A raw conversation about our faith with Angie Smith

Having never met Angie Smith before, I had no idea what I was missing out on until I had the most heartfelt, Spirit-led conversation with her for today’s show. 

Angie is a mom, wife, speaker, author, and a much-needed breath of fresh air for all of us trying to live our daily lives for Christ while struggling through the bumps and bruises we face along the way. 

Angie recently wrote a book, Woven, that’s a beautiful depiction of how the seemingly different storylines throughout the Bible are actually woven together into one big story of God’s love. If you’ve ever found the Bible to be confusing or even disjointed, Angie provides a deep dive into the bigger picture of God’s word and why it matters. 

As much as I loved talking about her book, I was struck by Angie’s vulnerability in sharing about her real-time fight with depression and loss. 

Without going into too much detail, suffice it to say I walked away so thankful for a strong Christian woman willing to share the hard places of her journey so that we might be encouraged in our own journeys. 

If you’ve ever had doubts about your faith, or struggled to understand the Bible, or even felt like life is too hard, I believe this conversation is exactly what you need today!


Praying for our kids: Marked by our soul

We’re continuing to pray through the greatest commandment to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. This week we’re praying that our kids love God with all of our souls, but what exactly is our soul? 

Our soul lies deep down inside of us and is our very core. It’s the invisible part of us that connects us with God. It is where we are most at home, and it’s the most fundamental driver of who we are from the inside out. 

To love the Lord with all of our soul, we’ve got to be faithful in private. We’ve got to be devoted to the things that drench our soul in Jesus and be willing to drop the things that don’t. 

As we pray for our kids to love God with all of their souls this week, let’s pray that they learn to love him with the very core of who they are—not by what they intellectually believe about him, or how they serve him, or what they communicate to others by their faith, but truly learning to love Jesus from the core of their being. 

I’m so thankful you’re staying strong with me each week as we finish off this school year. Don’t miss today’s podcast and the opportunity to pray with me over your child’s very soul and the core of who they are.


“Turn Your Season Around” with baseball legend Darryl Strawberry

Today is Opening Day for baseball, and in my baseball-crazy family, that makes today a big day!  

In honor of this momentous occasion, we’ve got the perfect show for you with baseball-great Darryl Strawberry.

Darryl has an amazing testimony of addiction, redemption, marriage struggles, and cancer. He shares some very practical principles that have changed his life, things like weathering trials with hope, nurturing godly friendships, and always believing in the power of prayer. 

And, of course, we also get some interesting behind-the-scenes scoop on his time in the Major Leagues and some amazing baseball moments. 

Incidentally, Darryl Strawberry is one of my husband Mike’s all-time favorite players, making it only right for me to ask Mike to join me on this show; however, in a strange turn of events, Mike actually relieved me of my duties and ran with the interview himself. 😂

Don’t miss today’s show with Darryl Strawberry and Mike Yanof talking all things Jesus, MLB, and allowing God to transform our missteps into ministry.

 


Praying for our kids: Marked by our heart

“Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30 NIV, emphasis added).

Remember the lawyer who tried to trick Jesus by asking him to name the greatest commandment? (Lawyers, am I right?) Jesus, knowing this guy’s antics, responded with, “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). 

It’s this verse that will guide us the next few weeks as we pray for our kids to be marked by loving God with their heart, soul, mind, and strength. 

We’ll kick off this week by praying for our kids’ hearts, which is not just critical to their health—it’s also the epicenter of their spiritual life. 

It’s central to their thoughts and actions and even the words that come out of their mouths. When Jesus talks about loving God with all their hearts, he’s referencing their emotions and decisions. 

In order to love God with all of our hearts, we have to prioritize spending time with him and in his word. Having time with our creator enables us to know what he wants for our lives, and we can’t help but pursue him and the things he values and wants for our families. 

Let’s pray this week that our kids learn to love God with all of their hearts, beginning with prioritizing time with him and pursuing him in all that they do. Join me on today’s podcast and let’s pray together for our kids. 


Brave conversations with our kids Part 3: Alcohol, drugs, video games, and addiction with Dr. Ken Wilgus

This week we’re wrapping up our Pardon the Mess series on brave conversations we need to have with our kids. Dr. Ken Wilgus is with us to talk about addiction and its impact on today’s kids. 

Believe you me, I would rather ignore this topic too and hope it never becomes an issue rather than face it head on—however, it’s too significant of a problem in today’s culture to idly stand by. Dr. Wilgus and I discuss these topics: 

  • Defining addiction and the idea of addictive personalities 
  • Drugs, alcohol, and vaping—how to discipline when/if your child experiments
  • Video games and the time our kids spend playing them 
  • How parents can deal with addiction and avoid enabling 
  • Important conversations to have with our kids beginning at an early age 

I’m so thankful for the information Dr. Ken shares today, and I know we will all be better for having listened. 

Please take a minute to share this with your friends—it’s too important of a topic to take lightly.

 


Praying for our kids: Marked by fruit

As Easter approaches in the next few weeks, it’s the perfect time to begin praying that the power of the cross impacts every area of our kids’ lives. 

It is an incredible assurance knowing that, by accepting Jesus, our kids have a new eternal destination. But we’re also praying for a daily life transformation.

When our kids become Christians, we should begin looking for (and hopefully seeing) fruit in their lives. Jesus said those who follow him will produce spiritual fruit, and it’s by this fruit you will know them (Matthew 7:20). 

In Galatians, Paul describes some attributes of a life without Christ, including anger, idolatry, jealousy, selfishness, impurity, and strife. In contrast, with Christ we start to see the spiritual fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control. 

Thankfully, this is not simply a checklist of things we’re constantly trying to achieve. Instead, it’s produced by allowing the Holy Spirit to work within us. Without even trying, our kids will produce fruit that’s visible to the world around them. This fruit can either be produced by the Holy Spirit or produced by their own spirit.

Our prayer is that our kids will submit to the Holy Spirit’s leadership, resulting in less of their own fruit and more of his. This week, let’s pray that the Holy Spirit produces fruit in our kids that leads others to trust Jesus and his great sacrifice at the cross.


Brave conversations with our kids part 2: The birds and the bees with Mary Flo Ridley and Megan Michelson

We’re kicking off week two of brave conversations we need to have with our kids, and it’s a doozie (or at least for me it is). 

I, for one, am particularly proud of myself for being brave enough to have a conversation around the birds and the bees in the confines of my home, much less on a podcast with all of you! 

Thankfully, Mary Flo Ridley and Megan Michelson speak into this topic biblically and quite practically—and I couldn’t be more grateful. 

We cover everything from: 

  • the hang-ups we have as parents when it comes to talking about sex with our kids, 
  • the importance of using correct anatomical technology (my bad), 
  • and shaping our family’s narrative in this important area before culture does it for us. 

If you struggle to have conversations around this topic and need a little encouragement and practical wherewithal . . . I promise that today’s podcast is for you!


Praying for our kids: Marked by armor

This week we’re praying a hearty topic over our kids as we focus on the armor of God. 

 

Most of us don’t spend a lot of time contemplating how to fight against the devil’s schemes, but Scripture does. Thankfully, Jesus has already won our ultimate battle by his death on the cross and resurrection from the grave. But, even then, there will still be trouble in this world because we have a real Enemy who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10).

 

As we face the visible (and often invisible) battles each day, Satan’s success hinges on catching us unprepared and with our guard down. Let’s pray that our kids are battle-ready by wearing the armor of God, as seen in Ephesians 6:13–17:

 

  • The belt of truth: Pray that God’s truth will defeat the enemy’s lies in their lives.
  • The breastplate of righteousness: Pray that they withstand attacks of impurity and wrongdoing by clinging to righteousness.
  • Feet fitted with the gospel of peace: Pray for a willingness to go and share the gospel.
  • The shield of faith: Pray for protection from doubt, fear, and anxiety.
  • The helmet of salvation: Pray for a mind controlled by God.
  • The sword of the Spirit: Pray that God’s word is their offense, knowing it’s sharper than any sword.

 

Take a minute to listen to today’s podcast, and then use the list above as your guide for praying all week for kids that are battle ready!


Brave conversations with our kids Part 1: Anxiety with Sissy Goff

We’re focusing the next few weeks of Pardon the Mess on brave conversations we need to have with our kids. 

This week we have licensed counselor Sissy Goff with us straight from Nashville. We’re chatting about anxiety in our kids and some of the hard emotions they are facing after this last year. 

Sissy and I cover these topics around anxiety and mental health: 

  • Questions to ask your kids to gauge their anxiety level 
  • Strategies to implement when dealing with anxiety 
  • Eating disorders and other mental health issues increasing in teens
  • Common parenting mistakes in dealing with anxiety

I especially loved Sissy’s explanation of anger being a secondary emotion that often stems from issues of fear and anxiety. 

It’s a good reminder that what meets the eye is not always a true representation of what’s going on inside of our kids. 

As we think through anxiety in our children this week, I want to leave you with one of my favorite quotes from Sissy’s new book, Brave: A Teen Girl’s Guide to Beating Worry and Anxiety

“All the girls I’ve ever met who are anxious have a few things in common: they’re bright and conscientious, they care and feel deeply, and they try hard. Those very gifts are sometimes the things that make us more anxious. Worry’s voice does not have the power to define you. That job belongs to you and the God who loves and delights in you.” 

What a great reminder of why we must have brave conversations with our kids around this topic.