Archive for the ‘men’ Category

7 Simple Traits of a Great Man

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

 

 

 

This is my husband, Bill’s, IMG_8450 birthday week. We have celebrated 36 happy years together—and the happy part is largely due to the great guy I married. Since Bill is the creator of the 7 Simple Skills series (for men, for women) I thought I would use 7 of his best qualities to show how ANYONE can hold on to Jesus and create a life to look forward to living.

When we met at a leadership conference at Campus Crusade (CRU) Headquarters in Arrowhead Springs, I am not sure anyone would have predicted we would go on to marry, write 44 books, (most on relationships), and raise 3 godly sons who married 3 amazing gifted and godly wives and have 4 precious grandchildren who all are following Jesus with whole and happy hearts.

The statistics were stacked against pam bill dating bcus: me, a daughter of an alcoholic abusive dad and Bill the son of a brilliant but busy father and a mother who then and now struggles with fears and emotional trauma.

These 7 of Bill’s best traits surrendered to Jesus helped us break the dysfunctional cycles and build a foundation that our own grown children are building even stronger, better lives on.  

Maybe reading through these traits will help you cultivate growth in some of these areas to move your life, your marriage, and your family and future forward too!

Simply put Bill is:

Surrendered- Bill’s goal is to keep 100% of his life is under God’s leadership. Now, he is, like all of us imperfect, but the moment he sees an area that is not reflective of Christ, he works hard to learn new skills, dig in  God’s Word to discover new truths. Bill also looks up experts in that arena to learn new tools to shore up those areas and bring them back under Christ’s control.  

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.. . (Romans 12:1)

Kind- My guy is just really, really nice! He is kind, thoughtful, attentive, forgiving  and caring.  I fell in love with the way he cared for my heart. I call this compassionate trait his “Superman” quality, so because of this there is always a line waiting for Bill’s help— so  l must be willing to share him with the world. (Which is a small price to pay to be married to a really great guy!!)

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you (Eph 4:32)

simple vertical horizontal relationship

Intellectual- Bill is smart. In high school he only missed ONE answer on the math SAT test. (I had to marry a math major to pass college math!)  He can figure out an answer to almost any problem. 

I call him “Superman” because he can fix almost anything: cars, the house, people’s traumas, the kids’ dilemmas, etc.

People call themselves experts even if they have not spent any time researching, bill pk at podium 2010studying or interning in that field.  People today have a bent toward narcissism and pride so they think their idea or opinion has equal value to leaders who have spent decades working in a field of endeavor.  My Bill was humble enough to know he needed to pay the price to be heard by studying HARD. He first thought he would be an architect and build houses, but God turned his heart toward the people who lived in those houses so now he helps families build happy homes—on the inside! He got his undergrad in Math because it was the quickest route to seminary where he got a Masters of Divinity (studying the original languages of the Bible: Hebrew and Greek) and his emphasis is in Practical Theology and counseling. While we were at Biola, Bill cultivated mentoring relationships with some of today’s best leaders.  

I believe it is because Bill walks in humility that God has entrusted him with the gift of taking complex topics and synthesizing them to make them simple enough for everyone to understand and implement.  

“The one who gets wisdom loves life.” (Proverbs 19:8)

Loving- One of the goals Bill had for our sons was to help them become a skilled lover as a husband. He has now developed a phone APP: Her Best Friendwhich sends one romantic idea a day to a man’s phone to help him romance his wife. That means 365 ideas a year! (And I have been the blessed recipient of many of these simple yet preciously wonderful ideas!)  In addition, Bill loves his sons, their wives, and our grandkids—and his friends sense his commitment by the loving things he says and does.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:24-25)

her best friend ap cold lake

Listener- Bill is one of the best listeners. He is patient, empathetic and wise, so after listening carefully, he often knows just the right principle from God’s Word to share and how to apply it to move a life forward.

My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry (James 1:19)

 Enthusiastic- Bill sings in the grocery line, is quick to offer a funny joke orFarrel09 132 pam over shoulder hug and laugh humorous story to lift the heart and his laugh is hearty and contagious.  His positive  attitude and steady, calm pace makes life more enjoyable—and somedays, his humor makes ME more bearable!  He is a shepherd, encourager, and motivator in the gentlest of ways.

Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up (Proverbs 12:25)

 

Dedicated- Bill goes the distance.

One of my favorite examples is when Bill built the home we raised our children in. Our wonderful (then small) church volunteered to offer their skills in plumbing, carpentry, roofing, cabinetry, etc to help hammer up a home because it sweat equity was the only way their pastor would be able to afford a home in expensive Southern California. I was pregnant and Bill was racing the stork to complete the home so we could bring the baby home to our new place. Even the local news was reporting on the race! 

bill and 10 best book To get final approval, all the hills must be planted and all the sidewalks must be in and all the details signed off on by an inspector. The last two days before my scheduled C- section Bill got zero sleep. After I delivered our healthy son, Bill fell asleep on the fold out chair in my room. In the middle of the night, after I had nursed our bundle of joy and placed him in the bassinet, my VI came out and blood was splashing out so I tried to wake Bill—but to no avail. I ran for a nurse and discovered in the mayhem,  the call button was unhooked as well, so I waddled slowly down the hall to the nurse’s station only to be chastised for being up and walking before I was cleared.

The nurse also began a “Can’t trust a man” tirade and asked me why my husband wasn’t helping me out. When I explained his heroic marathon of sleepless nights she quickly changed her tune. When she saw Bill collapsed in a deep sleep snoring, she simply said, “Oh, what a good man! Let’s just let him sleep—he deserves it!”

bill tools work

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Inspiring Transformation: A Model You Can Follow

Saturday, March 23rd, 2013

Last post, I introduced you to our son, Zach, who has a
Masters in Exercise Science and is a coach at a prestious university. While an undergrad, he also was the captain of the Universty’s co-ed cheer team and they won the National title each year he was captain. So Zach is more than a challenging drill instructor type, he also cheered this mom to victory in her wellness journey. I was fortunate to have many “cheerleaders” who believed I could and would hang tough til the finish line. Here are a few more questions and answers—and a pretty inspiring story from Zach’s life to cheer you on today too:

Q: You have encouraged us to cross train (vary our workouts)- why?
A: In-terms of cross training, I think that it is very important to increase activity in general. Resistance training will increase your ability to accomplish everyday activities. Cardiovascular training will be a great solution of you are unable to resistance train, have high blood pressure, or have a low understanding of how to resistance train. The ultimate goal should be to decrease fat mass and increase lean body mass.

Q: Why is interval training is so helpful in dropping pounds ?
A: Interval training allows for higher quality work at higher intensities. It will also increase the ability to burn calories of fat at resting after you are done working out. The ultimate goal of working out is to increase your ability to utilize fuel at rest and during activity. With the interval work you can do double the work I less time. Example: Running a mile vs. Interval Bike Sprints- 10 minutes to run a mile (low intensity, BORING!) vs. 10 Minutes 30 Seconds All out Sprint/ 30 Seconds Recovery Cycle can increase the amount of work being done, Increase heart rate, increase body and core temperature, and Increase fat burning at rest.
Examples to use – All on the Bike/Treadmill/ Track/ Resistance Training/ Body Weight Exercises
All 5-10 minutes 1-2 sets of each.
15 Seconds All out – 45 Seconds Recovery
20 Seconds All out – 40 Seconds Recovery
30 Seconds All out – 30 Seconds Recovery
15 Seconds All out – 15 Seconds Recovery
20 Seconds All out – 10 Seconds Recovery (Much Harder)
(Note: Zach’s introduction of interval training produced twice the benefit in half the time, so if you are a busy leader, consider learning some circuit training and interval work outs to make the most of you precious work out time).

Q: Zach, You had your own fitness journey your freshman year of high school. What do you think took you from chubby kid to a top competitive all star athlete?
A. I would call what I went through the end of my Freshman year in high school more of a Body Transformation not a Fitness journey. I was 160 lbs at 5’6″ tall probably over 20% BF (high for a male athlete). My older brother decided that it was time for me to start weightlifting with the varsity football team. I started out as a short chubby kid who had no idea what he was doing in the weight room to being a lean, aggressive, strong, Varsity caliber football player all within 6 months. I decided that I was not ok with being 3rd/4th string anymore. I made a decision and set a goal for myself. I wanted to play varsity football with my older brother. I asked the head football coach, “What do I need to do to be on Varsity?” He gave me an answer that was direct and led me to make the decision to spend the next six months dedicated to changing my body and work ethic. Every day after school, I went straight to the weight room and said “Coach, what is today’s workout?” Monday through Friday for 2-3 hours after school I went and did something that would get me in better shape. Weight Lifting, Plyometrics, Conditioning, whatever it was– I did it and did not complain. I wanted more and more because I knew that what I was doing wasn’t enough for me. I had set my mind on a goal and did not want to stop until I achieved it. I knew that if I did not accomplish this goal I would not be the person today that I am. I thank God, my parents, and my older brother for pushing me and allowing me to never give up. I was unable to drive to school so it was my dad’s job to take me every morning at 6:30 am for early “optional” practice, which wasn’t optional in my mind. I had a strong direction in what I wanted, that came from my walk with God, my parents guiding me and never allowing me to “quit” when things got tough. It was hard, I was exhausted but I saw results not within a week, but within 6,12,18 weeks. The biggest thing that I did was– I made a lifestyle change. I made my life revolve around my goals and what I needed to do to make those accomplishments.

Back then, it was easy, I was in High School. Well, the answer is the same now! I am a full-time employee at a Division 1 University working 70+ hours per week (12-14 hrs a day) and I make time to get my training in. I don’t just train, I am also a competitive Weightlifter (http://farrelweightlifting.blogspot.com/) you can see what I do and how I have made the decision to keep this a part of my life. I have goals, I have people around me who will help me get to the gym to train, and I have a drive that allows me to go when I don’t want to.

(Note: It is nice when your “cheering your child” to his fitness goal boomerangs back to bless you, as Zach now cheers me on to my wellness and health goals! Moms and Dads, what you sow into your kids “WILL reap a harvest if you do not give up!” Our ideas on cheering on your child is in 10 Best Decisions a Parent Can Make)

Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary (Gal 6:9)

Ready to get inspired- watch this:

(Follow Zach’s weightlift blog at:
http://farrelweightlifting.blogspot.com/)

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My Wellness Journey: Does Anyone Challenge You?

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

 

 

Today’s (and tomorrow’s) blog is by the person who inspires and CHALLENGES me the most- my son, Zach. Zach is a Performance Coach at a Large Div 1 University and trains athletes who compete on the national and even international (Olympic) level.  His athletes WIN championships- much in part because he and the other strength coaches challenge players OFF the field and prepare them when there are no spectators.  One of my favorite quotes ach often repeats to athletes that I love is, “Do today what others will not do so you can do tomorrow what others cannot do”.  In short, Practice Pays in Performance.

Here are a few questions and answers that might challenge you to take the next step in your wellness journey:

 

Q: Zach, you work with top athletes, what advice do you give them on exercise that the average person should keep in mind?

A: When exercising it is important to understand two things:

 

1. Training age – By training age I am referring to how many years you have been training. For example: If you have been consistently exercising for 1 year- your training age is 1. I have been training (exercising) consistently since I was 15 years old; my training age is now 13 years.

2. Knowledge- By that, I am referring to your personal exercise library. What exercises do you know how to do? Do you only know how to run? Do you like to resistance train? Increasing your exercise library will increase your ability to stay in the gym. Albert Einstein defined Stupid as, “Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”. If you only know how to do one thing in the gym you will only see one result. How long can you only do that one thing? After a while you will get tired of only doing that one thing!

(Note: This is why each time I see Zach I ask him to teach his dad and I one new exercise).

 

Q: How can the average person avoid injuries as they are trying to get back in
shape?

A: When taking that step to get back to the gym you must answer a few questions about yourself.

  1. Previous Injury: Do you  have any previous injuries? Research has shown that one of the leading  causes of injury is a previous injury.
  2. Do you know how to   structure a workout? Warm up, Resistance training/Cardiovascular Exercise/  Cool down?
  3. Resistance Training – How  to structure/ Upper Body/ Lower Body/ Pulling Exercises vs. Pushing Exercises.
  4. Posture- Do you know  what proper posture looks like?
  5. Do you quit when things  get hard? Do you like to” talk about” or “be about” doing the exercise?
  6. Do you have a training  partner? You need to have an accountability partner for when you don’t  want to go– they will make you!
  7. Goals- Do you have goals  set? Short term/Long term? If not set them and place them around so you  know what you are working for.

(Note: Good reason to get a personal trainer- See previous blog for finding one near
you)

 

Q: What credentials should someone look for when looking for a quality qualified trainer in their city?

A: Finding a qualified training is a must if you are just getting into exercising. What to look for: Certified Personal Trainers, if you ask them they should have no problem telling you what they have accomplished. I would also look into getting a Functional Movement Screen done to fully know how your body works.

http://www.functionalmovement.com/experts – Is a website that you can locate a certified movement specialist to take you through the screening process to find movement compensatory patterns.

(Note: This assessment is very helpful as a marker for your wellness and it will spot problem areas so you can avoid injuries as you get back in shape)

For wisdom will enter your heart and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul
(Proverbs 2:10)

PS- Stay tuned, more from Zach tomorrow!

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Do You Have a Word for Your Year?

Sunday, February 17th, 2013

 

Each year since I was 19, I have selected a “Word for the Year”, a “verse for the year” and later I added a motto for each year (something you might put on a coffee mug, billboard, T- shirt or bumper sticker). In 2012, Bill and I selected the same word and the same verse:

STRONG

Be strong and  courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will
be with you wherever you go.
(Joshua 1:9)

“Stay Strong”!

We know it is often hard for couples to dovetail their goals. In Men Are Like Waffles, Women
Are Like Spaghetti,
we have a chapter on Achieving Together  in which
we describe the process we use  to get on the same page. It begins by having an honest conversation of just what is really  important to each of you. Often couples have different priorities when it comes to the delicate balance of home, work, marriage, family, friends and self care.
We encourage you to grab the book, and a stack of 3 x 5 cards and begin writing down all the areas you each are responsible for personally and professionally- at work, home, church, family, and in community. (You’ll need to pick up a copy  of Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti to hear just what to do with these cards and how to use the “What’s  Important to You” survey in the same chapter). But we promise, if you use these  tools, there will be much LESS arguing and a lot MORE “Red Hot Monogamy” going on.

We also have a goal setting sheet for couples, as integrating the goals of each person in the family can be a challenge if you are fighting for your desire to be top priority. However, goal setting conversations can also be a great opportunity for deeper connection and intimacy. We have provided our Your Best Year Yet worksheet as a template for your conversations as our gift to you. We developed this process several years ago so we could be pulling in the same  direction TOGETHER!

So what was the result of our year of being STRONG? We launched a new Love-Wise video  production company and the first products have rolled out. (See Bill’s 10 Best Decisions a Man Can Make DVD series clip). We both got stronger physically –(I (Pam) lost 50 pounds!) Our family got stronger (we added a beautiful daughter in law and  new grandson too!) We got stronger spiritually—and God is using us- we traveled for ministry 250+ days last year, including to Singapore to release a marriage enrichment DVD commissioned by their government: “Love-Notes”.

Lastly, if this whole concept of having a Word for the Year is new, Pastor Mike Ashcraft and my friend,  Rachel Olsen just released a book, “My One Word” (Zondervan), and it can walk you through step by step on how to select, implement, and maximize your word.
My favorite quote from this resource is:

“My foot needed to be held on the outside for the sake of what was going on on the inside. This is
true of our spiritual lives. We need a boot, so to speak. Something to hold us in a given position long enough for some specific inner work to happen My ONE Word can be that tool.”-
Pastor Mike Ashcroft & Rachel Olsen

So get ready for the Best Year of Your Life—Choose a Word
for the Year, get a copy of Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti and My One Word, then dovetail those goals with your mate for some awesome synergy!

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Sex Before Marriage: The Landmine of Love

Friday, August 24th, 2012

According to a study on sexual activity by Relevant, a Christian magazine,

as many as 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults have had sex. 

This is a startling statistic in light of two  very clear commands from the Bible:

                Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will
love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.
(John 14:23 NIV)

                It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 

(1Thessalonians 4:3 NIV)

If one wonders what sexual immorality is, if you use Logos Bible Software, and dig into The Word, you will discover it means ALL sex outside the bounds– the context of marriage.  

So many of this generation (teens and grownups ) think they will come out ahead if they sleep with the one they are “in love” with. However studies show something entirely different. Jim Burns of Homeword radio, in his book, Teaching Your Children Healthy Sexuality, quotes a study out of the University of Wisconsin (so a secular study, so people can’t say it is slanted due to Christian bias!). 

Here are 9 Facts about Pre-Marital Sex:

Fact 1: Premarital sex tends to break up couples

Fact 2: Many men do not want to marry a woman who has had intercourse with someone else.

Fact 3: Those who have premarital sex tend to have less happy marriages

Fact 4: Those who have premarital sex are more likely to have their marriage end in divorce.

Fact 5: Persons and Couples who have had premarital sex are more likely to have an
extramarital affair as well.

Fact 6: Having pre-marital sex may fool you into marrying a person who is not right for
you.

Fact 7: Persons and couples who have had premarital sex experience sexual satisfaction
sooner after they are married. HOWEVER—

Fact 8: They are likely to be less satisfied overall with their sex life during marriage.

Fact 9: Poor premarital sexual habits can be carried over to spoil sex in marriage.

And let Bill and I add a Biblical observation we have made as Fact 10:

Fact 10:Couples who engage in premarital sex are practicing DISOBEYING God together, which is a terrible way to erode a marital foundation before you ever get to the altar. In addition, the consistent practice of premarital sex causes a callous to develop over the heart of each individual so it makes it harder for each to hear and respond to God’s guidance.

So what can we do to reverse this trend?

Parents:  Prepare your child, tween and teen by proactively educating him or her on love, sex, and relationships. Use our Teen Relationship Contract .Talk with your teen and reward your son or daughter for making wise choices.

Church leaders: Teach the whole counsel of God, offer discipleship, mentoring, and small groups with role models who are walking in integrity. Partner with parents for events and opportunities to equip tweens
teens and college students.

Teens: Read books like Guys are Waffles, Girls Are Spaghetti or The Purity Code (Jim Burns) – books aimed at teens to equip you to make your own wise choices. Have a daily quiet time so you practice listening to and responding to Jesus daily.

Reliable ministries that have helps and resources for this core vital issue: Homeword,  Focus on the
Family
, Family Life Today, Vicki Courtney -You and Your Girl, Generations of Virtue, Modern Day Princess, Dannah Gresh- Pure Freedom,  
 and
of course, Love-Wise.com.

Some of our resources that help parents and teens make wise relationship choices  are Guys are Waffles, Girls Are Spaghetti, Got Teens?, 10 Best Decisions a Teen Can Make, The Teen Relationship Contract, The Freshman Foundation Dinner and Dialogue Questions.

For singles: 10 Best Decisions a Single Can Make and Single Men Are Like Waffles, Single Women Are
Like Spaghetti.
 

 

 

The first step is likely a simple prayer.  Based on your past choices, you select the verse to pray over your life:

  1. You have had premarital sex and you desire to repent (stop), or you are already
    married but never have told God you are sorry and claimed his forgiveness:

Lord, your word says that is I confess my sins, you are faithful and just to forgive all my sins and cleanse me from
all unrighteousness
. (1
John 1:9)  Now I choose to hide your word in my heart that I might not sin against
You. (
Ps 119:9-10)

2. You are still a virgin, and you want to stay true to that commitment, or you are praying for your son or daughter, that they will stay strong:

I have sought your face with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise.  I have considered my ways and have turned my steps to your statutes.  I will hasten and not delay to obey your commands (Psalms 119:58-60)

 The best way out of the field of landmines caused by premarital sex is:

(1)  To never enter it or ( 2) ask God to lead you step by step out of it back to a safe more secure place.

Forgiveness and redemption are possible, see Pam and Bill’s book, Love, Honor and Forgive or 10 Best Decisions
a Woman Can Make
. Consult  a trusted pastor or counselor- God can repattern your heart to hear and respond to His best plan and path.  Take the first step, acknowledge you have gone of course and want to get back to the heart of God and allow Him to direct your path to healing and wholeness.

PS: Hold Oct. 17 noon to for Save Our Girls Day to Pray – join us in praying for the next generation of teens: www.saveourgirls.org

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