As a parent, do you wonder if you are really making a difference? Does it feel like your words go in one ear and out the other? Do you feel like all you do is dole out consequences? If you answered yes to any of those questions, you are really going to appreciate today’s conversation!

My guests are Jim and Lynne Jackson, founders of Connected Families. I actually met Jim and Lynne for the first time back when they spoke at a Hearts at Home conference, and have loved following along with them ever since. I just love their hearts and wisdom and I know you will too!

In this conversation, we discuss the unintentional messages our child may be hearing by how we communicate, Jim and Lynne’s connection-driven framework for parenting, some common parenting styles that actually limit connection, and we even get to see how all this works in a role-playing exercise!

Resources mentioned in this episode:

My Key Takeaways:

1) As parents, our worth and “success” is not based on how our children behave. It’s easy to get embarrassed by our children. We want them to behave a certain way and it’s easy to feel like a terrible parent if they don’t. But we need to shift our idea of “good parenting” away from the performance of our children and instead focus on helping our children discover who they were created to become.

2) What are the “You are…” messages your kids are getting from you?  Regardless of our intentions as parents, our actions communicate a “You are…” message to our children.  It could be negative messages like “You are not important,” “You are a bad child,” or “You are a problem.” Or we could intentionally send positive messages like, “You matter,” “You are capable of good things,” and “You are loved by God.” We need to focus on communicating to our kids two things: You are safe with me. You are loved no matter what. 

3) Parenting is hard! But taking the time to invest in your kids today will pay off in the long run. Walking your kids through the role-playing exercise we heard in the episode may seem like an insurmountable task! But taking the time to teach your children how to take responsibility for their actions and how to navigate conflict in this way will help your kids hold on to the truths about who they are and become responsible adults. But this shift won’t happen overnight!

About Jim & Lynne:


Jim and Lynne Jackson were dissatisfied with the parenting resources available to them as young parents of three intense and “lively” children. Their dissatisfaction grew in their roles working with high-risk teens (Jim) and as an occupational therapist (Lynne) as they saw issues with conventional parenting. Jim and Lynne founded Connected Families in 2002 and co-authored How to Grow a Connected Family and Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart. Together, they have over fifty years of professional experience working with children, teens, and families. Today, they share how God’s grace intersects with the “mess” of parenting with families and churches. Learn more at





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