Parenting

591 posts

Making Beauty from Ashes: Craig Svensson on FamilyLife Today, Part Three

When we see our kids headed in the wrong direction, we want to help turn them around. But ultimately, it’s our child’s choice. Craig Svensson, author of The Painful Path of a Prodigal, talks about his son’s ongoing battle with drug addiction. While Craig and his wife tried every avenue possible to find him help, Eric continued to use. After fifteen years on and off the streets, and in and out of hospitals, Svensson tells how Eric lost his battle with addiction in January 2017, dying sick and alone at the age of thirty. Tune in to your local radio station, or listen here: FamilyLife Today: Making Beauty from Ashes with Craig Svensson, November 20, 2020

Seeking Help: Craig Svensson on FamilyLife Today, Part Two

Craig Svensson, author of The Painful Path of a Prodigal, continues his story on FamilyLife Today. Craig thought moving and the change of scenery would be good for the family, especially his son, Eric, who was struggling with drug addiction. But Eric sought out the same kind of friends he had before. He was forced by the court to attend AA meetings, where he met more people with drug connections. Eventually, Eric’s addiction became dangerous for the family, and they asked him to move out. Svensson talks openly about the heartache involved in watching a son choose opposite values from you as he fell deeper into the abyss of addiction. Tune in to your local radio station, or listen here: FamilyLife […]

Craig Svensson on FamilyLife Today

Craig Svensson, author of The Painful Path of a Prodigal, walks us through his son Eric’s painful journey with drugs and addiction. Beginning in elementary school, Eric’s drug abuse escalated around the age of 15. Though Craig talked to Eric repeatedly, and even had the police talk to him, nothing changed. After taking several steps to stop Eric’s drug use, including sending him to a special program and moving to another state, Craig and his wife continued to pray that Eric could be rescued from this downward spiral. Tune in on your local radio station, or listen here: FamilyLife Today: A Downward Turn with Craig Svensson – November 18, 2020

Wise Words for Moms App Update

Two weeks ago, we became aware that the Wise Words for Moms App for iOS was no longer available on the iOS App Store. Worse, customers who had purchased the app found that it had disappeared from their devices. We investigated the issue and were able to resolve it yesterday. The Wise Words for Moms App is once more available for purchase from the App Store, and customers who have previously purchased should be able to reinstall it if it does not reappear on their devices automatically. We apologize for the lapse in availability and will do our best to keep it from happening in the future. Wise Words for Moms is also available as a calendar-sized chart and functions […]

Redemptive Purposes in Your Teen’s Depression

The truth that God can work good out of this season of depression (Romans 8: 28) is a consolation to use sensitively. However, it’s not without biblical merit to suggest that God intends to use this season of suffering to spiritually refine both you and your teen. Let’s briefly consider three purposes. First, you may find that your teen’s depression serves as an opportunity for you to share the gospel with him or her. If your child has yet to place his or her hope in Christ, now is the time to extend God’s gracious invitation. It may be God’s plan that your teen comes to saving faith in Jesus because of this trial (Psalm 119:71). If your teen doesn’t […]

Understanding Your Teen’s Depression

While it can be tempting to view your teen’s depression as pouting, or simply the result of hormone fluctuations, the truth is that your child’s despondency is an outward expression of internal unrest. It can be tempting to grow impatient with your teen’s emotional instability. Oftentimes, in frustration, parents may resort to trite slogans and superficial encouragements. Even so, a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” mentality is desperately insufficient to help our teens. In fact, any strategy that invites us to rely upon our own willpower for change is a limited resource at best, and painfully destructive at worst, “for not by might shall a man prevail” (1 Samuel 2:9). It’s important to view depression through a biblical lens. […]

Slow Down and Listen

Foolish responses without listening will make your children disinterested in speaking with you. They will take their conversations somewhere else where they can be heard. If your children are saying “You never listen to me,” it is because they feel you never listen to them. Slow down and listen. There is a perceptive insight in Proverbs 20:5: “The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.” There is more depth in your children than you might imagine. Drawing those deep waters out requires patience and great skill. It also requires being sensitive to the right moment. There are times when children are talkative and times when you cannot pry anything from them […]

Discipline: Communication and Prayer

Dialogue One of the most destructive aspects of ungodly discipline and correction is the lack of godly dialogue. God has wonderfully provided all the apparatus for meaningful communication with one another. Yet the most life shaping opportunities parents have in their children’s lives are often one-sided. Monologue is not godly communication. Long speeches that try to strong-arm our children with arguments, threats, warnings, and predictions will not change their hearts. It will harden their hearts. All of our conversation with our children should afford them an opportunity to respond—not as peers, but as children interacting with the direction and instruction of parents. We should encourage children to respectfully respond in conversation to help us understand how they are feeling, thinking, […]

From the Archives: Keeping the Gospel Central

Shaming your children is hypocritical. That, of course, is where you will always end up when you are trying to manipulate behavior. If, however, you deal with the heart, you will no longer be hypocritically distanced from your child. You can stand in solidarity with him and his struggles with selfishness. You can put your arm around him and say, “I understand what you are experiencing. I understand selfishness. I have my own struggles with being selfish.” Please note: You are not excusing selfishness as okay since you are selfish too. Rather, you are simply identifying with this common struggle with sin. Not only do you understand the struggle, you know where to go with your struggles with selfishness. You […]

Love for God is the Foundation for Parenting

Our love for God is the foundation for anything we have to say. We cannot impress our children with the fame of God’s name if we are not impressed with him ourselves. If the truths about God’s sovereign power and incredible mercy have melted our hearts and produced a profound love for God, we will impress our children with his awesome glory. If God’s Word is dear to us, it will be important to our children. We must be dazzled by God. We cannot give away what we don’t have. Psalm 34 is an excellent commentary on this point. “Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him” (Ps. 34:8). Here is […]