To the mom that feels really isolated, I would say make friends with people that don't have kids. So singles, those were some of my best friends in that time. They would come over after I put my kids down and my husband was gone and we get to hang out and they were flexible enough to be able to drop by when my kids were napping or when they were asleep. And then I would say make friends with people that are older than you that will give you perspective that this season is not the end all be all, like this is what's going to happen. And here's how I handled this and here's what I did.
And this is, those people are necessary in their life. Welcome to Family Life Today, where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most. I'm Ann Wilson.
Yes, you are. And I'm Dave Wilson. And you can find us at familylifetoday.com or on the Family Life app. This is Family Life Today. We're having an amazing week. The best of week. We're revisiting favorite moments on Family Life Today from the past year.
And today's theme is? Friendships really matter. And it was fun because we got to sit down with Maggie Combs. Oh, we have some people in the studio with us, don't we? Oh, I always forget you guys. Talk about friendships that really matter.
We got David and Meg Robbins, the president of Family Life, back with us. You're our friends, right? You guys, seriously, we do get to do a lot of things together. You know, when it comes to different conferences, retreats, we do get to sit around this table together. We are so grateful to get to do it with friends like you. Sincerely. You guys are a blast.
Wow, you too. Vice versa. And one of these days, we're going to get on a pickleball court. That's what we're going to do. This has to happen. That's going to be fun. Or a tennis court or whatever.
We will not publicly air on Family Life Today, the current tennis record. I'm coming at you today. You will get me, no question. Okay, let's talk about friendships and community. I mean, it's built into the human DNA. We need people. We really need people. And I loved when Maggie Combs came because she has a book called Motherhood Without Rules. And we're going to kick off with her because she's the content director for Well-Watered Women Ministry. A lot of our listeners have probably heard of that. But Maggie sat down with us to talk about how much moms need other moms. It's pretty crucial. We've been given friends.
We've been given the local church. And so often we want to go to Instagram for relationship. We want to go to social media for relationship. And those relationships are not enough. They cannot know our whole selves. But women who are in our lives doing real life with us can, when we're willing to pull back the veneer and say, hey, I don't feel like a good mom today because I did this. And moms tend to hide in our shame. When we feel shame, we pull away from others. And I remember making myself make calls when I felt like every other mom's better than I am. And if I tell them the way I'm acting or even what's in my heart, like I'm so angry or lonely sometimes, I'm afraid I'll be judged. And so sometimes to be the first one to say it will open this door of other women saying, me too.
And there's something really special and healing about having people open up about what they're facing and then praying. I think the right kind of friend, Dave, is really important. When I would call a friend and she would say, I know your husband is an idiot. I'm like, okay, that may not be the best friend. You had friends say that about me? It could have been a family member.
No, I'm just kidding. I was going to say there's kind of two steps. There's one being the willing to be the first person to be vulnerable, but then making sure that you are being vulnerable with the kind of friend who's going to give you the gospel. Exactly. And so the world is full of all kinds of things to put our hope in. Like we can put our hope in the next girl's night out or the next vacation. One of the main ones moms here is like, don't worry, it's just a season. And that is a little hope.
That is not enough to support all the hope that we need for motherhood. And so getting a friend who you know is going to say, I see that. I see how that was really hard. But you know, I also see that Jesus is here with you and He knows what it's like when your kids are just, they not listen to anything you say. Who knows better than Jesus about that, right?
I mean, it's like prone to wander. And so when your kids are refusing to listen to you, a friend who says, you know what? I think God has experienced that too. Let's pray together. Let's pray together and remember, let's remember together what God has said about this. I love what Maggie had to say there.
And you Ann, because I can so relate. And the enemy wants nothing more than to get us in that place where we want to hide and isolate. And I know that in pretty much every stage that we've been through so far in raising kids, from the diaper stage to the seven year old stage, and now we have teenagers, we obviously still have a road ahead of us. But every stage there are times when I feel like I'm failing or I'm doing things wrong. And it does come with shame at times, but there is so much freedom when I have picked up the phone and invited someone into that space with me or sat down with coffee or had a play date or whatever it was, but chosen to take that risky step with another friend.
I mean, we are created for friendships and for community. And I know for me, I experience the love of Jesus and the freedom so much more when I take that step of faith and just step into the light with others. There's something about the authenticity of someone calling you up or taking a walk with you and just being totally honest and real of where they're struggling. I remember one of my girlfriends, we were walking, she goes, I found pot in my son's backpack today.
We have been brutally honest, not only what with our kids have faced, but then how we feel we have maybe attributed to their failure or what we perceive as failure. And yet God's in the midst of that. And there's so much healing then when we come together and we pray through those things. I feel like I have a partner.
I love that Jesus gave us one another to walk this life. I'll tell you, this isn't just a woman thing. Sometimes it's easy to think, oh, women are so much better just than men and guys sit separate. We need community as much as anybody and especially as a husband and a dad to try and do it without guys. The best gift I think God's given me in my life besides Anne and our boys, now our daughter-in-laws and my grandkids is other men. Do you feel that, David?
Do you need that? I'm so grateful for the six guys I've had for 20 years and each city I've gone into. I've actually made the internal commitment after being overseas and feeling very isolated. Whenever we move to a new city, within six months, someone will know my whole story.
Someone in my vicinity within the place I live. It's one thing to have friends at a distance, a whole nother thing, friends you're walking with because as Larry Grab said, everyone needs people where you tell your story without leaving out a chapter. And that's true, but I also need friends. And this is part of the discernment where you take those risks, but you need friends that don't just give the spiritual platitude back. And I feel like that's what Maggie was really sharing there is people that will take you to the full grace and truth and depths together. And I think that's part of what makes family life today what it is. I mean, you guys journey with people.
I mean, you don't sit at a literal table with people who listen, but Dave and Anne, you get to sit with people and invite someone else into the conversation. And you are a trusted, authentic friend to someone who needs to hear the gospel truth, not a spiritual platitude, but the depths of what God offers us and meeting us in our time of need. And we need those people in our lives, but at family life, and with family life today, we want to keep encouraging you to be able to do that every day of the year. And that is why we invite you to partner with us and give a gift.
It allows us to keep journeying alongside more families and more homes and more people, giving them not just spiritual platitudes to make it to the next 20 minutes, but a foundation of God's timeless truth that gets them through the hardest of times and helps push them into community that will last. Yeah. So as we keep talking about the best of, we had Jenny Allen on. She's so fun. Oh, she was awesome. She had her husband, Zach, live in Texas. She has an amazing ministry, wrote a book called Find Your People. And you talk about a conversation about how important community is.
I don't think anybody can say it as well as she did. I was inspired to find more people in my own life, and I think you will be as well. To the mom that feels really isolated, I would say, first of all, just make friends with people that don't have kids. So singles, those were some of my best friends in that time.
They would come over after I put my kids down and my husband was gone and we get to hang out and they were flexible enough to be able to drop by when my kids were napping or when they were asleep. And then I would say, make friends with people that are older than you that will come over and say, hey, let me tell you, give you perspective that this season is not the end all be all. This is what's going to happen. And here's how I handled this. And here's what I did. And those people are necessary in your life.
We call them mentors or disciple makers sometimes, but whatever you call them, you just need people that have done this life stage before you. And then I would say, get creative with your friends. So one thing I did with my friends when we had young kids was every Sunday we would cook for each other and we would take deliver meals and see each other when we would deliver our meals to each other. That's so sweet. So you did that every Sunday. Yeah, we would cook together.
Yeah. And we're about to start it again, actually, because our kids are now getting older and we don't have as many. When you've got six, it's kind of eat a lot. It's six people in your family. It's hard to cook for other families. But when your kids are little and toddlers, that's a great thing to do together where you make the meals for the week and you cook one big meal for all the families and then they cook one big meal for all the families.
It was so fun. And so just be creative. Another thing I've seen people do is meet at Costco, meet at Target, meet at somewhere there's a playground, go to a park together, like push your strollers. I also want to say for those people that are just starting your life, do not be like Monica and Chandler on Friends where they have their twins and they move out to the suburbs. Like if you are having babies and you're thinking we need a yard, we need all these things, we need the perfect house, all that, be sure you're not leaving the communal system that you actually need to raise your kids like that. I would say be careful to take a job that pays more and leave your family.
Be careful in that season. Make choices that maybe bring you conveniences but take you away from people. I hope and believe people will, certainly not everyone's going to go move because they read this book, but I do hope it brings into context, you know what, I need neighbors and I need people that know what's going on and that I can borrow things from and take walks with and be in each other's life. As I hear Jennie, I just think, man, right where I'm at, there are already people all around us. There are already relationships that can grow deeper right now with just a little more intentionalities. There could be big decisions on the horizon to find your people more, but really I hear her saying, nope, right where you are.
Act 1726, God has chosen a lot of periods of times in the exact dwelling places so that people could be drawn to Him and we can just lift our eyes to what He's already doing around us. Yeah, I love how practical she is. She gives a list of six things you can do just to make things that we're already doing in our life, invite somebody to do it with you, whether it's working out or pushing a stroller or whatever it might be. Invite somebody and do it together. There are people around us doing very similar things to what we're doing, or maybe there are people who wish they were doing what we're doing and we can invite them into those moments.
And sometimes they can show up when you need them the most. I remember I had to move an elliptical from... I've done that before. This is real. I mean, this was super heavy and I got it, it's a long story, but I got it from the Lions and they were getting rid of it. So it was the kind that 300 pound lineman can use.
So it was the heavy, it was commercial grade. And I remember I got to get it upstairs to this little den. There's no way. And I texted about... You said the word upstairs. Oh man.
Upstairs, yeah. I mean, I could not, you couldn't move it. And I literally was online, like, you know, moving companies.
It's going to cost me several hundred dollars. I'm like, okay, here it goes. And I sent a text to like six guys and they were over in our house in 30 minutes. But those are the friends you can call that will come.
It was such a gift to go. I know the guys, you know, we used to call them your 2 a.m. friends who any call at any time, two in the morning, they will drop whatever to be there. And there's so many people don't have those people. And we were made to find those people.
That's what Jenny was talking about. I tell you, one of those people in our life, in my life is Carl Clausen. Carl hosts a show called Carl and Crew on Moody Radio in Chicago, pastor. One of the amazing things about, and he tells about doing the Iditarod in his book The Seven Resolutions. And if you've never heard Carl Clausen tell a story, you're in for a treat. No one tells a story like this guy. And he tells a story about one of his dogs.
I think it was named Alaska. And it's this epic story. And guess what?
The clincher is how important people are. So I had in my team some incredible dogs, but one of them was Alaska. Big, white, husky, blue eyes, just beautiful. Not the brightest guy in the team, but strong and faithful. Just one of those kind of guys. And he was my buddy.
We had been mushing up the Yukon River for over a hundred miles. And we finally get to the village of Caltech. And there's no checker at that checkpoint. And I'm like, what's going on? And I go walking up to what I thought could be the checkpoint. And I knock on the door, no one answers. I open it up and walk in. The minute I step inside, I hear the worst dog fight I had heard in a long time outside.
I run out there. I've got my headlamp on and it's dancing in the snow and I get to my team and there's blood all over the snow. What had happened was some loose village dogs didn't like the fact that my team had encroached on their turf and they came out and attacked my team. Well, Alaska, my big boy in wheel decided to defend the whole team. And he did.
And he got the worst end of it. And I pick him up and then we haul him back inside. By now, the veterinarian is awake and we've got some checkers that are awake. We lay him on a table and this big old brute of a buddy of mine, he's just looking up in my eyes and he's looking at me like, dad, I did it. I took him on.
I protected the team. And so I thought, I can't go without him. I got to have him to go from Caltech Geneleclete.
I got to go up over a pass and I need my big old beefcake Alaska there in wheel. I got to have him there. And so I waited seven hours and after seven hours, he got more stiff that I'm like, I can't take him. So I told the checkpoint, I said, I've got to drop this dog from team number seven. I had to officially sign off.
I'm leaving him behind and he's out of the team. Well, he didn't know it until I harnessed up the team and I pulled out the snow hook, which is the emergency brake for a dog team. And we mush out of Caltech and go around this corner and here's Alaska a hundred yards away howling at me. I had to cover my face with my parka hood cause I couldn't bear to see this guy. And he's just like, where are you guys going? We made it in about 25 hours to Geneleclete.
I had to snowshoe a good stretch of that trail because it had wind blown over and it was just a mess. I wanted Alaska with me so badly, but I land in Geneleclete with my dog team and I'm hungry. And they said, you're hungry? I said, I'm hungry. They said, we get some chili for you over at this home. So they point over there.
I'd mush my team over to that home. I park it. I go inside, get off all my gear. I sit down to eat and big knock at the door.
And I'm like, Oh, sure enough. Checker says, you got a problem with your dog team out here. One of your dogs is loose. I'm like, I got another one loose.
You gotta be kidding man. Go outside, walk around the corner and guess who's there? Alaska from a hundred miles ago. And what happens, well, what happens here is when you drop a dog in like a Caltag, they'll fly it to a bigger city like Geneleclete where I was now. I knew that they had flown them in overnight.
So we go down to ham radio operator and ham radio operator says, I just radioed Caltag. They haven't had any planes fly in or out of there. There's been bad weather there for the last day. I got Alaska in my hands.
He's standing right underneath me. They said, but one thing did happen. They had a dog from team number seven, chewed himself free and they haven't been able to find them. My Alaska followed me a hundred miles to Geneleclete to be with me.
You know what? We need to choose friends like Alaska. They're a hundred mile friends.
In order to find the kind of friend that Alaska was to me, and they are out there, you've got to meet people and you pray in the spirit that God will direct you to those people that God would say, this is your Alaska buddy. No one can tell a story like Carl. I mean, you just feel like you're sitting at the feet of Garrison Keillor. I mean, it's just like he weaves a story.
You feel like you're in the Iditarod. And I feel like I need that friend. But the point of the story is people do whatever it takes to be there when you need them. And hopefully we're those people and other people's lives as well. Well, you guys really are.
I mean, you day in, day out help us grow. Yeah. I think what we love about you guys, Dave and Ann, is that you have one heartbeat, one passion that really drives you.
Yeah. And I think as I think about the theme and beginning to close out this year as the end of year comes, we just wanted to honor you guys. We were just all holding up our flashlights to a song that Dave sang, waving it back and forth.
That's never, ever happened anywhere else. We do it here because we love you guys. And our team put something together for you, a little surprise.
In a world where relationships matter most, for one man, one thing matters most to us. What do you think I think about most of the day? Football. Football?
You bring it up often. And you know, I'm a football guy. You could probably throw a football there.
Probably. Football. I thought you were going to say play football. We're not here to talk about football today, which I could do. Can we make this more like a football illustration?
That's what I want to talk about. You don't have to revert to football. It's never going to happen. Not everybody's going to love football.
Seriously? This is Family Life Football. A story 30 years in the making, one team, one chaplain, one playoff win.
You know what that meant? A lot of losses. You know, I'm the Detroit Lions chaplain.
I'm depressed. The Lions lost again. I stand out on the Detroit Lions side. I was the chaplain for an NFL football. Maybe I've said it a couple times that I was the Detroit Lions chaplain for 33 seasons.
Starring Shelby Abbott. I'm into the NFL, but he's really into it. Along with Ann Wilson.
One of the things you talk about quite often is that I'm joyful. Football. And the looseness chaplain in the history of the universe, Dave Wilson. And our producer, Jim, just said somehow Wilson got football in an interview again. Oh, wait, football. Just had to get that in there.
Please, let me take that with me. Oh, that's hilarious. That's the funniest thing. I did not see that coming. Oh, you guys. I think they made all that stuff up.
I don't talk about football that much. They totally dubbed your voice and the unique things there. There's still so much on the cutting floor.
Did you do that? It was so well done. Oh, that's hilarious.
That just gives you little clips of the Family Life, the quality of the Family Life team behind Dave and Ann, an amazing group. But on a more serious note, now that we got you, Chucklin, we are seriously so grateful for you and you pouring out your lives. One of the things we love about you is not only do you point us to God's Word time and time again, you are so authentic. You bring your own story, even if it is a lot about football, because that's who you are.
It's got to come out of you because you love it. And you keep us all laughing. You do keep us laughing and you're willing to laugh at yourself.
That's a gift. There's a lot to laugh about. There's amazing humility of that. But one of the guests we had recently, Benjamin and Kirsten Watson, he was an NFL football player and they had this to say about you guys. We thank you for being a demonstration, not only to the teams that you are on, but being able to do that outside of the NFL, but also across the NFL. We were never with Detroit, but through Pro-Athlete Outreach, we were able to see you all and you all have spoken in our lives in ways that you probably will never know. And I can say that a lot of other people can probably say the same thing.
And so I think that's the beauty of the body of Christ is that you can be in your lane, but you also get encouraged by people that are ahead of you, behind you, and beside you. And you guys have been that for us too, so thank you. One hundred percent, yes. That's really sweet, isn't it?
Yeah. I remember when they surprised us, really. We were interviewing them and they said, hey, can we say something?
And I'm like, yeah, what do you want to say? Not thinking they were going to thank us for that. And then we'd have to end with saying to you listeners, you really matter to us. We need you and we thank you for how you support us, how you listen, how your contributors. Many of you give financially and that is an incredible blessing. We can only do what we're doing because of your generosity.
Yeah. And I would just add, you know, we've been talking today about relationships really, really matter and your donations really, really matter. You make this possible. Some of you are listening and going, I've never made a donation.
You know what? We love to invite you. Jump in.
There are thousands of people that are making what you're hearing today possible because they've said, I want to be a partner and maybe you've never had the chance. We're giving you a chance right now. It's year end. It's a critical time for us at Family Life. In fact, your donation given today or this week will be matched dollar for dollar. So it's a great time to jump in and I invite you to be our friends and friends sacrificed for one another. And I know I'm asking you to sacrifice, but I think it's worth it. And I think you do as well. So we'd love to have you join in and make this continue to go and grow and thrive and change families like it's changed yours.
Yeah, thanks, Dave. And thanks to some generous ministry partners, our matching gift fund is even bigger now. So every gift given through the end of this year, including your gift right now, will be matched dollar for dollar until we hit $2.3 million. That's for a one-time gift or if you become a monthly partner right now, your monthly gifts will be doubled for the next 12 months. And when you do give as a thanks to you, we're going to send you four copies of Bob Lapine's book called The Four Emotions of Christmas. Why four copies? Well, you can keep one for yourself and give three away to friends, family members or neighbors, or you can give all four copies away.
It's up to you. In addition to that, we're going to send you six greeting cards that have been hand selected by David and Meg Robbins. These cards make a great tool to be able to share with loved ones in your life during this Christmas season. Again, you can give today at familylifetoday.com or you can give us a call at 800-358-6329. That's 800, F as in family, L as in life, and then the word today. You know, it's easy to get caught up in life and totally forget that after this, there's something better in store, namely heaven. Well, tomorrow on Family Life Today, Dave and Anne are joined by Johnny Erickson-Tada to talk about helping you and your kids look ahead toward the fantastic forever party in store for all of us who believe, and that's heaven. On behalf of Dave and Anne Wilson, I'm Shelby Abbott. We'll see you back next time for another edition of Family Life Today. Family Life Today is a production of Family Life, a crew ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most.
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