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“How to respond when husband mocks Christian beliefs?”

Katie and Scott on Facebook Live

Outline for video:

  • 0–6:43—Scott’s question
  • 6:44­–8:11—Katie’s thoughts on Scott’s question
  • 8:12–12:54—Katie’s question
  • 12:55–17:37—Scott and Katie’s thoughts back-and-forth on Katie’s question
  • 17:38–19:17—Katie shares from Marriage God’s Way
  • 19:18–24:56—Discussion of Christian Heritage Marriage Retreat

Scott’s question: “How should I respond when husband mocks my Christian beliefs?”

How should I respond when my husband mocks my Christian beliefs? My husband claims to be a Christian, but he randomly says the church is really his wife’s church and it’s ridiculous to believe in creation over evolution. Occasionally he does this in front of the kids too.

There’s a chance your husband might be saved, but it’s hard to reconcile your description with the behavior of a Christian. People can be saved and believe in evolution, but they wouldn’t Christianity. That sort of hostility toward the Gospel seems incompatible with regeneration.

Here are the two encouragements: Continue reading “How to respond when husband mocks Christian beliefs?”

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“Leave this church?” and “Hubby likes kids more than me!”

"Should we leave our church?" and "My husband likes our kids more than me!"

Outline for the video:

  • 0-0:49 Intro and explanation of some of our adorable kids joining us
  • 0:49-9:18 Question for Scott: “Should we leave this church?”
  • 9:19-14:13 Question for Katie: “How can I get my husband to pay more attention to me than our kids?”
  • 14:14-15:35 A few thoughts from Scott on the question given to Katie
  • 15:36-16:06 Marriage God’s Way book giveaway
  • 16:07-19:27 Update on Marriage God’s Way Workbook and closing

Question for Scott: “Should we leave this church?”

I wanted to ask about leaving our church because of their misunderstanding of some doctrines. I don’t think I’ve handled the situation well. We’ve been checking out other churches, so instead of being a voice of reason the awkwardness has us not going there at all. My desire has been to continue going there, but my wife does not enjoy it. Though the people are sincere, the church is dead and there is a heavy spiritual attack going on. Another reason my wife doesn’t want to attend is my former fiancé from three years ago is there. The girl and I have no interest in each other, but it’s still hard for my wife to see her.

Every church we visit there is a lack of sobriety, or the they seem to be off base somewhere important. Perhaps they allow female teachers or there’s a “pop Christianity.” I’ve suffered way too much to attend a ho-hum church. I want seriousness, Scripture, and the life of Christ.

I met with the pastor a few times to reconcile our differences. He’s a very intellectual person and familiar with Scripture. But he’s come to a different interpretation of almost everything I believe God has taught me. I don’t see the pastor changing his mind, and I don’t know if I should bring up to the rest of the church the things I think are wrong.

What should I do?

My response…

Continue reading “Leave this church?” and “Hubby likes kids more than me!”

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Top Three Things I Learned From My Dad, John LaPierre

marriage-gods-way-author-scott-lapierre-2-jpg
Lots of wonderful friends came out to surprise my dad, John LaPierre, on his 65th birthday.

Friday night was my dad’s surprise 65th birthday party. Different people took turns standing sharing about him, and it was very touching. I’m thankful for all the wonderful friends God has put in my parents’ lives. Also, my dad is a really wonderful man, and it blessed me to see how many others recognize that. I concluded the time of sharing, discussing the top three things I learned from my dad.

First, Dad taught us to work hard

Front view of the house I grew up in from our visit in 2014.
Front view of the house I grew up in from our visit in 2014.

My dad is one of the hardest workers I’ve ever met. When people shared about my dad, this was the most common thing they said, pointing out how he’s such a servant.

When I was growing up, I don’t remember much sitting around. We grew up in the mountains, and it seemed like Dad always had work for us to do. While most of my friends looked forward to summers, I remember thinking it just meant more work around the house. I tried to get a job as soon as I could, because at least then I would make money while working :). Continue reading Top Three Things I Learned From My Dad, John LaPierre

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3 Ways to Build a Stronger Marriage

Developing a strong marriage takes daily investment– you can’t set it and forget it. Relationships are ever changing, because people and life are ever changing. With intentional changes, you can build a stronger marriage and go deeper with your spouse.

Here are 3 ways you can build a stronger marriage-

1. Give Them the Benefit of the Doubt

There are going to be times in which your spouse says or does something that hurts your feelings. It can be easy to jump to conclusions that they did the offensive thing on purpose. Just because they know you better than anyone else, doesn’t mean that they always know how their actions will affect you.

Instead of concluding that they did something intentionally, give them the benefit of the doubt. Believing that they meant to hurt you will cause your defenses to go up. Going to them about an issue when you are defensive will usually lead to unnecessary fighting.

Rather than believing that they were trying to hurt you, consider that they did it unknowingly. Your spouse is not your enemy, but you can make them out to be if you don’t give them the benefit of the doubt.

2. Become a Lifelong Student of Your Spouse

study-your-spouseMy husband, Austin, says that I’m his favorite subject and that he is committed to studying me for the rest of his life. Boy do I give him a lot to learn.

Even if you have known your spouse for a long time, it doesn’t mean that you have them all figured out. They change- you change- everything changes. Continue reading 3 Ways to Build a Stronger Marriage

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What Keeps Couples From Communicating?

marriage-gods-way-author-scott-lapierre communicating wellOver the last few years, my husband and I have had some major breakthroughs communicating with each other. I feel that we have always had a great foundation communicating, but we were still missing the mark with each other. This is not to say that we have it all figured out, but there are a few things that we have discovered that keeps couples from communicating well.

Listening To Their Words Doesn’t Equal Understanding

We are told over and over again that all we have to do is really listen to our spouse. I can tell you that there have been plenty of times that I have intently listened to my husband and still didn’t understand what he was communicating. Why isn’t listening enough?

You Aren’t Speaking The Same Language

If I were listening to someone speak another language, I would have little idea of what they were trying to communicate. This happens in our native language as well. Words do not have the same meaning to everyone. One person in the relationship will say something as clearly as they know how and the other will not interpret it correctly.

My husband and I have very different ideas of the meaning of the word relax. For him, relax means to sit in front of the television and do nothing for the rest of the day. To me, relax means to leave the house and go do something so I can shut off the working part of my brain.

Reviews of Marriage-Gods-Way-author-Scott-LaPierre-front-coverAlso, before we go any further, let me encourage you encourage you to check out Scott’s book, Marriage God’s Way. You’ll be blessed and it will help strengthen the communication – among other things – in your relationship!

If you have any questions, contact Scott personally. He’d love to hear from you: scott@scottlapierre.org or (360) 977-2877.

Actions Are Misunderstood

Continue reading What Keeps Couples From Communicating?

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Marriage God’s Way – presentation of first copy to my dad

I’ve been working with Amazon on Marriage God’s Way and they send a complimentary copy to authors when their book is finished. We opened the first copy as a family, which was a special moment for us. See video above! My wife, Katie, and our children have sacrificed a lot for me to be able to write this book. They have been without me many early mornings and late evenings while I was working.

My dad, John LaPierre, has Alzheimer’s disease and of my prayers was answered in being able to finish Marriage God’s Way is in a timely manner. On August 7, 2016 during the morning worship at Woodland Christian Church I was able to present Dad with the first copy that we opened together as a family. I read the Dedication, gave him the book, and felt thankful to share the moment with my church family. See video above! VBS took place the week before and you can see the set hadn’t yet been taken down :).

Here’s some extra info related to the videos…

Continue reading Marriage God’s Way – presentation of first copy to my dad

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4 Graduation Tips for Seniors

4 Graduation Tips for Seniors
A view from the back table where the kids sat. My son Ricky is in the middle. The screen shows the welcome slide.

Each year one of the outreaches Woodland Christian Church puts on is the Senior Dinner. The graduates join us in the fellowship hall for a nice meal. I present a message with graduation tips, and my brother brother-in-law, D.J. Malinowski, plays some music (see below).

I tell the seniors that I’m going to share with them the four graduation tips I wish someone would’ve shared with me when I was in their place. I use a PowerPoint presentation and the slides are below…

4 graduation tips for seniors
The welcome slide that was up when they arrived.
4 graduation tips for seniors
Contrasting two individuals who invest the same amount of money at the same interest rate, but one starts at 20 and the other at 30. The person who started 10 years earlier makes over twice as much as the other.

Continue reading 4 Graduation Tips for Seniors

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Should we seek great things?

Should we seek great things for ourselves? Last post discussed leading a quiet life that’s faithful in “small things” based on:

  • 1 Thessalonians 4:11 Aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you.
  • Zechariah 4:10 Do not despise the day of small things, for the LORD rejoices to see these things take place.

God is looking for consistency in the ordinary activities of our daily lives that often seem insignificant or trivial.

Should we seek great things?
Should we seek great things?

The prophet Jeremiah had a faithful scribe named Baruch. He was probably Jeremiah’s closest friend, and for much of Jeremiah’s ministry, his only friend. Jeremiah gets the attention, but Baruch was also a man of God who faithfully stood by the prophet through years of persecution and rejection. Jeremiah was the most despised man of his day, and being his assistant meant being the only person on Jeremiah’s side and suffering when he suffered. Continue reading Should we seek great things?

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3 Encouragements for Homeschooling Families

I was recently invited to speak at the Annual Home Educators’ Day at the Capitol, and a few people asked for my message. Following are the three encouragements I passed along to homeschooling families…

Homeschooling Encouragement 1: The responsibility to teach and train children is on the parents’ shoulders.

Encouragements for homeschooling families
At the Capitol with former WA State Representative Jason Overstreet, who is now president of Christian Homeschool Network. I’m thankful for his ministry and heart for Christ.It’s not on the shoulders of the government, public school, or even the church.

Deuteronomy 6:7 You shall teach [the words of God] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 

The “You” is parents, and this teaching is supposed to go on all the time, when you:

  • Sit in your house…
  • Walk by the way…
  • Lie down…
  • Rise up. 

When I taught elementary school as soon as the bell rang I sent students home for the day, but as homeschooling parents educating is never done. God wants us teaching and discipling our children around the clock, every day, all day.

Continue reading 3 Encouragements for Homeschooling Families

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When should children be baptized?

When should your children be baptized?I recently received the following question: “When should children be baptized? Please explain why a child’s baptism should] lack coercion. Helpful tips, suggestions, things to avoid. This would be helpful. Sounds like the approach we definitely want to use.”

Here’s my response…

I hate to sound harsh, judgmental (or arrogant, since my oldest of five is still only eight), but one of the most common mistakes parents make is having their children baptized at a young age. At that time the baptism could be more a product of the parents’ encouragement than the child’s heart to obey Christ. When children are young they generally desire to please their parents. If parents want a child to be baptized, most likely the child will have that desire. This leaves the parents wondering, “Was my child trying to please me or God?”

Continue reading When should children be baptized?

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Our 2014 trip to CA (and Katie’s b-day)

Our 2014 trip to CA

I have to be a little more specific regarding which trip I’m referring to, since I have blog posts on our September 2013 trip to our hometown of Fall River Mills, CA, as well as Parts I and II of our December 2011 trip to Lemoore, CA.

Katie and I had a wonderful time. We visited many of our old friends as well as our previous church, Grace Baptist. We missed all of our Woodland friends and our church family – especially when looking at the pictures of the Harvest Party, but we really enjoyed the time of rest.

We arrived on Tuesday, October 21st in the evening and returned on Tuesday the 28th. We’re stayed with our wonderful friends Dave and Naida, whom we stayed with for our 2011 trip as well (here are previous posts I’ve written about them). We met in 2005 when we attended Calvary Chapel. They visited WCC in June of 2012 and shared during Sunday School, and they’re planning on visiting again in a few months.

Prior to arriving, Dave and Naida asked if we wanted them to fill our schedule with meetings and visits, but we told them we’d be happy relaxing at their house spending time with each other and with them. They’re the kind of friends we can talk with for hours, and even when we haven’t seen each other for years it feels like no time has passed between us. Plus, one of the main purposes of the trip was rest and relaxation…although we still stayed pretty busy…

Like I said, we arrived on Tuesday evening. We spent the evening with Dave and Naida, unpacked, then went to bed.

Wednesday, Dave invited me to meet with him and one of the young men he’s been discipling. In the evening Dave and Naida’s daughter Danielle and husband Charlie (two of our good friends when we were in Lemoore) came over for dinner and spent the evening with us.

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Thursday, Dave invited me to meet with him and an atheist he’s been witnessing to each week. Our previous pastor, Joe Gruchacz (I began my ministry under him at Grace Baptist as a part-time youth pastor and then full-time associate pastor), scheduled a “Marriage Toolbox” in the evening, which he invited me to lead. It worked out wonderfully since I was able to use the material from our Marriage & Family Series at WCC. I asked Katie to look through my sermons and find the lessons she thought would make good “tools” for people to take with them.

We spent most of Friday relaxing at Dave and Naida’s, and in the afternoon we went to Pastor Joe’s house and spent the evening with him and his wife Janet. They took us to the Cheesecake Factory in Fresno, then we went back to their house and prayed together.

10325242_765315453504460_1857955430012611486_nSaturday, Katie and Naida attended a bridal shower and Dave and I spent the afternoon together. In the evening Dave and Naida put on an Open House for our friends from the area to come and hear about our ministry at WCC.

1801309_765881770114495_920414317427170050_oSunday I preached at Grace Baptist, again using material from the Marriage & Family Series…and again I asked Katie to choose the lessons she thought would be most valuable to everyone. After service, we went out to lunch with a small group of friends.

10623752_765881893447816_5623008548092812676_oThen Sunday afternoon and evening we visited our good friends Steve and Sylvia McCartha, who have really suffered since acquiring Lyme Disease, including not being able to leave their home at times because of Sylvia’s low white blood cell count.

Monday we had a really special morning with Dave and Naida. We spent hours after breakfast talking, and I feel like the Lord really guided and blessed our conversation. Then for our last day Katie and I spent our time together, going out to lunch and walking around the mall. In the evening we had dinner with Dave and Naida and our friends Barry and Pam came over too.

Tuesday morning we got up, had breakfast and headed to the airport. Katie’s father Rick picked us up at the airport, as he was staying at our house with Rhea, Ricky and Charis. My parents were visiting a timeshare and they’d taken Johnny with them. They said they were returning on Thursday, so while we were glad to be back and see our other kids, we were sad about not seeing Johnny (or my parents) for a few more days.

This also happened to be Katie’s birthday, and her sister Molly invited us over to their house in the evening. Molly and her husband DJ purchased a place right next to the church when they moved here a few months ago. Katie knew Molly was making her a cake for her birthday, but my parents surprised us by coming home from their timeshare early with Johnny. It ended up being a wonderful ending to a wonderful week.

photo 1Overall, I’m thankful for my parents and Katie’s parents watching the kids most of the time we were gone (a few other families watched the kids a couple nights and we’re thankful for them too), and I’m especially thankful for Dave and Naida’s hospitality and the love they showed us while we were with them. It was great to see old friends and our previous church, but whenever we’re away it makes us recognize what a gift we have in WCC as well.

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What do I have to complain about?

What do I have to complain aboutHere’s the conversation between Katie and I one month ago when I told her I wanted to go back to the gym:

  • Katie: “You’re going to hurt yourself again.”
  • Me: “No, I’m not. I’m going to do things differently this time.”
  • Katie: “You say that every time.”
  • Me: “Yeah, but this time will be different.”
  • Katie: “You say that every time too.”

I went back to the gym one month ago, and this past Wednesday I hurt my lower back so badly I could barely make it out of the gym. If the pain hadn’t subsided some by the evening I would’ve had to cancel the first night of our home fellowship. By the time I work up Thursday morning I couldn’t get out of bed, which is where I spent the whole day (and most of Friday). Katie was wonderful as you’d imagine, taking great care of me and – most graciously – not reminding me of how right she was and how wrong I was. I joked with her throughout the day saying things like:

  • “Why didn’t you tell me you thought I’d hurt myself again?”
  • “If you would’ve warned me this wouldn’t have happened.”
  • “I’m only in this situation because it’s so important to you to have a husband that works out” (something Katie couldn’t care less about).

The truth is I was feeling sorry for myself on Thursday. I had four messages to prepare/review this week, and trying to study and type on my back was difficult. While I wouldn’t compare my “trial” to the trials others have gone through or are going through, there were still some lessons I tried to learn, because I believe the Bible is clear that every trial is meant to be a time of learning:

  1. First, it happened to be September 11th. What right did I really have to complain about anything compared to what some people were going through as they remembered the past?
  2. Second, good health – including the lack of pain and just being able to get out of bed, move around and wrestle with my boys is a blessing I take for granted. Ricky and Johnny try to “fight” with me every day and I felt like the elderly person in Ecclesiastes 12:5 afraid of everything whenever they came near me.
  3. Third, Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” There’s wisdom associated with valuing our days and when you experience what feels like a completely wasted day, it makes you thankful for days you can be productive and spend your time profitably.