Love. Fight. Win.
November 19, 2017
Ed and Lisa Young
As the marriage goes, so goes the family. And just as God has set married couples up for success, He has set families up to win as well. But winning in the family takes just as much work, just as much of a fight. In the last message of this series, Ed and Lisa Young focus on the centrality of the marriage relationship within the family, and they unpack a unique definition of “kids” that will help every family experience ultimate success.
– [Ed] Are you guys ready to love, fight, and win? I’m Ed, this is my wife, Lisa. We’ve written 14 books on the subject. We’ve had the opportunity, Lisa, to lecture all over the place about this and the thing is, God’s way works. You know, God’s not playing. God’s not giving us suggestions, he’s saying, okay, here’s the deal. You either follow it or not. And quite frankly, if we follow it, I’m telling you, success will occur, because, Lisa, I’ve never met a person ever who sincerely said, I’m gonna do life, I’m gonna do family God’s way, I’ve never met a person whose life was screwed up when they truly live it out. I’ve not met that person yet. Now I’ve met a lot of people who’ve said Oh, I’m gonna do this, I’m gonna do that, whatever, but they don’t live it out. Well living it out, Lisa, that’s where it’s at.
– [Lisa] And I’m so excited to be able to share, Ed and I to get together to share, to these young families who’ve just dedicated their children and what a beautiful experience, because today is the starting point where you have, I mean obviously when they’re born and you’re excited and all that but today is that commemorative day where you are dedicating them to the Lord and establishing the priorities for raising the family the way God intended it. And I wanna, we’ll just have a seat here. I wanted to, I mean, Ed and I have just entered a new phase of life and you guys saw in the weekend update, our daughter, Landra, son-in-law, Brad, and Sterling and so I love being a grandma. Do you like being a grandad?
– [Ed] I love it.
– [Lisa] It’s awesome, but a couple of months ago or before she was born, let’s see, she’s two months old, so we went to the baby store to do the registry and everything and I was blown away.
– [Ed] Have you been to a baby store lately?
– [Lisa] Blown away.
– [Ed] Unbelievable, the paraphernalia.
– [Lisa] It’s unreal, I mean, I’m thinking to myself, do you need all of this stuff in order to raise a child? I mean, seriously, in fact, I mean just simply wipe, wipe warmers, that’s hard to stay really fast.
– [Ed] Wipe warmers.
– [Lisa] Wipe warmers. I hope our children were like, you know, they’re not gonna be scarred for life because they had cold wipes on their behinds, I don’t know, but I mean, you’re just looking at all this stuff thinking, okay, do we need it all? What do we really need? I think that’s the question that we have to ask ourselves as parents as we raise our children, as we focus on how to do this thing in a winning manner, what do we need, what do we have to do? And that’s what we’re going to unpack today because.
– [Ed] I think people too, Lisa, and I’m gonna interrupt you for a second, because you know I love to interrupt.
– [Lisa] I know, it’s okay.
– [Ed] People don’t realize, and I said this just a little bit earlier, that God has set us up to win and the Christian life is about the win, so it’s not like we’re defensive and like we’re paranoid and poor pitiful me, it’s not like our dobber is down all the time and we’re all depressed and despondent. Just the opposite is true. We’re fighting from victory, not for it. We’re trying to secure that so the family, I want you to get this down, this might be the Tweet of the day, the family is the ultimate fight. So the ultimate fight is the family because fighting for the family is the ultimate. Could you hear that? The ultimate fight is for the family because fighting for the family is the ultimate. Yet we’re fighting not for victory, we’re fighting from it. And once we understand that, if you’re in a dating relationship, if you’re a single parent, if you are in the nuclear family with two point three kids, once we understand that, it’s like whoa, because the Bible says, Lisa, Romans 8:37,
– [Lisa] It says, we are more than conquerors through Him, who loved us.
– [Ed] Did you hear that, more than conquerors.
– [Lisa] More than conquerors. And I’m just assuming because all of these beautiful, young families and at all of our different locations, that sometimes you don’t feel like a conqueror. You feel like you’ve just barely got your head above the water and are right there just barely making it, and I’m telling you, you have to remind yourself about from what scripture says about you. You are more than conquerors, we are winners. But we have to make the choice and decide in advance the priorities on how to build a vision for our family.
– [Ed] Because we choose our choices but we don’t choose our consequences. In other words, I could eat like crap, I could choose that and you know, the consequences aren’t gonna be too pretty. On the other hand, I could eat clean, paleo, you know, and maybe vegan or whatever is hot, and then, you know, I will look a certain way. And the same is true, honey, when it comes to the whole parenting game because, and I think this is funny, we look like our parents. I mean, even though we try not to, we look like our parents. So when we’re born, we look like our parents, but when we die, we look like our choices. So the decisions that you make and I make, or the net effect of it, we end up looking like that and that’s the whole consequences thing.
– [Lisa] And parents, we have some choices to make.
– [Ed] Yes, we do.
– [Lisa] We have some choices to make that the consequences are so huge and the consequences can be so positive in our lives. We wanna give you an acrostic because for sleep-deprived people, which I’m assuming there are some sleep-deprived people, these parents, that an acrostic is easy to remember. So kids, that’s kinda the focus today, kids, K-I-D-S. Knowledge that’s grounded, intimacy that’s intentional, discipline that’s consistent, and structure that is strategic. I like that, KIDS. Knowledge that’s grounded, Ed, what is that all about?
– [Ed] Well, the Bible gives us the 411, I mean, we’re talking about keeping it real, the Bible does, the Bible shows us the good, the bad, and the ugly about people, even about parents. I can give you great examples of great parents in the Bible and I can give you examples of parents, and I’m asking myself, what were they smoking? And I love that about the reality of it, so it’s one thing to have knowledge, yet we’re not a church of just knowledge. Knowledge is important, that’s one half of it. The Bible was not written for just our information, it was written for our transformation. You’ve gotta have the information, then you apply what is written, the knowledge, and you live it out, so God has given us, Lisa, this amazing knowledge and we have an opportunity inspired and fueled by the Holy Spirit of God to live this out, to win, and that’s what God wants us to do. So no matter what age or stage the information is there and one of the frustrating things about leading a church is we talk to a kaleidoscopic range of people, people cycle through here once a month, once a year, once every other year, and I can tell just by looking at them, just by seeing the lack of involvement, the lack of church attendance, I can predict with 100% accuracy what’s gonna happen to that couple living together, what’s gonna happen to that person smoking weed and getting high every other day, to that couple and their kids who were chasing the AAU dream who only show up here once a month, I can tell you with amazing accuracy what’s going to happen and I’m like come on, man, come on, man. Get your game in gear. Show up here and God is gonna deposit amazing information and application into your life. And the second part of this acrostic is intimacy, Lisa, the intimacy that’s intentional, because intimacy is all about relationships.
– [Lisa] Yeah, and when you’re married, intimacy flows a little bit easier, more natural because it’s just you and your spouse, and it’s like, oh, this is easy, but when you put a child in the mix, I mean, we can give you another acrostic for that, KIDS. Keeping intimacy at a distance successfully.
– [Ed] Is that brilliant?
– [Lisa] Yes.
– [Ed] Because it’s pretty much, no money, no sex, no time. Once you have a kid, and some of you are like, oh, no, not me, my brother, and some, oh no, not me, my man. I don’t care what you look like, what you have, what you don’t have, we all deal with these issues, and you’re gonna wake up after you have a little bouncing baby and go, no sex, no money, no time. No sex, no money, no time, what do you do with that? That’s reality, what do you do?
– [Lisa] And because we don’t wanna end on a negative note, we’re gonna give you instruction on how to navigate through that. How to plan ahead, how to prioritize intimacy. Then D, discipline, discipline that’s consistent. How do you discipline your children? Ed and I, he’s the fun parent, I’ll just tell you, he’s the one that’s a lot more fun, ask our children. Discipline, for him, is sometimes he gets a little side-tracked, he’s a little ADD so he might tell the kids, you know, this is your discipline, but he forgets to follow up with the consequences and I’m like, you know, honey, it might be good if you said to go to your room that you actually watch them go up the stairs and into their room.
– [Ed] But I’ve learned a lot from you, I’ve learned a ton from you, I’ve learned to do a better job.
– [Lisa] Yeah, but I’m just a little bit more hard-lined, I was a schoolteacher you know, I’ve got rules, and I’m enforcing the rules and Ed’s the fun one, so you need to talk, how are you going to discipline? How do you bring that consistency so that you’re on the same page?
– [Ed] And Lisa, this seems benign, some of the single people out here are like, oh this doesn’t even relate to me, are you kidding me?
– [Lisa] I wish that I had heard this when I was single. I wish that I had known this. You know, Ed and I have talked about the fact that we didn’t have pre-marriage counseling before we got married and that was a difficult thing
– [Ed] Mistake, turnover.
– [Lisa] To figure out, wouldn’t it be great, pre-parenting classes? Yes, well that’s basically what we’re helping you with is getting ready before you’re in the throes of it.
– [Ed] And I don’t know, the church, let me brag on this GQ childrens’ pastor we have, Mike Johnson. Does he look clean or what? But seriously from knee high to tree high, we’ve got parenting classes, we’ve got classes on marriage, classes on divorce recovery, recovery groups, and we have intensive teaching junior high students and high school students and on and on and on and on and on. The children’s curriculum that Mike and his team writes is seen in over 5,000 churches worldwide. So if you find a church, let me brag here, that has more than this, join it. Leave this one and join it. But guess what, you ain’t gonna find one like it. So if I’m you, and I’m not bragging on myself, I’m bragging on what God’s done. If I’m you and I’m like, I’m gonna be all over this. So we talk about this last thing, the structure.
– [Lisa] Yeah, that leads us to the structure that’s strategic. You have to decide in advance that you’re gonna have him play those things that highlight and underscore the values that God intended for your family. There’s no place but the local church that highlights and underscores those values. Ed and I unashamedly attribute the success of our parenting to Fellowhship Church, no doubt.
– [Ed] And we’re four for four.
– [Lisa] Four for four, they’re not perfect. We’re not perfect, but they love God, they’re serving the house, they’re seeking to do his will and you cannot ask for more success than that. I don’t care if your child ends up in the NBA, the NFL, some famous soccer league, I don’t know what it is, that’s not as important as serving God and loving him with all their heart.
– [Ed] Oh, no doubt.
– [Lisa] So don’t make the mistake of chasing the dream that does not matter. That’s okay, but the first and foremost priority is structuring your family for success.
– [Ed] Lisa, you won’t believe what I’ve found. I was in my office doing some filming before services for a big end-of-year thing we’re doing, and I’ll tell a little bit more about it, and I came across this journal that was hidden from me and I have some raps, some bars that I’ve written about the family. And I just happened to thumb through this, I was like, look at this! Do you mind if I do a little rap for you? I mean, this is like, she had no idea I was gonna do it and I just like this stuff, I do.
– [Lisa] I’ll just fold my Bible.
– [Ed] No, no.
– [Lisa] It’s all over now.
– [Ed] I wanna get Derrick, okay, hey hey kids, don’t leave the path, ’cause you’ll experience serious wrath. Give mom and dad a massive break, sometime parents gonna make a mistake. Understand that authority comes from above, you know God is all about love. A god of discipline and justice too who always has the best for you. Somebody, Eminem, can you say Marshall Mathers? Gotta be consistent, very resistant, super proficient, not by accident.
– [Lisa] Oh, now, that’s his secret dream, to be a hip-hop artist.
– [Ed] In the colossal, crazy mess, diapers, dishpans, and all the rest, all these kids runnin’ the show, hey mom and dad, what’s up, yo? Family order is the name of the game, if it ain’t crackin’, you’ll go insane. God and spouse and then yo’ kids, if it gets inverted, you’re a hit your lid. Every single week, have them in church, if you ignore it, you’ll live in a lurch. Do what you can to have ’em in the house, if you don’t, you’ll raise the louse. Teaching and training and dim to leave, that’s God’s plan, once you conceive to help them receive and then believe.
– [Lisa] Oh my goodness, wow. I don’t know what to say. That was awesome, that was so good. In fact, Ed and I read an article recently talking about some of the issues that come up with kids.
– [Ed] I believe that was God that I found this. That’s unbelievable, I mean, I never look through my drawers in my office. I’m like, what’s this journal? And then, boom.
– [Lisa] I mean basically, everything you need to know about parenting is in the hip-hop.
– [Ed] I’m sorry, go ahead, I interrupted you.
– [Lisa] It’s right there. But we were reading an article and it talked about, and that’s funny, but you know, and it’s fun to rap.
– [Ed] And this is true.
– [Lisa] And it’s true, yes, but this article is talking about little things that kinda change from when you’re married to having children, little what seems like insignificant things.
– [Ed] How about household chores? Okay, before you have a kid, and again, I’m talking to couples who don’t have kids yet, household chores, yeah whatever, you know, we’ll get to them and there’s a little bit of an urgency. Once you crank out a child, urgency.
– [Lisa] Everything becomes urgent.
– [Ed] You better do it.
– [Lisa] You have to take out the trash or it’s gonna smell really bad, you know those diapers, you can’t leave them hanging around in the house. Or spit up on clothes, everything becomes urgent, so chores that maybe you did as a couple and you were both dual-income, maybe now one stays at home and one does it, and you’re trying to split the chores up or you’re keeping score with the chores, like, well I did this, so hmmm.
– [Ed] Guys, don’t try that game, we lose every time. It’s like a blowout, you know, she’s 37 and we’re like three. Don’t, you’re not gonna keep score when, no.
– [Lisa] And Ed and I grew up very differently when it came to chores. My sister and I, I have one sister, I mean, every week, we vacuumed, dusted, cleaned the bathrooms at our house every week. If we wanted to spend the night out on a Friday night, we had to do it before we left because Saturday morning was chore day. And it wasn’t gonna wait til Saturday afternoon because that was family time. So our family was really structured with that. Ed, on the other hand, his mom made up his bed, she picked up his clothes, all of those things.
– [Ed] In the morning, what would you like for breakfast, honey? Whatever I wanted!
– [Lisa] And you know what she’s saying now that she’s in Heaven? She’s saying, Ed, you should make up your bed.
– [Ed] I know, and Lisa has taught me, she’s taught me, see, that’s how iron chakras iron and marriage, you learn from one another, you have intimacy.
– [Lisa] And now we’re both improving on these things, right?
– [Ed] We still are.
– [Lisa] And parenting styles, another one’s parenting styles.
– [Ed] You know what, ladies, let me tell you, guys, we’re insecure, you might not think it ladies, men, we are so insecure, we are. And it helps up, let me give the women just a hint, it helps us if you’ll compliment us even when we don’t need to be complimented. It really does. For example, if you just take the plate from the table to the sink and run water over the plate, ladies, just say honey, that’s so, that’s so great that you did that. That helps us so much.
– [Lisa] That is so great.
– [Ed] And then if you say, let me give you a little suggestion honey, take the plate, and put it in the dishwasher. Okay, that’s even better. Okay, so just we need an inordinate amount of compliments. And also, too, guys, we need to compliment our beautiful ladies as well.
– [Lisa] That’s right, it’s encouragement.
– [Ed] Encouragement.
– [Lisa] How about parenting styles? Do you have to talk about parenting styles?
– [Ed] You do? Yes you do, you need to talk about parenting styles when you come into the relationship.
– [Lisa] Yeah, and that goes back to discipline and how you’re raised, but talk about it.
– [Ed] Yeah, and maybe one is more relaxed and the other is more rules-driven. And you need to get that on the table before you get married because that’s going to be an issue and the kids will be able to read that and play one against the other. You’ve got to give a unified front to your kids. Now another thing I wanna talk about, and this is a shocker that I wanna talk about it, is sex. Look how quiet it got.
– [Lisa] Wow.
– [Ed] Lisa and I wrote the Sexperiment, it’s so hilarious and we went on a book tour whenever I would go to these places, these churches, and say okay, we’re gonna talk about Sexperiment. It’s okay, God made sex, just laugh. Let me hear a laugh, one, two, three.
– [Lisa] We wouldn’t be having baby dedication if it weren’t for that, so let’s just talk about it.
– [Ed] Because you know what we read in this article, tell them about the frequency issue.
– [Lisa] Young couples who bring a newborn into their family, back home, sex decreases 50%. 50%, so we know that through
– [Ed] Some are going, we’re not gonna have kids.
– [Lisa] Through transition
– [Ed] No, don’t do that.
– [Lisa] And there’s things that weigh into that. For example, let’s say you’re a parent of multiples, the challenge is even greater. Let’s say you’re a parent of a disabled child. The challenges are even greater. So you have to think intentionally about preparing for intimacy. A time for your date night, scheduling a date night, how do you arrange babysitters? How do you, you know, co-op babysitters?
– [Ed] And schedule time to have intimacy even when you don’t have a date night.
– [Lisa] Yeah, you wanna have your date night, but then,
– [Ed] And what I used to do, this is kinda embarrassing but, I used to just, you know, I like to sing songs and stuff, and I used to sing this in the morning if I wanted to think about making a night of love-making, okay, we had kids, I would sing this song, I promise you, I took this song from the group Queen. I’d wake up in the morning, get some coffee, I would go bomp, bomp, bomp ♪ It’s gonna be a time of love ♪ ♪ Bomp, bomp, bomp, ♪ And Lisa knew by that song, that night,
– [Lisa] I have no words.
– [Ed] To put the kids down early. So guys, try that. ♪ It’s gonna be a time of love ♪
– [Lisa] But that is true, I will tell you, that is the song that he sings sometimes. Okay, and then it’s all about time management.
– [Ed] Time management, you gotta make time.
– [Lisa] Prioritize time for your marriage, that’s the date night. Prioritize time with friends, that’s important. We encourage you be a part of a connect group, we have a young and hitched connect group, we have young parenting connect groups, we have singles connect groups. Because when you’re with people who are going in the same direction, have the same goals and priorities, you’re strengthening yourself, so make time together. And then time for yourselves. One of the things that Ed and I, well one of the best gifts he’s ever given me was when our twins were born and it was Mother’s Day weekend coming up and he said, you know, Lisa, for Mother’s Day, I wanna give you a trip. Just maybe you and some friends could go away and enjoy some time by yourself and you’ve done such a great job with the kids. And I was like, I don’t wanna go with anybody else. I wanna go by myself, I mean, just me. I don’t wanna chop anybody’s meat, I don’t wanna ask somebody where they wanna go, I don’t wanna take anybody to the restroom. I just, you know, no, none of that. I just wanted to be by myself. I need alone times, perhaps it’s because Ed sings a lot and I just need to be by myself.
– [Ed] No way, that’s impossible.
– [Lisa] Impossible, I know, but just time for yourself. So when you’re first married, you might still have those guy nights or girl nights or times where you’re out with your friends together but it’s important that you’re able to individuate and I even carve out time during the day where I have a moment or two by myself and just recalibrate and gain energy from that. It’s very fueling for me.
– [Ed] Well it is, and I’m happy that you do that, that you draw away, and I think it’s good to even start those habits as you mentioned a second ago when you’re newly wed and when you have child because it’s not that you can spend maybe as much time away but have that time where maybe you get involved in a recreational pursuit or something that you enjoy and you help one another out. And that leads us to grandparenting.
– [Lisa] Our favorite topic now.
– [Ed] Okay, if you’re a grandparent, lift your hand.
– [Lisa] All the different places, oh my word.
– [Ed] That is awesome! Let’s give the grandparents a hand.
– [Lisa] Yay!
– [Ed] And we have people on the balcony I can’t see for the lights,bbut any grandparents up there?
– [Lisa] Yes, yes.
– [Ed] Yeah we do, man, this is grandparent central. I love it!
– [Lisa] Being a grandparent is awesome, but it’s somewhat of a dance, because, as a grandparent, you’ve been there, done that. You kinda know the 411 and you see your kids and they’re just figuring it out. And they’re awesome, and the tendency could be that we kinda hover and get a little bit too involved.
– [Ed] Helicopter grandparenting.
– [Lisa] Helicopter grandparent because and I’ve noticed this, I’ve had to, I’ll think something and just because I think it doesn’t mean I need to speak it. And I step back and inevitably, this is a great part about being a grandparent, Landra will ask me, mom, how do you, what you do, or I can’t get her to sleep through the night, what would you do? And they ask for advice. And that’s really the healthy way to function, not hovering and not being overbearing as a grandparent but just being available for support. And we are the best babysitters and so we take advantage of that and say hey, we would love to keep them, or keep her, it’s not them, not yet, just one, but I might be being prophetic. But anyway,
– [Ed] Okay, how about this? Because being a grandparent, there’s the dance of, okay, this is the holiday season right now, now we have the whole week of Thanksgiving. Back in the day, it was a couple of days. Now, I mean, we love Holidays, but there’s this dance, okay. Do you go to hang out with this family Thanksgiving? You know, that family, that other side of the family, Christmas, you know, in-laws, out-laws. How do you,, that was good. How do you do that? And then there’s some manipulation maybe, there’s some like, I gotta have the family together, whatever. So are those real issues or what? Yeah, yeah, okay, that’s real. So, almost turned this over, how do we, Lisa, you tell them what we decided to do a long time ago.
– [Lisa] Ed and I decided, well first of all, as pastors and Fellowship church does a lot at Christmas time, so at Christmas, we’re here, and we’re here til late on Christmas eve, and so we have always chosen to create our own holiday traditions. We’ve spent Christmas morning together, our family. But now we’re having the situation where we have two son-in-laws, and so, thankfully, we’ve been able to get everybody on the same schedule. So they will spend either Thanksgiving with us and Christmas with, you know, we’ll swap it out, that’s what I’m trying to say.
– [Ed] I personally think, this is my personal opinion, that it’s important to establish like, with Christmas, those family traditions and then after that, you can get out on a boat, train, plane, and go see mama, you know. And then do that thing. That’s my personal opinion.
– [Lisa] Talk to your spouse and figure out what works best for your family.
– [Ed] Don’t make that decision on your own. Talk to your spouse. And again, young people, I know you think this is boring, you’re like, this doesn’t relate to me. Well one day you’ll think, I remember back in the day, someone said, and it’s wild, I’m facing what they said now. Because they will.
– [Lisa] It’s important. And as we conclude this time, I hope it’s been conveyed, the passion that we have for you as a family, for you as single adults to grow in your walk with God. To do life well and that is done through prioritizing Him first and foremost and giving every opportunity consideration as to does it help me grow in my walk with God?
– [Ed] Because again, the Tweet of the day, the ultimate fight is the family. Because fighting for the family is what, the ultimate. Let’s pray together. Father, as our heads are bowed and our eyes are closed, here at all of our campuses, I just pray your blessing over all of the families and the future families, for the kids, and Lord, may we continue to lean into your greatness as we win. God, we’re all fellow strugglers, and I thank you, Lord, for what you’ve done, what you’re doing, what you’re going to do and I pray, if there’s someone here and you’ve never responded, to love fight and win, that you will, that you will say, you know what, God, I believe you love me by sending Jesus to secure the ultimate victory on the cross by dying for my sins. And that’s the win. That’s the eternal win, and right now, Lord, I give my life to you. My marriage to you, my family to you. We thank you, Lord, in Jesus’ name. And everybody said, amen.