed like it would go on forever.

But then you’re walking your son or daughter by the hand into school, or dropping them at the bus stop, and suddenly you realize just how fast the seasons come and go.