The 12th Man

The 12th Man – that’s a phrase every football fan understands.

Yeah, when an audience generates this energy by cheering them on, they can make a team play better.

Well, and players have said it makes such a difference in a stadium when you have those fans behind you. You know I think the same is true in any relationship, especially marriage.

Yeah, the truth is sometimes as couples we don’t realize how much we can impact another couple by celebrating them and their marriage.

Yeah, as a marriage mentor or a marriage coach, maybe just friends, but figuratively speaking, just to have somebody on the sidelines cheering you on as a married couple. Friend ,think about that in your own relationship. Get a marriage mentor.

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.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Help—Our 4-Year-Old Keeps Wandering Off In Public Places!

Dear Dr. Bill,

Our 4-year-old son has a bad habit of wandering away from us whenever he gets a chance — giving us quite a scare.  We were in a children’s museum where I took off his shoes to enter an exhibit.  When I looked up, he was gone!  We had the entire place locked down tight in about :60 seconds, but it took us almost 5 minutes before we found him playing nearby.

In the mall, he’ll run off and hide in the clothes rack.  At the beach, he’ll disappear while I’m trying to put lotion on his sister.  My wife and I try to keep an eye on him at all times, but sometimes it only takes a second.  We’ve talked to him about this and he’s promised to not run off, but the problem persists. What should we do?


Dear Scott,

My advice is—buy a leash.  Just kidding–although many parents with younger toddlers have found child harnesses very helpful.  A four year old child is old enough to learn not to wander away from the family.  The trick is teaching him that unauthorized expeditions will cost him.

That means that you need to take charge: implementing unpleasant consequences every time he wanders away.  This could involve making him serve a boring time-out in the back seat of the car, or taking away a valued toy or privilege.  Whatever consequence you decide to implement, it needs to be powerful enough that he will remember not to wander away again.

You can also encourage him to stay nearby by praising him and giving him an incentive not to run away.  You might reward him with one of his favorite stickers for every five minutes that he stays within a five foot radius of you or your wife.

If the problem persists or your son shows signs of hyperactivity, distractibility, or impulsiveness, I would suggest that you that you talk to your pediatrician.  It’s possible that he may be manifesting symptoms of ADHD.

However, it’s more likely that he simply needs firm guidance from you and your wife, backed up by actions, not simply words.

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

Listen to today’s audio here.

The Extra Mile

You know I have probably said it a million times, the most revolutionary relationship principle I think ever taught was walking the extra mile.

Absolutely. That’s not just doing what is expected, but doing something that goes beyond that.

Yeah, you walk the first mile just because you are a decent human being; the extra mile is something that catches people off guard.

Yeah, and in marriage it is so amazing to experience that; when your spouse goes the extra mile for you.

Yea, you can walk the extra mile in big ways, little ways, you know: taking out the trash, that’s the first mile.

And then not saying anything about it. Just doing it without being asked, that’s the extra mile.

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.

Listen to today’s audio here.

The Link Between Exercise & The Quality Of Our SLEEP

What’s the relationship between physical exercise and the quality of your sleep?  Dr. Kelly Baron is a sleep researcher at Northwestern University and she decided to find out.

She learned that the influence of daily exercise on sleep habits is somewhat complicated.  In fact, in the short term, sleep may have more of an impact on exercise than exercise has on sleep.

The New York Times reports on Dr. Baron’s research, which looked at older people with insomnia, all of whom DIDN’T exercise.  Half of the people in the study began a moderate exercise program, consisting of three or four 30-minute exercise sessions per week.  The exercise program continued for 16 weeks.

At the end of that time, the volunteers in the exercise group were sleeping much more soundly than they had been at the start of the study. But the positive effects of exercise didn’t occur right away.

After the first two months of their fitness program, the exercising volunteers weren’t sleeping any better than at the start of the study.  It took four months of regular exercise before their insomnia improved substantially.

Dr. Baron also found another interesting connection between sleep and exercise. When the people in the study had a poor night of sleep, they were much less likely to get the full amount of exercise the next day.

According to Dr. Baron, at first glance, these results might seem “a bit discouraging.”  But she points out that the volunteers in this study already had sleep problems.  She says that people with chronic insomnia and other sleep disturbances tend to be “neurologically different.”

For most of us, better exercise during the day tends to lead to better sleep at night.  But don’t exercise too closely to bedtime.  Aerobic exercise raises the temperature of your body for a few hours, which can make it more difficult to fall asleep.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

“Sweet Lorraine”

Have your heard about Fred and the sweet song he wrote for his wife of 73 years? Fred is 96-years old and his “Sweet Lorraine” went home to Jesus earlier this summer, and shortly afterwards he wrote these lyrics and entered a songwriting contest. It’s an incredible love story, and one that’s encouraged me to one day write a song for my beautiful bride too. Thanks Fred for the inspiration! Oh, and you might want to grab a few tissues!

~Garrett from Shine Afternoons



Mandisa “Stronger”

“I should preface this comment by saying that I am blind. On May 27th, 2011, I was arrested on false charges. I spent 188 days in jail before the truth came out. I was afraid every day that someone would hurt me. I spent 98 of those days separated from the general population for my own protection. At one of my lowest points, I heard ‘Stronger’ by Mandisa. It really lifted me up and helped me keep my faith. The song reassured me that God was with me and would not forsake me.” – Darrin

Just 10 Percent

You know with one little question, I have seen some couples turn their entire relationship around for 12 months. It’s a question we sometimes post at seminars or even in the counseling office.

Yeah, I love this question. Here it is: “If you could make your marriage 10% better in just one specific area over the next 12 months. What would that area be?”

Yeah. That get’s you thinking, “What could I do?” Just 10%. We’re not talking about a huge change here, but that little thing that could make a difference.

It can. Immediately, I would want us to have more meals at the dinner table together. I just love that fellowship time.

It’s that kind of specific idea that can drive you to make your own relationship better.

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.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Are More Intelligent People Less Religious?

Are intelligent people less likely to be religious?  That’s the conclusion of a new study conducted by Miron Zuckerman, a psychologist at the University of Rochester.

Dr. Zuckerman says it doesn’t mean that only people with less intelligence believe in God.  Instead, more intelligent people tend to fulfill basic needs like self-esteem, a sense of community and a sense of purpose outside of religion.

Commenting on the study, Dr. Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, says Christians don’t draw support for their faith from scientific reports.

Lillian Daniel, a Congregationalist pastor and author of “When Spiritual but not Religious is not Enough“, says it is not intelligence that leads to atheism or education that leads to loss of faith.

Instead, Rev. Daniel points out that there is a certain peer pressure in educational circles that tends to dismiss all religion as fundamentalism for the sake of  “open mindedness.”

In other faith news, a spiritual revival is taking place on Indian reservations throughout the United States.

Evangelist Ron Hutchcraft reports that nearly 600 Native American youth began a relationship with Christ this summer, during special evangelistic outreach events.

Ron says, “These very broken Native American young people were the drug addicted, they were the drug dealers, they were the alcoholics, they are the abused. But they come with a story of hope about our Jesus.”

The 2013 Summer of Hope outreach began on July 1. Over 53 Native American young people from 30 tribes traveled to 10 different reservations to share the Good News with other Native American teens.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

5 “Mom Mobiles” If You Hate Minivans


If you’re the type of parent who prefers tattoos to tea parties or boogie boards to bake sales, here’s a look at five great cars you can buy if you consider minivans too square for your lifestyle.  Find the perfect swagger wagon in Lisa’s Home School.

Good News: Praying Woman Saves Kids

A 20-year-old gunman who was talked into surrendering his assault rifle by a cool-as-a-cucumber bookkeeper after he allegedly stormed a school in Dekalb County, Ga., last week.  The school’s bookkeeper, Antoinette Tuff, emerged as a hero after apparently talking Mr. Hill into surrendering his weapons, in part by telling him about her own hard times, including a divorce that ended a 33-year marriage and the difficulties of starting a business.  Annette just started praying for him immediately, and God took control right away.  Listen to her heroic tale here.