When Steve Helm was in high school, his trajectory didn’t include having a girl in his life. But when he met Julie, all bets were off. Now, decades later, they’ve built a strong marriage and have three kids and eight grandkids. They’ve built an amazing life together.
Steve firmly believes that having a strong relationship and being a great husband is the key to raising great kids. He shares more about the importance of being a great husband—and why it isn’t just a cliche—in this episode of Dads on Tap.
You will want to hear this episode if you are interested in...
- [1:26] Why Steve is passionate about coffee
- [2:25] Steve’s relationship with his dad
- [7:17] Steve shares about his wife and family
- [9:33] How Steve and Julie partner as parents
- [11:47] The constant pursuit of each other
- [15:48] How to stay in alignment with each other
- [18:36] Parenting to build confidence and security
- [21:50] How to prepare your kids for choosing a spouse
- [24:58] The importance of faith as a foundation
- [28:40] Live your life with the end in mind
How Steve and Julie partner as parents
Steve points out that the beginning of anyone’s marriage consists of trying to make the other conform. But he also points out that if both people are the same, the other isn’t necessary. Then you realize that the differences you have are the complementary strengths that will make life work.
You need to figure out what’s important to the other person, so when you come up against disagreement, you can question, is this more important to me—or them? If you tear down the house to win a point, is it worth it?
When little people come along and you’re on the same page about resolving conflict, it’s far easier. How to parent and who does what starts by choosing to lean toward your spouse. Everything else drives out from that relationship.
There isn’t a formula to follow to build a perfect marriage. It looks different for everyone. But to have a good home, a good marriage, and a good family you have to be in lockstep. The only way that happens is by continuing to pursue your spouse.
You can’t allow room for anything to build a wedge between you. When you’re in constant pursuit of one another, it’s the best guard to your household. You have to fight for each other and do the hard work to always be on the same page.
How to stay in alignment with each other
To stay in alignment, each person has to respect the others’ opinions. If you’re only valuing your opinion, the other person has to agree. If that’s how it is, that isn’t a marriage—it’s a business relationship. When someone has a “My way or the highway” mentality, how can that be a healthy marriage?
When Steve and Julie had to make decisions they often offered different solutions. They heard each other out. They thought back to how it would have been for them growing up. Then they worked out a solution together and stuck with it. It’s about building a process that becomes the way you do things and doing it together.
In the beginning, you might have to work through some discomfort, but it’s worth it in the long run. Steve regards his wife’s position, thoughts, and perspective above his own. He firmly believes that when you start with that perspective, you won’t lose—even if you don’t get your way.
Being a great dad starts by being a great husband
Steve and Julie Helm didn’t focus on being good parents. They focused on building a solid foundation as a couple, rooted in Christ. Christ should always be the uncompromised first focus because one’s personal relationship with Christ is the basis of who you are.
Secondly, they made a covenant to work through everything without question. When they had conflict, they fought together. His kids knew that their relationship was their primary focus. Kids become confident because they know their foundation is solid at every level.
So when they saw that their parents were strong people who believed in their marriage and children, their kids learned to believe in themselves, too. Secondly, they gave them permission to fail. They didn’t have to do everything perfectly.
Steve’s Questions for Discussion: There will come a day when you hug your child for the last time. There will be a day when you see your spouse for the last time. What do you want your life to be? What do you want to matter? What do you want to be remembered for? What is your legacy? Live toward that. Too many people meander forward hoping they get to a good place.
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