Robert Jesenik-Family Man

Author of Book: James Dobson
Date Read: February 27, 2024

Book Report

Title: Family Man
The Biography of James Dobson

Date: 2-27-2024

Dr. Dobson is a very famous Christian Leader with a huge following. While I’ve read a couple of his books over the years, I’ve never taken the time to understand his overall ministry or the man himself. So I thought this would be a good read for me.

The book covers his life from childhood through 2005, basically through election of George W Bush’s second term. He was a staunch supporter of Bush, and his ministry has really focused on traditional values, especially marriage, family, and children. Over 20 years he has built a worldwide ministry named Focus on the Family. In 2005 it had over 3mm+ members, 1400 employees, and his radio show around the world had over 200mm listeners.

To me it’s fascinating how he became an early version of today’s Election PAC’s, using his influence with his members to target state measures around the US and eventually US Congressmen and Senators who allowed traditional family values to be diluted for power and money or votes.

The book cites a whole litany of casualties from Tom Daschle, leader of the US Senate losing re-election, to Pete Coors and many more. It also cites numerous examples of putting “member” pressure on sitting politicians to actually be accountable for their election promises. He was also one of the first to target Corporate America, like Abercrombie & Fitch, where they were exploiting model’s sexuality, skimpy clothing, the whole thing.

One thing that especially stands out is Dr. Dobson’s personal integrity, and how it impacts every decision he makes. Really impressive is his fiduciary mindset for his ministry as well.

In summary, its note worthy the way the very same issues he fought in the 1990’s and 2000’s are the same we are still debating as a society. Promiscuity, children’s education regarding values and gender related topics, embryo’s and their use/protective rights, definition of marriage, politicians being accountable and so forth. One could say the same about prison reform, it will always be there! Good for us to keep all this in perspective in my view!

Dr. Dobson has a summary perspective towards the end of the book which I will remember to use the rest of my life, both in prison and in real life. It relates to a real world experience in Nazarene College where he won a tennis trophy for his success on the court. When he went back years later it was gone, apparently thrown into a garbage bin. When the school relocated to Point Loma, a board member found it and reclaimed it, surprising him at the end of his commencement speech one day. Dr. Dobson went on to say:

* If you live long enough, life will trash your trophies too!

* All our exhilarating accomplishments are going to fade and burn eventually

* So what will stand the test of time?

– a loving family
– a consistent investment in the lives of people
– an earnest attempt to serve God
– Nothing else makes sense

This closing will contribute to my success both in prison and thereafter guaranteed! BJ