All Posts By

Jonathan Hoover

Three Indications a Story is Becoming a Rumor

By | Communication, Leadership, Relationships, Technology and Social Media | No Comments
We’re drowning in stories. Whether you’re scrolling through your social media feed, or watching the news, it seems like every lead-in starts with: “you won’t believe this…”

There’s power in a story. Stories hook and keep our attention better than concepts or ideas alone. And they have a way of motivating us to action. Writers and content producers know that.

Think about the last few stories you read online. Chances are they pointed you in a direction. They led you toward a conclusion, or inspired you to take action.  And there’s nothing wrong with that… so long as the story is really accurate.

But what if the story isn’t completely true? What if the story is just correct enough to be powerful, but wrong enough to be misleading? Then we call the story a rumor. And, generally speaking, we all hate rumors.

But how do you know the difference? When does a story become a rumor?

I’ve reviewed some of the research, and I’ve developed this short list: Read More

When He Wants More Sex, and She Wants Less – Two Questions to Ask

By | Communication, Conflict, Marriage, Relationships | No Comments
It’s not a new concept that husbands and wives often don’t agree on how often to have sex. But recently, I read a fascinating academic study that did have some new information to offer.

In 2007, researchers Bodenmann, Ledermann, and Bradbury were studying what stress can do to marriages. And, they were specifically interested in a certain kind of stress–the kind most toxic to marriages.

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The Unruly Child in Your Pocket

By | Kids, Life Challenges, Marriage, Parenting, Relationships, Technology and Social Media | No Comments
John has four children. Three of them are very well-behaved. John is one of those parents who believes kids should learn good manners and be polite. Because of this, he’s taught them not to interrupt other peoples’ conversations. He’s taught them to say please when they ask for something, and thank you when they receive it. And, he’s taught them that they can not always be the center of attention.

But he’s only taught these ideas to three of his kids.
His fourth kid is a rebel.

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Has Your Teenager OutGrown Having a “Lights-Out” Time?

By | Marriage, Parenting, Relationships, Technology and Social Media | No Comments
Has your teenager outgrown having a “lights-out” time? In a word, “no.”

Of course, as your kid starts becoming an adult, it might seem “not cool” to set bedtime guidelines.  But, let’s face it, most of us have given up on being a “cool” parent some time ago.

Here’s why you should care about your 15-year-old’s bedtime routines:

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Is jealousy in marriage normal?

Is Jealousy in Marriage Normal – Part 2

By | Communication, Conflict, Life Challenges, Marriage, Relationships | One Comment

Part 2

Is it normal for your spouse to feel jealous even if you haven’t done anything wrong?  How do you respond to them when they are jealous?  And how do you best respond to the jealousy that can crop up in your own heart sometimes?  In this two-part blog post, I tackle these tricky issues.

Read Part 1 of This Post

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Five Questions that Will Make You Look Like a Communication Pro

By | Communication, Conflict, Leadership, Life Challenges, Marriage, Relationships | No Comments
The best kept secret about how to communicate in a tense conversation is this: forward movement will usually happen because of something you hear, not because of something you say.

I have written in my books and on this blog about the fact that when conversations turn sharp, it usually ends in two people talking (sometimes very loudly) and no one listening.  Arguments and heated exchanges often do nothing to move the ball down the field, and do far too much to elevate your heart rate, blood pressure, and overall stress level.  And what’s the point of that? Read More

When You and Your Spouse Disagree About Politics

By | Communication, Conflict, Life Challenges, Marriage, Relationships | No Comments
It’s one thing to disagree with friends and co-workers about political issues, but what do you do when your spouse is rooting for something or someone that you can’t stand?

Here are a few ways to safeguard the heart of your relationship, and avoid a November marriage meltdown. Read More

Wise, Foolish, and Evil People – How Can You Tell the Difference?

By | Goals, Leadership, Life Challenges, Marriage, Ministry, Parenting, Relationships | No Comments
Years ago, Dr. Henry Cloud introduced me to the idea that there are three kinds of people in this world: wise, foolish, and evil. I love that observation! It comes straight from the book of Proverbs where the Bible outlines the difference between each of these life paths. The wise person is headed for a bright and exciting future, the fool a life of hardship and frustration, and the evil person a fittingly disastrous and tragic end.

This is very important for those of us who parent, coach, lead teams, supervise, hire, fire, or are in any other type of authority role. We need to be able to quickly recognize the difference between these life patterns, because they massively impact the future of our families, teams, and organizations. Read More

Free to Live What I Believe?

By | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

This article is quite a bit different from the posts I normally write.  I usually blog about marriage, leadership, family issues, or personal growth; current events commentary isn’t exactly my gig.  But when I started the blog, I mentioned that I would also talk about “life challenges”.  And this post addresses something that is a personal challenge for me.  As a husband, dad, and pastor, I’ve grown increasingly concerned by our government’s tendency to punish those who live by traditional views of gender and sexuality.  And when I read Target’s recent statement about bathroom usage, I decided it was time to address the issue on the blog.  This post represents my opinion, and I have tried diligently to keep the ideas and wording thoughtful, balanced, and graciously stated.

Religious freedom is a big issue right now. Watchdog groups on both sides of the issue spend tireless hours trying to make sure their side of the debate is protected. Those who feel that religion has no place in public discourse or the “secular” world have, for instance, fought hard to remove the Ten Commandments from government related spaces, even if the display in question is considered a piece of artwork or a historical monument. They continually pursue the idea that public schools and universities should be religion-free zones, and one by one, any remaining vestiges of faith-based life have been pulled from the education system. They suggest removal of the reference to God in the Pledge of Allegiance, the motto “In God We Trust” on American coinage, and the phrase “so help me, God” in many public oaths. On the far opposite side, I sometimes meet individuals who feel strongly that religion–their religion–should be embedded in the government’s gear work. I recently read a post on social media from an individual who insisted that it was time for our government to start “legislating from the Bible.”

I suggest that it’s important for all of us to take a balanced and pragmatic look at the issue before we go too far in either direction. Read More