Sponge Bob puts my little guy to sleep?

Hey it’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons, and last night I was holding my fussy 7-month old Caleb. Finally we settled down in front of the TV for a few minutes…and guess what show settled him down? SPONGE BOB!! Never in a million years would I think that Sponge Bob would have calmed my little guy. AND we watched a couple episodes together.

When you have your little one and are trying to calm them down, is there a show that helps? C’mon, I was honest….how about you?

George Jones

George Jones, one of the pioneers of country music passed away last Friday. If you know anything about his life, then you know his music through most of his career focused on wild living, broken relationships, alcoholism, drug abuse and more. In fact, country music could have said he was their “bad boy” poster child for many years too.

What you might not know is that later in life, after falling into a coma for a short time, George Jones gave his life to Jesus. Now he wasn’t perfect by a long shot, and still battled with some of his past behaviors, but wasn’t afraid to tell people about Jesus.

Maybe your story is a little like George Jones, and you’ve had some “bumps” along the way. My bible is FULL of stories of lives that God used even though they had weaknesses (think David, Paul, Peter….there’s more). How has God used you in you in spite of your “weakness?”


Bethel Church

The Community Ministries of Bethel seek to empower and equip disciples of Jesus Christ to love their neighbors as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her (Ephesians 5:1-2) so that we can reach the lost and teach the found. Bethel sponsors groups that volunteer with English as Second Language schooling, a deaf ministry, Harvest Market (Bethel’s own food pantry), and many other ministries that touch the community.

Valparaiso Nazarene Church

Valparaiso Nazarene Church encourages everyone to serve in two ways. The first way to serve is within the church. There are many was you can serve within the church, the second way they encourage you to serve is outside of the church. They host a database on their sight of on-going needs they help out with from leading teens in small groups at the community Youth Center, to helping out at the local Men’s Shelter.

Living Hope Church

Living Hope Church offers a unique ministry through Tae Kwon Do lessons to people in the community. Their mission is to equip each student with the skills needed to protect the mind, body and spirit from physical and spiritual attack, to instill the confidence that comes from self-discipline and self-control, And to inspire a deeper relationship with Christ Jesus.

Faith Church

Faith Church is a member of the Salt & Light Ministry. Salt & Light of Northwest Indiana is a collaboration of local churches, non-profit organizations and community members seeking the welfare of communities and the proclamation of the Gospel. Salt & Light provides proper training empowering leaders to go out and minister to the less fortunate of Northwest Indiana.

Mirroring Your Partner

We just came from a little business meeting and you gave me some feedback afterwards. You said, “Hey, you kind of came off a little arrogant in there.” Just a little gift I gave and yet the thing that I love is that you really are open and non-defensive when I give you feedback. Well, I do like feedback cause I think it’s important to know how you come across to other people. It is because we’re all blind to parts of ourselves. One of the best gifts of marriage is someone who can really mirror yourself back. I remember that I once told you that you sometimes finish my sentences before I even have my thought completed. I have the wrong ending so it creates this impatient feeling. So, friends remember it’s not always an easy pill to swallow but sometimes feedback from your partner can make you a better person.

If you have a comment or question for the New Shine.FM Relationship Experts Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott, visit the Relationships Experts page at Shine.FM.

Click Here for the Audio Version of this Post

Home School: Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally

Did you know that high blood pressure contributes to 15% of deaths each year?  Scary!  In Lisa’s Home School, learn some tips to lower your blood pressure naturally.  Hint: it involves working less and dark chocolate!

Good News: Suspended Coffee

This Good News story reminds me a lot of Drive-Thru Difference (coming up this Friday – don’t miss it!)

Tough economic times and growing poverty in much of Europe are reviving a humble tradition that began some one-hundred years ago in the Italian city of Naples. It’s called caffè sospeso — “suspended coffee”: A customer pays in advance for a person who cannot afford a cup of coffee. It’s an elegant way to show generosity: an act of charity in which donors and recipients never meet each other, the donor doesn’t show off and the recipient doesn’t have to show gratitude.  Read the full story here.  Then, print your Drive-Thru Difference note to get ready for Friday!

Dealing With A Critical, Controlling Mother

Dear Dr. Bill,

I am 34 yrs. old and have 3 children.  My mother has always interfered in my life.  I don’t enjoy her visits and I often find myself making excuses for her not to come.  What happens is that my Mom comes to “observe” how our family is doing — and she totally undermines the authority we have with our kids.

After her visits, she calls with critical comments about everything we’re doing wrong, and I feel hurt and angry.  What should I do?


Dear Kim,

Unfortunately the people who are the closest to us have the most potential to hurt us.  It sounds like your mom has been criticizing you and attempting to control you for years.  There are likely reasons why she is so negative and controlling.  It may be helpful for you to gain some insight into her past, in order to develop some degree of empathy for her.

At the same time, she has no right to treat you with such disrespect.  It’s time to set down firm boundaries in your relationship with her.  This won’t be easy, and will require strength and courage on your part.

Sit down with your mom when both of you are in a good mood, and let her know that things are going to be different in your relationship from this point forward. Tell her that you love her, but that her constant criticism hurts you deeply and that you are no longer going to accept it.

Explain that unless she can make a genuine effort to change her attitude and behavior, she will no longer be welcome in your home.  She may react in anger, or may play the martyr role and attempt to make you feel guilty for your words.  But stand your ground and refuse to be manipulated.

An excellent book that will help you is “Boundaries” by Henry Cloud and John Townsend.

Thanks for writing Kim.  If you have a question for me about family issues or Christian living, click the “Questions” link on the Family Expert page.

Click here for the audio version of this article.