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Hopeless, Feels Like a Loser (Part 1 of 2)

How can a loser like me ever be happy? I hate myself for who and what I am. I hate myself for the laundry that's not done, for the dirty socks and clothes on the floor, for a bunch of clean and unfolded clothes, for dirty dishes all over the house. I feel like the filthiest person in the world. My love life is a mess, too. I feel broken. I don't deserve to be happy, and even if I were, I'm afraid someone would show up and remind me about my past and how awful I've been and everyone would hate me again. Can you help me?

Dad Concerned About Preteen Girl's Interest In Boys

Is twelve years old too young for a girl to be expressing a keen interest in boys? My husband and I have a difference of opinion on this point. Our daughter and her best friend like to talk about "cute" boys and often tease each other about who has a crush on whom. To me this seems like normal preteen behavior. My husband, on the other hand, feels that she is too young and that such activity will lead to worse behavior when she is older. I respect my husband very much and want to maintain solidarity with him. At the same time, I can't help wondering whether he's being too strict. What do you think?

Child Has Behavioral Problems at Preschool

How can we encourage our child to cooperate and follow his preschool teacher's instructions? He becomes defiant when there's a change in the schedule or when the teacher asks him to switch activities. He wants to do things his own way and on his own time. How do we break him of this?

Blended Family Etiquette

How do we decide what people should call one another in our newly blended family? It's a second marriage for my husband and me, and each of us had a three-year-old child when we married. Those kids are now six and seven years old. Recently, my step-daughter started calling me "Mom." When my husband's ex-wife heard about this she became extremely upset. We explained that we were as shocked as she was, especially since this little girl had been struggling with the new family arrangement. My husband's ex wants her daughter to call me by my first name only, but I'm not sure I'm comfortable with this. What should we do?

Young Single Adult Feels Hopeless about Marriage

When so many marital relationships end in divorce, why should I even bother tying the knot? It's hard to avoid the conclusion that the institution of matrimony has outlived its usefulness and doesn't mean much these days. Can you say anything to convince me otherwise?

Temptation Prayer and Spiritual Vigilence

Won't God protect me from temptation if I pray? Here's my reason for asking. Though I'm unaware of any immediate threat to the health and well-being of my marriage, I'm still afraid that, somehow, someday, I may trip up and fall into an adulterous affair. I recently heard a man confess that this very thing had happened to him in spite of his commitment to marital fidelity and in spite of the fact that he had prayed many times to avoid sexual sin. This scares me. Why would God refuse to answer such a prayer? It's not as if the guy was asking for a new car or a suitcase full of money. He wanted to be kept pure! Can I trust the Lord to answer my prayers and protect me from temptation or not?

Biblical Perspectives on Polygamy and Polyamory

Why can't I have a biblically based family with multiple partners? Most of the great men of the Bible – Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon – had many wives. Given your ministry's strong commitment to the Scriptures, I can't see why you're against things like polygamy and polyamory. I consider myself a polyamorous Christian. I love several different women, and there's no reason we can't build a strong family together on a foundation of consensual, ethical, and responsible non-monogamy. When did the "change" occur that established marriage as a covenant relationship between one woman and one man?

Faith Doubt vs Unbelief

What's the difference between an "unbeliever" and a person who simply has honest questions about God? I believe in the Bible, and I have often told friends and family that God can do miracles and even raise the dead. Nevertheless, when things get tough, I find it hard to trust in the Lord. Though I tell others that they can depend upon His grace, I'm often overwhelmed with fear and anxiety when difficult situations arise. Does this mean that I lack faith?

Girls and Women Wearing Pants

Should I let my teenage girls wear pants? I was raised in a conservative Christian home where modesty in behavior and clothing were always stressed as matters of the highest importance for young girls. In particular, my mother made sure I understood that women should never wear pants, since "A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman's garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the Lord your God" (Deuteronomy 22:5). Nowadays women wear pants all the time - not only around the house or in the yard but even at church. I find this extremely upsetting and confusing. How do I teach my teenage daughters to dress appropriately in a society like this?

Marriage and Sexuality As Spiritual Symbols

Are marriage and sex appropriate images of our relationship with God? While reading an article on Christian marriage I came across what I consider a pretty shocking statement. The writer began by comparing man's relationship with the Lord to human marriage. Then he went on to say that we must "marry God" and even suggested that, in the context of this union, Christ plants "spiritual seeds" in us so that we can "give birth to new life." I find this highly sexualized language both offensive and confusing. It's one thing to talk about the church as "the Bride of Christ." It's something else to suggest that we can actually interact at this level of intimacy with God! Many Muslims reject Christianity for this very reason. They think that when we speak of Jesus as God's Son, we're implying that the Father had sexual relations with Mary. Shouldn't we do everything we can to avoid such misunderstandings?

Talking to Teen About Suicide of Friend or Acquaintance

How should I talk with my adolescent son about a friend of his who recently took his own life? The boy was hardly more than an acquaintance, but I know that this incident has impacted my teenager deeply. Can you help me figure out the best way to approach the subject with him?

126 episodes

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