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Finding Freedom as a Grace-Based Mom (Part 1 of 2)

Air Date 04/22/2019

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Jeannie Cunnion encourages moms to exchange stress, perfectionism, and guilt for God's abounding grace in a discussion based on her book Mom Set Free: Find Relief From the Pressure to Get it All Right. (Part 1 of 2)

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Episode Transcript

Opening:

Excerpt:

Jeannie Cunnion: I never thought I’d be the perfect mother, yet it always seems to surprise me when I’m not. Maybe you’re like me, someone who never tries to be perfect, but gets sidelined each time you fall short of some unspoken standard. Or maybe you absolutely try to achieve perfection, but then feel like a failure each time you miss the mark. As moms, it seems we’re either aiming for perfection, but we feel shame when we miss, or we simply hope for the best and crumble when reality leaves us defeated. Then what?

End of Excerpt

John Fuller: Hmm, well, many women can echo those same thoughts. And no matter how hard you try to be a good mom, it just seems like it’s never enough and your bad days outweigh your good ones. If that’s been your experience, hang on, we’ve got some great encouragement for you coming up on Focus on the Family. Your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly. And I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: John, what a heavy burden it is for moms. I’ve seen it firsthand, you have as well, as husbands of wonderful moms and, really, that - that burden that they carry that they’re not doing enough, the guilt, the shame, everything that gets loaded onto a mom because she feels like she’s just coming up short. And man, we want to help you today, mom. And we’re gonna talk directly to these areas of your heart that you may not even be expressing to your husband or maybe not even the Lord. We want you to feel empowered as a - as a parent, as a mom, not to be taken down by the enemy of your soul who whispers those lies to you that you’re just no good. And I think we have some wonderful content for you today.

And here’s the truth of it - I’ve experienced it as a parent. There is no formula. There are things you can do to have a better, predictable outcome, but it’s not guaranteed because guess what? God has made these little ones with self-determination. They get to decide what they do. And we can struggle as parents to keep them in the boundaries to get the right response, to get the right behavior. And I’m telling you, at the end of the day, it’s about your relationship with them, the love they feel from you, even when they blow it and how that expresses the love of God’s heart.

John: And while today’s conversation is really primarily for moms, I think, Jim, there’s a lot of good stuff here for dads as well, some really good core parenting concepts to discuss throughout the conversation.

Jim: That’s absolutely right. And it doesn’t let us off the hook. I mean, we’re probably more distracted than we should be in our parenting. We’re a little more distant. You know, “They’ll get over it. They’ll clean it up. They’ll wipe it off,” whatever it might be. Uh, that’s not too healthy either. I mean, the two really make a great team - mom and dad. And I feel for the single parent, but there’s going to be content for you here, as well, how to do this better. So strap up. Let’s all become better parents after today.

John: And we have Jeannie Cunnion here. She’s back in the studio with us. She has a great heart for her - if we can call them as fellow moms. And she is right there in the trenches with you. She has four boys ranging in age from toddlerhood to teenagers, right?

Jeannie: Right.

Body:

Jim: Hey, Jeannie, welcome back to Focus.

Jeannie: Thank you so much. It’s so good to be here.

Jim: You know, it’s true, I mean, this is such a topic. And you’ve written this great book, Mom Set Free. Every mom is going, “Yes, yes. Set me free. Help me.”

Jeannie: Find relief from the pressure to get it all right.

Jim: Well, and what’s great about the way you’ve written this and the way you’re expressing it is you lived it. Um, you were that mom that had high expectations. Things quickly became difficult for you. We want to cover all of that. But in the parenting space, particularly, what began to happen when A plus B didn’t equal C?

Jeannie: Yeah, I think there’s a formula that we believe works, which is “Good parenting in, good kids out.” And um, I joke about how, you know, going into motherhood I thought, “You know, how hard could this be,” right? Um, I had a wonderful mom and dad.

Jim: Yes.

Jeannie: Um, I have a background in social work. I’d actually done some parenting training before I became a mom. I read several books, you know, did my fair share of highlighting...

Jim: You were a good student, weren’t you?

Jeannie: ...I was, so I went into motherhood going, “How hard can this be?” And then I had children.

(LAUGHTER)

Jeannie: Then I had kids. I had three boys in five years. And I was like, “This is really, really hard.”

Jim: Let me ask you, to really cement it in the hearts of the moms listening and for us dads, when we say this, what is the hard part? I mean, you did it. You prepped yourself. You came from a great Christian home. You were - sounds like - a very good young lady, a teen daughter. You probably did all the right things and - or many of the right things. Let’s give you some slack.

Jeannie: Not all (laughter).

Jim: But you know, probably a good student, all those kinds of things, and then you become the mom and it doesn’t quite work that way. What is the hard part?

Jeannie: I think the hard part, which I discovered several years into parenting, is that God doesn’t just work through us to grow our children. He works through our children to grow us.

Jim: Now why is - that is absolutely right. I’ve got the biggest grin on my face because that is what’s happening.

Jeannie: That’s what’s happening. And - and parenting is designed to deepen our dependence on God. That’s what it does. It deepens our dependence on God.

Jim: In the book, you remind moms about that verse in 2 Corinthians 12 about God’s grace and power. What exactly do we need when we feel weak? I mean, what - what is it that we’re looking for in that weak moment?

Jeannie: We’re looking for strength, obviously. I mean, but the thing is I think as moms, one of the biggest things I hear moms say is, “I don’t feel like I’m good enough.” That is the number one struggle when I speak, when I meet friends. I just don’t feel like I’m good enough. I’m not measuring up. I’m not good enough for my kids. And what’s so interesting about that - because I really struggle with that, too. And I have - this isn’t something I’ve mastered. I mean, I have to keep going back to the good news of the Gospel every day to be reminded of my freedom in Christ. But you know, if you think about what God says, nowhere do we find God saying, “Hey, Jeannie, hey, Jim, hey, John, I’m going to need you to be enough for your kids.” He doesn’t say that. He says, “My grace is enough. I am enough, and My grace is sufficient for you.” You know, Paul talks about if we even had a shot at being enough, then Christ died for nothing. And so this is really good news that can radically change our parenting. God didn’t call us to be enough for our kids.

Jim: But in that emotional and spiritual battle that goes on in a mother’s heart and a mother’s head, describe that tug-of-war, though. I mean, the Scripture - it’s so interesting because the Scripture is pretty plain. He’s saying, “My grace is sufficient for you.” And then we say, “No, it’s not.”

Jeannie: Right.

Jim: “You don’t know my life. You don’t know my parenting battles, Lord. Your grace cannot cover this.” I mean, that’s really what we’re saying.

Jeannie: Yes, and what’s so interesting is Paul’s response to when Jesus said that was, “Well, now I can boast about my weaknesses. Now Your strength can be magnified in me.” But as a mom, what I say is, “No, Lord, I don’t want to be weak. I want to be strong. I want to be awesome.” And so it’s a humbling of, “Okay, I don’t have to be perfect for my kids. I don’t have to be their savior. God called me to be their parent. And the opportunity for me is to point them to Jesus.”

Jim: Jeannie, um, you know, just to press you on that so that we can have some practical handles for moms listening right now, that’s so common. You have Pinterest. You’ve got social media. Here’s my kid’s sixth birthday party, isn’t it perfect? I mean, that’s what you’re trying to project. What does it look like, practically speaking, to be weak as a parent? What does that look like? Is it messy or...

Jeannie: It’s so messy.

Jim: ...And what - emotionally, how do we move to a comfortableness with that, when everybody else around us, including our Christian friends, are really the Pinterest parent? They’re - it’s everything perfect. My kid’s the quarterback. You know, my daughter plays the flute at three. There’s this constant competition about how good my kid is and how well-behaved they are. How do you get comfortable...

Jeannie: And how that reflects on our identity.

Jim: Well, right. And how do you get comfortable going, “Oh, that’s nice. My kid’s kind of average right now.” I mean, that sounds like you’re not doing your job.

Jeannie: Yeah. No, I love that you asked that because that’s really the whole premise of Mom Set Free is we have to know our own freedom in Christ as moms. We have to know who we are in Jesus. We have to know the way that He loves us and welcomes us on our worst day as mom. So whether we crush it and we get it all right or whether we’ve had our worst day as moms and we’ve thrown our own temper tantrum and we’ve used to shame instead of grace and we’ve disciplined in anger, we have to know the grace that is available to us as moms. We have to know the way that Jesus welcomes us when we run to Him and repent and receive His mercy. And he gives us a fresh start the next day.

Jim: Jeannie, there’s that saying - and I don’t know who to attribute it to - but you can only give what you’ve received. So speak to that with that mom that’s constantly in the shame mode, and, “I’m not good enough and I’m terrible.” There are a lot of different inputs. Your husband could be doing that. And it may have been your upbringing. Your own mother and father may have given you that sense that you don’t - you’re not adequate. Speak to that turmoil in the mom’s mind. How can she break that cycle of, “I’m okay, God loves me?”

Jeannie: Yeah. I think you’re right. You know, what we live in is what we live out. So as a mom, when I was living in shame over mistakes of my past, which I brought into my marriage with Mike, and it overflowed into my parenting, and one of the big things for me is I discovered how much shame I was parenting with. And it was because I was still carrying shame from things in my past that I hadn’t received God’s mercy and forgiveness for. Because I think my perspective was Jesus took my sin on the cross, but I have to carry my shame. That’s how I was living. He paid for my sin, but I have to carry my shame. I have to, in some sense, pay for it. And Jesus is so clear - “No, I bore your sin and your shame and I really - I want you to surrender that to Me. I want you to live in freedom from that. I want you to know the depths of My grace for you,” that He died for us while we were still sinners, “I want you to receive that because it will overflow.” If you are living in shame as a mom - and I hear this from moms all the time. I write a story about it in the book where she says, “I’m living in shame, therefore, I parent with shame. And then I” - and it’s this vicious cycle - “Then I just feel worse and worse.” And she wanted to be set free. And it’s us saying, “Lord, help me see myself through Your eyes of grace. Help me receive that grace and parent with it.”

Jim: Which is exactly what we want to do today - and next time - is to give moms hope that they can break that cycle. You’ve made a list of, quote, “Things I Wish I’d Known Before Becoming a Mom,” unquote. What is that list? Give us an idea.

Jeannie: You know, the list is so much about just how hard mothering can be and how God really does want to grow us through that mothering, um, that this is really an opportunity for us to deepen our dependence on God. I think moms need permission to say, “This is hard.” You were talking about it earlier. You know, there’s this - we feel like there’s this pressure in our society to look like we’re pulling it off. And really, what another mom wants is to sit down with another woman who can say, “This is hard, isn’t it? And I need Jesus. And I make a lot of mistakes, and I need a lot of do-overs.” Um, and that’s not to celebrate our weakness or our sin, but it’s an opportunity for moms to gather together and say, “His grace really is sufficient for us,” and what does that look like in our - in our daily parenting?

Jim: Here’s one that will connect with moms listening, the way you illustrated the hide-and-seek game in the book. I mean, it was funny. When I read it, I, laughed out loud because it’s so practical. What do you do?

Jeannie: Yeah, you play hide-and-seek with your kids. And you say, you know, “You guys go hide. I’ll count to 500, and then I’ll come find you,” right?

Jim: (Laughter) The goal being?

Jeannie: The goal being I just need 30 seconds alone, right?

John: Oh, it takes longer than 30 seconds to count to 500.

Jim: I was hollowing with that one, I mean.

Jeannie: I just need a little time to be alone.

Jim: Go hide. I’ll come find you this afternoon.

Jeannie: Yeah, find a really good spot, you know? Find a really...

Jim: Yeah, and then walk around the house a lot.

Jeannie: ...One you haven’t used before. But I want moms to feel like they have permission to say that, you know, to recognize that they do not have to be perfect.

Jim: Yeah, but it is a pressure.

Jeannie: It is absolute - there are so many pressures. I mean, moms are under so many pressures. And we - we list - I list those out in the book because I think we’re not even acknowledging a lot of those pressures, and then they stay in the dark. And if we don’t bring them into the light and expose them and then speak God’s truth and promises over them, then they just stay in the dark and shame festers in moms’ hearts.

John: Jeannie Cunnion is our guest on Focus on the Family with Jim Daly. And you can get her book, Mom Set Free: Find Relief from the Pressure to Get It All Right, and a CD or download of our conversation - our mobile app as well, so you can listen on the go - all of that at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast, or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY. And Jeannie, I’d like to know what does it look like for me not to put my anxieties on my kids, given what you just said there?

Jeannie: Right. Well, so I think, you know, we talk about how our kids - what we model has a profound impact - right? - on our kids. They’re watching us. And so if they are seeing us as parents finding our significance and success or failure, um, they’re watching that. But if they see parents whose significance is in Jesus, whose souls are satisfied in Jesus and they see the fruit of freedom in our own lives, that also has a profound impact on them. So as a mom, if I’m chasing significance and how well I’m doing as a mom or how well I’m doing as a writer or how I’m even doing as a spouse versus I am who God says I am, I start the day and I end the day knowing that my identity is firmly anchored in the goodness and the perfection of Jesus Christ covering me and I am free to live out of that identity, they see that, and it produces fruit in our lives, the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

Jim: Jeannie, a mom might be saying, “Boy, this woman sounds like she just has it all it together, she’s perfect.”

Jeannie: I do not.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: Well, I’m going to put you on the spot a little bit because I know in the book...

Jeannie: Please do because I do not.

Jim: ...You did a great job of being real. You share a story about a bad day that you had of parenting.

Jeannie: I have a lot of bad days.

Jim: But in that case you made, you know, I was, again, I was laughing because the mistakes that you confessed that you made that day. Describe that day. This will hook so many moms out there.

Jeannie: Which day are you talking about because there’s a lot of days that I talk about in the book?

Jim: I think this is the one where you were caught saying unkind things about someone else’s gossip, and you were spewing about that - my words, not yours. And then you weren’t modeling how to love your enemies. And then you yelled at the boys. But you can take it from there. I don’t want to continue to incriminate you.

Jeannie: No, it’s okay. You know, it’s ironic when we yell at our kids to stop yelling.

(LAUGHTER)

John: Generally we’re yelling when we do that, don’t we?

Jeannie: Yes, we are. And so I - you know, at the end of that I said to one of my boys - the child I was with - I said, “Son, I’m really sorry. I’m really sorry about the way I just behaved. Um, I let my sinful nature win. And I got angry. And I’m really sorry, will you forgive me?” And my son said, “Of course, Mom, I forgive you.” And - and then he said, “But Mom, I don’t think you have a sinful nature, I think you have a loving nature.” But it opened up the door to such an awesome conversation because in that moment I was able to remind my son, again, that I am free to confess my sinful nature because I know I have a sinless savior who has me covered. And so this is the kind of freedom we can give our kids, even when we mess up every day. It’s to be able to say, “I know that Jesus Christ has me covered, and I want you to be able to live in that freedom, too.” And that’s not a license to sin because if you - if you really have experienced the grace of God, you know that it doesn’t make you want to break the rules or break God’s heart with your sin. It really - gratitude breeds obedience. Gratitude makes you - the grace of God breeds this gratitude that really makes you want to live in appreciation for what He’s done for you.

John: Jeannie, I appreciate that. And it’s neat the way the Lord gave you an opportunity to kind of have some closure. We’ve had moments where, you know what, the kids go to bed angry. And I go to bed angry. And it doesn’t wrap up so well. What do we do in those moments?

Jeannie: I’ve had those, too, or days when I’ve sent them off to school, you know, where they’ve...

Jim: Like, sent them off. Get out of here (laughter).

Jeannie: ...Exactly. And I may or may not have gone back to the school and taken one child out to get ice cream because I felt so guilty for the way I behaved. Um, but I think it’s never too late for grace. And I think that’s a really important message for the mom who just went to bed angry and the kids went to bed angry, or for the moms that I hear from whose kids are 20 or 30 and they’re saying, “It’s too late for me now.” And it’s never too late for grace. And I tell a story in the book about, um, a young woman who was telling me about how she had a pretty tumultuous upbringing. And even though she was raised in a Christian home, it was very complicated. And she and her three siblings, in their 20s, one night their parents had everybody over for dinner. And they sat them down, and they basically said, “We want to repent. We want to ask for your forgiveness. We are discovering things about God’s grace that we never understood before. We did the best we could do. And we raised you under the law, and we wish we had given you more grace. And we’re really sorry. And we want to do better from this day forward.” And she talked about it being one of the most healing, beautiful days in her life and how that impacted her going forward as a mom, showing her how her parents’ ability and willingness to say, “I’m sorry,” was so healing and really transforming in her life.

Jim: Well, I, you know, I think temperament plays a part in this - and the parenting temperament - where you have - and often, we marry opposites, so you might have this in your relationship with your spouse. But the point of that is, um, that hundred million dollar question, you know, grace can be made cheap and then expectations are reduced and children will rise to the expectation. But there is kind of that green zone in that balance between grace and truth and responsibility. And then it begins to get yellow on both sides, if I can describe it visually like that. Like, if you have too much legalism, you’re going to hurt your child. And if you have too much grace, it will hurt the child as well. So where is that balance found? How do you strive to hit that middle ground that’s the healthy green where Jesus wants us to live?

Jeannie: Yeah, I think it’s having an understanding of what grace actually is, right? So, you know, one time I was disciplining my boys, and my son Brendan said, “Mom, just give us grace. Please, give us grace.”

Jim: (Laughter) Yeah, every sinner would say that.

Jeannie: Right? And I thought that is, um, he’s really articulating, though, that common misunderstanding of what grace is because what he’s saying is, you know, “Cut us some slack, you know, just let it go. Forget it happened, and let’s move on.” And if we understand what grace actually is, then it really empowers us in our parenting because grace is the unconditional love of God given to us in Jesus Christ, right? And so if we apply that to our parenting, then the question is how do I weave the unconditional love of God into the way that I establish my authority, into the way that I discipline my kids, into the way that I train them. So grace in parenting is not a free pass to do as you please. Grace in parenting is every day I have to ask the question, how do I reflect the Father’s heart in the way I lead my kids today? And I get that wrong all the time. And there’s grace for that, too.

Jim: So what I’m hearing you say - and I want to make sure the listeners are hearing this - you know, there is firmness in the boundaries and those kinds of things. There’s consequences with kids’ actions and what they do. But the way you deliver that - “Come, let me talk to you about this. This is what I see happening. Your grades seem far lower than what you’re able to achieve. How are we going to work together to overcome that? What can we do?”

Jeannie: Right, because “You are not defined by your grades. It doesn’t change my love for you. But I’m calling you to a higher standard because I know what God has created you to do and what He’s equipped you to be able to do.” And so yeah, it’s this very, um, God disciplines those He loves. He gives us boundaries for our good, you know, to lead us in the fullness and abundant life. And so, again, that’s just another opportunity for us to think, “Oh, God disciplines those He loves. He’s given us boundaries to help us flourish, and that’s what I want to do as a mom.” But I think we have - it’s important to articulate that to our kids because there’s a language of grace, and there’s a language of shame.

Jim: Right.

Jeannie: And they’re very distinct languages.

Jim: Give me words to help me understand that. What does - what do the two sound like?

Jeannie: Yeah. So language of grace is, um, “I give you boundaries because I am for you and because I love you,” or “I’m disciplining you out of my love for you.” And it’s - you know, it’s reflecting the heart of God all the time. We just - I just said that. But, um, how would the Lord discipline those He loves? Shame has a language which I’ve used and I’ve had to repent of with my boys - is, “How could you do something like that?”

Jim: It goes to their character.

Jeannie: It - it equates what they did with who they are. Um, “How many times do I have to tell you? How can you keep getting this wrong?” Um, and so - and I - and I’ve used those words. And there was a very precise moment with one of my boys when the Lord convicted me about that and - and changed my parenting because my boys were in the backyard fighting. And I went to my oldest son and I - I kinda lifted him up. And I looked at his eyes and - ‘cause he was hurting his little brother - and I said, “Who does something like that?” And he looked at me with tears in his eyes, and he said, “I guess someone like me.”

Jim: So you were defining him.

Jeannie: I was defining him and...

Jim: Mmhmm. Yeah.

Jeannie: ...And making...

Jim: We’ve all done it.

Jeannie: ...And making him feel like, you know, uh, worthless. “Well, I guess someone like me.” And that was an invitation in that moment from Jesus to say, “I’m sorry. You know who else does something like that? Me. I need Jesus, too.”

Jim: Yeah.

Jeannie: I sin every day, too. And we can go to the cross alongside each other. Um, it’s a radical difference. You know, that alongside parenting is - I call it the broken together approach.

Jim: Yeah.

Jeannie: You need Jesus. I need Jesus.

Jim: Jeannie, we can understand - we could be Bible smart...

Jeannie: Uh-huh.

Jim: ...And know that to be true. But why will some parents - and I’ll throw dads in here, as well, ‘cause we’re all guilty of this to some degree - why do we go to that well pretty consistently to shame? What - what is it in us that is creating that need to say, “You’re no good and you need help?” I mean, we don’t say it that bluntly...

Jeannie: Right.

Jim: ...But that’s what we’re saying when we say, you know, “Who would do that?”

Jeannie: Right.

Jim: And again, I appreciate your openness. But we’re all guilty of it, if we’re honest.

Jeannie: Yeah.

Jim: We’ve said something like that as a parent, you know?

Jeannie: Yeah.

Jim: “Bobby would never do that. Why did you do it?”

Jeannie: Yeah.

Jim: But what’s driving that behavior in us as parents to go to the bucket of shame?

Jeannie: Yeah. I think we touched on it a little bit, which is what we live in is what we live out. I think it’s just our constant need for Jesus and refinement and growing in His grace as parents. Like, we’re never gonna get this all right. You know, we’re gonna grow, and God’s gonna continue to shape us through our kids. But we’re gonna stumble every day, and it’s gonna be a reminder of our beautiful need for Him. But there’s - you know - I mean, it’s an invitation to view it that way.

Jim: Yeah.

Jeannie: It really is because I think a lot of times, we understand growing in our relationship with God as getting better and stronger, right?

Jim: Yes.

Jeannie: That sanctification. But in a lot of ways, it’s really about growing in our awareness of our need for the Holy Spirit to keep shaping us and molding us in His likeness.

Jim: Yeah. And this comes - in His likeness.

Jeannie: Yes.

Jim: And this is all the way back to the point you made earlier that “What does God intend for us as parents in the role...”

Jeannie: Right.

Jim: “...Of parenting? What do we need to learn?” We’re right on it. This is the stuff, which is to learn His grace. And you’re gonna see it in parenting. I mean, if - if we - we’ve said it many times. God is a God of teenagers.

(LAUGHTER)

Jim: I mean, all of us misbehave.

Jeannie: Yes. Yes.

Jim: We do things that displease Him. And then hopefully, we’re mature enough in Him to say, “Lord, I blew it. Please help me not to do that again.” That’s the Christian life.

Jeannie: Yeah.

Jim: But that is the Lord, too. He’s - He’s got a lot of teenagers He’s dealing with.

Jeannie: He’s got a lot of teenagers.

Jim: Let’s end here on a high note. And I want to come back next time and talk about your tragedy and how you began to become more aware through a broken marriage that happened early in - in your life.

Jeannie: Mmhmm.

Jim: But let’s end on the high note. Speak to the importance of family warmth. Studies have shown this.

Jeannie: Yes.

Jim: I was really encouraged by this...

Jeannie: I love that study.

Jim: ...Reading the material. But say it. Why is family warmth - what is it, and why is it so important?

Jeannie: Yeah. Kara Powell talks about this. It’s from Fuller, um, Institute.

Jim: Yeah, Dr. Powell.

Jeannie: Yes.

Jim: Good friend. She’s been on the broadcast.

Jeannie: Yeah. She’s amazing. And - and what her research showed - and I find this so encouraging - is that family warmth is the number one faith transmitter to our kids.

Jim: Did she give the adjectives that go with that? What is a - a household that has family warmth look like?

Jeannie: Well, she talks about how it’s in our tone. It’s in our body language - ‘cause I can use really sweet words, but I can have a tone that tells you something different...

Jim: That face.

Jeannie: ...You know, or a face that says, you know, “I’m not buying what I’m saying.” And so the invitation - because as parents who want to nurture and disciple our child’s faith, we get very focused on the things we can do, and that’s important - you know, reading God’s word together, memorizing Scripture, um, doing all of those really important things that plant seeds. But the question is, are we doing it in an environment that has family warmth?

Jim: Yeah.

Jeannie: And if somebody listens to that and goes, “No, we’re not,” I want them to be encouraged because here’s the thing. It’s never too late to change the thermostat in your home, to think about, “How can we change the thermostat so that our home is a place of warmth?”

Closing:

Jim: That is so good. Jeannie, this whole discussion - it’s gotten me, and I’m looking forward to tomorrow when we can come back and talk about this again. Your great book, Mom Set Free: Find Relief from the Pressure to Get It All Right - who wouldn’t want that resource?

Jeannie: (Laughter) I do.

Jim: I mean, come on - great title. And, uh, hopefully we have helped many moms and some dads glimpse, uh, the light at the end of the tunnel, kind of looking at the big picture, which we often talk about. And for you, the listener - man, I don’t know how much more strongly I could recommend Jeannie’s book, other than this is one of those resources - as a parent, you need it. And we all need it and to read it and digest it. And we’d love to send you a copy of that today. And you know, a great way to do that is for a gift of any amount because that helps us, uh, you know, prepare these broadcasts, pay for the airtime, do our - our marriage ministry, counseling efforts. When you purchase, uh, the book with a gift of any amount, all the proceeds go to do that. It doesn’t go into anybody’s pocket. So help us in that way, and we’ll say thank you by sending along a copy of Jeannie’s book.

John: You’ll find great encouragement in it. So you can donate and get that book, Mom Set Free, at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast, or call 800, the letter A, and the word FAMILY.

Well, on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, I’m John Fuller thanking you for listening to Focus on the Family, inviting you back next time as we hear more from Jeannie, and once again, help you and your family thrive in Christ.

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Guest

Jeannie Cunnion

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Jeannie Cunnion is a blogger, a public speaker and the author of Parenting the Wholehearted Child: Captivating Your Child's Heart With God's Extravagant Grace. Her book has been featured on programs such as The Today Show, Fox and Friends and The 700 Club. Jeannie holds a master's degree in social work and serves on the board of Raising Boys Ministries. She and her husband, Mike, have four young sons. Learn more about Jeannie by visiting her blog, www.jeanniecunnion.com.