Pray with us: February 2016

praying woman

The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. ~James 5:16

Each month we share our prayer requests with you and invite you to pray for and with us. Here is the list for February:

Prayer Requests as of February 2016:

  • We are just beginning the spring session of our Discipline That Connects online course. Please pray for the parents who are beginning this journey, that they would experience God’s peace and love as they work to transform their parenting.
  • Our team is in the middle of creating a new sibling online course and we’re just embarking on a new speaking season including a West Coast tour. Please pray for wisdom, inspiration, discernment, and focus for our team as we prepare to reach many new parents.
  • The editing process is nearly complete for the fall re-release of our book, Discipline that Connects. Please pray for Jim, Lynne, and the whole editing and publishing team as they continue to work through this difficult and important process.
  • As we work one-on-one with parents in coaching, we have been hearing many stories of pain and brokenness in families. Please pray for these precious parents and families, that they would especially feel God’s comfort, peace, and presence as they struggle through the pain.
  • As we begin 2016, we are mindful of stewarding our monetary and other resources to reach as many parents as possible. Please pray that God would grant us the finances, the reach, and the staff to do the work God has prepared for us to do this year.

Check out our prayer page to see these and other prayer requests or to share your prayer requests with us. Thank you for praying with and for us!

What to Do When I Don’t Approve of My Child’s Friends

friends parents don't approve ofPeer relationships carry increasing influence as children grow up. And sometimes, these relationships can be reason for parents to feel increasingly anxious.

Kids may choose good friends or they may not. Parents, wanting what’s best for their kids, have a tendency to over-control their children’s choices. I was one of those.

As Daniel entered elementary school, he had a friend Lynne and I did not particularly care for. Because they shared common interests, they gravitated toward each other. The fact that the friend was in our neighborhood also made it almost impossible to fully monitor their interaction. We tried to convince Daniel that while this friend needed God’s love, we didn’t think their friendship was a good idea. But even as a seven-year-old, he was resistant to our control.

Final Reminder: Register now for the Discipline that Connects online course!

Discipline that Connects parenting online course

Have you been thinking about registering for the fall course of Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart? Now’s the time! This is the very last “Register Now” email you’ll receive from us until October, when our next session launches.

If you’re on the fence about taking the course this spring, we’d urge you to jump right in and register. If, after watching the first module, it isn’t what you’re looking for you can easily contact us for a full refund – no questions asked.

Begin your family’s transformation here.

Here’s just a small sampling of testimonials from online course alumni:

Carrie: “I’ve been praying that God would help me with the way I handle my son and along came Discipline that Connects with Your Child’s Heart. God is so good. I can see where applying these principles could really change the way we communicate together.”

Destiny: “Wow, I love the new perspective given. It makes me realize all the wrong messages I have been sending my son and why he has insecurities. I am excited and hopeful to reconnect and send new biblical, loving messages to my son.”

Mo: It is SO encouraging to know that things do not have to stay the way they are or have been!! It is NOT hopeless! It is empowering to know that there are such practical and small steps to be taken (vs. giant, overwhelming ones) that will have a snowball effect. I’ve seen it already just having changed my attitude and perspective. I KNOW that all of this that you’ve presented here is exactly what my children need. Exactly. I am thankful, eager, and hopeful! I thank God for putting this course in my path and nudging me to enroll. Awesome!!”

(Still unsure? Need a scholarship? Email your questions to courses@connectedfamilies.org. We would be honored to come alongside you in your parenting journey.)

Don’t miss out! Class officially launches on Monday!

Discipline that Connects parenting online course

There are three things we know to be true:

  • Parenting is the most challenging, rewarding, exhausting endeavor you’ll ever encounter.
  • Parenting is more complex now than it ever has been in history.
  • Parents are doing the very best they can with the resources they have, but some parents just continue to feel “stuck.”

We know what it’s like to feel stuck — like everything you try just lands you back in the same ruts — because we’ve been there, and we can help.

As we’ve worked with thousands of parents in one-to-one coaching and live workshops over the past twenty years, we’ve seen families changed. It’s the kind of change that will last for generations to come, as old unhealthy patterns are replaced with new vision and purpose.

We’ve packed these years of experience into a six module online course called Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart. We’d be honored to join you in your parenting journey as you continue to do your most important work.

Begin your family’s transformation by learning more and registering here.

Class officially launches on Monday!

Read this short testimonial from LeeAnn, a recent online course participant:

I’m finding myself telling anyone that will listen about the success stories I’ve had (even to an unsuspecting cashier in retail) with this parenting philosophy. I’m not bragging, but quite humbled at the realization that I was not an emotionally safe parent. The success stories I refer to are the things that I learned in the first 2 modules MOSTLY ABOUT ME. My kiddos’ reactions to my changing attitudes and choices are just the icing on the cake! The Bible references are invaluable to me. Have I told you that I LOVE the online course? Lynne and Jim are so real and have such relevant stories and relevant verses. I have become a better person since God put this online course in my lap.

How to Get Kids to Say Sorry Like They Mean It

siblings argue sqWhen kids fight, the typical way many parents try to resolve things is to tell the kids they have to say they’re sorry.

While parents may be aware that this can be a very shallow, “go through the motions” sort of consequence for kids, they may also struggle to know what to do instead — “How else will my kids know that they should say they’re sorry?”

We can’t make our kids give a heartfelt apology. But we’ve found that not only can kids learn the importance of apologizing and reconciling from the heart, but they can even learn to the point where they value reconciliation enough to mend broken relationships themselves!

In this short 3-minute video, Lynne shares a helpful illustration to explain conflict resolution to kids and some practical tips for how to teach and model reconciliation in your home.

P.S. If you want to learn more about how to model reconciliation for your kids and help them take responsibility in their relationships, then join us for our online course, Discipline that Connects with Your Child’s Heart! (You can also Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more videos like this.)

The Surprising Power of No, Yes, and Why

tall angry parent conflictWhen our kids do something they’re not supposed to, or ask us for something they can’t have, often our reflexive response is a simple, quick, “No!” And our kids’ reflexive response to “no” can be frustration, resentment, or even a meltdown.

But a look at the Bible gives us another way to respond to our kids — one that still enforces boundaries, but helps kids to grow in wisdom even through the “no”.

3 Steps to Becoming a Peaceful, Confident Parent

tired mom parent discouragedParenting is tough these days. And parents seem to be trying harder than ever to get it right.

You read books as time allows. You stay up sometimes for hours researching articles on the internet. You give it everything you’ve got. You see glimpses of progress with your kids. But you continue seeing the same issues, the same misbehavior, the same fights, repeat themselves over and over again — maybe even grow slowly more troublesome. And you know your family is capable of so much more.

You just can’t seem to get there.

Are We Setting Our Kids Up to Be Uncooperative?

are setting up kids uncooperativeParents can get in ruts. That’s true for me and I’m pretty sure it is for you, too.

One rut that is familiar to many is the hurried race out the door because “we’re going to be late!!” Or how about the chaos of bedtime and the barking of orders that can consistently ensue? In our house lately it’s the questioning of completed homework and interrogating of my kids’ screens that is especially exasperating to all involved.

If we were to video ourselves at these times and watch it through the eyes of our kids, what would we see?

How Do Your Kids Feel When You Discipline Them?

anger how kids feel disciplineAs a typically impatient, “get it done” sort of dad, I found myself in our early parenting years using my big voice and strong presence to move my kids into action.

This approach worked great for me! …But my wife Lynne, in my opinion, seemed to spend too much time arguing with the kids or letting them try to talk things out.

Lynne did two things that helped me grow to be more thoughtful, honoring, and wise.