Got a Minute for Your Family ?

50 Sample Radio Scripts by Dr. Kay Kuzma 

    Note: The following scripts are made available for reprint by non-profit organizations, such as churches or schools. (Bible texts can be admitted if desired.) We offer 50 scripts at this time, which is enough for you to use weekly for a year. For the free use of this service, we only ask two things: 

    #1: Use the following credit line: By Kay Kuzma Ed. D., Founder and speaker for Family Matters Ministry. Author of many books, including Creating Love, Easy Obedience and Blessings at Midnight. For more information call 423-566-5007 or see the Web site:

    #2: When you publish a radio script, please send a tear sheet to Dr. Kay Kuzma, 1105 Big Creek Road, LaFollette, TN 37766. 



    When I say, "V.I.P." you automatically think of a Very Important Person, but the initials V.I.P. can also stand for three of the most important things parents need to provide for their children's character development. Wholesome character traits don't happen by change. It takes VISION, INSPIRATION, and a good POSITIVE PATTERN. That's V for Vision, I for Inspiration and P for Positive Pattern. Here's how it works: You must give your children a VISION of what they can become. Children tend to live up to their parent's expectations. Children also need INSPIRATION or motivation to choose right from wrong, and to develop their potential. And finally, every child needs a POSITIVE PATTERN or role model. With Vision, Inspiration and a Positive Pattern your child can become a V.I.P.

Think about 1 Corinthians 11:1 (NKJV) "Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ." 


#0602 LIFE AFTER DIVORCE by Kay Kuzma  

    There isn't any way to soften the word "divorce" or make it sound nice. Millions of Americans live with its reality and for most it is a wrenching, bitter experience. Most divorced people go through four stages in the process of coping with this reality. Each phase is important and normal--so long as you don't stay there, locked forever into seeing yourself primarily as someone's ex-mate. The first stage is trauma, where you're still in shock, decisions are difficult, and the tendency is to withdraw or over work. Next comes turmoil where confusing emotions overwhelm you. Third is adjustment, where you begin to explore new possibilities that life can go on. And finally reconstruction, where you accept what's happened and begin to build a new life, finding ways to enjoy your singleness and reach out to others.

*  Think about 2 Corinthians 4:16 (NKJV) "Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day."



    Are you feeling guilty because you haven't been successful in getting rid of some objectionable behavior traits in your kids? If so, it's not your responsibility to change your children--it's theirs. Don't steal something that belongs to them. To be strong, healthy individuals, children need to take responsibility for their own lives. But here's what you can do: Talk to the children about their problem. Help them to recognize the negative effect this behavior has on themselves, as well as others. Tell your children you are willing to help them, but only if they want to change and ask for your help. Then start building your children's self-worth. Build their confidence through praise and encouragement. It's scary to change. But, when children feel good about themselves, they are much more willing to make changes.

*  Think about Proverbs 20:11 (NKJV) "Even a child is known by his deeds, By whether what he does is pure and right."



    Just like baseball, playing the violin, or painting, it takes instruction and practice to become a good decision maker.You can't rely on how you feel, or what you want. You may feel like telling the person off, but you could get in a fight. Or you may want to eat the whole box of candy, but it could make you sick. Teach your children that good decision makers get as much information as possible before deciding. Tough decisions may mean doing some research or talking to those who are more experienced. Good decision makers consider every possible option and look carefully at the pros and cons. And finally, since all decisions have consequences, both good or bad, these must be carefully considered. Teach your children how to make good decision making--and then let them practice.

*  Think about Isaiah 7:15 (NKJV) "Curds and honey He shall eat, that He may know to refuse the evil and choose the good." 



    I'll never forget that evening when my husband, Jan, walked through the back door and called, "Kids, come quickly, I'm going to give your mother an Italian kiss!" Well, guess who came quickly?" That's right. I did! And with the children watching, Jan took me in his arms, bent me over backwards and gave me a wonderful, romantic kiss. The children looked on in wonder and finally said, "I want one, too." That Italian kiss has become a favorite memory for our family. I call it a 15 pointer. I'd give Jan 1 point for thinking about us and planning this on his way home. Being together is worth 2 points. Then I'd add 3 points for talking together, 4 more for looking at each other, and 5 for touching. Yes, Italian kisses are definitely worth 15 points. Why don't you surprise your mate with one tonight?

*  Think about Song of Solomon 2:8 (NKJV) "The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills."



    Here's an experiment to try with others. Put your hand up and ask them to place their hand palm to palm against yours. Now push. How did the other person respond? Chances are they pushed back! That's a great object lesson for parents who are tempted to push their kids. When you push, they push back. Instead, you must learn to motivate and lead. Don't make requests when your children are deeply absorbed in a favorite activity, and expect immediate obedience. Give them fair warning. Ask for their cooperation, rather than telling them what they must do. You'd rather be asked than told, wouldn't you? When possible, give your children a choice, like, "Would you rather sweep or dust?" And then be willing to cheerfully work along with them. Most kids would rather work with someone who's fun to work with, than work alone.

*  Think about Philippians 2:3 (NKJV) "Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.



     With a little preparation, you can make your next shopping trip kid friendly. Start by planning a short trip, at a time when your kids aren't tired or hungry. Pack a surprise package of goodies that can be handed out frequently to reward them for being good shoppers. Small mints, life savers or a little plastic baggy of Cheerios or animal crackers may make the trip a little "sweeter." Take time to discuss the rules before going into a store. Talk with your kids about what you want to buy. Give them something to look for as you go up and down the aisles. And make it a policy that if Mom says "no," she means it! A nagged for toy should never be purchased. If you know you are going to be passing breakables, play the "pocket time" game, where their hands have to go inside their pockets until the danger is passed. Shopping and kids can go together, if you make it kid friendly!

*  Think about Luke 7:24 (NKJV) "Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock..."



    A listener once wrote, "I have a lot of anger and frustration harbored toward my husband. He's a workaholic. Often I feel used, unloved, and burdened with domestic responsibility. And the children feel rejected when he says he's too busy to do things with them. Sometimes I feel like just packing up and leaving." I responded, "That's not a bad idea!" You're probably shocked by what sounds like a cold hearted response, when I've dedicated my life to keeping families together. The problem is addiction. When someone is addicted to drugs, alcohol--or work--the worse thing you can do is cover for them and allow them to continue in their destructive patterns. You must do something to get the person's attention, to let him know you and the children are hurting, and that he must make a choice. Your workaholic must be confronted with the consequences of his addiction.

*  Think about Joshua 24:15 (NKJV) "And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve..."



    I once read a story about a father dancing with his pajama clad three-year-old-son in his arms. I shut my eyes and I could imagine dad twirling and dipping and his son holding tight burying his head against dad's shoulder. And then I remembered magic times like that with our children. The animal rides to bed, when our little ones would climb on their daddy's back and proclaim the animal they wanted to carry them to bed. Away they would go bucking, or swaying or hopping down the hall. I remember watching the big round harvest moon come up as we stood on the roof of our house to see it peek from it's hiding place behind Mt. San Gregonio. Those were magic moments of memory that will never fade. I hope you're busy creating those magic moments with your family. Remember, kids leave home, but memories never do!

*  Think about Luke 12:34 (NKJV) "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.


#0610 PETS FOR TODDLERS by Kay Kuzma 

Toddlers are afraid of strange things they can't control. That's why strange animals, especially those that move suddenly like bunnies, lizards, or even puppies, are frightening, and may not make a good starter pets. Instead, start with a small, slow-moving animal, like caterpillars or box turtles. Then graduate to something like a guinea pig in a cage, but don't force your children to touch it if they are afraid. They will in their own time. A grown cat who doesn't mind being "man-handled" and is de-clawed makes a good starter pet. But remember, toddlers can be rather rough with small animals, so don't rush into this experience. As your children grow, become more secure in new environments, and have positive experiences with animals, their fears will subside. And in a few years your home may be filled with all kinds of creeping and crawling pets. Have fun!

*  Think about Proverbs 3:25-26 (NKJV) "Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the Lord will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught."



    When the opposing team has the ball and is running toward the end zone for a touchdown, you've got to block their advances, or they'll win the game. Temptation to follow the negative influence of peers is the same. Unless children have a good strong defense, they'll likely join them and try alcohol, smoking, drugs or other mind-altering substances. That's why parents need to help their kids develop some effective blocks against peer pressure. A healthy sense of self-worth is the most important block. When peers say, "Everyone's doing it," it takes guts to say, "Not me!" The second block is a strong set of personal values. And the third, a dynamic relationship with God. It's easier to say "no," when children believe that God created them and has given them a code of ethics to keep their bodies healthy.

Think about Psalm 141:3-4 (NKJV) "Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips. Do not incline my heart to do any evil thing..." 



    What should you do when you feel a drug abusing spouse is abusing your children? There are a number of options: A court order to keep a person away from the family can be obtained, but there must be evidence of impending danger. There are shelters for battered women and their children, and counseling is available to help these women deal with their situations and make wise decisions so the abuse can be stopped. But getting rid of the drugs is much better than getting rid of a spouse. Children need both parents. If a spouse continues to take the abuse, there is little incentive to change. The abuser needs to be confronted and the message delivered loud and clear, "Get into a drug rehabilitation program, or else!" Help is available. Get it, before drugs destroy your family!

*  Think about 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NKJV) "Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.



    Melody tried to let her daughter know she loved her by putting love notes in her lunch box and giving her an occasional hug. But each time she did, her daughter would say, "Moootheeeer," in a disgusted tone. Why is it that some children reject a parent's love? Some children are more sensitive to peer acceptance, and shun anything they think may might cause their peers to tease. In their eyes, having Mom "mush" over them is not very grown-up. If you have a child who's saying, "Moootheeeer," it doesn't mean you should stop showing her that she is loved, you just do it in different ways. Compliment her, show you approve of the things she does, and let her overhear you on the phone telling someone what a neat kid she is. Love is more than hugs and love notes. Love is unconditional acceptance.

Think about 1 Peter 1:22 (NKJV) "Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart.



    Sleeping over with friends is really tough on school-age children who wet the bed at night. Here's how you can help: Point out to your child that he can increase his chances of a dry night by not drinking anything after supper, and by going to the bathroom right before bed. Make it a policy that your child must bring his own sleeping bag. Then just to be on the safe side, pack a couple disposable pull-ups inside his bag. After the lights go out, he can quietly slip into one. A waterproof cloth "pajama" bag can be hidden in his sleeping bag and used to hide a wet diaper until it can be secretly disposed of. Confide in the supervising adult, so if peers find out and begin teasing, the adult can talk frankly about how each child is made differently, and how bladder size and soundness of sleep make it very difficult for some to keep dry at night.

*  Think about 1 John 5:14 (NKJV) "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us."



    Children who feel they have little or no control over their lives may fight to control something--and often that something is their parents! Jackie, because of financial difficulties, temporarily moved in with her folks, so most of the time there were three adults to meet her three-year-old child's needs, but the child refused his grandparent's help. If his mom was busy, he would throw a temper tantrum! This boy desperately needed to control something. He couldn't control the circumstances that removed dad from his life, or the move. So he attempted to control his mom. You must meet your children's needs, but use your common sense. Don't let your children's behavior control you or your emotions. Instead, give your children a secure environment, and areas where they can appropriately have control.

*  Think about Romans 13:1 (NKJV) "Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God."



    Children's fears are real to them, whether or not they are reasonable to you. Accept that fact and talk about their fears without ridicule. Respect their feelings, and don't expose them to things you know will upset them. When they are frightened, stay close to them or pick them up so they'll feel more secure. The key to getting rid of fear is to help children feel as secure as possible. Don't push them into new situations. In time they will be begging you to go visit their friends or see interesting places of entertainment, and you'll wish you could keep them home. Just let them decide when they're ready, and don't judge your children by what others their age are doing. They will grow out of these fears in their own time as they begin to associate the objects and places they fear with pleasant situations and people.

*  Think about Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV) "Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand."



    Why is it that parents so often give in to their children's pressure to buy them material things? Many times it's simply easier to give in, than to say no. Children have a way of wearing down parental resistance. And once they find their begging is successful, they become even more persistent, hoping it will work again. Another reason be that parents are unconsciously trying to soothe guilty consciences. When they don't or can't spend as much time with their children as they would like, it's easy it try and compensate by giving gifts. A third possible reason is that parents want to make sure their children won't lack what they lacked growing up. Children are somewhat of an extension of their folks, and parents want their children to reflect them in the most favorable light. Too many, however, hope that things will insure a good relationship. But unfortunately, it never does!

*  Think about Luke 12:48 (NKJV) . . . For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more."



When divorce is forced upon you, it's easy to feel you're riding a run-away roller coaster. You've lost control of your life. It's normal to respond by engaging in excessive, compulsive activity or by becoming detached from the rest of the world.  But you can't continue living this way for long. It's important to begin putting on the breaks and talk to someone who cares enough to tell you when you're missing the mark or wallowing in self-pity. A part of the wild roller coaster ride is confusing emotions--rage, anger, depression, guilt, hostility, and fear--that seem overwhelming. You must learn to identify and deal with your emotions. Joining a support group might help. Boldly ask for help when you need it, and don't be afraid to fail. Then learn to be creative with your solitude, and do what needs to be done. In time you'll establish a new plan for your life and will begin to enjoy the ride.

*  Think about John 10:10 (NKJV) "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."



    Once children experience sexual stimulation prematurely, through self manipulation or sexual experimentation with peers or by adult abuse, it is almost impossible for them to go back to what we call, "childhood innocence." Without thinking, these children may act in ways that they have found creates feelings of sexual pleasure, and the result is rejection by friends, increased guilt and a desire for more sexual stimulation. It's a hard cycle to break and a child may need professional help. It's not always easy to give your children the sexual information needed to satisfy curiosity without creating sexual hang-ups in the future, and yet guard them from sexual experimentation that may lead to premature sexual responses. A trip to the library may help you find just the resource you're looking for.

*  Think about Proverbs 2:12-14 (NKJV) "Discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you, to deliver you from the way of evil, from the man who speaks perverse things, from those who leave the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness." 


#0620 THE 24 HOUR WAIT POLICY by Kay Kuzma 

    If you're tired of your children nagging you to buy everything that catches their eye, you need to establish the 24 hour wait policy, and put an end to impulse buying. When a child finds something he wants, don't argue about whether you'll buy it, write it down on his want list. Make it a policy that you will only buy things that are on the want list for at least 24 hours. This avoids nagging! Later when you're home, get out the dollar bills and show your child how many it would take to purchase the item. If your child wants the toy badly enough, don't say no. Instead, encourage your child to start saving. Make a plan. Then circle the date when your child will likely have money. Impulse buying is a habit that dooms families to a lifetime of debt. The 24 hour wait policy is a good one for all ages!

*  Think about Luke 12:15 (NKJV) "Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses."


#0621 YOUNG CHILDREN'S FEARS by Kay Kuzma 

    Young children fear the unknown and not being able to control their environment, that's why the sudden movement of animals is particularly frightening. A little rabbit may evoke more fear than a big horse. Fear can be contagious. When one child is scared, others may cry, which makes the fear of the first even worse! If your child is easily frightened, it may make you feel better to know that bright children are often the most frightened at a young age because they can perceive the dangers in a situation and also are smart enough to know they don't have the skills to cope. Just remember your children's fears are real to them, whether or not they are reasonable. You must accept that fact and talk about their fears without ridicule. Avoid fearful situations, and in time fear of animals tend to subside. 

Think about Psalm 23:4 (NKJV) "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me."



    Children usually grow out of their childish fears in their own time as they begin to associate the objects and places they fear with pleasant situations. So don't get impatient. It just means for a while you are going to have to adjust your lifestyle to accommodate your child's needs. Amusement parks, petting zoos, and playgrounds may have to wait. And in the mean time make your home a secure, warm, and pleasant place to be. Cut out scary books, TV, loud music, or sudden sounds. Let them decide when they're ready for outside activities, and don't judge your children by what others their age are doing. When you venture to a new place, stay close to them. Hold them in your arms if possible. Don't violate their trust. If they think you're going to leave them or push them into a fearful activity, they will just hold on tighter, or scream louder. 

*  Think about Isaiah 43:5 (NKJV) "Fear not, for I am with you."


#0623 DON'T STOP SHOWING LOVE by Kay Kuzma 

    Just because your child resists your hug or kiss with a disgusted, "Moootherrrr," don't stop showing your love. You're just going to have to change the form to a less demonstrative way, such as giving compliments, showing approval, or celebrating successes. Most children will accept a hug or goodnight kiss in private--be satisfied with that. And remember, other children aren't huggable. Even as babies, they resist being cuddled and kissed. You may have one of those! If so, be satisfied with rubbing sore feet or an approving pat on the back. In the long run, it's not the number of kisses you plant on a child's forehead or the times you say, "I love you," that gets the love message across, it's the time you willingly spend together giving your child positive attention.  

Think about Psalm 27:4 (NKJV) "One thing I have desired of the Lord, That will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life."



    Many school age children wet the bed, but since it's not talked about openly, most parents feel theirs is the only one in the world. If bed wetting runs in the family, be honest with your child. Just knowing mom or dad had the problem can give hope. Your child doesn't have to avoid social occasions that requires staying over night, just remind the child to not drink anything after supper, and to urinate right before bedtime. Make it a policy that your child must bring his own sleeping bag. Pack a couple disposable "diapers" in it with and a waterproof bag to hide a wet one until it can be secretly disposed of. Confide in the supervising adult, so if someone finds out and starts teasing, the adult can explain how some children's bladder size and soundness of sleep make it very difficult for them to get through the night without wetting.  

Think about Psalm 25: 2 (NKJV) "O my God, I trust in You; Let me not be ashamed." 



    Around two years of age children become more autonomous. They want their own way. So it's quite common for them to rebel against those who try to control them. That's why many throw temper tantrums. When you get frustrated and angry with your children, you are allowing their behavior to control you. That's why if a child chooses to throw a tantrum, you shouldn't pay attention. Their tantrum is an attempt to control you. Your child is bright enough to come to the conclusion that it takes far too much energy to continue throwing tantrums if they don't work, and tantrums become less frequent. Children must learn that parents are not slaves ready to jump to every whim or fancy. Meet your child's needs, but use your common sense--and your child will learn more appropriate ways to communicate! That's what growing up is all about! 

Think about Psalm 25:21 (NKJV) "Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for You."



    As children grow older there are many experiences you want them to have which require them to be away from home. Summer camp, for example. An overnight school outing or a band tour. Most children look forward to being away from their parents, but others resist. When children resist, it's generally for two reasons: They're scared to be without their parent, and they don't have close friends. If it's the first, perhaps you could go along as one of the adult helpers, or help your child to establish a trusting relationship with a supervising adult. If your child doesn't have friends, begin early inviting potential friends over. It's a lot easier for a shy child to get acquainted in a one-to-one situation on home turf. Armed with one friend, the world beyond your family becomes a much more inviting place. 

* Think about Psalm 27:10 (NKJV) "When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the Lord will take care of me." 



    Some argue for the family bed, others vehemently disagree pointing out that babies who sleep alone learn self-comforting techniques and are less demanding. Where children sleep, however, is a minor factor when it comes to a child's psychological health. The most important thing is that husband and wife agree on the issue. Parental conflict, especially over something that has a direct relationship to marital intimacy and satisfaction can be much more destructive to the child's security in the long run. Healthy self-reliant babies must feel secure--but sleeping with parents isn't essential. Wherever babies are put down to sleep becomes a comfort zone. That's why when children get used to sleeping in their parent's bed, it can be tough breaking the habit, since their security is threatened. Where should baby sleep? It all depends on what you want! 

Think about Psalm 4:8 (NKJV) "I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety."


#0628 WHEN A PARENT IS ON DRUGS by Kay Kuzma 

    Drugs destroy families. The parent on drugs needs help, but first he or she needs to come to the conclusion that drugs and good relationships with the family don't mix. And to make that happen hitting the bottom is sometimes necessary. If the family continues to take abusive treatment and cover for the offender, there will be no incentive to change. A counselor can support the family in making decisions that will make it clear to the offender that it's either drugs or the family--it can't be both. Locate good sources of help so when the person is ready to quit, there is no delay in getting that person into a drug rehabilitation program. Call the county health department, look up drug rehabilitation programs in the yellow pages and call local churches to find out what support groups are available. Don't lose hope. Help is available. It is possible to kick the habit. 

*  Think about Lamentations 3:26 (NKJV) "It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord." 



    The two-year-old who is encouraged to touch the private places of an older child. Kids playing strip poker--taking advantage of the younger ones. The teenage girl who stimulates a little boy. The teenage cousin who tiptoes into the child's bedroom to take a peak. All these are examples of abusive sexual behavior among children that must be stopped. Parents shouldn't be paranoid, but neither should they put their heads in the sand. Here are five important ways to protect your children. (1) Provide good supervision, especially when you feel uncomfortable about the influence of a particular child. (2) Maintain a good, honest, and open relationship with your child. (3) Never shame your child concerning sexual things, so your child would be afraid to confide in you. (4) Teach your child to say no to uncomfortable touching. (5) Screen baby-sitters well. 

Think about Lamentations 5:21 (NKJV) "Turn us back to You, O Lord, and we will be restored."



If you're a stay-at-home mother, don't expect your husband and children to meet all your psychological needs. Chances are there will be some days when he leaves with kissing you, the kids are whining for attention, you haven't had a good night's sleep in a week, a neighbor complains about something your kids did...and you end up feeling worthless. On those days you need two additional sources to boost your psychological energy. One: an encouraging friend who affirms your personhood and the choice you have made to be a stay-at-home mother, and two: Good positive self-talk. Remind yourself that you are working for a private family firm as a relational consultant that specializes in conflict resolution, behavior modification and morality training to maximize individual potential. After all, isn't that what being a mother is all about? 

Think about Titus 2:4-5 (NKJV) ". . . Admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed." 



    When are children ready for preschool? I wish I could say when they hit three, or are potty trained. But it's not that easy. Some children may never be ready. Consider: Does your child want to go? Is he or she complaining of being bored at home and wants friends to come over? Does your child feel comfortable enough to leave mom and dad and stay with a baby sitter or friends, or does your child withdraw in new situations, need a comfort device like a blanket or pacifier, and feel uncomfortable when away from home? And can your child take care of dressing and toileting needs? All these are indications that children may be ready for experiences outside their home. Just remember, not all preschools are equal! A small home preschool may be great; an institutionalized one with 15 kids in the classroom may be too much! 

*  Think about Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NKJV) "To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven." 


#0632 EASY OBEDIENCE by Kay Kuzma 

    Easy obedience--is there such a thing? Some argue, it's impossible! But I disagree.  Parenting will always have its challenges, but your chances of experiencing the pleasure of rearing a child who is generally willing to obey will be greatly increased if you parent with the foundation of understanding love, and the willingness to meet your children's basic needs.  This doesn't mean you'll have a child who is faultless. We all make mistakes. But children who know without a shadow of a doubt that they are loved irrationally--not for any reason except that they exist--seldom have a hidden agenda of rebellion which is the primary element that makes it so tough to get kids to obey. The goal is to encourage your child to become self-disciplined, for with self-disciplined children you simply don't have to worry about obedience. 

Think about Colossians 3:20 (NKJV) "Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord." 



     I know a sure method for getting your own way: Just pound your fists on the table, stamp your feet and scream! Your children will immediately take note, and likely jump up and do whatever you want done. Now if little children acted this way, pounding their fists on a table, stamping their feet and screaming, we'd call it a temper tantrum and do whatever was necessary to stop the uncontrolled behavior. But adults? Well, most parents tend to get away with it, and for too many, a show of temper becomes the only method of getting kids to obey. Parents lose their tempers and scream at their kids because it works. The children know that when parents start screaming, punishment is going to follow. Don't fall into this trap. Instead, act before you scream, and your children will learn to obey without you having to throw a tantrum. 

*  Think about 1 Corinthians 13:11 (NKJV) "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things."



    How much respect would you have for a policeman if he got angry with you, pounded his fists on the hood of your car, stamped his feet and screamed, "Why are you double parked?!!" You might remember not to double park because you know that if you do it again you'll get a ticket. But because he lost his temper, your respect for him would be nil. A person in authority generally has to earn the respect of others. If they demand respect, you may act as if you respect them because you fear punishment, but it's merely an act. And chances are you would criticize that person behind their back, and in covert ways try to get undermine their authority. It's the same with parents and children. If you want your children to respect your authority, you must earn it.  

Think about Matthew 7:12 (NKJV) "Therefore, whatever you want men (children) to do to you, do also to them."  



     If your child isn't paying attention the first or second time you speak, try lowering your voice instead of raising it. Go over to your child, look him in the eyes and whisper your message. I know teachers who have had wonderful control over their students mainly by lowering their voice to a whisper if there was too much noise in the classroom. The students responded by being more quiet so they could hear. Or you might want to go one step further and try the silent method. Just go and stand next to your child, perhaps touching a back or arm, and don't say anything until he or she turns and looks at you. When you have your child's full attention, make your request. And if nothing else works, you could always make your request over the telephone. Somehow that always gets their attention. 

Think about 1 Kings 19:12 (NKJV) ". . . And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice."



    Based on a worldwide survey on 100,000 children who were asked what things they wanted their parents to do or not do; here is their top ten list. How do you measure up? (1) Treat all your children with equal affection. (2) Keep close to them. (3) Make their friends welcome in your home. (4) Don't quarrel in front of them. (5) Be thoughtful of each other. (6) Never lie to your children. (7) Always answer their questions. (8) Don't punish them in the presence of others. (9) Be consistent in affection and moods. (10) Concentrate on good points, not failings. Why not ask your children for their top-ten list? It should make for a great discussion around the dinner table! 

Think about Colossians 4:21 (NKJV) "Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged."


#0637 THE MAGIC OF TOUCH by Kay Kuzma 

    Every woman, as she nears her time, wonders, "How will it be?". Those who have gone before talk about the intensity of pain, the breathing, the pushing, the exhilaration of anticipation, and finally, a baby is born. Although each birth is special, there is something about the first that tugs tight at the heart and body of each mother. I remember the first. I remember exactly where I was standing, and what I was wearing when I felt that first contraction of my abdominal muscles. Then 18 1/2 hours later, the final push, the cry, and the announcement: "It's a girl!" But the magic moment was when I held this 7 1/2 pound miracle to my breast and felt the bonding tie knot the two of us together in a relationship that only a mother can understand. Ah, the power and magic of touch! 

*  Think about Isaiah 49:15 (NKJV) "Can a woman forget her nursing child, And not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you." 



    When John D. Rockefeller was 52 years of age he was broken in health and ready to die as the richest man in the United States. It was said that the veins in his arms were hard like lead pipes. He was a driven man--driven to use whatever means available to satisfy his lust for material wealth. As Rockefeller faced death he began to see himself for the greedy fool he really was. He resolved to became kind and benevolent, and began giving away millions. Instead of dying, his health steadily improved. He was also far happier in his money-giving days, than he had been in his money-making days. When he died at the ripe old age of 96 it was said that the veins in his arms were as soft as a baby's. When you're tempted to accumulate things for yourself, remember, "It is more blessed to give than to receive." (Acts 20:35) 

*  Think about 3 John 2 (NKJV) "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers." 



    Too often, we consider "I'm sorry," the magic words to make wrongs, right--regardless of whether or not they are said with meaning! Does this sound familiar? "Billy, tell him you're sorry, or else you're going to get it." Finally Billy shouts, "I'm sorry!" stamps his foot, whirls around and slams the door. Sorry? It doesn't sound like it; but he said the right words so you let him off the hook! The problem is that words alone are pretty meaningless. It's the attitude that counts. But too often force the words, "I'm sorry," and forget we can't force the attitude of repentance. It takes time to feel repentance, and it will never come in the heat of an argument--or when tempers flare. So, don't force an "I'm sorry." Instead, wait and encourage a repentant spirit. Once the child feels sorry, the words come much more easily. 

*  Think about Matthew 18:21-22 (NKJV) "O Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?" Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven."


#0640 OWNING UP TO MISTAKES by Kay Kuzma 

    Asking forgiveness has a prerequisite: you must be willing to "own-up" to your mistakes. It takes a heap of self-worth to admit you have goofed. From the beginning, people have been blaming others for their mistakes. If we can't pin the blame to anyone close at hand, we escape with the cliché, "The Devil made me do it." Kids have been known to blame anyone from Santa Claus to the Cookie Monster. Even blaming fantasy characters is better than having to take the rap yourself! So often, children blame others--tear them down--to make themselves look better. This can be a symptom of a poor self-image. If you want children who are willing to own up to mistakes and ask forgiveness, make your children feel valuable and special. Build up their confidence. Encourage them. Show them special attention and they will have less need to blame unjustly. 

Think about Matthew 7:3 (NKJV) "And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?"



    Intelligent, informed wives are sometimes the worst possible source of parenting information for the men they are married to. You'd think men would be thrilled their wives would be so interested in their self improvement that they would spend their annual book buying budget on "fathering" books. But for some reason, that's just not so. In fact, the more you push, the more they resist. Too many wives major in telling, begging, nagging, cajoling and threatening their husbands. Instead, wives need to be subtle. They need to encourage. Motivate. Reward. Some men enjoy having their wives read to them as they travel, especially if they select the book. Others may enjoy a book on tape or interesting presentations that they can listen to during drive time. Or maybe a gift certificate for a weekend seminar may interest them. Just don't push. 

Think about Proverbs 19:13 (TLB) ". . . a nagging wife annoys like constant dripping." 


#0642 WORDS TO LIVE BY by Kay Kuzma 

    What we feed our minds, we become. Think back over the last 24 hours, what words have you given your children to inspire them to become everything they were born to be? Not all of us were born with a positive, optimistic spirit--some of us have to work on it. Often, however, when you meet a person that just exudes hope, you find that person had a parent who pumped him full of proverbs and axioms that eventually became a philosophy of life. I grew up on Ben Franklin's Almanac and a healthy dose of proverbs. Now, forty some years later, when I'm tempted to stay up past my bedtime, I still hear those words, "Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man, healthy, wealthy and wise." And when I'm angry and feel like spouting off, the words flash into my mind, "A soft answer turns away wrath." 

Think about Proverbs 15:23 (NKJV) "And a word spoken in due season, how good it is!"



    It's easy to fall in love. The challenge is to keep your romance alive during the busy years with children, mortgages, and career ladders. Try these ideas: (1) Write the story of how you met. Then spend a quiet evening together reminiscing. (2) List your mate's best qualities in alphabetical order. Frame it as a gift. (3) Notice the little changes in appearance, and compliment liberally.(4) Go swimming (skinny-dipping?) in the middle of the night. (5) Write a love poem for your mate. (6) Stop in the middle of your busy day and call your spouse just to say, "I love you." (7) Create our own special holiday. (8) Watch the sunset together. (9) Give your mate a foot massage. (10) In a crowd, whisper something romantic.(11) Kiss in the rain. (12) Wink from across the room. 

Think about Proverbs 5: 18 (NKJV) "And rejoice with the wife of your youth."



    You may have been trained for a successful career, but do you know how to be a successful family member? Healthy families stick up for each other, look out for each other, and give up individual rights and wants for the good of the family. Here are some ways how you can promote loyalty in your family: Role play typical put-downs and then discuss how it makes you feel. Then role play a better way to handle it. Surprise each other with nice things. Or give each other "car wash day" where all day you "wash" the other with compliments and kind deeds. If one is performing, make sure the whole family is in the cheering section. Cook and wash dishes together. In fact, the more things you choose to do together, the more you'll understand each other, and be willing to help meet each other's needs. 

*  Think about Proverbs 3:25 (NKJV) "Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so."



    Traveling with children can sometimes be a challenge, so here are some suggestions that may make your next vacation more enjoyable. Start out by planning ways to enjoy the trip--not just the destination. Don't drive more than an hour at a time. At home, most young children don't stay put for more than a few minutes, so don't have unreasonable expectations for them in the car. Then make a pit stop at a playground, or plan jump roping or tag games before starting out again. Before your trip, check out story tapes from the library for the children to listen to in the car, or be willing to read them a continued story. Don't make the children sit in the same place all the time. When the children get bored with each other in the back seat, trade places with one of them.  

Think about John 13:17 (NKJV) "If you know these things, happy are you if you do them."



    One of the biggest hassles of parents is to get the family out of the house in the morning and be on time to appointments such as school, work or church. The more the children can do to get themselves ready, the easier it will be. Make a list for each, stating the time they should wake up and when various activities are to be completed. If they beat the time you have established, reward them. The more you can have prepared the night before, the better. Choose the clothes that are to be worn, fix lunches, or set the breakfast table. Keep the breakfast simple. And if you are worried about spills, let the children eat in their pajamas. Allow fifteen extra minutes. Something always seems to go wrong when you're rushed. And children don't respond well under pressure. Slow down, plan wisely and chances are you can make it on time! 

Think about Psalm 40:1 "I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me. . ."



    Most children get far too many gifts. One present, that children can play with in a variety of situations, is far better than dozens of little trinkets that are likely to get lost and broken. But the greatest gifts of all, you can't buy. Here are some examples: Why not give your children a couple hours of your time doing what they want to do. Fly a kite, roast marshmallows, feed the ducks, play catch. A great keepsake for the future would be a scrapbook of answered prayers your family has experienced. Most school age children would appreciate a coupon that says, "This coupon is good for one full pardon when you make a mistake." Write a love message to your child and have it framed. And perhaps the best gift of all--a smile of approval and a hug! 

Think about Matthew 7:11 (NKJV) "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!"



    Knowing what factors contribute to delinquency, can help parents prevent it. Here's what kids who have gotten in trouble say contributed to their demise. Their parents were too busy to listen or supervise. Many kids get into trouble because they are bored, or they misbehave to try to get their parent's attention. The second way to raise a delinquent is to find fault with everything the child does. Criticize, threaten, and ridicule the child when he fails. If children find it too difficult to get their parent's approval, they eventually give up, say, "Who cares?" and rebel. Kids who break the law, often have parents who fail to discipline them when they do wrong. Ignoring wrong-doing doesn't make it go away! Finally, teaching your children "an eye for an eye" philosophy is quite likely to eventually get them into trouble. Instead, practice the Golden Rule. 

Think about Proverbs 22:6, "Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it."



    Have you taught your children how to be good neighbors? Many families don't even know their neighbor's names; and the more crowded the community, the more isolated families tend to become. That's why parents must actively teach their children how to be good neighbors. Start by saying "hello" or waving every time you see your neighbors. And use their names so your greeting is more personal. Find out their birthdays or anniversaries. Send them cards, take over a gift, or plan a surprise party. When you know that a neighbor is going on vacation, ask what you can do to help them while they're away. When you bake cookies or bread, make some extra and surprise your neighbors with a homemade treat. Plan a yearly block party: Celebrate July 4th or Labor Day together with an outdoor picnic and games. It's a great way to increase community spirit. 

Think about Proverbs 18:24 (NKJV) "A man who has friends must himself be friendly." 



    What should you do when preschoolers crawl into your bed in the middle of the night? You could scoot over, wait, and carry your sleeping child back. It's a stage children eventually grow out of by eight or ten. But what if you are a light sleeper, enjoy the intimacy of sleeping alone with your spouse, or have four kids who all want to sleep with you? Children who are otherwise secure, can learn to sleep in their own bed. Just immediately take the child back to bed. It may take you a dozen times a night for a week, but if you never allow children the reward of getting into your bed, they will eventually give up. Or when you go to bed lock your bedroom door. When things get quiet, you'll probably find your child asleep outside your door, and can carry him or her back to bed. Just make sure your child feels secure and his bedroom is a pleasant place. 

Think about Proverbs 23:12 (NKJV) "Apply your heart to instruction, and your ears to words of knowledge." 

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