CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).

Posted 4/19/16 at 11:10 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Midlife Crisis? No Way!

I don't think it's a mid life crisis. I think it's more like my kids are grown and I have no idea who I am again. This is where the whole "as I find myself came from" except it was because I was finding myself as they were growing. Then I found it very different once tony left and I had the son home that has more of the part of me that likes to be I found myself alone! Like...really alone!

Day in and day out. Alone.

No one to talk to but my dog. Then I have to find myself again. So, if you have the money you maybe buy a new car, or a woman might get a boob job...because what did we do with time before we had families and were so busy we couldn't see past one day! Now those same days that we grew into as teenagers and young adults, we are left with as 40-50 years olds with no clue how to fill our days! I spent many many days doing yoga and getting very concerned that I stretch very specific muscles. This is just my thoughts on its opportunity not midlife crisis But it took me a while to see that!

Posted 4/11/16 at 10:00 AM | Marianne Kurtz

A New Journey

I feel like a new journey is beginning beginning of a new adventure. A new and improved time with God, a new and improved time with family, and a new and improved time of friendship. I go to bed at night and can't wait to get up in the morning and it's not because things changed around me. But is changed inside. From a conversation I had with my son about me wanting to be married. It's a personal conversation but I'm going to share it because it made me see something In me that only his truth could let me see.

A New Journey

Posted 4/5/16 at 9:38 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Training for Sharing

One of the things that I see that baffles me, is seeing adults who do not know how to share.

I do understand that there is a certain amount of respect that is held for things that we own and have spent money on. In this training scenario I taught my sons to not only share but to learn to respect what I have purchased for them. In other words, they had to also learn to be respectful of others things as they would want someone to respect their things.

This training scenario I found completely and totally necessary when I trained them to share their toys. At this point in our lives I was a full-time nanny to two other children where my job was to continue this same training that the mother was doing at night during the day. She didn’t want to put them in daycare and have everything that she was doing be undone daily so I stepped in and would train them along with mine, so I was training four kids ages 4, 3, 2, and 1 at this point. I do not exactly remember the ages but they are all 1 year a part so that’s what I have figured. FULL POST

Posted 3/29/16 at 11:48 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Contracts With Your Children

By definition a contract is a binding agreement between parties.

As my children were growing in their obedience and I was growing in my patience, there were several times when I felt a contract would help there be cooperation between the three of us. I can't believe I'm going to tell on myself like this...honest and real!

The first time I did this was when they became old enough to understand, which was just a few years after I first started disciplining them. I can only tell about this if I tell the whole story, so here it is...

As I have said in earlier blogs or maybe in my book that is coming out (I honestly don't recall) but I was not raised the way I ended up raising my boys. My parents just did not have a revelation of "Spare the rod, spoil the child" like I did. I mean they spanked us but a lot of times they were pretty upset. Don't get me wrong they did by no means beat my brother and I. Continuing my story...I had a pretty bad temper and when I would forget to be consistent I would sometimes lose my temper; this did not mean I beat my children, it just means it wasn't the right way (see my blog on "Impart Peace, Not Anger"). FULL POST

Posted 3/22/16 at 11:22 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Continuing in Consistency

I must say one of the things that was very challenging for me through the years was consistency. It is challenging to stay consistent in a lot of things in life...exercise, cooking (that might just be me), get the idea. There were many times throughout training that I would find myself saying over and over "If you do that again I am going to spank you" and next thing you know I am in anger and would be tempted to think 'it's not working'.

Now, I'm not sure if you are reading this because you already spank your children and just need encouragement or if you were like me and took the opposite approach in the beginning and then realized that spanking is the resolve that God intended. Spare the rod spoil the child. I, of course, can only speak of the latter which means that I would get frustrated because I seemed to say "I'm going to spank you if you do that again" instead of just spanking. The bottom line is they already know what is expected and our lovely children are just still going to try to get us to do things their way. It is much less frustrating and much more beneficial to our children to simply spank each and every time because they really do know what is right and wrong. FULL POST

Posted 3/15/16 at 11:54 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Dating and SVU

Dating and SVU

Some of you may not know what SVU is but it is literally my favorite tv show. Law and Order Special Victims Unit, yep and now the theme is stuck in your head if you’re a fan.

Here’s the thing…when you have watched as much of that as I have EVERY situation feels like a potential SVU moment. I actually have them often and it’s kind of fun to think how a piece of paper may have fallen of your car and then a crime happened after and that paper lead to my finger print and the SVU department comes knocking on my door! WHAT?? Just saying…that would be just a little fun…in retrospect, of course.

What isn’t fun is when you enter into a dating situation that is very much like an SVU moment. Here was mine…I went to meet with some people at a house and I was going to be pretty late but when I showed up there was only 2 guys and me! What?? Ummmmmmmm. So I sit down and immediately text my friend the address to where I am at and just send a text hey, I’m out with some people…here is my address. OK…smart, right? Yep. FULL POST

Posted 3/11/16 at 10:04 AM | Brian Wallace

Can Augmented Reality Improve Education?

We all want our kids to have the best education possible. Can augmented reality help with that? Learn more from this infographic!

Posted 3/7/16 at 3:39 PM | Marianne Kurtz

Absolutely No Lying

I taught my boys from the very beginning that they were not allowed to lie. This has been a tricky thing to teach because even if you know they are lying you don't want to call them a liar you really want them to admit it themselves that they are not being honest. As parents we have to remember that we don't want to browbeat our children into admitting that they lied. The goal here is that they have a conscience that will be easily susceptible to the prompting the Holy Ghost.

I have a great story about a time when my youngest lied and it was so small and maybe to any other parent it wouldn't have been a big deal but the Holy Ghost would not let him get away with it.

My boys would always come in on my bed and sit and we would share our days with each other. In the way early years we had "tea time" almost every night (and we still have tea time about once a month) but at this time I would normally call them in to talk. This particular time I used a word that I don't normally use, it wasn't on purpose but the Holy Ghost knew that this lying needed to be taken care of. I said, "come on guys when you're done come sit not he bed and let's chat." I NEVER said that before "let's chat" even when I said it I remember thinking how odd it was for me to say that. Anyway, neither of them answered me and my youngest (Tony) was in the bathroom brushing his teeth and Jacob was in the kitchen but the bathroom was right next to my bedroom. Jacob asked what I said and Tony answered him that he didn't know. I knew that Tony heard me and I asked him to give him a chance to admit that he heard me and was just choosing to be disobedient but he again said he didn't hear me. I didn't want to force him but deep inside I knew he I then said, "come on guys when you're done come sit on my bed so we can talk." Jacob said, "What?" and Tony answered, "Mom wants us to come and "chat" with her". At this point there was no turning back...I had been up over 24 hours because of church, work and school at the time I was very busy, but now I couldn't let this go it was too obvious that he lied. I asked him why he lied and said he didn't hear me and he insisted he did not lie - after a very long discussion - he finally admitted it. We are talking about 2-3 hours it took to break that off him - he finally broke when I told him that the devil would like to get a foothold in their lives by any means possible and this foothold would be just the beginning of a life of getting away with lies and deceit and that is not the kind of life they want. FULL POST

Posted 3/1/16 at 10:09 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Questioning Your Parenting...?

Every parent, I think, at one time or another questions their parenting at one point or another. And I think that’s healthy to a certain degree. I mean, if you never check yourself than you will never know if you are doing something wrong.

One way is if it makes you happy to spank your children, than you probably need to check yourself. When my boys were wayyyyyy younger, like 2 and 4 when I first starting spanking, because before that I didn’t necessarily think spanking was the right way to go, I was spanking my oldest and I had this actual grieving in my heart. I didn’t always have this. I used to control myself but secretly be thinking “you deserve this” I know that sounds mean but I’m just being honest. Now I didn’t lose control, spanking were administered very soundly.

1. Take them into the other room
2. Explain why they are getting spanked and make sure they understand. When they are young this is very simple, “You must obey Mommy”
3. Spank them with a paddle, I don’t believe in using your hand.
4. Hold them on your lap and rock them, you don’t even have to talk just love on them. This used to confuse me because I thought that this would teach them that doing something wrong would get them this attention but, a very wise woman (Allison – my mentor) explained that as long as I love my kids throughout the day, every day, they would not get confused. AND it worked.
5. Then I give them the words to say to teach them how to apologize. “Mommy, I’m sorry I did not obey you.” And I say, “I forgive you”. FULL POST

Posted 2/29/16 at 11:20 AM | Audra Jennings

A Parents’ Guide to Honest Discussions About Homosexuality

Critical Conversations by Tom Gilson

Parents of teens today may have a tougher job in front of them than parents of any other generation in recent history. While immorality has always existed, the Western world has never seen such a time of moral confusion, especially regarding sexuality, gender and the definition of marriage. To help parents cut through the lies and political correctness and find a way to impart truth to their teens, Tom Gilson has written Critical Conversations: A Christian Parents' Guide to Discussing Homosexuality with Teens (Kregel/February 27, 2016/ISBN: 978-0825443961/$15.99).

This is one of the most complex issues Christians face today, and it’s rife with landmines. In Critical Conversations, Gilson describes the efforts by some to paint Christian beliefs as hateful, making many believers hesitant to speak truth for fear of being seen as homophobic. Even teens growing up in faith-filled homes can be suspicious of how Christians treat LGBT people. Gilson says this can separate them from their church, their parents and most importantly their belief in Christ.

With a foreword by Sean McDowell and endorsements from apologists including Alex McFarland, Critical Conversations is a dependable and highly practical guide that will help parents understand the history of this issue and its far-reaching cultural and spiritual implications. Gilson also uniquely provides clear but compassionate and biblical answers for two dozen anti-Christian objections, enabling parents to counter the questions teens face in the media or even with their classmates at school. Parents will be able to help equip their children with answers to popular arguments such as: “If you disagree with homosexuality, you’re a hater,” “You’re on the wrong side of history,” “The Bible doesn’t even mention gay marriage,” and many others.

Encouraging parents to avoid pat answers or the “Bible brush-off” of “The Bible says it. Believe it,” Gilson calls parents to take their teens seriously and do their homework. “If Mom or Dad will talk with them respectfully about this topic, they’ll know they’re being treated seriously,” Gilson advises. “If there are hard questions the parent can’t answer, that’s actually OK — as long as the parent stays in the process and seeks to uncover the right answer alongside the teen.”

The stakes couldn’t be higher for moms and dads, and despite it being what Gilson calls the “perfect storm” of awkward parent-child conversations, he believes with proper equipping, parents can navigate these crucial discussions, drawing their teens back into closer relationship with themselves and their family and giving them the confidence they need to stay connected with Christ and Christianity.

Learn more about more about Critical Conversations and Tom Gilson at or on Twitter (@ThnkngChristian).

About the author

Tom Gilson, author of Critical Conversations
Tom Gilson

Tom Gilson is the Senior Editor and Ministry Coordinator for the top conservative daily online news and insight website The Stream, and for years he’s interacted with those of differing viewpoints on his blog, Thinking Christian. A 36-year veteran of ministry leadership with Cru, BreakPoint and Ratio Christi, Gilson holds a Master’s degree in organizational psychology. He’s the author of Critical Conversations: A Christian Parents’ Guide to Discussing Homosexuality with Teens, as well as more than 150 articles found in publications such as Discipleship Journal, Touchstone Magazine and Salvo. He also served as the lead editor for True Reason: Confronting the Irrationality of the New Atheism (Kregel). Gilson speaks regularly on topics relating to faith to national conference audiences.

When not studying or writing, he enjoys canoeing, sailing and long walks in the woods. He lives with wife, Sara, in Lebanon, Ohio. They have two college-aged children.

Keep up with Tom Gilson at or on Twitter (@ThnkngChristian).


Read more