Participants: Shelley Quinn (Host), Jennifer Schwirzer
Series Code: IAA
Program Code: IAA000453A
00:29 Hello, I'm Shelley Quinn.
00:30 And we welcome you once again to Issues and Answers.
00:33 Today, we are going to be talking about something
00:36 that will touch your life and change your life,
00:39 I truly believe that.
00:40 We're going to be talking about how to get along with people,
00:45 that's something that we all need to know
00:47 and we can all experience a little improvement maybe.
00:53 Let me introduce our very special guest
00:55 Jennifer Jill Schwirzer.
00:56 And, Jennifer, did I pronounce your name right?
01:00 That was good enough.
01:01 I like way you said that. Jennifer Schwirzer.
01:03 Yeah, Schwirzer. Schwirzer.
01:04 That was even better.
01:06 I always try to put a little TH in there.
01:07 That's okay.
01:09 You are a licensed professional counselor
01:11 and an author,
01:12 and tell us about some of the books
01:14 you have written.
01:15 Oh, well, I'm working on my, I think, 13th book actually.
01:20 The last two are probably the most relevant
01:23 to what we're going to be talking about.
01:24 I wrote one called Thirteen Weeks to Piece
01:27 that deals with individual psychology
01:29 from a biblical standpoint.
01:30 And then I wrote a sequel to that book
01:32 called Thirteen Weeks to Love,
01:34 that's about relationship health.
01:37 So because, you know, we're wired in God's image
01:39 and God is a relational God.
01:41 So to be healthy, we have to have healthy relationships.
01:44 So, and they're really workbooks,
01:46 like, you work through them,
01:47 you can use them as a group study manual,
01:49 they have questions at the end of the chapter,
01:51 and worksheets and that type of thing,
01:52 they're very interactive.
01:54 So you can do, use them as a group study manual
01:56 or as an individual kind of growth journey.
01:58 What is your website? I didn't know.
02:01 Jenniferjill.org. Jenniferjill.org.
02:06 has all the different facets of my life,
02:08 music, writing books, counseling, everything.
02:12 I always forget to mention that you're also a musician.
02:16 Well, we're going to tap into your counseling today
02:20 because the Lord has given you,
02:23 I think, uncommon wisdom from on high.
02:26 And I know you have trained to become a licensed counselor,
02:29 but you also, it's not just the secular training,
02:34 it is that you use so much Bible in your counseling
02:40 and I just love that.
02:41 Well, psychology is like any other science,
02:43 it's a social science.
02:44 And so there is good in science,
02:46 you know, we are just basically studying
02:50 nature and science.
02:51 And so with psychology, we're studying human nature.
02:54 And so there are some valuable things
02:55 that come out of the study of psychology
02:57 but I use the Bible as kind of a screening tool
03:00 to sort through what's good and what's bad.
03:01 Amen. Yeah.
03:03 So let's talk about...
03:04 Just kick this off.
03:07 How do we, you know,
03:08 God is a God of infinite love and unconditional love.
03:13 But His people are not always as...
03:15 That loving. That loving.
03:17 That's right.
03:18 So how do we go about improving our relationships with people?
03:22 All right, let's just cut to the chase here.
03:25 You know, Titus says that by nature we are hateful
03:28 and hating one another.
03:31 But then it goes on to say that
03:32 when the kindness and love of God,
03:35 our Savior appeared not by works of righteousness
03:37 which we have done, but according to His mercy,
03:40 He saved us through the washing of regeneration
03:43 and the renewing of the Holy Ghost,
03:45 who He poured out on us abundantly in Jesus Christ.
03:49 So there's this pouring that God engages in,
03:53 pouring out His love through the Holy Spirit
03:54 on the human race.
03:56 And we see that in Romans 5 as well,
03:58 it says, "Hope does not disappoint,
04:00 because the love of God is"
04:01 you probably know it better than I do.
04:03 Romans 5:5, "Poured out into our hearts
04:04 are shed abroad..."
04:05 either way it goes.
04:07 Depending on the translation. Yeah.
04:10 And I use that one all the time
04:11 because I know as a human being that I am limited by...
04:17 A sinful nature and its response,
04:19 so what I do every day is I pray
04:22 and say, "Lord, help me to open my heart to You
04:24 that You can pour Your love in my heart."
04:26 That's Romans 5:5 says,
04:28 "So that I may levy with all of my heart,
04:30 soul, mind, and strength
04:31 and so that I may love others as myself."
04:34 You know, it's impossible without the Holy Spirit
04:37 working in you.
04:39 Amen. I love that.
04:40 We can just end the show right now,
04:41 that's really what I wanted to say.
04:43 But the love of God is poured out into our hearts
04:45 and so I like to envision it, kind of as a bucket.
04:48 You know, we each have our bucket of ourselves.
04:50 And there's a hole at the bottom of the bucket
04:52 and there's a certain amount of fluid in the bucket
04:55 and that's human affection, natural affection.
04:58 You know we fall in love and get married,
04:59 we have friends, we love our children.
05:01 There's a certain amount of natural affection
05:04 that God has built into us, but it's a limited supply,
05:07 and what will happen is, it will drain out of that hole
05:10 and there will be nothing left
05:12 unless there's a constant infilling
05:14 and then when God through His great garden hose in heaven,
05:17 I don't mean to be cheesy here,
05:18 but flows His love into our lives
05:20 and mingles with our human affection
05:23 and so our relationships
05:25 can have longevity and consistency.
05:28 And so that they can actually be improved.
05:30 I think that, now, I'm not a professional counselor.
05:33 JD and I do a lot of biblical counseling with people,
05:37 but what I have found is that the number one problem
05:41 in relationships, and tell me if you will,
05:45 getting along with people is communication.
05:46 That's right. That's right.
05:48 It seems that if you have poor communication skills,
05:53 you're not going to get along with people.
05:55 Sometimes it's a skill issue, like,
05:57 we may have the best of intentions,
05:59 but if we don't have the wisdom
06:00 and the skills that we've learned to use,
06:03 then sometimes we can sabotage a relationship unintentionally.
06:07 I think of an issue with my daughter
06:09 and a skill that I learned that helped corrected issue
06:12 that I had with her.
06:13 She would come home,
06:14 this is when she was kind of transitioning
06:16 from living at home to being on her own,
06:17 she's now on her own, married.
06:19 But this is in that interim period
06:20 and she'd come home,
06:22 and she didn't really live there,
06:23 and she didn't really live somewhere else
06:25 and she wouldn't do as many tasks
06:28 around the home as I wanted her to.
06:29 So I'd ask her to and then she'd kind of feel put out,
06:32 and then I would interpret her leaving the dishes
06:34 in the sink as her not loving me.
06:36 And I would think, "You just want to treat me like a maid,"
06:39 and I would say things like that,
06:40 and it would escalate from there.
06:42 So I was reading a book that talked about
06:45 reflective listening in a conflict situation
06:47 where instead of pushing your own agenda forward,
06:50 you actually listen to the other person actively,
06:53 and you try to resolve the conflict
06:54 in the context of listening.
06:56 And this is based, of course, on James 1:19, it says,
07:00 "Let every man be quick to hear, slow to speak,
07:04 and slow to wrath."
07:06 It's no accident that we are slow to hear,
07:08 quick to speak, and advance our own agenda,
07:11 and then quick to wrath.
07:12 So that's what was happening with my daughter,
07:14 we were quick to wrath,
07:15 we were escalating and exploding,
07:17 and not working through the conflict.
07:19 I read about this tool of reflective listening.
07:22 When the person says something instead of telling him
07:25 how I feel and arguing back,
07:27 I reflect back to them what I heard them say.
07:30 So I went into her room to confront her
07:33 about leaving the dishes in the sink,
07:34 and I remember the moment like it happened yesterday,
07:37 her little shoulders went up
07:39 and she started to talk in this high voice
07:41 that she did when she's under stress.
07:43 And she said, "Mommy, I hate it when you tell me
07:46 that I don't love you."
07:47 And I remember the reflective listening and I said,
07:50 instead of saying,
07:51 "Well, you got to prove that you love me,"
07:53 or whatever I would've normally said,
07:54 I said, "So you really,
07:56 you really hate it when I doubt your love for me?"
07:58 And I watched her shoulders drop like three inches.
08:01 She just went from here to like,
08:02 "Yeah, that's exactly right.
08:04 I want you to believe I love you."
08:06 And then we started to talk
08:07 and then after I kind of heard her,
08:09 I asked her, "Would you be willing to hear my side of it?"
08:11 And she said sure,
08:12 and we were able to resolve the conflict
08:14 for the first time, it's really amazing,
08:16 because I learned that skill of reflective listening.
08:18 So what we do often in communication is,
08:22 God is pouring out His love from heaven
08:24 and He's willing to fill our bucket
08:26 but we've got this lid on the bucket of bad habits
08:29 that we engage in,
08:30 that kind of undo everything that we really want to do
08:34 and that God wants to do for us.
08:35 Amen. Amen.
08:37 And there's other things that...
08:39 Let's just kind of unfold and unpackage the problems,
08:43 the things that we do that put the lid over that?
08:46 So glad you brought that up.
08:47 There are a number of different lists
08:49 of what I call Little Foxes, you know, Solomon said,
08:53 "Catch the little foxes that spoil the grapes,
08:55 that spoil the vineyard."
08:57 You know, we're told to catch those little things
08:59 that ruin our love relationships.
09:01 And so there are a number of different lists
09:03 that the great minds of psychology put together.
09:05 One is man named John Gottman, he's a marriage expert,
09:09 this man can predict the outcome of the likelihood
09:12 of divorce within 85 percent accuracy
09:15 as a result of just observing people's body language
09:18 and tone of voice.
09:19 He's a genius, he has studied marriage,
09:21 he knows what works.
09:22 He has his own list of little foxes, so to speak,
09:25 and he calls them the Four Horses of the Apocalypse.
09:28 And so that's a great list,
09:29 but there's a new list that I've come upon
09:31 that I think is possibly even better.
09:33 And it's put out by a group called CPREP
09:36 out of the University of Colorado in Denver,
09:39 it's a group of Christians.
09:40 C-P-R-E-P. C P-R-E-P.
09:42 So it's Christian Preparation
09:44 and Relationship Enrichment Program.
09:47 And they put together this program,
09:48 and they have identified four communication mistakes
09:52 that people engage in.
09:54 And the outcome of those four mistakes is number one,
09:56 that they're strong predictors of divorce,
09:59 that they are present in almost all failed relationships,
10:03 that they're often learned from the home of origin,
10:05 and then this is the scariest part,
10:07 that they will neutralize,
10:09 they can neutralize all the good
10:11 in the relationship.
10:13 So we really don't want these habits,
10:15 there are four of them.
10:17 And I use this all the time in counseling
10:19 especially with married couples
10:20 but the same principles apply in other relationships as well,
10:23 so I thought we could go through them.
10:25 Oh, please. Yeah. Let's do it.
10:26 These are the little foxes that destroy the vines.
10:29 So the first one is Escalation.
10:31 Escalation is, you know,
10:33 just where you lose your temper basically,
10:34 and you begin to shout.
10:36 Often starts with me saying something to you,
10:38 you say something back to me, and reaction,
10:40 then I react to your reaction and you react to that reaction,
10:44 and pretty soon we're in an escalated situation
10:46 and it goes to...
10:47 And it becomes explosive...
10:48 Very, very quickly.
10:50 I have a robust history of escalation.
10:52 I was raised by a father that escalated,
10:55 he was not physically abusive
10:57 but he would yell and go on a tirade.
11:00 And when he said jump, we said, how high.
11:02 How high. That's right.
11:03 So, Dad would lose his temper.
11:06 I saw that modeled, I probably got some of the genetics.
11:09 And my poor husband in our marriage, for years,
11:11 I would struggle with exploding.
11:13 He on the other hand was quite quiet
11:16 and would shut down in a conflict situation.
11:18 So I remember one time, having an explosion,
11:21 feeling terrible about it,
11:22 one of my kids had witnessed it.
11:24 I went to apologize, I always apologize.
11:26 I went to apologize to my child and she looked at me and said,
11:28 "Daddy had a short temper."
11:30 And I thought why is she saying Daddy had a short temper,
11:33 and she looked at me and said, "You had a long temper."
11:36 So that was my history,
11:37 but I remember the moment I started to change
11:40 is when I realized, "I do not have to control him.
11:43 I can let go and let him do what he wants to do,
11:46 it's not my responsibility.
11:47 I can walk away if I'm under stress."
11:50 And in fact what they find is,
11:52 if we can back out of an escalated situation
11:54 within one to three minutes,
11:56 it will not go to seed so to speak.
11:59 In fact, they found that married couples that argue,
12:02 but know when to back out of an argument
12:05 are actually better off than married couples
12:08 that never argue.
12:10 So it's not fighting that's the problem,
12:12 it's fighting to the point
12:13 where we start becoming angry, and irrational,
12:16 and losing perspective.
12:17 So learning how to back out
12:19 when you're at that point is very, very important.
12:21 So I encourage people to use time out.
12:24 I was going to say the very same thing,
12:27 is that that's what you have to have
12:28 is a little time out to prevent the escalation.
12:31 If you know you're in an escalated situation,
12:33 throw up a prayer to have, and I say go vertical,
12:35 because you're in a reactive cycle here,
12:38 and so if you go vertical
12:39 that's going to break that reactive cycle.
12:41 And then ask that person for a time out
12:44 and reschedule a time when you could talk through it.
12:46 And that's the key point,
12:47 it's not that you're just saying,
12:48 "Okay, enough.
12:50 I'm walking away."
12:51 It's, "Can you give me 30 minutes?
12:52 Let me regain my balance here
12:57 and let's get back together in 30 minutes."
12:58 Precisely, precisely.
13:00 And it's good for couples for instance
13:02 to establish ahead of time
13:03 that either one of them can call a time out
13:05 when they want, and it doesn't mean you're withdrawing
13:08 or that you're stonewalling.
13:09 It just means you're going to come back to it
13:10 when you're calm.
13:12 Amen. So that's the first offence.
13:14 The first little fox is Escalation.
13:16 Then another one, it's more subtle,
13:18 is Invalidation.
13:21 It's really hard for me to nail down what invalidation is,
13:23 but it's basically putting a person down.
13:27 And shutting them down oftentimes,
13:31 not really listening to what they're saying
13:33 and validating their feelings.
13:36 So often we'll use sentences that begin with why,
13:40 "Well, why didn't you just tell him to go away?"
13:42 'Why' can come across as an accusation,
13:44 so be careful of sentences that start with why.
13:47 Another sentence starter
13:49 that's often an invalidation is just,
13:52 "Well, just tell him to come back tomorrow
13:53 or just don't think about it,"
13:55 or is that there's some simple solution
13:57 that that person hasn't thought of,
13:58 it's really kind of a form of invalidation.
14:00 And 'shoulds' are often invalidation,
14:02 "Well, you should be grateful.
14:04 You know, it's a beautiful day out,
14:05 you should be cheerful, and you're sad."
14:07 Really I'm invalidating that person's feelings.
14:10 So one of the most important ways
14:11 to prevent invalidation is to be a reflective listener
14:15 and ask people how they're doing.
14:17 And then when they tell you, reflect it back to them.
14:19 And, you know, some people will say,
14:21 "Well, this whole idea of reflective listening,
14:24 you know, you want me to be a parrot?"
14:26 And what we don't understand is it doesn't come,
14:30 you can take those very same people
14:33 and say to them, if they're saying,
14:35 "Are you trying to make me a parrot
14:37 or I'm just going to say something back?"
14:38 And I said, "So you feel like parroting would upset someone?"
14:43 "Well, you know," and it's like,
14:44 you've just used it on them and they're calming down.
14:47 And they're calming down.
14:49 Exactly, exactly.
14:50 Yeah, so we don't, you know, everybody wants to be heard,
14:52 people want to be understood.
14:54 I think that's something that's very important
14:56 is people want to feel like someone is
14:59 and trying to understand them or understand them.
15:01 And when you use that reflective listening,
15:05 often it does deescalate something.
15:09 Oh, so much.
15:10 And often people really don't want to necessarily
15:13 want to be agreed with but they do want,
15:16 they'll be satisfied just to be understood.
15:19 So you make such an excellent point there.
15:21 So reflective listening is a great way
15:23 to prevent invalidation,
15:24 just validating a person's feelings.
15:27 The third little fox,
15:28 the third communication mistake
15:30 is what we call Negative Interpretation.
15:33 So I think of the husband
15:34 that tries to give his wife a compliment.
15:36 And he says, "You look beautiful in blue,"
15:38 and she says, "You think I look ugly in red?"
15:41 And he says, you know,
15:42 they say that the gentlemen prefer blondes,
15:45 but I love your dark hair, and she says,
15:47 "Oh, you've been thinking about blondes, huh?"
15:50 No matter what the guy says, he can't give her a compliment,
15:53 and not have her pass it through this filter
15:56 that makes it something negative.
15:57 This is very, very damaging to relationships.
16:02 And women I think are particularly guilty of this,
16:05 although it can happen either way.
16:07 No, I think you're right that quite often
16:09 men are more worse at invalidating.
16:13 They're more condescending
16:15 because women are more emotional.
16:18 We listen with both side of our brains,
16:21 and I think because women are more emotionally tuned,
16:24 men will often invalidate that emotion.
16:27 So men, and I'm not saying
16:29 that's always but quite often it tends to be that way.
16:33 But as far as negative interpretation tends
16:36 to be more of a woman thing.
16:38 It can very often be a woman thing
16:40 'cause we make less serotonin, our brains make less serotonin,
16:44 we tend to have more anxiety and depression,
16:46 and therefore, tend to be maybe more negatively biased.
16:48 So we hear something
16:50 and it passes through that filter.
16:51 So the replacement behavior for negative interpretation
16:54 is checking in with that person saying,
16:57 "Did you mean to tell me that
16:59 you're thinking about blondes all the time, honey?"
17:01 And he says, "No, I'm not thinking about blondes at all,
17:03 I love your dark hair, that's what I meant."
17:06 And then you believe the guy, you know, very simple
17:09 and straightforward process of just simply believing people
17:11 and trusting them.
17:13 So the fourth negative communication problem is,
17:18 why am I forgetting, oh,
17:20 stonewalling or withdrawing from the relationship.
17:24 Usually following all of the first three,
17:26 you know, you engage in enough escalation,
17:28 invalidation, and negative interpretation,
17:30 you're going to want to get out of that relationship.
17:32 So often people will get into a situation
17:34 where they're just not communicating at all
17:37 And so, I like to encourage people,
17:39 you know, be in the constant posture of bridging
17:43 to that other person in your relationship to them,
17:46 be constantly trying to build a bridge from yourself to them
17:48 rather than creating a stone wall
17:50 between you and them.
17:51 And a stone wall, you're basically saying
17:53 this would be somebody that's giving the silent treatment,
17:56 someone that is just walks away
17:58 and says, "I heard it, I've heard enough,
18:01 I don't want to talk about it anymore,"
18:03 never wants to address the issue.
18:06 That's part of stonewalling as well, right?
18:08 Yes, that's right, that's right.
18:09 Stonewalling is actually
18:11 the negative communication habit
18:14 that CPREP identified as withdrawal
18:17 and stonewalling is a type of withdrawal.
18:19 So withdrawal would be just shutting down in a relationship
18:22 and not engaging with that person
18:25 because you're so discouraged
18:26 with how the relationship has gone.
18:28 You don't want to try to deal with it anymore,
18:30 you just want to withdraw and just co-exist.
18:34 This happens often with married couples
18:36 where they're not really engaging anymore,
18:38 they're not really sharing much anymore,
18:40 and they're kind of living separate lives.
18:42 They're just ships passing in the night, roommates.
18:44 In the night, yes.
18:46 I was speaking with someone recently
18:49 and she and her husband are having some difficulties.
18:53 And it was...
18:56 The stonewalling is going on
18:59 in a major fashion in their home.
19:02 And when I talk to her about,
19:04 you know, the most important thing you can do right now is,
19:07 are you praying for your husband every day?
19:08 I like that.
19:09 Day by day, are you lifting him up
19:11 because he is God's son,
19:13 you know, the way I used to do it,
19:15 just say, "Lord, he's Your son.
19:17 You deal with him," you know.
19:18 Yes. Amen.
19:20 And she says, "Well, actually not."
19:22 And because I'm trying to tell her
19:25 that if you're going to see change,
19:26 you're going to have to be the one
19:28 that's going to reach out.
19:29 She said, "I'm so tired of doing all of forgiving,
19:31 I'm so tired, you know, he will do these things
19:34 and be cruel and say bad things."
19:38 I mean, name calling to where she's very wounded.
19:43 And then he stonewalls afterwards.
19:48 And she's ready just, you know, let it go as well,
19:52 let him sleep on the couch and she's in the bedroom.
19:55 How does when you've got one,
19:57 I mean, I highly recommend for them professional counseling.
20:01 When you have one person who is...
20:06 Apparently willing.
20:07 Apparently willing, and is alert to the situation,
20:12 and the other person
20:13 who doesn't want anything to do,
20:16 where does a couple begin?
20:17 Yeah, I am going to go out on a limb here
20:20 and say that I think sometimes there's a place
20:22 for what I call structure separation.
20:24 Now let me just clarify, there is disagreement
20:27 within the Christian counseling community
20:29 about the issue of separation,
20:30 and there are people that I respect that say,
20:33 under almost no circumstances should a couple separate
20:35 and it is true that when couple separate,
20:37 it can often mean that they're moving toward divorce,
20:41 or it can actually make the gulf wider.
20:43 It can, it can work that way.
20:45 But I recommend structured separation
20:49 where there is a context of hope
20:53 and a specific object toward
20:56 which that individual that is implementing
20:58 the structured separation is striving.
21:01 So for instance, in the situation you described,
21:05 if there's verbal abuse going on,
21:07 the wife could say to the husband,
21:09 "I'm not willing to live with this."
21:11 It's unacceptable.
21:12 That's what I always teach.
21:14 They're unacceptable.
21:15 "And we could do better than this.
21:16 And you are better than this.
21:19 You don't have to be living this way.
21:21 We don't have to be living this way.
21:22 We're capable of so much more.
21:25 I love you.
21:26 I don't believe in divorce.
21:28 I will not divorce you and marry another.
21:30 You are it for me.
21:32 I'm committed to this relationship.
21:35 But if we don't get help,
21:37 I'm not willing to live
21:38 in these circumstances any longer."
21:40 That's a structured separation
21:42 because you've created a context of commitment
21:44 and love but within that context,
21:47 you've confronted the sin in that person's life,
21:50 and you've pushed them to the point
21:52 where they have to make a decision.
21:53 And what's often the case and now we're getting to male,
21:55 female psychology but men often don't listen to what women say,
22:00 but they do listen to what they do.
22:02 And so often it's the wife saying,
22:04 "Hey, look, I'm not willing, I got a place to move to,
22:07 I've got two months that I'm going to you know try this,
22:10 if something doesn't change, we don't get help,
22:12 I'm going to move out."
22:13 You know, sometimes the man will listen at that point.
22:15 I hate to say and I wish I could say that you just stay
22:18 and keep praying, but sometimes,
22:20 you have to take action
22:21 if you really want things to get better.
22:23 And I know, I mean, and I realize
22:25 we are kind of stepping out on a limb
22:27 because we are not, you know, this is in extreme cases.
22:30 But I do know an extreme case
22:32 where a Christian counselor told
22:33 and they were actually friends of ours in Dallas
22:35 and he told them that their marriage was so damaged,
22:39 that marriage of 23 years was so damaged
22:42 that they needed to...
22:44 The husband actually,
22:46 he had to move out for six months.
22:49 But they had a date night every week.
22:52 That's good.
22:54 They had luncheon, you know, they saw each other
22:58 and I think they saw each other perhaps every day
23:01 but he had to give her a hug every day,
23:04 you know, every time he saw her.
23:05 And I remember what he said, Harold said,
23:08 "Oh, I can't stand this, it's so silly,
23:10 you know, I've got to hug her,"
23:12 and within about six weeks, he was saying,
23:18 "Boy, I just can't wait to hug her every day,"
23:21 and when they did, their marriage
23:23 when they got back together their marriage was better,
23:26 she said, than it had ever been.
23:28 Oh, that's fabulous.
23:29 Because they were seeing,
23:31 they were going through counseling at the time.
23:33 But it just didn't work with them
23:36 being in the same home at the time
23:38 because there was so much damage.
23:41 Yeah, that's an excellent example
23:43 of structured separation
23:44 where you in the context of commitment and love,
23:47 you admit what's wrong with the relationship first of all,
23:50 and you do something
23:52 that can help kind of restart the process of really courting,
23:55 I mean, that's what that counselor does,
23:57 he implemented a courtship
23:59 kind of situation for that couple,
24:01 and it worked to restart the affection process.
24:05 But I do want to emphasize, we're not recommending that
24:07 just because you're having problems,
24:09 one of you move out for a while,
24:10 because sometimes,
24:11 and particularly when it's not structured,
24:14 you can end up going in the opposite direction.
24:16 That's right.
24:17 But this is for extreme cases, abuse,
24:20 you know, if your children and then this situation,
24:22 as wonderful person as he was, he had become,
24:26 started having such explosive anger
24:29 that he vided out and he didn't remember
24:32 what he was doing.
24:34 And she felt it was affecting their teenage children
24:37 and so they just said, "Okay, this is unacceptable,"
24:40 you know.
24:42 This is what we have to do.
24:43 And he responded, they both responded.
24:46 I mean, they both realized their area that they do...
24:50 How they were contributing to their problems.
24:52 I like what you said about prayer like,
24:55 I mentioned in the last session we taped.
24:57 There are two things going on in the counseling situation.
25:00 I'm trying to bring tools to people and help them
25:03 know what to do in these different situations,
25:06 but there's also a kind of a reliance on God
25:09 and His Spirit that we really have to cultivate
25:11 and kind of integrate
25:13 into the process of taking action steps.
25:15 So a lot of times we forget
25:17 that really ultimately it's up to God,
25:19 and divine intervention to really catalyze
25:23 that transformation process and none of us
25:25 apart from that external source of power
25:28 coming from God being poured out upon us
25:31 can experience what it is to love and be loved.
25:35 So as you've been studying,
25:38 you said that you grew up in a dysfunctional environment,
25:41 but as you have studied and applied
25:43 what you've studied from social science
25:45 as well as from the Bible, tell us just briefly?
25:48 It's made a huge difference for me.
25:50 I struggled with depression for many years
25:52 and getting into counseling
25:54 kind of marked a turning point for me,
25:55 and I'm not sure if it's whether I learned about
25:58 how to treat depression.
26:00 I think it's partly that
26:01 but I think it's also being there to help other people.
26:04 I'm constantly helping other people out of depression
26:06 and it sort of served to help me out of it.
26:09 I'm more conscientious about how I conduct relationships.
26:14 It used to be that I would,
26:16 you know, kind of check off the list of things
26:18 I was supposed to do in terms of my faith,
26:21 you know, all the things that I was supposed to do
26:23 as a good Christian but I've realized
26:25 since then that all the law boils down
26:27 to love your neighbor as yourself,
26:29 Paul said that twice.
26:31 And there is a phrase in the New Testament,
26:34 ah-LAY-loan, which is one and other.
26:37 It's translated one and other.
26:39 And it's all about us doing for one and another,
26:41 and being in relationship with one and another.
26:43 And as I've seen
26:45 how this principle of love for one another
26:47 is so prominent in scripture
26:49 and really the law all comes down to that,
26:51 I've been much more conscientious
26:52 about how I conduct relationships,
26:55 and I think more effective at it,
26:57 not perfect by any stretch of the imagination.
27:00 Oh, Jennifer, our time is already all gone.
27:01 Thank you so much for coming.
27:03 And just I'm going to close with a scripture that pertains
27:06 to what you've just said,
27:07 Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13.
27:10 He said, "I pray that God will cause you to increase
27:13 and abound in love
27:14 so that he may perfect you in holiness."
27:18 The more we learn to love
27:20 and relying on the power of the Holy Spirit to do so,
27:24 the more we'll become like God because God is love.
27:27 And that's what how we become holy
27:31 is the more loving we are,
27:33 as we grow in love, we grow in holiness.
27:36 So keep that thought today
27:39 and practice these wonderful things
27:42 to overcome the negative behavior,
27:45 the negative communication behavior.