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Godly Men Still Exist, with Evelyn Husband Thompson, Christina Fox, and Robert Wolgemuth
Restore your faith in godly masculinity. Celebrate and honor the strong, godly men in this Grounded episode with Evelyn Husband Thompson, Christina Fox, and Robert Wolgemuth.
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Portia Collins: If you've ever wondered where all the good men have gone, then this episode is for you. I’m Portia Collins, and this is Grounded.
Dannah Gresh: And I am Dannah Gresh. Portia Collins, get …
Restore your faith in godly masculinity. Celebrate and honor the strong, godly men in this Grounded episode with Evelyn Husband Thompson, Christina Fox, and Robert Wolgemuth.
Connect with Christina
Connect with Robert
Portia Collins: If you've ever wondered where all the good men have gone, then this episode is for you. I’m Portia Collins, and this is Grounded.
Dannah Gresh: And I am Dannah Gresh. Portia Collins, get off of my soapbox, because I think that question where have all the good men gone is asked far too often. Listen, I'm very excited about this because yesterday was Father's Day. I was wondering, do the men in our lives feel celebrated? I mean, look at the headlines. The word I see associated most often with masculinity in the headlines and on social media is “toxic.”
But we are here to tell you today that there are strong, godly men out there. They're loving their families while serving their church as well, running businesses well, following Christ well, and we want to honor them today. We want to invite you to express your appreciation for the good men in your world. Because we really feel like staying silent is being culpable in reinforcing what for some young men is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy that they're supposed to be toxic. And we are saying “no way” to that. God is calling all men to be good.
Portia: Amen, amen. Yeah.
Dannah: I got on my soapbox there, didn't I? I'm sorry.
Portia: You did, you did. It's perfectly fine, though. And listen, guys, we're not saying that all men are good, but there are a whole lot of them that are okay.
Portia: Evelyn Husband Thompson is with us. You may not know her name, but I bet you will remember parts of her story. Her good man was on the space shuttle Columbia back in the 1990s. Okay, and we are still learning from his life today.
Dannah: That is right. I remember that day. I remember that story of the space shuttle Columbia; you probably do too. Christina Fox is also here. She's the author of a new book titled Like Our Father. It's all about how God parents us. Isn't that a cool concept? She's going to open God's Word with us. And hey, Portia, Robert Wolgemuth is in the house today.
Now you probably know him as the husband and founder of Revive Our Hearts, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth. He's also a best-selling author and has helped launch many of the authors you know and love into their careers as a literary agent. He’s stopping by so we can hear it straight from the horse's mouth: What can we do as women to honor the men in our lives?
Portia: Absolutely. I'm looking forward to it. I think this is gonna be an awesome episode. But it is not Grounded without good news. And it is most certainly not Grounded without Erin Davis. So, Erin . . . .
Dannah: That’s for sure.
Portia: What is our good news this morning?
Erin Davis: Good morning, girls. I actually need some help for good news today. So, Dannah and Portia, stay right where you are, because I need your help. And those of you who are watching this live, I need your help, too, because good men are the good news this morning. We want to take just a minute and honor the godly men in our lives.
Let me introduce you to my Pop. There's a picture we have of him doing something funny with a fork. That was one of his best tricks. He can hold a fork or a spoon with one hand. And that's my beautiful Grandma Virginia who got tired of that trick, I think about 50 years before this photo was taken, you can tell on her face.
But we always loved it. My Pop was in the army in World War II. He was D-Day plus four. So, four days after we invaded Normandy, he drove a truck onto that sandy beach, which was a turning point for the war. He also one time went out looking for souvenirs, he went on his own, and he happened to scare up seven Nazis who were hiding. He didn't have a gun, but they didn't know that. He marched those seven Nazis back to camp, and one of them had some secret papers in his sleeve.
Dannah: Oh, wow!
Erin: So, he was among the greatest generation. But what I want you to know about my Pop is that he loved the same woman for more than 60 years. He loved his kids. My mom was one those. He loved his grandkids. That little blonde had a boy on the side of that couch is my Eli who's now 14, and that's Pop in the middle of it. Pop loved the Lord. I can tell you that Pop is one of the few people in my life who was never disappointed in me. He always loved me no matter how I was. When you were in his presence, you knew you were loved. So Pop was one of the good ones. I can't wait to see him and glory. Sometimes we talk about, “I want to see Paul, I want to see Moses after I see Jesus,.” I want to be with Pop. And I can't do an episode…
Dannah: Wait a second, Erin, you make an error, and you didn't even take a breath. I can hardly get this in there. I'm so amazed at what you said. He sounds like a man I would like to meet. But I can hold a spork and a spoon with one hand.
Erin: You can?
Dannah: I'm saying I feel like everybody can. If you're listening to the podcast version, you need an explanation because . . .
Erin: You can do it like this. Yeah, he did it so that he was touching the end with like a thumb and a pinky, which I cannot do.
Dannah: The podcast viewers are like, “Erin why are you so amazed? Like I hold a fork and a spoon with one hand every day.”
Portia: They’ve got to come check the video. It was amazing.
Erin: It was amazing. Yeah. You gotta come see the video just so you can see my Pop. What a sweet guy.
Dannah: Yeah, those are good pictures.
Erin: Yeah. I cannot do an episode on good men without mentioning my men. That is my legacy right there. That's Jason Davis, the man the love of my life and our four sons. He is a man of integrity. He is a man of honor. He is raising those four boys to be men of integrity and honor, and those men are young men and boys. They bless me every single day. So, they're my good news.
Dannah: Portia, what about you?
Portia: Well, let me tell you, I am so thrilled at the opportunity to talk about one of my favorite men. It is my father-in-law, Tom Collins, also known as Papa. That’s what Emmi calls him.
Erin: Oh, look at Papa.
Dannah: That is a good picture. Good picture. The podcast listeners are definitely gonna have to get on video this week.
Portia: Yes. And you could tell from that picture that they are just two peas in a pod. Okay. There are a million things that I could say about my father-in-law. I like to call him Daddy Tom. Since the day that Mikhail introduced us, he has always been just so kind and loving toward me.
In fact, I have never felt like a daughter-in-law. I've always felt like a daughter. He just shares so much wisdom and grace and patience. I call him my one-call-that’s-all man, because if I call him and say Daddy Tom, I need some help, he is literally on the way like before I can hang up the phone.
So, he's just a constant encouragement to me. And not only has he encouraged me, but so many others from those in his congregation. He's a pastor to those in the community. He is very active in his community. I'm just grateful to be able to witness his life and his love for the Lord and His love for the women in his life and his children. And when I think of good godly men, there is no doubt that Tom Collins is at the top of my list. So I love you, Daddy Tom.
Dannah: Oh wow! You guys picked family members. And you were so serious. I I went a little different direction. Am I allowed to be a little silly Erin? Like, what are the game rules today?
Erin: You’re allowed to be silly.
Dannah: I think it's fitting to honor the good men on the Grounded team. There are a whole bunch of them that push all the buttons. I'm not talking about our buttons. They don't push our buttons. They push the buttons in the control studio. They coach us up when our equipment here in our home studios don't work—which is like every week.
Erin: Yeah, every week.
Dannah: But I think one of the coolest things about the Revive Our Hearts ministry is how many men want to help lift women up and encourage them in their lives and bring them closer to the Father. So, I just think that is so cool. So, let's give a great shout out to them. They encourage us after every episode. They even provide biblical insight on some weeks that just is awesome. You know, we also have a lot of fun with them.
Dannah: Would you say Portia. I think they heard you. I don't know, but I think it got through. All right. We have a lot of fun. We have so much fun with the men on the Grounded team. I don't have photos of all of them. I wish I did. But here are two of them doing shenanigans. This is Phil Krause in his headphones. Again, podcast listeners, you're just gonna need to get on YouTube this week.
This is us when we were still in lockdown. He was just silly as he was coaching me up. And this is Tom. Now, Tom smiles. He's not smiling here in this photo because he's giving his deadpan face, because he has written the name Dinah Gresh on the clapboard, because you know, why not? They keep us laughing. Don't you think? Sometimes the laughter lightens us up and does away with our nerves.
Erin: Well, thank you to Tom for putting “Someone's in the kitchen with Dinah” in my head now. I'm singing that song. But we also want to thank Nathan, Hugh, Graham, Mac. These are all men who are behind what we call the digital curtain. You're probably never gonna see that or bearded faces on Grounded. Some of them have beards. But they are part of what makes this happen. So, fellas, you better hope Dannah doesn't ever find a silly picture of you, because she's proven today she will broadcast it out. But we could not do Grounded without these good men. Week after week we pray together, we talk about each episode. Their desire is to serve you.
So, I told you I was gonna need your help with good news. It's your turn. Who are the good men in your life? Who protects, who guides, who goes to work every day and provides? We want to hear about them. This is just a good practice just to affirm our men. So, use that chat feature, that comment feature if you're watching later, and brag on a man in your life. We hope when you turn off this episode, you're going to be equipped and eager to celebrate good godly men. So, let's start now.
Dannah: Amen. Well, let's get Grounded with God's people. Remember back with me? Where were you on February 1 the year 2003. Hmm, that one's too tough. Let's try this. Where were you when the news of the space shuttle Columbia disaster broke? Some of you are going to remember that. You know, the second greatest tragedy in the NASA space program was the space shuttle Columbia disaster where the shuttle broke up upon reentry, killing all seven of those brave crew members. You probably remember that. Here with us today is a woman who remembers the details of that day with painful accuracy. My guest is Evelyn Husband Thompson. Her husband, Rick Husband, was one of the good men who died on that day. Welcome to Grounded, Evelyn.
Evelyn Husband Thompson: Good morning. Thank you.
Dannah: Hey, tell us about Rick.
Evelyn: He was a great guy. We met in college. Even though we grew up in the same hometown of Amarillo, Texas, and went to the same high school, he was a year ahead of me in school. We didn't meet until college. We dated all through college. On our very first date, I asked him what he wanted to do in life. He said, “I want to be an astronaut.” Nobody had ever said that to me before, but it was really interesting, and he was serious. He pursued this since he was little. So, we dated all through college and married after he finished pilot training.
Dannah: Wow, that's beautiful. Yeah, you don't get that on every date. “I want to be an astronaut.” Well, on January 16, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia took off from the Kennedy Space Center. A piece of the installation damaged the wing when it was taking off. Did you know on that day that the crew was going to have trouble on reentry, Evelyn?
Evelyn: Absolutely not. Nobody knew. Nobody had any idea.
Dannah: So just three days before your husband was scheduled to land on January 28, you observed three really special anniversaries. What were those three things that happened on January 28?
Evelyn: They started really early for me. I got my kids up before dawn, which was taboo in this house. We drove to Johnson Space Center to have a video chat with Rick on the space shuttle. So, this was our second one. It was a very significant day because it was an anniversary of Rick's and my first date. We had our first date back in 1977. So this was the anniversary of that. We'd always remembered that. And so, his very first words to me that early morning were, “Happy dating anniversary.”
We also had the anniversary of the Challenger accident, which had happened in 1986. And so, we were very mindful of that. And Rick went on later that day to commemorate and remember and honor the Challenger crew. It was just a very significant day. It was the last day we actually ever spoke. Dannah, we had no idea that that was gonna be the case. It was the last time I ever heard his voice, and the words he spoke were, “I love you,” and those were my words to him.
Dannah: Oh, precious. Well, where were you that day just a few days later when the news broke that the shuttle had in fact exploded.
Evelyn: So, the night before my children Laura, Matthew, ( Laura was 12, Matthew was 7) and I traveled to Florida with the rest of the Columbia families. We're extremely excited to see our family members the next day welcome them that morning on February 1. We all stood on the runway at Kennedy Space Center anticipating their return. We get here the audio while we were waiting of the crew interfacing with mission control. So we were not alarmed. There were no concerns, and there was an expected silence period as they were reentering the earth's atmosphere. So again, there was no concern. The concern only began when they could not reconnect with the crew at the designated time.
Dannah: What went through your heart, your mind, when you realize what had happened,
Evelyn: It's very difficult. It was extremely shocking. Obviously, it was a trauma. So, everything was real, but it seemed to go in slow motion. My huge concern was for my children. We really didn't have answers at that point. Most of the world was already seeing video on the TV of the streaks of the vehicle broken apart going across the Texas sky. In East Texas, we had not seen that. So, we were waiting for information. My first instinct was just to be with my children and take care of them and to find out the truth, to find out what was going on.
Dannah: Yeah, you know, your husband was a good man. He did a brave thing. Every astronaut that ever went up into space knew they were risking their lives for the advancement of society. I wonder, you've had time, many years now to think. What do you think Rick would have said about what happened that day? What do you think he would have said to us?
Evelyn: Well, he knew it was a calculated risk. Our lives are all filled with that. It's a calculated risk to get out of bed in the morning, but we felt like it's worth it. And so, he felt like this was something of great value. He wanted more than anything for people to know about Jesus, so much so, that on his contingency sheet that he wrote out just in case something happened was to tell them about Jesus, that Jesus is real to him. So, I think that more than anything, that's the legacy that Rick wanted to leave, not only with me and Laura and Matthew, but the world. I've done my best to honor that. It was more than anything. It was crucial to him that Laura and Matthew had a relationship with Jesus. So, he made videotapes, for each one that they listened to every morning while he was in space. He recorded those in the midst of 1,000 million other things he had to do. It was very, very much a priority to him.
And so, each morning, Laura watched her tape and Matthew watched his. It was about five minutes long. He would read from their devotional books like he did here at home, and pray with them, read the Bible verse, a little story, and then just talk to them and say a prayer with them, just like he did at home. That was very important to him. And because of that, since he died at an early age within my children's lives, he's left a legacy.
Dannah: How beautiful. That's what good men do. They leave a legacy. And you know what you're saying? It's these good men . . . We know him as an astronaut who flew up into space. But it is what we are in private that really proves who we are. And it's far more than we ever are in public.
And you're saying that in the middle of getting ready to travel to space, he knew that planting the truth of God's Word and the love of Jesus Christ into his children was so important that he took time to make those videos for his children. Now, that right there to me is the example of a good man, Evelyn. I think sometimes today, women are not supporting their good, godly men in the way that God wants us to. That's because we have so much stress and other pressures on us and other ideologies and thinking pressing upon us. So, what tip do you have for us as wives, mothers, brothers of good men? How do you think we can honor and support men like your husband, Rick.
Evelyn: I feel like it's really important to understand that the enemy strategy is to confuse and distract. And so, all of us are bombarded with information every single day with way more tasks than we can possibly accomplish in a day. And so, even though we're good women, and they're good men, we live, distracted. And so, one of the most powerful things you can do is to be still and to pray. One of the most powerful things I feel that I have done to support Rick throughout his career was just to pray for him. He knew I was praying for him each step of the way. We prayed together every single day. We prayed over our children, and we prayed for each other. I don't think there's anything more powerful than that, to be still before the Lord.
Dannah: Yeah. And you know, I want to say that if you're married to a man whose character is like Rick Husband, pray. But if you're listening to this and you're thinking, but that's not the man I'm married to, and that's not the son that I had hoped to raise. He's a prodigal right now. It’s all the more important that you do the very same thing. Pray that God would speak to their hearts and bring them to a place of goodness in their lives, goodness, according to His Word.
Evelyn, I'm also thinking about widows who are grieving their good men missing them. I sat with one just this weekend who was at the graduation party of her granddaughter. She just lost her husband this past year. I said, “How are you today?”
She said, “I miss him so much.”
God does go on to heal. He does go on to bring good men into your life, sometimes, even as husbands. Tell us about the man you call the second love of your life.
Evelyn: So, Bill Thompson is an amazing man. We knew each other from church. I knew his grown children from church. His son was actually my daughter's teacher when Rick died. Bill and I didn't know each other that well, but I have so much respect and love for him. We married almost 15 years ago. And we have learned so much together. I asked Bill a question preparing for this interview about how do I best encourage him. He said the very same thing I just shared with you: praying for him and giving him undivided attention when we have conversations. Those are two of the most powerful things that I can possibly do. And when you mentioned the protocols, and all of that. I just think it's so important as women to absolutely love and honor these men. But most of all, our priority needs to be our relationship with God. God is perfect; men are not. And when we have our eyes on Jesus, everything else falls into place.
Dannah: That is a good word of wisdom to end on. Thank you Evelyn Husband for being Evelyn Husband Thompson. You are a blessing and an encouragement to so many of us. Thank you. You can get all the details of Evelyn's story by getting a copy of her book High Calling. The subtitle is The Courageous Life and Faith of Space Shuttle Columbia Commander Rick Husband. It's cowritten by a mutual friend of mine and Evelyn's, Donna VanLeer.
Erin: I will never think of that event in American history the same way. I love knowing there was a good man aboard that space shuttle who's now with Jesus.
We’ll spend just a few minutes with Robert Wolgemuth, and you will know you're in the presence of a good man. He loves his wife, Nancy. He loves his daughters and his grandchildren. Just ask him about them, and he'll tell you. And more than that, he loves the Lord. He has a real heart to see men and families thriving. So, let me be among those to tell you, “Happy Father's Day, Robert.”
Robert Wolgemuth: Thank you, Erin Davis. What a precious girl you are. Good to see you and hear your voice.
Erin: Well, no pressure, but you're here to represent all men this morning. What effect does the encouragement of a woman—his wife, his mom, a woman that he works with maybe—have on a man's desire to be good?
Robert: Wow, what a great question. And the answer is that how a man acts has so much to do with what you've just described. I have the joy of being married to Nancy, as you mentioned. This past week, we celebrated our 79th anniversary.
Erin: All right. You’ve got to explain.
Robert: On the 14th of every month, we celebrate an anniversary. We were married as of this past week, 79 months. The 14th of every month gives me a chance to honor my sweet, precious girl. We talked about this last week, not even remembering this conversation that I was going to have with you.
One of the things that Nancy does . . . First of all, this is a very strong woman. Those people, those friends of ours who are watching this are going, “Really? Nancy DeMoss is strong?” Oh yeah, she's amazing. But she has willingly allowed me to lead. I can't tell you what that does to a man that he knows that he's not in a fistfight for the leadership of his home and his relationship. I think many women by default, maybe because the guy is acquiescing and not doing his job, but will fill that role if he doesn't.
So, here's a very simple thing I mentioned this last week to Nancy. When we're driving in the car, we pull into a parking spot or into the garage, anywhere, she waits in the car. She waits for me to get out my side, walk around the back of the door of the car, and open her door.
Now, that really sounds old fashioned to a lot of people. But that gives me a chance to be the gentleman. Not every woman wants to do that, not every man wants to do that. But that's an example, I would call it exhibit A, of Nancy giving me the kind of respect that really gets my attention. It really alerts me to the joy of leadership, and loving her as a good shepherd, as the kind of leader that the Lord would want me to be. So that may sound like a little thing. But giving me the chance to serve her is a great opportunity to love her in a way that I think I am made to love my wife.
That's one little example. There isn't anybody who's listening to this, Erin, who doesn't say, “Well, I could do that.” I'm just gonna say, this isn't for everybody. But I'm gonna say that a lot of guys, if their wife would wait and give him a chance to lead and serve, that would mean more to him than you can possibly imagine. So that's just a little, maybe silly, example. But that's something that Nancy Leigh DeMoss does.
Erin: I think it's gold at the Davis household. It's waiting in the car, yes. But it’s also just learning to wait to speak, just let the man form his thoughts. If I will just let the man make a decision, I tell him all the time, his batting average is amazing. He makes excellent decisions when I will just let them make the decision. Whether it's opening the car door, or where we go to eat ,or where we go on vacation, or any number of things.
Robert, one of my favorite memories of you was when we were at your place, and we went out on your boat. You let each one of my four boys drive the boat. Now, I think you were secretly driving. I don't think they were actually driving. But they like rose to that occasion that they were given, just a little ego. They got to take the wheel. So, take it aside from wives. Not everybody who's watching is married. Many of us are moms or grandmas. How do we raise up that goodness in our children when they're still just boys? What are some things that you think might work there?
Robert: That's a great example. Could I drive the boat better than your boys? Yeah, probably. I have more experience. Yeah, no doubt. What am I saying to them by moving out of my seat, having them sit down, take the wheel. And I really did let them drive. Of course, with a boat there's less immediate danger than going down the highway at 70 miles an hour. Right. But what I'm saying to them is, “I respect you. I trust you. I think you'll do a great job at this.” And a young boy or husband will rise to that occasion. If you set the bar high and say, “I believe in you. I know you can do this.” Then he will. That's an incredible opportunity for a woman to help her husband, the man in her life, her sons or grandsons, to step up and be the man that he really would love to be.
Erin: That's so good. I'm gonna tell you a little secret. Sometimes when my boys watch Grounded (I hope they're not watching this episode) . . . But I don't mind killing spiders. I'm not really a girly girl. I don't mind to squish them. I just kind of go on with life. But lately, I've been calling my boys in and saying, “Oh, there's a spider in here. Can you kill it for Mommy?” And they're like, they stand up really straight and their shoulders kind of square. Because they've been called to save their mommy from this spider. It really is all of those little things. But you've been talking this language that women don't talk. Women talk the language of love. I love you. Men, I think, speak the language of respect. So, could you give us some just some words or some phrases that we can say that would encourage goodness in the men around us?
Robert: Well, recognition of what your man does if you're married, or your sons; speaking gracious words, “I love the way you did so and so.” When I serve Nancy, and I do, by my own volition, I do the dishes every night.
Erin: Holy cow.
Robert: She doesn't always say thank you. But almost every night she will recognize that. I am so motivated by gratitude and recognition. Nancy takes the time to notice, and then she speaks gracious words of gratitude. That’s huge; that's so motivating. Most men are not motivated by people saying, “Don't do it that way.” They are motivated by people waiting long enough for them to do it right and then saying, “Well done. I love the way you did” whatever it was. Nancy is brilliant at that, at taking the time, to recognize when I do something, right. That's incredibly motivating.
Erin: It's so, so good. Lots of gold nuggets for us to put in our pockets. Robert, you are a good man. And you've done a lot of good kingdom work. I don't want to say goodbye to you without giving you a chance to talk about Gun Lap, because the idea of that book is that men can rise to the occasion at any phase of life. It's not too late, right? Tell us a little bit about that book, that project.
Robert: Gun Lap. The metaphor of the book is that last lap of a long-distance race around the track. The starter often fires the pistol again, and that's called the gun lap. So, I wrote a book a year and a half ago that gives a man an opportunity to run that last lap really well. It has been so much fun Erin to speak with men around the world who are grateful for that conversation. I really consider it a conversation back in the corner of a coffee shop, me and the reader, talking through failures, my own failures, challenging him to live this last lap very well, to honor his family, to honor the Lord. I challenge him to step up, maybe, even though he doesn't have the energy. I mean, at our age, you do lose a lot of drive, a lot of ability to run and step up like you should. But it's a word of encouragement, hopefully. I've heard from lots of men who have been very encouraged by this book. So, I would say if you're 50 years old or older, or you know somebody that's 50 years old or older, Gun Lap is the ticket.
Erin: It's great. We're gonna drop the link for that book. Robert, you're one of the good ones. Thanks for being on Grounded.
Robert: Thanks, Erin. I love you, friend.
Erin: Love you too.
Well, in a world that is very overtly trying to erase the differences between men and women, we want to celebrate those differences as good and as God given. So, here's a short clip of Joni Eareckson Tada, a gifted Bible teacher and a woman who loves Jesus and has loved her man for a long time. She's got some thoughts on those differences between us.
Joni Eareckson Tada: Men are good at relationships. They're good at reaching out, connecting, relating. And it's a good thing, because God is interested in relationships. So, I think today's woman is one who is able to take this, this innate giftedness, this ability to relate and find creative ways to share the love of Christ in this postmodern, post-Christian, anti-biblical, and for the most part, self-absorbed generation.
The differences between men and women have been so mitigated. There has been such a concerted effort to minimize the differences between the sexes, between men and women, that honestly women have lost their feminine bearings. Well, today's Christian woman can truly model through genuine relationships what it means to be female, to be loved by God, and to be a friend to and to relate to others. God is looking for a woman, any woman, who will take hold of Daniel chapter 11, verse 32, where it says, the people who know their God will display strength and take action.
I tell you, when we obey God, we are male or female, when we follow Him, when we desire Him, choose Him. Women are on the true path of femininity, and men begin to discover their masculinity. Because it says we are hidden with Christ in God. Even our femaleness is hidden with Christ in God. And that means the closer we get to Jesus Christ, the more feminine we will be, we can't help it. We just can't help it. Because we will discover our femaleness in Him and men as they grow closer to Jesus Christ will be truly masculine
Erin: Well, that's an older video, 12 years old. But I don't think that problem has gone away. Joni Eareckson Tada articulated some really deep, really powerful truth, in that short clip. Joni is going to be at True Woman ‘22. She'll be joining us via video. And that's just another good reason to join us there. Dannah is going to be there. Portia going to be there. I'm going to be there. Nancy is going to be there. I bet Robert is going to be there. And we want you to be there. So, we're going to drop the registration link in case you've not yet made plans to join us.
Well, it's time to get grounded in God's Word. Our guests already have been pointing us to God's truth. But Christina Fox is here. She's the mother of two young men. She's the author of a book called Like Our Father. She's gonna open her Bible with us. Christina, we're so glad to have you on Grounded. What passage are we going to be studying this morning?
Christina Fox: Thanks so much for having me. Yeah, I'm just gonna be looking at an admonition from Paul in Colossians 3, verses 12 and 13. As you mentioned, I have this book out, Like Our Father: How God Parents Us and Why That Matters to Our Parenting. I loved hearing these great stories of fathers and men, good men in our life. But this book is about our Father, our perfect Father in heaven. And so, I talked a bit about just the different characteristics of His Fatherhood, how He parents us, and then what that means for us in our own parenting.
I think one of the characteristics that really stands out to me the most, and probably because I struggle with it the most, is the Lord's patience toward me. I do talk about that a bit in the book. I don't know if this has ever happened to you, but each week when I get ready to go to the grocery store, I go to my pantry. I open it up. I look inside to see what's missing and what I need to restock up on. I see everything in there and what's missing. I write it down. I go the store, fill my cart, come back.
As I'm unloading groceries, I start to realize there's all these empty boxes in my pantry. All those things I thought I had were actually empty boxes of granola bars, cereal, whatever. I can't count how many times I've said to myself, “How many times do I have to tell my kid to not leave empty boxes in the pantry?” I find myself getting irritated and impatient. Because I could have bought more of those items, but I thought I had them. That's certainly a little thing that happens to me on a regular basis. But there are many other situations in which I find myself impatient with my children. And I find myself asking myself, “How many times do I have to teach them this lesson or ask them to do something or remind them of a rule?” those kinds of things.
But my perfect Father in heaven reminds me gently of all the times that He has taught me things over and over in my life. And He says how many times, if I taught you lessons on contentment? That's certainly a lesson I know; I've learned more than once. Lessons on trusting in the Lord's provision in my life. Many times I encounter a new situation where I'm concerned, “Will we have enough money? Will I have enough strength to do something?” And the Lord reminds me, “Yes, you will. Do you remember when I taught you this before?” And so patience is definitely an area in my life where I struggle as a parent. But I think that the apostle Paul really reminds me of the Lord's patience.
Paul is known for giving instructions, but not giving them without the gospel connected to it. And he does that in Colossians, as well. And then Colossians 3 he says, starting in verse twelve, “Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”
And it convicts me because too often I'm like that, that servant that was forgiven of much and then went after a fellow servant who owed him just a little. He went after him and demanded that he pay him back. With my own kids I so often forget how much I have been forgiven, how patient the Lord has been with me, how often He teaches and reteaches me and reminds me of truth that I’d forgotten. But with my kids, I quickly forget. So passages like this remind me of my good and perfect Father in heaven and how He parents me and encourages me so that I in turn can parent out of what the Lord does in my life, out of that grace that He has given me.
And so, when it's time for me to go to the grocery store, again, at the end of the weekend, and I open up my pantry and realize that there's empty boxes. I do have to remind myself that I just have to reteach my kids the same lesson, just as the Lord does for me.
Dannah: Thanks so much, Christina, for being with us today. You know, I feel like the Lord just has to keep reteaching me lessons over and over again. I've finally given up on learning it for good. He just keeps having to remind me. So, thanks for that reminder today from God's Word. It was a joy to have you.
You know, if you've been listening today, and you've been thinking, Wow, this is a different way of talking about masculinity, a different way about talking about fatherhood, a different way of talking about men, and you have questions. You might even have a little bit of a stirring in you like, I'm not sure I should be agreeing with it. That's okay. Get into the Word of God. Test what we're saying. But we believe that God created men to be good and that we can respond to that goodness with encouragement and support. Let me give you a few tools that might be helpful if you need some help following up on this program.
First of all, since Robert was with us, I was just thinking of Lies Men Believe which Robert wrote, in response to Nancy, his wife's, book Lies Women Believe. That would be a great place to start. There is some incredible research that really does tell us that because our boys keep hearing this message of toxic masculinity, that there is a little bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy rising up in them. They're losing their goodness. We need to plant the truth in them about what God says. So, it might be your husband, it might be your son, your adult son, but get them a copy of Lies Men Believe, especially if you forgot Father's Day yesterday, this is a great opportunity to revisit that.
I also want to just talk with you if your marriage is hurting, maybe your marriage is in a hard place, and this program was hard for you to listen to. There are seasons in all marriages where it's hard to honor your man. I know, I've been there; we all have. I want to give you a little bit of hope by sharing a link to a teaching that my good man Bob and I did together at a past Revive Our Hearts conference about a time when our marriage was facing some challenges. And the message title says it all. It's called, “Need Help Loving That Man.” If you need that help, check on that link.
Portia and I also wanted to recommend the Revive Our Hearts podcast episode. She brought it to light, “The Way to Make Men Feel Respected.” So, a ReviveOurHearts.com classic. Go ahead and Google it. “The Way to Make Men Feel Respected.” We will also drop a link in the show notes for you.
Erin: Good episode. Girls, the Lord's been doing something in my life for probably the past, I don't know, six weeks to two months related to all this. It bubbled back in up in my heart as Evelyn was talking. I felt convicted that when it comes to Jason. I've been a good wife, but not a good friend. And when it comes to my boys, I've been a good mom, but not a good friend. I don't just spend time with them. I don't play catch in the backyard. I don't have fun. And I have intentionally been being a good friend to my husband and sons and what a difference it has made. I think that’s part of what Evelyn and Robert were communicating to us. So, if you walk away from this and you go, “I don't know, I don't know what to change. I don't know how to do better.” Maybe try to be a good friend to the men in your life.
Dannah: Yep. I love that. You know, I always love to say it's never too late to push reset on things when they're not going as you think they should.
The thing that I have written down in multiple places in my house on Post-it notes is just two words: “be playful.” Bob likes to play. He doesn't like all the serious stuff. I mean, he does the serious stuff. But he also needs trifle stuff too. So, I'm resonating with what you're saying. I'm going to be a friend of my husband this week. Thank you, Erin Davis.
Hey, next week, we hope you'll be with us. We're gonna be asking the question, how can you forgive the unforgivable? You're going to hear a remarkable story of loss and grace. Please be with us next week. And let's wake up with hope together on Grounded.
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