Think of all the times when it would be swell to decline a request that comes your way.   Sure, sometimes you absolutely can’t say no. Like, when your boss dumps a mammoth-sized stack of paper on your desk and says get to work or you’ll be fired. Or when you’re watching football on TV and your wife goes into labor.   But a lot of life revolves around unessential queries that come our way.   Can you attend a… Read more

Do wealthy kids whose parents pay for their college have an advantage? Most people would think so, but if Mommy and Daddy pay for everything… it might just be a disadvantage. American Sociological review just published a study revealing “the more money parents provide for higher education, the lower the grades their children earn.” The students shown “least likely to excel” were the ones who were given essentially a “blank check” for college. I think this stretches further than the… Read more

Bill Perkins is one of my favorite authors. Not only is his prose a joy to read, but he also handles heavy topics with a light touch. His latest book, “Why Naked Women Look So Good,” exposes a subject men think about 24/7, but which feels unholy for us to discuss. Perkins handles this taboo subject with gentleness and grace, pointing us back to the garden of intimacy that is still available to couples who approach sexuality God’s way. Perkins… Read more

One of the major conflicts I hear from parents of teenagers is whether to allow their children to experience positive extracurricular activities in school or to make them get a part-time job and go to work. We experienced the same dilemma with our children. We chose to allow our son to be in band, play sports, be in Boy Scouts, attend youth group at church, and be involved in student government at school because they were healthy, wholesome activities that… Read more

Gather ‘round boys, and listen in.   Some months back I introduced you to the wisdom of the late Crazy Ned Van der Meyer, an 88-year-old Holstein farmer living on a lushly plowed dirt patch in Custer, Washington.   Crazy Ned “dispensed advice to spare,” as folks say politely in these parts. Yet the bulk of his advice was straight-shooting common sense.   “Today’s young folks don’t know a hill of beans about dating,” Crazy Ned told me flatly one… Read more

I’ve never met an empty-nester who reflected back on his or her life and concluded, “I think I spent too much time with my kids!” It’s never happened. I don’t think these parents exist. My daughter Ashley came up to me 90 minutes ago and asked me, “Dad, can we hang out?” Ashley is 15-years-old and always swamped with school work, activities and friends. She happened to have an hour this afternoon, so she decided to see if Dad was… Read more

Almost every church that launches a men’s program meets with failure. There’s clearly room for a new approach to men’s ministry – or perhaps an ancient one. Read more

Have you looked at the top 10 music videos recently? In this post, Jonathan takes a peek at the current iTunes Top 10 music videos… and you might be surprised what lyrics and visuals are only a click away via the smartphone in our kids’ pockets. Read more

About a decade ago I noticed something that had been hidden in plain sight: there were always more women than men in church. Read more

Surprisingly, one activity that is very healthy in the emotional development of boys is hunting. Societal wisdom might suggest that killing an animal (hunting) breeds violence and cruelty in males. But research suggests just the opposite is true. Hunting in fact actually develops respect and reverence for life and other universal virtues in males such as generosity, fortitude, respect, patience, humility, and courage. According to noted family therapist and bestselling author Michael Gurian, hunting paradoxically makes males more empathetic and… Read more

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