Episode 16: Jamie Ivey on experiencing heartache in parenting
Watch the Conversation
Jamie Ivey (00:00):
Aaron and I's new favorite phrase now is like, we'll, we'll be, we'll have something go on with a kid or have a conversation. And then we get into our room, we talk about it, and literally our new favorite phrase, you can take it if you want. It is, you know what? That's just gonna have to work itself out.
Joey Odom (00:12):
I like that.
Jamie Ivey (00:13):
That's just gonna have to work.
Joey Odom (00:14):
That's hard. By the way, you,
Jamie Ivey (00:15):
You telling me <laugh> the last two years, if I had a dollar for every time I said, well, you know what, that's just gonna have to work itself out, because as a parent, you can't fix everything. Yeah. And we wanna fix, we wanna control, we wanna make sure everything's okay. We want this, we wanna present ourselves as this real, I mean, listen, the Ivy's, like Aaron's a pastor. I have a Christian, let me present ourself as like, we got all of our, all of our stuff together, together,
Joey Odom (00:34):
Jamie Ivey (00:36):
And then you open the curtain and you're like, wow. Oh
Joey Odom (00:39):
Welcome back to The Aro Podcast. Hey, it's Joey Odom, co-founder of Aro, and you're about to hear a conversation with one of my most favorite people in the entire world. Jamie Ivey, for those of you who know Jamie, this is vintage Jamie Ivey. It's open, it's candid, it's direct, it's nuanced, it's vulnerable. It's a great conversation. And we actually did it live. Heath Wilson, co-founder of Aro and I were in Austin, where Jamie's bass. So we recorded this in her studio, and we cover a lot of topics on her story and kind of the redemptive love behind her story. And then at the end, just a little heads up for maybe if you have young listeners in, in your car, we do talk about sex. And Jamie does not give a prescription. She doesn't give a simple answer to a complex problem. She gives a complex approach to a complex problem. So whether you hate that approach or love that approach, it's one that I think is worth listening to. And I appreciate her openness and all of that dialogue. So for now, just sit back, relax, and enjoy my conversation with Jamie Ivy.
All right. So I, I'm, I'm a little fascinated by you and, and it's for a few reasons. I, I, and I don't know your whole story. I don't know how you came up, but you were, you're, you have a prolific podcast now. You have a podcast empire. Can we say that? Say
Jamie Ivey (02:04):
I You can.
Joey Odom (02:05):
Thanks. I I just said it. Um, and the, but it was a blog before. Well, you, how did, how did all this happen?
Jamie Ivey (02:11):
Yeah. I'll give you the short version. Um, in 2011, I don't think I've told you this. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, well, stop me if I have. Okay. In 2011, uh, we lived here in Austin, where I currently still live. And there was a radio station that held an open casting call for a DJ to spill a mor to fill a spot in the morning show. Okay. Okay. Well, my educa, I have a degree in kinesiology, like Aaron said, it's called my husband. He used, should joke that it was like a whistleblowing degree. It's like study of movement. Hello?
Joey Odom (02:41):
Jamie Ivey (02:42):
Degree. Cause I was a coach. So
Joey Odom (02:44):
A lot of you
Jamie Ivey (02:44):
Joey Odom (02:44):
Gonna coaching. I thought you meant like telling, like telling fraud or something. No,
Jamie Ivey (02:48):
That, that was not in my lane. But, um, I have degree in kinesiology. Like I was a teacher before we had kids. And at this time I was parenting four kids. Like, what? Six and under. And so I'm just like, stay-at-home mom, driving kids places, all the things. Eventually I thought, I'll go back to work and my kids get in middle school and stuff. And I heard this on the radio that they were offering this. And for some reason, I mean, I remember the exact stoplight I was sitting on <laugh>, it doesn't mean anything to you, but it was at the corner of like 35 and 180 3. And I thought to myself, well, I'm gonna audition. And I literally to this day look back and like, what, what was I, who was I, why was I thinking this? So anyhow, I went home. We had a studio in our back house.
Cause my husband's a musician. I remember too. He had the flu. And I'm trying to convince him to come back and help me do this. And he's like, no, I'm sick. And finally I get him back to the back of the house. And I did this like 62nd demo. It's probably the, if I still had it, it has to be the worst thing I've ever heard in my entire life. Anyhow, I sent it in and it was a long contest. I mean, there were professional people sending and stuff, and also regular people like me. Long story, I ended up winning. Wow. So I go from stay-at-home mom, four kids under six to now I'm a morning show host with a very established team. Like he's the guy who runs it is still a, a like legend here. And awesome. I step in and I love this job so much.
Like, I literally thought I found my calling in life. Like, this is what I'll do for the rest of my life. The guys were so great. It was a country, it's a country radio station. I love country music. And anyhow, I get in, I love it. And I'm thriving <laugh>, but my entire family is falling apart. Huh. Like, ev no one can get their stuff together. Yeah. I'm like, guys, come on. Can you not throw mom a bone here? I've got a job. I think this is a career. Come on. Yeah. And a year earlier, we had brought two of our kids home from Haiti through adoption. And so my, my kids just needed, yeah. A mom at home. And I am not a, an advocate for working, you know, for staying home. But at that point in my kid's life, it was very evident that the only thing that had changed in our lives was me working.
And so four months and I quit. And it was super hard. I was honestly probably a little mad at a lot of people, including God. Like, why would you put me through all this? Yeah. But all that to say, it just like sparked something in me mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so that was 2011. So fast forward a couple years, I just thought, I wanna do something. I wanna do something. I was a guest on someone's podcast. I have no idea what she asked me about because what, what was I doing with my life? <laugh>. And I thought, I think I wanna do this. And so in May of 2014, I put out my first episode of the happy hour. No idea. I used like the Apple headphones, like didn't know what I was doing. It was just like, this will be fun. And about a year and a half in I was like, I think I wanna make this my job.
And so we've been going ever since. And the thing is, there are a million podcasts today. Yeah. And I'm grateful for that. I think podcasts, I think there's space for everybody. But if you think about it, in 2014, cereal hadn't come out yet. The Apple Podcast app on your, the operating system didn't have it yet. So I just look back and I'm like, I see God's hands so much in that. And as a Christian, like, like that. See, like I see God's hand moving. Yeah. And like I put you here at the exact right time because starting a podcast today, honestly, is really hard. Like, we help people do it all the time. And I believe in it. Yeah. But I am very much acknowledged. I started at a really great time. Yeah. And so that's how I started podcasting.
Joey Odom (06:02):
And what, what, what, by the way, I listened to the first episode this morning. No, you didn't. I did. I listened to it. I'm really sorry. Now that was, well here's what, what's interesting about that and the story you just told about your DJ career was that in both cases you just kinda said, I'm just gonna do it. Like it was ready, fire, aim instead of ready, aim, fire. Right. And is that, is that in your personality that I'm just gonna, I'm I'm just gonna go it.
Jamie Ivey (06:25):
I don't think it is, but maybe it is. Huh? I am. If you're in the angiogram world, if you're not, it's okay. But I would classify myself as an engram. Six. Okay. Which we are pretty fear-based, anxiety driven. And so I've grown a lot professionally and personally with dealing with fear. Uh, like my faith has helped out a lot about that. But even professionally, like just stepping out and doing stuff, all of a sudden you're like, okay, here I am. But I am a very timid person in a couple of ways. Like, I'll tell you an example. Like if someone's doing something new, I usually wanna sit back and see if it's gonna succeed before I jump in it. Yeah. So I miss, I'm late to every game. <laugh>, I'm like late to the Instagram game. I I cannot get myself on TikTok. I just am late to all of it.
Cause I'm like, is it gonna work? And so when I think about those two scenarios, honestly, I, this sounds weird. And I don't mean to be prideful. I'm proud of myself. Yeah. Because it's not my norm. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and I don't know where, what, why Yeah. I said yes to those things. Maybe I fe I felt like there wasn't much on the line. Like either I'm okay, this will be fine. Oh, interesting. I can put my demo tape in worst case, I don't get it. Well, I'm not qualified, so that doesn't mean anything. Okay. I'm gonna create a podcast with my best friend as guess one. Yeah. If it doesn't work, okay. I'll be a teacher when my kids get older. And so I just, I am very timid and I wish I had more courage when there was a lot on the line and I'm growing in that. But at those points, I think it felt, honestly, it felt kind of no pressure.
Joey Odom (07:52):
Yeah. Right. So I'm curious with that. When you and Aaron were dating, would, did you, were you like, yeah, I'm in. Or were, you're more timid there. Like there's a, a bunch on the line. How did that happen? How, how does that I'm trying to, I'm trying to decipher the, the personality. So how did that play
Jamie Ivey (08:08):
Out? Well, that's interesting because when Erin and I started dating, uh, I had just started following the Lord Hmm. In when I was 21. Huh. And we started dating months later. Now I grew up in church my whole life, so it wasn't a foreign concept to me. Yeah. But I lived a lot of life before I was 21. Like, um, I was pregnant twice in college. Mm. Lost both those babies in miscarriage. Very sexually active partying, just living a very, very, um, lifestyle that was not attracted to God and not ruled by God's love, grace, mercy on my life. So I got saved at 21 at a passion conference. Wow. Yeah. And so I didn't know that. I don't know. Still, I look back and I'm like, God, how did I end up at this conference? I, I would've said I like, oh, I, I, I think Jesus is, I would've said all the right things. Cause I knew all the right answers, but my life was never committed to following the teachings of Jesus. And so, again, I ended up at this passion conference and said, yes. And so when Aaron and I started dating, he was the first guy every day that didn't play baseball. Okay. That gives you insight into my life.
Joey Odom (09:11):
<laugh> baseball players, they're, they're a different bunch.
Jamie Ivey (09:12):
They're a different bunch. And we all know the girls of the day baseball players, they follow them all around all this. Okay. Right. There you go. Got it. Now you see where I was coming from. He's the first guy ever day that didn't play baseball. He's the first ever day that loved the lord. Hmm. And he was the first guy I ever dated that like, cared about our relationship. And we ended up, we didn't have sex before we got married. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I come into this relationship with my husband feeling very broken, very used, very tainted. Like he had never kissed a girl before me. Wow. And so I'm coming to the table feeling like he's getting the short end of the stick here. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And we've been married almost 22 years and I don't believe that at all. Yeah. And he didn't believe that at the time either.
Um, but for me, dating Aaron, he was the first guy who made me feel like I didn't have to like, do anything for him to love me. And my husband has plenty of flaws and he would say this. And so I never wanna make him out sound like the saint. Um, but it was a guy who treated me like maybe Jesus would treat me for the first time ever. Mm-hmm. And again, plenty of flaws. Very human. Yeah. Sexual sin that didn't look the same as my sexual sin pornography. Right. Um, but I felt loved in spite of what I thought I was bringing to the table. Mm-hmm. And so I felt like it was more of a chance, more of a risk for him on me, honestly.
Joey Odom (10:29):
And you're like, yeah, I'm in. Yeah, I'm in. Please. I bought my own ring. Yeah, go
Jamie Ivey (10:33):
Do that. Please take me. Um, but yeah, and so we've been married almost 22 years this summer,
Joey Odom (10:39):
So that's such an interesting that that was along the same two times. The, the word I just, the words I just wrote down were redemptive love. So it's like you experience like two forms of redemptive love mm-hmm. <affirmative>. That that's, has that been a theme that, that am I, am I making something up there? Am I extrapolating too much? That seems like that's, which is hard. I mean, that's a, that's challenging to accept. Um, did that, was that kind of a season of that? Or am I, am I taking that too far?
Jamie Ivey (11:02):
Yeah, I mean, we're just diving in here. Yeah. You know, when I started following Jesus at 21, I, I was gonna say I had to, I wanted to change a lot about my life for the first time ever. Um, I quit drinking and not that drinking is bad. Yeah. But because I was indulging in like excessive Right. Drinking and I needed a change, I quit drinking. I came home, I told the guy I was dating, Hey, I don't wanna have sex anymore. He was like, huh, I don't know if I'm down for that <laugh>. So I changed a lot about my life. Um, and so the craziest thing part about my story is that I got pregnant my sophomore year in college, uh, in Dallas. I was going to a school in Dallas, ended up moving home, was living with my parents. That's how I ended up at passion. So a guy completely changed my life and I felt like, man, I've been redeemed. Um, I grew up in the purity culture. So like, getting pregnant was like worse than actually having sex. Like, it was just like, oh, okay,
Joey Odom (11:50):
Jamie Ivey (11:51):
Than having sex. Just don't tell anybody, you know? Oh my goodness. But when I got pregnant, I just felt like I really had this like scarlet letter, this like stain on me. And I felt like I would walk into church even after I got saved and just feel like if everyone, if anyone knew that just two years earlier I was pregnant by a guy that I never even met his parents and we were only dating a month. Like if they knew that, would they accept me? Would they, would they want me to be a part of this church? All these things. And so I'm growing in love with Jesus and following him and, and really for the first time believing that I don't have to prove myself to God. Like he already loves me. Like I'm trying to, like, yeah. I'm trying to follow him not to get his love.
I'm trying to follow him because I love him. Yeah. And I was, um, a believer for just 6, 7, 8 months and I made a really bad decision, a decision that I had made for years previously to this. Yeah. Um, and believe it or not, I ended up getting pregnant as a believer. Wow. And when that happened, that redemptive love that you said, I felt more loved by God in that moment than I ever had because I had done the screw up that I had been used to screwing up in my whole life. I had, like, that was an issue for me since I was 16 Yeah. Of like flippantly giving myself away. And, but now I follow Jesus and now I don't wanna do that. But I messed up and I ended up losing that child to miscarriage also. But I look back at that season and I'm like, I knew God loved me even though I made a mistake and I knew that there was grace for me, even though I made a mistake.
Whereas previously my mistake cost me a college I was at, it cost me my parents' approval potentially, and like my parents love me, but you know what I mean? Yeah. That does let down people. Sure. It cost me like a reputation. It cost me a lot. I didn't think about what it cost me between me and God. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I, I, I knew it cost me like, oh crap, now everyone knows I'm having sex, you know? Yeah. Yeah. I was just hiding it before. Yeah. But this time I was like, I don't think it cost me God's love. Hmm. And so that do I wish that wouldn't have happened, obviously. Of course. Yeah. But I look back and I'm like, God, you are real. And, and, and you mean what you say when you say that you take all of our sins, you mean what you say when you say that, that I love you and like you mean that because I felt it in that moment. So yeah. Lots of redemptive love going on in that, those couple years of my life. And then Aaron and I start dating a few months later, so I'm like, oh, hey, by the way, <laugh>,
This is, this is what I'm bringing to the table. Which I didn't tell him right away. Yeah. I didn't tell him I, on our very first date, I said, Hey, uh, I've got some things that like, I feel like they might be a deal breaker, but honestly I'm not ready to talk about them. And he said, okay. Which I would've been like, you know what the deal breaker is if you don't tell me right now. Yeah, exactly. That's the deal breaker. But he said, okay. And it was six months into dating before I told him those parts of my story.
Joey Odom (14:44):
When you told him that you, you were six months in, so maybe this isn't the case, but I I've heard that like, heard people, they talk about like when like in relationships, women are, are offering tests up a bunch mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And then are you still like, almost like, and I see this in my daughter who's 13, like just like almost trying to push me to see like, okay, now what are you gonna do? Was when you told Aaron that maybe on the first date, was that a little bit of a test? Like let's see how you reacted this and then even at six months, was that also a a an almost attempt to push him away?
Jamie Ivey (15:14):
When I told him on the first date, it was for me feeling like I'm gonna give him an out. Like I don't think he should waste his time. Yeah. And, um, I had no intention of telling him. I wasn't even, it was literally like four months earlier <laugh> that I was in the hospital. Yeah. And so I was just like not in interested in, I wasn't very long in my faith. I just didn't, didn't, I didn't know a lot of things. I wasn't comfortable. Um, but during those six months, uh, Aaron's character proved true, you know, I am falling in love with Jesus. I'm a part of a local church. I'm growing. Um, I really did think I'm gonna think I'm gonna marry this guy. You know? And so for me, those six months were just like, I remember praying all the time, like, cuz I was so afraid that he'd never kissed a girl.
So I'm gonna show up to the table with this information, he's gonna be like, that's a little more than I bargained for. Yeah. But I didn't have a concept of like, like his sexual brokenness just looked different than my sexual brokenness. Like, I really don't believe anyone's coming to the table sexually clean. Yeah. I think that the culture that we live and the day and age, everyone shows up with brokenness. Right. We live in a broken world. And I just think if you meet someone who shows up at 21 with no sexual brokenness, I don't know where they've been living, you know? Yeah. Or had they had a phone, had they had the internet, had they been in school, had they been around another human <laugh>? Like it's just, and so I didn't have that concept, so I really just thought I'm the one that's gonna ruin this.
And um, we were away. He was a youth pastor and we were away on a trip with our students, our senior trip. And we took him to the beach, which is where you take students so they can, you know, really struggle with all their pressure. Yeah. That's great. Yeah. So we're at a students beach trip and I don't know why God asked me to tell him then because I had told God. I'll tell him when you tell me. Yeah. So I'm gonna listen to the Holy Spirit. You tell me when, and it was a really cruel joke because we're at the beach. What if he says I'm done? Like where do I go? <laugh>. But we had had communion, um, on the beach with our students and it was just a really great night and everyone ended up leaving. And I was the last one there.
And I just really, if you're not a Christian, you don't understand this. Like, I really just sensed Yeah. The spirit say, this is the night. Right. The night you've been asking for. This is the night. So Aaron comes down and finds me and we sit on the beach like 25 years later. I still at this moment just gives him moment. We sit on the beach and I said, okay, I'm ready to tell you. And I'm assuming he remembered from the first date that I'm like, got something. And so I tell him everything from 16 on my life. Um, I tell him about the pregnancy when I was in Dallas. I tell him about the pregnancy less than a year earlier.
Joey Odom (17:29):
He didn't know
Jamie Ivey (17:29):
Any of this. He didn't know any of that. None of you. Okay.
So I tell him, I I think that he was, he's not dumb. Sure. You know, and when I showed up to that church two or years earlier, we had become friends. Yeah. But I definitely look like the girl that shows up at us saw parties on Saturday night, if you know what I mean. Sure. Like, I'm showing up with my parents, you know, but I had definitely been out the night before. Yeah. So I tell him all of this and I am just, I, I don't think I ever thought he would say this is too much. But it's just a lot to un of course, to tell someone that you love, that I really do think I'm gonna marry. This is part of my story and it affects us now, you know, potentially if we do get married. Yeah. And, um, I told him all of it and he looked at me and he said, you have nothing to be ashamed of.
He said, that's not even the girl that I know. Wow. And in that moment, it felt like Jesus was saying that to me again, Aaron is not Jesus. Yeah. Yeah. But it was this, it was someone saying, it's okay. Like this stuff doesn't matter. And it had mattered so much to me because I thought this was gonna be the deal breaker and who wants a girl like me, like every guy, like, who wants this? Um, and then we got married a year later, you know, and so it was a beautiful redemptive moment for me, almost as God was saying. Like, trust me. Like I've, I've got this part of your story. Yeah. And so, you know, I tell this whole story in a book that I released a couple years ago and a lot of people would say like, is it hard for you to talk about this?
And I'm like, not at all. A it was 25 years ago. Yeah. I've lived a lot of life since then. Yeah. But, and it's not the biggest thing God's done in my life. I mean, if you're only telling stories about God's redemptive story from 25 years ago, <laugh>. But, um, I know that it brings a lot of hope and healing to people who are struggling with brokenness and feeling like they're the only one that if people knew that they would not want them to either be in leadership or how can you be a Christian and the sexual broke, I mean, I'm still affected by things. Yeah. N not necessarily those things, but it's still things I have to fight in my life, um, around, um, pornography and things like that that Yeah. Just Satan wants those to keep coming up for the rest of your life. Sure. And so very redemptive.
Joey Odom (19:40):
Hmm. Do you find 25 years past that you're, you're, you're more rooted. That's not been a struggle. Do you find it harder to, probably at the time you had more grace, maybe not more, but it was easier to extend grace Cause you're like, yeah, look at me. Cuz you're comparing your, your like recent self with others as you, you've been a believer for so much longer since then. Does it become more challenging to extend grace and compassion when you see somebody, whether it's with your, maybe not with your kids, cuz you know your kids, but even like seeing like, like, you know, the girl at school that goes to school. You're like, oh, you know, she Yeah. Like she's a baseball girl. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Right. So does that, does it get harder to extend grace as you get further away from your moment of real redemption?
Jamie Ivey (20:23):
I think it, the fur, the longer I walk with Jesus, the more the sin I see in my own life. And so the longer I walk with Jesus, the more grace I need. Yeah. The longer I walk with Jesus, I think I'm just one step away. Yeah. From total complete failure. <laugh>. And so even if we just talk about marriage, like one of my biggest fears is Aaron cheating on me and leaving me. It's, I talk about it all the time too much because it is a really big fear that I take the Lord all the time. And part of that comes from just stuff I've endured in my own family like that, that has become something that really is scary to me. Um, but the longer I walk with the Lord, you know, I would've always said I would never do that. Yeah. Like if anything happens to be air and I would never, because I have been hurt by infidelity.
I, it is such a big fear, da da da, the long run walk the Lord. I'm like, well I'm, I'm literally like three steps from Yeah. Making the worst decision of my life. And so I don't think it's harder to extend grace. Yeah. It feels like, oh, I can see, I can see where this is coming. I can see why you would do that. I can see where this would happen. Yeah. Um, and hearing, hearing people's stories. Cause that's my job. I hear stories all the time. It's a constant reminder Yeah. Of the humanity and that none of us are too good to make the worst decision of our life. You know, I was just, um, I'm, I'm about to interview a guy that I met at San Quentin in like Wow. The prison. Yeah. He's not in anymore, but he was, and so I met him when he'd been out about six months. He's gonna come on the podcast and I, ed and I were on a trip somewhere and I made the comment like, oh this is, this is, I'm gonna do a little rabbit trail. Have you been keeping up with the Murdoch stuff?
Joey Odom (21:57):
Yes. Okay. Fascinating
Jamie Ivey (21:58):
To me. So I have watched every special on Netflix. I haven't learned anything new. They all say the same thing, but I watch all of them. Okay. So one time I made a comment to Aaron, I was like, what kind of person would actually kill their child? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Like, I just, I don't understand who could do this. Yeah. And I caught myself after I said it cuz I'd just been to San Quentin and I met a bunch of men who had killed people and they loved Jesus. They're repented for their actions. They're doing restore, they're doing restorative work. They are making amends to their victim's families. And I thought, oh, I could, yeah. Like, and so just that, that constant reminder Yeah. Of like, we are not any better than we think that we are. And, and, and and the, the men that I met at San Quentin, they, they were three steps away from the worst decision of their life. And, and they ended up there. And so I think that's been helpful for me. Yeah. Of just like always remembering that without the grace of Jesus, we're all just Yeah. Done.
Joey Odom (22:50):
I was talking to my brother Jacob about this and, and I made it. It was, I think Oswald Chambers talks about it like just understanding that we're all a decision away. We're all a decision away from Yeah. What if you, yeah. What if you do go, uh, you know, cheat on your spouse, you do whatever it is the, but Jesus says you don't even have to go that far. You have the thought, like, and so and so for me to look at, oh, I'm, you know, I'm separate from them or I'm one decision away from them. Whatever. I, I've made that decision done already today. Yep. Yeah. Already. And so it, it, it that, and then when you do get a grasp of what all of that means, which I don't think like you would know better than I, but that that wasn't Jesus condemning people for less than their heart. It's saying like, how utterly dependent we are and how like completely insufficient we are to be able to accomplish anything on our own. Right. And there's even like a level of pride in like, oh, I'm so thankful that I haven't made that decision. Well I still have had a lustful thought. Exactly. You know, in, in my heart. And, and that, and I don't know. It it does, it does make it easier when you start getting a grasp of that.
Jamie Ivey (23:47):
Yeah. Yeah. And it, it helps us be, it helps our, our be better. Even like proclaimers of the good news of Jesus, of the gospel when you're like, oh me, I I'm just like you. Me too. Yeah. Like, that's me too. Mm-hmm. I, I've been there, done that. Me too. Even though it has looked different. Yeah,
Joey Odom (24:01):
Exactly. I don't know why this is on, on my mind here. I, I wrote this down. I'm curious what this concept is. I, I've, I know somebody right now, maybe it's just on the top of my mind. Someone very close to me is going through real like heartache and you speak to so many women and heartache I, I think is a theme that you hear a bunch. What, what is, this is a wild open-ended, but what is your experience with that, that term, that word, that experience?
Jamie Ivey (24:29):
Hmm. You know, I would say because of my, where I'm like 45, I'm a mom, A lot of it comes from parenting for me. And I know you're a dad and, um, I think I didn't know that there would be heartache involved in parenting mm-hmm. <affirmative> and maybe other people don't have heartache. Maybe it's just me. Yeah. But I feel like there has been heartache involved in parenting for me over the last couple of years. Um, and it's hard for me to talk about cuz it's my kids' stories and it's their lives. Yeah. But as a mom, I can talk about me Sure. Is that, um, watching my kids make mistakes, watching myself make parenting mistakes, um, watching the effects of the world and trauma through of my kids join our family through adoption. So they're bringing a whole story into the table, watching all of that take place inside my family has been tremendously heartbreaking.
Um, in ways that I never could have expected or seen. I think when Erin and I got into the parenting journey and with three of our kids being through adoption, we thought, well, you just love kids and everything comes out okay. Yeah. And I have just found that to be utterly false <laugh>. Like, like even with our biological son, I mean, you know, like Yeah. Right. I love all of my kids so much and yet there's still so much heartache involved in their stories. And to me, there's a part of me that feels, that feels very unfair. It feels very not okay. Wrestling through that with God has been a thing. And really just trusting and trusting, trusting that his plan is bigger and better than mine and I can't understand it, um, has been the only thing that has helped me through that, honestly.
Because I have a lot more questions and answers. Yeah. But I would say as a parent, uh, that was super surprising to me. And, um, you know, all my kids are teenagers and teenagers Erin and I say are the best and the hardest. Yeah. And we, we say that the best are awesome and the hard is like what the actual h e hell is happening in my life, <laugh>. Um, and that was like a little unexpected. Mm-hmm. Because you don't see those extremes. We didn't in parenting younger children. And so it's just been that heartache has been hard. And it's also, for me in particular, has been hard to even like find friends who relate. Not because my mom friends can't relate, but I have a whole nother dynamic of adoption and trauma and kids stories involved, but not a lot of other people. Not a lot of people understand. And so, honestly, as much as I can say that my husband is my best friend, and some people be like, that's so weird. I, I, he truly, truly is. And going through what we've been through in the last couple of years, I don't know how I could have survived without that person that understands me better than anyone else. Um, to go through that with me.
Joey Odom (27:11):
Something. So with, with your, in your audience, I, I mean primarily women, not all, not all women, but which I assume that you're, you're speaking when you're speaking to somebody, I assume you imagine yourself speaking to women. Is that correct? For sure. And you, let me ask a baseline question first.
Jamie Ivey (27:28):
Not cause I don't think I can speak to men.
Joey Odom (27:29):
Yeah, exactly. <laugh>
Jamie Ivey (27:30):
Throw that in me. But I get
Joey Odom (27:32):
That. But you, but, and women relate to you a hundred percent. I'm, I'm curious, and maybe I just gave away the answer with that, but why do you think that you have grown and su sustained and had the staying power? You started your podcast in 2014 mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that's a, that's an eternity. That's nine years mm-hmm. <affirmative> of, of generating content. And why do you think it is that you've had that kind of staying power and why it's been been able to sustain?
Jamie Ivey (27:58):
Um, I think that this is a hard question for me to answer. Yeah, sure. And I get asked it a lot because it's hard cuz it's like, well, let me tell you how awesome I am. Yeah,
Joey Odom (28:05):
Jamie Ivey (28:06):
I don't mean, I don't wanna say that, but I do wanna say what I hear from people. That's okay. That's a better way. Okay. So that's makes me feel better to say it like that. What I hear from people is that, um, the vulnerability that I bring to conversations is refreshing. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, uh, the authenticity, um, which comes, goes along with vulnerability is refreshing. I think also people are really craving someone who feels like them. Yeah. If that makes sense. Yes, it does. And so for a long time I've had to navigate where do I fit in this like, Christian teacher, woman world and I come to the table with a lot of friends who are amazing Bible teachers and I don't think that that's me. And I'm okay with that. Yep. I love God's word. I love teaching God's word, but I also love, um, encouraging people.
And I really think that's one of my gifts is encouragement. And I think that comes through in conversations. And so I think all that to say, I think people are looking for someone who is grounded biblically. Yep. Like, I, I always say like, I have conservative theology, but I've got maybe some more liberal social ideas and I think people are looking for that a little bit. Yeah. Like, I'm not willing to compromise on some issues over here, but I really am for like, people having rights like everyone else. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, we don't have to talk about all, but you know what I mean? Like Yeah. I think people are like, oh, we can do both. Like we can actually care for people. And so I'm trying to find my way in that. Yeah. I'm trying to follow Jesus the best I can and I think people en enjoy that refreshing view of someone who's like, feels like, oh, she would just be my friend next door neighbor.
Yeah. And um, I always, I always joke with Erin tell mom, I'm like, I'm I'll tell Erin, I'm like, I'm like the girl next door. He's like, no you don't because you have your lashes done. You got your hair appointment, <laugh>, you're not the girl next door, Jamie. I'm like, no, but I am <laugh>. Um, and so I think that's what it is. It just, yeah. The vulnerability, the authenticity. And I hope and pray that people who were in my real life would show up and say that you're not getting a different version than we're getting. Yes. And I, I think that's true.
Joey Odom (30:06):
Jamie Ivey (30:07):
I hope it's true.
Joey Odom (30:08):
One thing I, as we've gotten to know each other, one thing I really like is that you also, it's, and I didn't quite know what to expect. I think some people like intently kind of push the envelope a little bit where it's like, oh, you like, it's like trying to be edgy and like, I didn't know, like before we knew each other, like I didn't know like, oh, you going, would you like, almost like just try to push the envelope a little bit too much or like make people feel a little bit uncomfortable. You don't do that either. Like it really is like authentic is a great word for it, but I think sometimes people will say like, oh, they're so authentic. But it's almost like, yeah, but they're trying too hard. Does that make sense? Uhhuh <affirmative>. There's no, there's no real try hard Uhhuh <affirmative>. It really is just like, yeah. Here, here
Jamie Ivey (30:44):
I am. Oh, thank you. Did you think I was edgy? It's the tattoos, huh?
Joey Odom (30:47):
Well, no, honestly, when I saw tattoos I was like, oh, is she gonna like try to, you know, she's gonna like try to push the envelope, but you don't push the envelope in, in the way that you would imagine others. You know what I mean? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I don't know if that makes sense. I'll accept it. There was a church in um, there's a church in Tulsa, Oklahoma where I'm from, called Guts Church. And it was like the bunch of bikers went there. Pastor named Bill Sheer who's awesome. And he, um, I always assumed he just like cussed a lot from the pulpit Uhhuh. Cause it's the edgy one or something like that. Yeah. It turns out like, oh no, this is actually biblically sound. It's just a lot of people feel comfortable going there, Uhhuh <affirmative>. And so I just maybe, I don't
Jamie Ivey (31:19):
Know. I did say hell on your podcast.
Joey Odom (31:21):
You did. Yes. And we're gonna edit that out. Parents, <laugh> parents, don't worry. We'll be getting rid of that. We'll never have her back. <laugh>. Um, okay, so you start, this may be a hard question to ask or answer. 2014, you started it and I went through your episode list and I noticed what, how many episodes? Like 600 I
Jamie Ivey (31:40):
Just interviewed today. Well, 5 77 was the episode today, but there's some that aren't numbered. So probably over 600 conversations.
Joey Odom (31:46):
Amazing. And as I looked through that list, I saw people who probably had had some moral failure since probably public saw people who had the faith is deconstructed people who have left the faith. What is that? I don't even know if there's a question here. What is that like to look at that expect gosh, that things have changed a lot in the last
Jamie Ivey (32:07):
Nine years? Yeah, yeah. You know, I don't know that I've ever actually thought about what you just said, but the thing that's hard, and you can tell me if you've had to think about this, doing this for so long and inviting people on and getting so many pitches for happy people on the show and all kinds of stuff. Like, I don't know what someone's gonna do in five years.
Joey Odom (32:28):
Jamie Ivey (32:30):
But when I have someone on the show, literally what I'm saying to my viewers or my listeners is as of right to now when we're interviewing them, this is where they are. It also is a hard thing for me too because I'm like, do I, am I responsible for this person
Joey Odom (32:45):
I bring it to to you? Exactly.
Jamie Ivey (32:46):
Yeah. And so I do take some responsibility in that. Like, if my listeners are gonna trust me enough, I want them to know that this person like believes that the Bible is a hundred percent true. You know, believes that Jesus, one of a, all, all the like, major things mm-hmm. <affirmative> and then there's other things that I'm like, I don't know what that feels like. You know, like I'll give you one big example that would be a culturally relevant example right now would be sexuality. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So I have a sexuality that uh, like a what I would believe to be true Right. Based on the gospel where I would stand, I don't know where everyone stands. Yeah, exactly. If they're coming on to talk to me about like faith, like I just don't know where they are.
Joey Odom (33:20):
If you give like a gender and sexuality quiz Exactly.
Jamie Ivey (33:22):
Before they come on. Yeah. There's no gender and sexuality like quiz before people come on. So all that to say is like, I do hold a lot of responsibility and feel like, okay, I'm bringing you someone, I want you to trust them, but I also am like, I need everyone to use the brains that God's given them. Right. And I am not the the end all be all. Like if Jamie has 'em on their show, like check them out. Yeah. You know, like, so, but looking back over those many episodes and seeing things like that, I don't know that I've ever done that. And that that is, um, that's crazy. Yeah. You know, and I, I think it just shows like what our culture is going through, what faith in America is going through. Yeah. Well I should say Christianity in America, it's telling. Yeah,
Joey Odom (34:06):
Yeah. Yeah. It is. It's been a challenging few years. And even in, especially on, maybe on the moral failures part, that's where it's thought about this a bunch. It's not like that was the exception in the Bible. It's like that was the point. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> like, here are a bunch of frail people who are totally incapable and like Paul talks about it, like you rejoice in your weakness. Yeah. Like that's like that's that is the point. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, the point is that we can't do it. Yeah. The point is that like, that's a bridge we can't cross and so we need a savior, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Right. Um, that's, that's, um, that's a hard one to,
Jamie Ivey (34:37):
I'm gonna go back and look at my Yeah. My past guess now. But I, but you know what, like I wouldn't, I, now that I'm think, I think we've took taken down one show. Oh really? You know what I mean? Like, I'm not gonna go back and see,
Joey Odom (34:49):
Was that the one I was on <laugh>?
Jamie Ivey (34:50):
No. Okay, good. I'm not gonna go back and I don't feel the need to go back and censor anything.
Joey Odom (34:54):
Yeah. Yeah. I like that.
Jamie Ivey (34:56):
Yeah. Yeah. There's one show that we took down and it's not, we're talking about Sure. But it was a failure thing mm-hmm. <affirmative> and it was a, it had just released in like the month previous. Oh gosh. So I just don't feel comfortable censoring. Yeah. Four years ago someone was on my show, you know what I mean? Yeah.
Joey Odom (35:13):
What do you think of, of the people in this, people that sustain, it's one thing for someone to have a trendy idea or to have a great sermon or message or something that some that, that catches fire. Do you know? Uh, can you think of any kind of common traits, characteristics, disciplines, practices, whatever it is that leads to people, leads people to sustain something over the years?
Jamie Ivey (35:35):
Uh, I'm gonna, I'm gonna quote someone. I just listened to a podcast. My friend Beth Moore, you know. I know. And so Beth Moore was on, I don't know the name of the podcast, but it's Russell Moore's podcast. Okay. And she, he asked her a question about something about her call. I cannot remember the question specifically what he asked, but she said to him, and I'll never forget this, she said, Russell, I was called to a person and not a position. Hmm. And I immediately took down my notes and said that, and it, it made me chew on that. And I think about that for a long time. And I think that to sustain ministry life, you have to be called more to a person than you are to a position. Hmm. And because that calling to that person is what's gonna sustain you. Jesus is gonna sustain us. Yeah. But then if you're like, what are, so what are some practical things, you know, that looks like, and um, man, I'm a big believer in people around you that like know you legit Yeah. And are willing to call you out. Yeah. I was listening to her 60, I was watching 60 Minutes last night. Well, it was on after all the basketball games. Mm-hmm. And so I was coming in and Charles Barkley was on there. Did you watch
Joey Odom (36:35):
It? Yeah. No, I, I take
Jamie Ivey (36:36):
It, I actually wanna go back and watch the whole thing. Do people tape things. Got it on your little I got
Joey Odom (36:40):
On verbatim and Al Beta Max. I still, you still I'd never left beta.
Jamie Ivey (36:43):
Um, I actually wanna go back and watch it because the snippet I, um, saw was the, an interview was asked me about him and Michael Jordan's relationship. Yeah. And I didn't know they had a strange relationship. Okay. So I wanna go back and watch it. But Charles Barkley said something that I think is his name as True's ministry. He said, and I felt this, did you watch Michael Jordan like that seven episode series?
Joey Odom (37:03):
Oh yeah. Last dance.
Jamie Ivey (37:04):
Yeah. Yeah. I never finished it, but I, I found it very intriguing. Charles Barkley said, I think Michael Jordan doesn't have anyone around him that'll tell him no. Hmm. And whether that's true or not, I have no idea. But I think that is where you see a lot of people get too big for their britches. There's no one around that's gonna tell them no. Um, I mean I could name two examples in the past five years that we've seen pastors in a very public place fall and it really was, they were the only one in charge. Yes. No one could tell them no. Everyone was built around them to build them up. And I think that doesn't happen overnight. Absolutely. That is a slow burning machine. And I mean, usually the people that say no don't end up staying very long. Yeah. Because that, that power and that control.
So, you know, that's something. And, and I, I don't wanna say those are like, um, extreme situations cause I think they happen mm-hmm. <affirmative> all the time. So I would say just like a healthy community around you that you can listen to, to feedback. Um, um, I keep talking about Beth as well cuz I interviewed her recently and she just released the book. So she's been on a lot of podcasts. But really just talking about like sane in the word. And I'll tell you one of my greatest, not greatest. That was a big, that was a very dramatic statement. <laugh>, one of the things I struggle with because now I teach and travel and stand on stages and talk about Jesus. The struggle for me is to be in God's word for myself. Yeah. And not in God's word for what I'm prepping for.
Joey Odom (38:31):
Oh, that's interesting.
Jamie Ivey (38:32):
So I, I talked to a pastor about this one time and he's like, he, he said it as like, it was such a grace on his life that God made him a pastor cuz it kept him tethered to the word. So there is that as well. Like, you know, like I've, I've gotta read God's word if I'm gonna preach it, but am I all, am I going there to feed myself or am I going there to get a good message?
Joey Odom (38:54):
Jamie Ivey (38:55):
Good. And I'll, I mean, that would be a struggle that would, that I would fall under. And so it's something that I have to fight. Mm-hmm. Is like, okay, so I'm gonna read God's word this morning. Is this because I'm prepping to teach on Philippians four? Or is it like, I want to, to like know about Philippians four? Yeah. That kind of thing. Yeah.
Joey Odom (39:10):
Right. That's so interesting. Um, I'm gonna jump back. How do you, given your experience, you talk through, how do you talk to your kids about sex? And do you talk to your boy? Do you have two boys, two girls or three boys? One
Jamie Ivey (39:25):
Girl. Three boys. One girl.
Joey Odom (39:26):
And do you talk to the boys differently than your daughter?
Jamie Ivey (39:29):
Okay. So I, when my kids were younger, we read these books. God's Designed For Sex. I don't know if you've heard of them. It's like a five part book. They start at age three. Wow. Yeah. Highly recommend them. Okay. But age three, it's not about like sex and intercourse. Yeah. It's just God made our bodies, that kind of stuff. Yeah. And honestly, I tell parents all the time, if you start at age three, listen, it's not weird.
Joey Odom (39:50):
Jamie Ivey (39:51):
Doesn't get weird till they're like 14. Right. But if you do been doing all that year, they're just kind of roll their eyes. But it's some, they're not, it's not like the first time they've ever heard their mom say the word sex. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I, when I was talking to my kids when they were younger, my old, my oldest three are boys, so we started with the boys. My husband traveled all the time. So honestly, if they were gonna get talked to about this stuff, when the conversation came up, it was from me. Yeah. So I had to lay aside, the dad talks to the boys and mom talks to the girls a long time ago. And I actually am a proponent for everyone talking to everyone. Yeah. It you bring, I have a different like tone about sex. I have a different view, not viewpoint, but a different life experience.
You know, like Yeah. I'm a woman and so I think I've always talked to both of my se both of my kids, um, the boys and the girls about sex. Uh, we, so we've been talking about forever. Yeah. So there wasn't a moment where like, I remember when my mom had the talk. Yeah. And that honestly is one of my biggest encouragements to parents. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it's for them. Never remember that we can get away when they first heard about sex. Yeah. For two reasons. Number one, if they don't remember the mo I'm teaching now instead of telling you my own experience, I'm sorry, look, I just turned into like I'm in charge.
Joey Odom (40:55):
No, come on. Okay.
Jamie Ivey (40:56):
No, listen. So I always
Joey Odom (40:56):
Say like, you got on court advantage here. This is your studio by
Jamie Ivey (40:59):
The way. I always say like, if they remember that moment Yeah. Then it was like this experience, it was just like, okay, my mom told me about that weekend and then we are done with it. Yeah. Instead, what if it's like we've just always had this fluid conversation. Yeah. So that's the one thing I say. And then the second reason I am like, what was my second reason? Now I forgot after all that, don't make it that one time. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Oh, this is the second reason. The second reason is honestly might've already heard about it.
Joey Odom (41:24):
Jamie Ivey (41:24):
That's right. There's no breaking news. Yeah. You know, I mean I think we might've talked about this when you guys are on my show of just like kids are hearing about sex. Right. No matter if you're telling them or not. Yeah. And younger and younger, I mean, it is just, it's a very, very harsh reality Yes. Of the world that they live in. And so, um, I'm a big proponent and not a one-time talk mm-hmm. <affirmative> and you're make, you're probably not gonna be the first time they've heard about the thing. Yeah. So my kids know about it, honestly, parenting teenagers, it's a whole nother ballgame. Yeah. It is a whole nother ballgame where a lot of people would disagree with me with what I'm about to say, but our kids know our stance on why we think that God's best plan is for people to have sex with their husband or wife. Yep. Like we, we talk about that. We talk about it fluidly, all the things. And I tell my boys, if you're going to have sex, please wear a condom. Yeah.
A lot of people will be like, well, you're giving them permission. Well, I don't think my boys are gonna ask my permission if they have sex or four <laugh>. Do you know what I mean? Like, tell my mom real quick. You know what I mean? It's just like, I just don't see it that way. And again, you've already heard my life experiences. Yes. Right. Nobody told me that. Yeah. I wish that the people I were having sex with Yeah. Would've like, it would've saved me a lot of heartache. Yeah. And so I tell my ki my boys, we don't want you to for lots of reasons. Yeah. And here's what God's word says about it. Yeah. We think that you'll actually be healthier and whole and Yeah. Like have a better sexual history in life. Right. But if you do Yeah. Please wear a condom.
Yeah. Because here's the things that you're gonna be setting yourself up for pregnancy, std, like all the things that we know. And so that is something that I think I bring in from life experience mm-hmm. <affirmative> and just being not unaware of what's happening in 2023. Um, so, but one more thing I wanna say is I talk to my boys too, not just about sexual purity, but I always remind them, take care of her heart. Take care of her soul. Take care of her body. Yeah. Like all three of those things matter. And I just want to raise men who care about the whole of a woman. Yeah. And not just, can I see her boobs? Yeah. <laugh> or you know what I mean? Like it's just like, and not just like, well we didn't have sex. So, you know, but are you caring for her heart that's like, are you leading her on, like, are you caring for her mind?
Like, what are you guys talking about? So I didn't get that growing up. Mine was like, it's not, I don't even wanna throw my parents under the bus, but like, we had a conversation. My dad took me out, gave me a Locke, it Yeah. And I signed a couple true left weights, cards, you know what I mean? But like, that's just how it was in the nineties. Absolutely. Nice. And so just trying to give them a whole perspective of that. And my daughter, she's a freshman and I've had the same conversations. Yeah. Obviously a little different. Um, but the same kind of conversations, we talk about consent. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, like yes. Consent matters. Yeah. And you can't be like taking advantage of someone if someone says no, that means no. Yeah. I think that's a conversation that needs to happen that's not happening. Absolutely. Often enough, if someone's been drinking, they, their consent doesn't matter. You know? Yeah. And so, yeah. Hard conversations. It is hard. And I, I'll say this one more thing is I never would've thought I would've said this either. My kids being virgins when they get married is sometimes the least of my worries. Hmm. I want my kids to love God. Yep.
And I think that begging for my kid's salvation, begging for my kid's heart to be turned towards Jesus. I have to trust that those things are gonna work themselves out. Yeah. But, and I don't wanna be, as the mom that is only concerned about, have you had intercourse with somebody? Yep. Because I told you my story already, to me, growing up in a conservative, evangelical Southern Baptist church, having sex was basically the worst thing you could ever do. Yep. And I just don't think that anymore. I don't want my kids to be sexually active before they get married. I don't want them to have a list of partners. They don't remember their names. I don't want anything for of that, for them. I want my kid's heart to love Jesus. Yeah. And I'm telling you that that's a harder battle than anything else I ever thought about. Absolutely. Yeah. You know, and so I want my kids to have their own faith. I, I want, I want that because I think that handing that over to God, that the rest will work itself out.
Joey Odom (45:30):
Well. The, the one of the issues with the, are you a virgin or not when you get married, is it's, it's yes or no, right? Yeah. So it's a, so it's a yes or no. And then if, okay, so if no, so if you slip when you're 17, well then you've already said no. So then, so then it's almost like that foundation, if your foundation is virginity Yes. And then it's gone. Well then what's the point in even continuing to try? Right.
Jamie Ivey (45:54):
And let me say this too, virginity as in just like intercourse. Yeah. Right. You know what I mean? Yeah, exactly. I mean, because there's a million things Yes. That you could do that still like go against God's best design for Yeah. For sexual intimacy. Right. But when you're 17, you're like, well, we haven't gone all the way. Yeah,
Joey Odom (46:10):
Jamie Ivey (46:10):
Yet you have just totally, almost, right.
Joey Odom (46:12):
Yeah, that's exactly right. So it does become that binary thing as opposed to as your heart turns towards Jesus. And so that's, that's a much different, and it's less, and it's, it's, that's a lot easier. That's a lot more difficult to clinging to cause it's so much more abstract. Well, what does that even mean? Yeah. Where you at least can quantify virginity versus not totally. Versus no virginity. Totally. It's such an interesting topic. I've, I think this was from my youth pastor growing up, Randy Ays Cross Mountain Church, Bernie, Texas. He's a great guy. That's where he is now. And he said, he talked about how don't let your, and I like this as a guideline, not letting your physical relationship exceed your level of commitment. And so if you believe that like, okay, my sex is for marriage for the ultimate commitment that you're gonna make towards somebody, and it helps you with that guideline. Okay, well then what's your level of commitment towards them? A hundred percent. Which I think that makes a lot more sense.
Jamie Ivey (46:57):
Yeah. Erin, I just talked about that. We did a dating episode and we talked about that. Like if you've got a level, uh, a level like six commitment, like you're just like, maybe you're in college, maybe you think you might like Yeah. A level six commitment, but you're giving them level 10 access to your body. Yeah, that's right. Or that doesn't add up. Yep. Right. You know, and anyone can bail it anytime. Yeah. That's the thing. Like there's no commitment. Yeah. And so that's, I mean, the tar teenagers, their brain isn't formed. Right? Yeah. They're, they're just practically dumb <laugh>, you know what I mean? I mean, let's just be honest. I love mine, but they just, I was dumb. I made Yeah. Some of the worst decisions ever as a teenager. Yeah. And so at this point we're just kind of like, we will tell you what we believe to be true, but it is literally the act of the Holy Spirit. Yeah. That's, and that actually has been one of the hardest things in parenting for me, is like, Hmm, okay. Like this is Erin and i's new favorite phrase now is like, we'll, we'll be, we'll have something go on with the kid or have a conversation. And then we get into our room, we talk about it. And literally our new favorite phrase, you can take it if you want. It is, you know what? That's just gonna have to work itself out.
Joey Odom (47:55):
Jamie Ivey (47:55):
That. That's just gonna have to work. That's
Joey Odom (47:56):
Hard. By the way, you,
Jamie Ivey (47:58):
You telling me <laugh> the last two years, if I had a dollar for every time I said, well, you know what, that's just gonna have to work itself out because as a parent, you can't fix everything. Yeah. And we wanna fix, we wanna control, we wanna make sure everything's okay. We want this, we wanna present ourselves. Is this really, I mean, listen, the Ives, like Aaron's a pastor. I have a Christian. Yeah. Let me present ourself as like, we got all of our, all of our stuff
Joey Odom (48:17):
Jamie Ivey (48:18):
And then you open the curtain and you're like, wow. Oh boy. <laugh>. But it is literally like, man, God is just gonna have to like, this is a God, this is a God thing. Yeah. And, um, I think our kids can, I, here's what I was gonna say is I don't want, I would be so upset to raise kids who had never had sex, but didn't love Jesus. Now we have no control over whether our kids love Jesus or not. Yeah. Like just take that pressure off. Yeah. Parents take it off. Literally. That was one of the most freeing things ever when I realized I cannot save my kids or damn them to hell. Like, that's really good. Can't, but what is my focus on? Am I so focused that like, don't have sex, don't have sex, don't have sex? And then like, what if they don't have sex? Awesome. We pat ourselves in the back. Yeah. But yet they just like, that's their only guideline for following Jesus. Yeah. Wow. That's gonna mess you up in about 20 years. Absolutely.
Joey Odom (49:07):
Jamie Ivey (49:08):
Joey Odom (49:09):
I think also the, the, going back to yours, your statement of here's a, what we think God's design is for you to, to say that for until you're married. But also if you do, here's, you know, where economy, I can understand why, why people would push back on that. I, I can't understand that. But the other side of that is give
Jamie Ivey (49:23):
'em your email please. What's that? <laugh> give 'em your email when they push
Joey Odom (49:26):
Back. Yes, please. Yes. So the other side of that is, and again, talking to my brother Jacob the other day, we were talking about this and talking with my, um, my kids and my kids are teenagers. So we've talked about sex recently. And he said, and he has younger kids, but he said, don't be afraid to, even if it's unrealistic, it's still okay to give an ideal. Which that was a good thing too, because it's almost like, you know, as a parent you want to, it's almost like give it, maybe we hold back sometimes now. Maybe it's cuz you know, our generation and, and growing up in the purity culture in the nineties. And so we may go to another side of it, but then it's still okay to say, but let me just tell you whether realistic or not, it doesn't matter. Here is the ideal and that's an okay thing too. A
Jamie Ivey (50:05):
Joey Odom (50:06):
Because, so I like that you're giving that, I mean, you are giving that when you're saying that to your kids.
Jamie Ivey (50:09):
A hundred percent. Because I have heard the exact opposite of like, yes, listen, kids are gonna do what they're gonna do. Kids are kids. Right. Like, just prepare your kids gonna have sex. And while I'm a realist mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I do appreciate realistic conversations. I would hate it if everyone's like, oh, if you're a Christian, your kid, don't worry. Your kids will never have sex. Is no. Yeah. Tell me the truth. Do not ever, I wanna know the truth, but I have heard people swing the opposite way of like, yeah, kids are just kids that are gonna do what they're gonna do. You know, just whatever. And I'm, I'm like, well no, actually we wanna give them god's god's ideal for everything. Yeah. Not even just sexual intimacy, but like what is God's ideal for everything. Yeah. Friendship and conversations and how we love our neighbor, all the things.
Um, knowing also that we're humans Yeah. And we're sinners. And honestly just also for parents. Like some of your kids may not even have a great relationship with the Lord. And so we're asking them to, to hold a moral standard that honestly they may think that feels pretty dumb. I think that it's hard also for parents because we give our kids this ideal, but if your kid is not following Jesus and they don't have their own faith, we're asking 'em to hold a moral standard that they don't even understand. Yes. That's right. Or doesn't even mean anything to them. Yeah. Because let's be honest, saving yourself for marriage. It is a weird concept if you're not a Christian. Yeah, right. <laugh>. You know what I mean? We're talking about Yeah. I mean Aaron and I joke all the time in a very joking way, but they're like, we're gonna spend our entire life unless one of us dies and we're only have sex with one person.
Hmm. Like in the world standards. That is ludicrous. Yeah. Like boring. Try it out. All the stuff. And as followers of Jesus, like we actually see that this is the best, this is the best way. Yeah. Right. Like there's no better option of getting to have sex with a hundred different people before you die. Yeah. Because there are, there are like, there are consequences to that, but we can't understand. So my thing is like you're telling your children something that the world is telling them the exact opposite of. And honestly, if I were to go even further what our flesh would be like, that doesn't make sense either. Yeah. Because our flesh is like, I want sex with everybody. Yeah. <laugh>, I wanna try it all out. Right. And um, and so that is also, and when you're parenting teenagers, like, like I want my kids to have their own faith.
And what if that faith doesn't come until they're 25? Yeah. Like they're growing up in a Christian home, but what if they're like me? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I grew up in a Christian home Yeah. And didn't start following Jesus till I was 21. Um, so really just holding all of it's so nuanced and that's what I wouldn't have ever said when I was like 20. And in youth ministry, which is also funny. Yeah. They put 20 year olds in charge of the students <laugh> and, and they were supposed to tell the parents how they're supposed to do their job. Now I look back and I'm like, I know why the parents were like, eyeroll us because we were 20 <laugh>. You know what I mean? Exactly. We're youth pastors, two kids that are three years younger than us. Exactly. But now parenting and being 45, you look at these things and it's not as black and white as it used to be. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. I do think God's word is black and white. But I think parenting is just like, each kid is different. Each kid has different thing. I mean, Ooh. It's just a lot. Yeah. It's a lot.
Joey Odom (52:56):
One, this is a sad and funny all at once. My, a friend of mine left the faith and his parents, he grew up in a very Christian home and he was telling me whenever his parents were trying to convince me, you were talking about, and they, someone doesn't hold the same worldview or belief system. He said all they came to him with like 15 bible verses and he was like, you don't understand. I don't, I don't believe that. So your bi the Bible verse don't mean anything to me. Yeah. Yeah. So it's, it's an interesting, interesting thought there. Okay. The, you just turned in a manuscript for a book. <affirmative>. Can we make some news here? I mean, let's, I want to hear, I want to hear What do we got?
Jamie Ivey (53:30):
Sorry. I just turned in a manuscript at the end of January. Okay. And I'm deep in, I'm in edits right now. Okay. Okay. Which is like probably my least part of writing
Joey Odom (53:37):
A book. Yeah.
Jamie Ivey (53:38):
Because really what I I'm my personality is like, oh, you're the editor. Just change, make it better. No, that's fine. It's fine, it's fine. Whereas some of my friends are like, oh no, don't you change my words. I'm like, oh, you're smart. Make it better <laugh>. Um, so I turned into manuscript and it's called Why Can't I Get It Together? Oh. And it's not a book about like, why can't I like get my calendar ride and, and my kids are the right places. Although I feel that often in this stage of life. But it is really this idea of like, why can't, why do I keep expecting myself to have different results when I'm still doing the same thing in my life? Yeah. Basically it's like if I look at my, my, my circumstances of my current life, but yet I have the same expectations on my life as I did when I was parenting young kids.
Well, those things don't add up. And so often we feel like why can't I get myself together? Yeah. But we're not taking into context like, what's going on in our world? What circumstances do we have? What's, what's happening? Um, one really, really, like tangible example only cuz I just saw this in the edits is in 2000 and 2008, we hosted a child in our home who was here on a medical visa. So I had two young kids plus this medical visa child. I was in the hos in and outta the hospital all the time with her. But yet often I found myself like frustrated, like, I can't get this stuff done. All the things, but I hadn't reevaluated how my circumstances had changed. And so I was still thinking I needed to work the same way I was before. Right. But my life has changed.
And I think we do that a lot. Like I even think there's some past experiences in my life that keep coming up. I alluded to them a little bit of just like, why is this still a problem for me that I'm still thinking about this and I'm still like worried that this is gonna happen. And I'm still thinking, how did I walk through this? Why did this happen and I can't seem to get over it. And it's been 25, 30 years. Yeah. And I look at that and I think maybe I need to deal with something that I haven't dealt with. And so, so many times we have past things in our life that just keep coming up. Yeah. We keep having to deal with them and honestly it's like, well, you haven't done the work that you need to do to, to get in there. You know? Or we have the expectations on ourself that other people put on us that aren't, they shouldn't be there because they don't make sense. And so I'm in the edits. I will know more
Joey Odom (55:43):
Jamie Ivey (55:43):
In two weeks.
Joey Odom (55:45):
What's the projected release date?
Jamie Ivey (55:47):
February, 2024. I
Joey Odom (55:48):
Like it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, does it get easier to write a book? Does it get done? Does it get less iss of authors a bunch? Does it get less vulnerable or is it every time like, please, I hope you like this thing. I poured my heart into
Jamie Ivey (56:00):
Here's what you need to know about me, is that, uh, writing books is the least favorite part of my job. Huh? It's the hardest part of my job. Yeah. And so I would call myself a communicator verbally. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. I love podcasting. Yep. I love staying on the stage. Writing a book is so hard, <laugh> It is literally,
Joey Odom (56:19):
I sounds horrendous.
Jamie Ivey (56:20):
So hard. And and you might say, well, why do you do it? And I do it because I have something to say and it's a great way to say things. And so, um, for me it's also a community effort. I'm, I'm not ever writing a book alone. Right. Like, I'm gonna have someone walking with me through it. There's editors, there's all kinds of things. And so, um, no, it doesn't get easier for me. <laugh> at all. <laugh>
Joey Odom (56:40):
Does. Is vulnerability a part of it though? Like, just, just hoping that, hoping that people like it and you don't get people who trash it on Good Reads or, or in the comment section. I
Jamie Ivey (56:49):
Don't read com. I don't read smart reviews. Smart. Because I will think I will 16 great reviews and one bad. I'll only remember the bad cuz that's what we do is human. So I don't read reviews. I will say in this book, my editor came back and she's like, I need more vulnerability. So apparently I wasn't very vulnerable. But there's, there's two stories in this book that like, maybe two people in my entire life know besides people that have read this book. Wow. And so that I was like, listen, you got a lot of vulnerability outta me. I never even said this out loud. Um, but I, I think that I always say like, I don't think we should be vulnerable for the sake of vulnerability. Like there's this really big move of like, be vulnerable. Like lay it all out for me if I'm gonna be, if I'm gonna be vulnerable, I need it to point to Jesus. Got it. So I can't just be vulnerable. So, you know, something more about me like that is, feels very just like prideful and look at me, but I wanna be vulnerable so that my vulnerability can point you to Jesus. Whether that is you going, oh, I'm not alone. Yeah. Or wow, that is, you know, unexpected. Um, so there's vulnerability in here for sure.
Joey Odom (57:50):
Vulnerability's an interesting, actually I had a note here, I was curious about this, but you're, you have, the way you live is the same as how you communicate from in, from what I've seen and that I believe that's true. But I do think like even showing vulnerability can become a persona of yours. It can become a caricature or something like that. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, do you find that hard to balance? Is it, is it ever challenging to just question, I mean, you said maybe alluded to it earlier, preparing why reading the Bible for me or for the, or for the audience. Is that hard to even just naturally not drift into on air persona? Jamie,
Jamie Ivey (58:26):
I'll tell you, when I'm vulnerable, when there's a story that I'm vulnerable with, it is always because I have worked through that in my real life. Yeah. I've worked through that with the Lord. Like there's a story in this book that, um, I've n never said out loud. And I, I'll say like when I first start sharing that, it's gonna be super, super hard because I will feel like I'm like throwing myself in front of people naked and letting them Yeah. Circle all my fat circles. Yeah. But once I've done that, once I'm over that bridge and I'm like, okay, I've done this, then it becomes a story to me the same way that like, like that vulnerability about like being pregnant twice in college, that that is, that is being vulnerable, honestly. Yeah. But I don't feel the same in my heart as I did when I first started sharing that 12 years ago.
Yes. Um, and so for me, vulnerability is something where I'm like, I can bring this to the people because I want it to push them towards Jesus. But if it's still raw for me Yeah. It's a it's a cluster. Yeah. It is. This is, this is a wreck. Um, like I'm even thinking right now like, oh, I should just share this story right now, but I, not because you're asking me to. Yeah. But I'm like, oh, like it would prove my point and all these things, but I'm like, I don't know that I, I yeah. Literally at the thought of sharing it, I feel like I wanna vomit. So my point in saying that is that like vulnerability shouldn't be like, we're just airing our dirty laundry. Yes. Because it, talking about it right now would feel like airing my dirty laundry now I need to figure this out because people are gonna be asking me about this in about one year.
Yeah. Um, but I do wanna share that. Yeah. Because it's important, you know, um, I'll give you one example from a book I wrote a long time ago. Um, I told you I struggle with sexual sin Yeah. All through college and high school. And so that stuff doesn't go away. And so pornography has been a small part of my story, but still something that a lot of women mm-hmm. <affirmative> wouldn't talk about. And now we're seeing a lot of women coming out and saying like, yeah, this is a thing for women too, which I'm grateful for. Yeah. I wrote a story in my very first book about pornography and it's all people, not all it was always asked and I was like, y'all, there's like four sentences <laugh> in chapter nine. Like duh. You know, like all things. But talking about that at first when that book came out was really, really hard for me mm-hmm.
<affirmative> because it was like not something from 25 years ago. Yeah. You know what I mean? I have teenagers and so like Right. Even just it's vulnerable for my kids. Yes. It's vulnerable for me to know that my kids would know that their mom would struggle with that. It feels embarrassing a little bit, you know? And so, um, but again, every time I would hear women come up to me and say like, I didn't know that any, I've struggled with this, and no one ever talks about it. And so it's like pushing people towards Jesus. Yeah. I feel like I'm rambling, but that's No, no, no. That is like vulnerability for me is like important, but it's not let's air all of our dirty laundry off for everyone to see. Yes. It is. Like you have, and some people would say like, oh, you need to be vulnerable. Like, people in the moment, not me. Yeah. Like, not me, because I need to be like, this is gonna be more about Jesus than it's about me.
Joey Odom (01:01:25):
That's such an interesting, I hadn't, I hadn't thought about the pride of vulnerability, the people, if you're taking pride in it, and I do believe that vulnerability has to hurt a little bit and it, and, and if it doesn't, then it probably is just the story. Or if you're taking pride in it, eh, it's probably you just being private mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that's not real vulnerability. Real vulnerability. I mean, it is, it's exposing your underbelly and giving people the opportunity to stab you if they want. Mm-hmm. Yeah. And hoping they don't, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So that's vulnerability is an, that is an overused word. And I'm trying to figure out what it means because it's, I probably tend to overshare a little bit then it's like, is that vulnerability mm-hmm. <affirmative> or is that just me, like, just seem sincere? I'm just, I'm just sincere. You know what
Jamie Ivey (01:02:02):
I mean? Yeah. I think it depends on like the, the platform as well. Yeah. You know, like vulnerable with just like if these microphones were turned off. Right. There are so many things I would've said in this interview Yeah. That would give more context to what I said, whatever. But I could say that to you because like, we're friends and there's no microphone and it's just like two people having a conversation Right. In front of like the Yeah. There's more, like there's more editing only because for me personally, a lot of, if I were to like put all my vulnerability on a postal board, it'd all be around parenting right now. Mm-hmm. And lemme tell you what, I can't talk about my kids. Yeah, right. Exactly. You know what I mean? Let me tell you what, what things I can't bring to the air Yeah.
Their lives. Right. Because it's nobody else's business. That's right. Now I and my counselor has talked about this, like, how do you tell people what you are dealing with and what you're feeling? All the things. But so many times it's all wrapped up into like our family and I just refuse to use my kids as a story line Yes. When they're not five, you know? Yeah. Right. But when they're 17, 18, 19, I'm not doing it. Yeah. And so, um, that's all, that's, that's finding me in a hard place right now. Yeah. Of just, there's so much vulnerability that is there on personal relationships that I have conversations with that if you're in my real life, you know, what our family's gone through in the last two years, but I'm not publicly talking about that. Yeah. Because it's nobody's business. So that, that, that is a tension that I find myself in. I would
Joey Odom (01:03:15):
Imagine. Yeah. Well, and and because it's such good material your kids have, it's such good material there they provide you with, so it's,
Jamie Ivey (01:03:21):
It's all my material <laugh>. I'm
Joey Odom (01:03:22):
Jamie Ivey (01:03:22):
I have nothing to say because you guys like, I can't tell your stories. Yeah, yeah,
Joey Odom (01:03:25):
Exactly. Um, I feel like I could go for hours more and I've, I've about a quarter of the way through my notes, but, um, I do wanna close with a question we ask everybody and everybody has a little bit of a different answer. And then the RO podcast is all about people who strive to live intentionally. So what does that term, what does intentionality mean to you? To Jamie Ivy,
Jamie Ivey (01:03:45):
I knew you were gonna ask me this and I I thought about it and I think for me, intentionality, again, I'm in such a parenting season, so Yeah. If people are listening and you don't have kids, I, I try to have different examples, but it's just the life I'm in. <laugh> um, intentionality for me means taking, um, grasp of the moments that you have been given. Hmm. And so <laugh>, teenagers, we talked about this before we started, it's just hit or miss sometimes. Yeah. <laugh>. And it's not, I always say like, teenagers are so hard and I have great kids and it's still so hard to parent teenagers. Yeah. Because it's just hard being a teenager these days. Like it is so hard being a teenager. It is, it is so hard. This, I'm gonna tell you my answer in a minute, but a couple weeks ago there was, uh, some tension at our house mm-hmm.
<affirmative> and, uh, my son, oldest son's 19, I can share this story mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And um, after a couple of hours we met in the stairwell and we were talking and kind of confessing and forgiving and all the things. And he said, um, he said, mom, I'm not mad at you and I think you're doing a great job. Which is like my great, one of my greatest fears in life is that I'm a bad mom. He said, I think you're doing a great job. And he said, and it's hard to be a mom sometimes. And I said to him, I said, dude, I'm not mad at you. It's really hard to be a teenager. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so we had this moment of like, yeah, we're both trying like our absolute best. Yeah. And we fail all the freaking time. Yeah. Um, so for me, I find that parenting teenagers is such this, like, you'll get a moment and you're like, okay, we, we gotta, we gotta stay here.
Yeah. Like, I got this moment, you know, a couple weeks ago Aaron was outta town and I texted him and it was like 1130. He didn't get it till the next day cuz he was in bed. And I was like, they were all up and they all wanted to talk. And so for me, intentionality, I I wanna go to bed. Yeah. I, I can't stay up till 1130. You know, when that, you know how long that affects me Days, <laugh>, you know what I mean? For sure. I saw a thing on Instagram the other day. It said, you, I may have to drink to feel hungover, I have to stay up late <laugh>. So I'm like, this is what it is. Like, you know what I mean? So like, but that was, that was me taking the moment Yeah. That was there and um, and seizing it.
And so that for me is intentionality, is trying to see those moments and being intentional with what I got because this could make me cry. But as your kids get older, there's just fewer moments. Yeah. And it's not bad, it's just how life works. It's, it's how growing up is, if our ki they leave our house, some of them, if God has it and their plans are, they get married, they get married, if he has it on plans would have kids like life changes. And so my moments are fewer than they were when they were 7, 6, 5, and four. And so intentionality means taking those moments, seizing them. Yeah. Not feeling bad if I miss one because that happens cuz we're human. Yeah. And then making the best of, if I have 45 minutes, if I have 20 minutes, whatever it is.
Joey Odom (01:06:30):
There's, there are a bunch of, we been thinking a lot about this lately, just how they say 90% of the time you'll have with your kids happens before they're 18 years old, which there's a soul crusher right there. Yeah. But then you even think about how there's some parents, I have a friend who refers to, whenever she talks to her parents, her parents will, you'll, they'll go to see them for two days and be like, ah, I wish you could have stayed a third day. And like, why would I just enjoy the two days we had? You know what I mean? And that's one thing I have to always be looking towards and it's back towards gratitude, which everybody talks about. But taking to your point, just taking, if it's 45 minutes, that's great. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, let me just take advantage of that and really savor that. Yeah. That's so good.
Jamie Ivey (01:07:02):
Yeah. And as I get older, I mean it literally, my 19 year old Aaron always reminds me, he's like, let's don't remind him of what we don't have.
Joey Odom (01:07:11):
Jamie Ivey (01:07:12):
Good. Like really like, be here for what we have because what you don't wanna be as a parent that's like, well I guess you're hanging out with your girlfriend again. And that's just how life works. Yeah. Of course. He wants to hang out with his girlfriend. Yeah. He's a 19 year old dude,
Joey Odom (01:07:24):
<laugh>, you know. Exactly.
Jamie Ivey (01:07:25):
He's going to choose her over his mom. Yes, absolutely. And what I can't do is make that about me. And so, oh listen,
Joey Odom (01:07:33):
That's a hard one.
Jamie Ivey (01:07:34):
Aaron is so much better about this and he's very kindly having to remind me of a lot. It's like, don't make it about you. Yeah. Don't make it about you. I'm like, he's not about me. It's not about me. <laugh>
Joey Odom (01:07:43):
Gosh, Jamie Ivy, you're the best. Thank you for hosting at your studio. You had home court advantage. You won <laugh>. This was a competition you didn't even know you won it. You had the home court
Jamie Ivey (01:07:54):
Advantage. I'm glad y'all are here,
Joey Odom (01:07:55):
But thank you. Very, very glad and thanks to Heath. He he's been taking video of us here. Look at him just over there. Just servant servant leader. Heath.
Jamie Ivey (01:08:01):
Joey Odom (01:08:02):
Servant leader. Heath Wilson <laugh>. Um, thank you very, very
Jamie Ivey (01:08:05):
Much. Thank you so much.
Joey Odom (01:08:06):
Like I said, vintage Jamie Ivey, open, raw, candid, vulnerable, funny, all of those things. And she is, she is authentic to the core. The person you hear behind the microphone is the exact same person apart from the microphone in everyday normal conversation. So very, very grateful for her time in her studio. Go show her some love on socials. Go buy her books and can't wait to get the new book coming out very, very soon. Thank you for joining us. We can't wait to see you next week again on The Aro Podcast. The Aro Podcast is produced and edited by the team at Palm Tree Pod. Special thanks to Emily Miles for video and digital support and to our executive producer Aro's own, Katelyn Farley.