How To Wage War For The Heart Of Your Family.

Author of 5 books, podcaster, parent trainer, husband and father.

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
A couple of years ago we found ourselves at a crossroad in our family. We came face to face with the reality that change was needed. It has been extremely difficult to institute, but the payoff is worth it.

It’s that breaking moment you’ve always heard happens in other people’s lives, but you never expect will arrive at your doorstep. After all, your children won’t ever make bad choices like other people’s kids, right? The infrastructure of your family will never be weakened or compromised like so and so’s family down the street. And then it happens to you.  Suddenly, your breath is taken away.

When this happens you find yourself standing at a fork in the road and you’re faced with a decision. Continue on the route we’ve been traveling, or move in a new direction and change.

We were there as a family not that long ago. Kristin and I had to take a hard look at our family. We surveyed our children’s behavior and asked ourselves a lot of why questions when it came to their choices and attitudes. We re-evaluated our priorities personally, and as a family, and contrasted them to what we said our values were.

Truth is, we didn’t liked what we saw. We didn’t like the apathy in our children, or us. We found ourselves unsatisfied with the direction our family was moving. The mis-guided priorities that permeated our family made us sick, to be honest. Through the pain of these realizations, we decided it was time to get up and fight. We drew a line in the sand and decided to reclaim our family. A year and a half later I can safely say that it has been one of the hardest battles we’ve ever fought. It’s unending. It’s taken a lot of desperation and intentionality. We had to get desperate and choose to intentionally engage in the fight for our family’s heart!

Get mad.

We got mad. Really mad at our apathy, staunchness, and lack of direction. We became so ticked off at our situation that we couldn’t rest until we were moving in a different direction. We discovered that when you get mad at your predicament or situation, it leads to change. We refused to allow bad choices to go unchecked. We no longer accepted apathy as a mode of operation amongst us or our children. Our anger toward it brought an end to it!

Change direction.

We realized pretty quickly that getting mad does absolutely no good unless you’re willing to change direction. If you become angry over your situation but continue to walk the same direction, all you do is waste emotion. We’ve been guilty of this so much in the past. We’ve talked about changing our direction. We’ve even intended to walk a new direction. But intentions mean nothing unless they’re backed up with action.

Andy Stanley, senior pastor of Northpoint Community Church in Atlanta, says this: “Your direction, not your intention, determines your destination.”

For our family, it meant changing the way we carried out our days. We realized that we were permitting our children to spend a lot of time online or watching TV. This had to change. New boundaries needed to be established. We discovered that we were not dialed in as parents to some of the smaller, easily missed, needs of some of our children. We had to change direction.

Charge the hill of your family’s heart.

Once we were made enough and moving in a new direction, it was time to storm the hill and reclaim our family’s heart. We looked our children square in the face and told them, “I love you enough to put a stop to this!” “I love you so much that I am not giving up on you and I am going to be there for you no matter what!”

“I’m going to do whatever it takes to fight for your heart!” These moments were gut-wrenching at times. In fact, they nearly took the life out of us. Some of our children resisted or complained but we kept fighting. Again, we’re still fighting. Choosing to fight for the heart of your family is not a one-time event. It’s a lifetime event.

Personally change.

This was the hardest thing to do, but we had to. We realized that it was easy to expect our children to change, but a whole different thing for us to change. For our children to change direction, however, we had to change direction and model what we were expecting for our children.

We realized that it was easy to expect our children to change, but a whole different thing for us to change.

We learned a lot from this experience. At the end of the day, this is about growth and growth is hard. It’s never easy to go to the gym and begin getting in shape for the first time after years of no exercise. It’s painful. Truth is, changing the course of our family was extremely painful. It still is. But it’s the healthiest thing we could do for them.

I promise that if you choose to do this in your own family, consistently for a long period of time, you will see powerful results. It will not be an overnight fix but, in time, it will be worth it. What are you waiting for?

What areas do you need to change in your family?

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
Mike and Kristin Berry are the Co-Founders of The Honestly Adoption Company and have been parents for nearly two decades. They are the authors of six books, and the host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.

Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is the executive assistant to Mike and Kristin Berry. And she is the best in the land. In addition to providing a warm and friendly response to the many emails our company receives on a weekly basis, she also manages Mike and Kristin’s speaking and meeting schedules, and makes sure that team events go off without a hitch.

Nicole Goerges

Nicole Goerges is a Content Contributor & Special Consultant for The Honestly Adoption Company. She works with Mike and Kristin as a recurring co-host for the Honestly Adoption Podcast, and co-host of Kitchen Table Talks, exclusive video content for Oasis Community, along with Kristin. She is a fellow adoptive mom, and former foster parent.

Matt McCarrick

Matt McCarrick is the Content Production Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. If you’ve loved listening to our podcast, or enjoyed any of the videos trainings we’ve published, you have Matt to thank. He oversees all of our content production, from video edits, to making sure the tags are correct on YouTube, to uploading new videos to Oasis, to hitting publish on a podcast episode, he’s a content wonder!

Karen Anderson

Karen Anderson is the Community Engagement Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends the bulk of her time interacting with, and helping, people through our various social media channels, as well as providing support for Oasis Community members through chat support or Zoom calls. In the same spirit as Beaver, Karen is also passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and supported. Karen is also an FASD trainer and travels often, equipping and encouraging parents.

Beaver Trumble

Beaver Trumble is the Customer Care Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. Chances are, if you have been in need of technical support, or forgotten your password to one of our courses, you have interacted with Beaver. He is an absolute pro at customer care. In fact, he single-handedly revolutionized our customer care department last year. Beaver is passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and encouraged.

Kristin Berry

Kristin Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Content Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends most of her time researching and connecting with guests for our podcast, as well as direction, designing and publishing a lot of the content for our social media channels, blog and podcast. She loves to connect with fellow parents around the world, and share the message of hope with them.

Mike Berry

Mike Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Marketing Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. He spends the bulk of his time and energy designing and building many of the resources you see within our company, as well as social media and email campaigns. His goal is to use media as a means to encourage and equip parents around the world. He is also the co-host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.