Meet John and Lisa Bevere
John and Lisa Bevere have been travelling, writing and speaking for over fifteen years now. They have virtually been all around the world ministering the gospel of truth to those who are in need of a touch from God. Their books are in the millions, and their TV program, The Messenger, is aired in 216 nations. But what makes this dynamic couple succeed behind the pulpit? The truth can be found in the strength of their relationship with God, each other and family. We recently sat down with both John and Lisa to discuss marriage, life, family, scooters, and what they want for the next generation.
Q: With such busy speaking and writing schedules, what do you do to relax and unwind?
Lisa: One of the things that I love doing is working in my garden. There is something about working with the ground that clears my mind and allows me to refocus. With such a fast-paced life, it’s great to be able to do something that puts me outdoors enjoying God’s creation. I also really enjoy reading when I’m home. It’s a great outlet for me to relax after a busy speaking weekend.
John: I love to play golf. There are a few guys around town who are very good golfers and I love competing with them. Somehow the competition allows me to unwind. I win sometimes, and they win sometimes, but it is always challenging me to be a better player. I love that challenge about golf. My current goal is to shoot below 70 for a round. It definitely keeps me on my toes. I also unwind by playing cards with my boys or watching a movie with them. Just being with the family helps to relax me.
Q: How do you balance ministry and family life?
Lisa: I don’t travel as much as John does, so I tend to be home much more than he is. When I’m home, I’m really home. I focus fully on my family and pour into my boys as much as humanly possible. I’m there to send them off to school every morning, and I make sure that I’m home when they come home from school. I believe it’s very important for a mother to be there for her children, and so I make an effort to be available for them. Our family really enjoys spending time with each other; we have dinner together, we play games together, and I help the boys with their homework. We just love being together. And then when I’m out ministering, I fully focus my attention on ministry.
John: I agree with Lisa. When I’m home, I am a father first and a minister second. I try not to schedule too many things when I’m home that will take me away from my family. A lot of people say that my schedule looks very busy, but we really try to schedule our speaking engagements so that we are as effective with our time as possible.
Q: What’s your favourite memory as a couple this last year?
John: I really enjoyed our trip to Europe this past summer when Lisa and I ministered at Hillsong. London. We try to schedule a few trips each year that are just the two of us so that we have that alone time, but we do really enjoy just being together in our daily lives. I love riding scooter with my wife, exploring beautiful places, and having lunch dates.
Lisa: I think my favourite memories occur in the day-to-day activities with my husband. We go to our local health food store two to three times a week to have lunch. They have amazing organic salads, burritos and pizza. It’s really the best time of the day for us to connect as a couple, because once the boys get home from school, it’s go, go, go the rest of the night. Of course, whenever we get on our scooters, I’m always trying to beat John wherever we’re going.
Q: Who’s the faster scooter driver?
John: Definitely Lisa. She loves everything fast - skiing, surfing and scootering.
Lisa: I’m trying to break the scooter land speed record. Not really, but John doesn’t stand a chance when I’m on my scooter.
Q: What’s a typical day like at the Bevere household?
John: Very active. With four teenage boys, we are constantly on the go. I love praying in the early morning. We live on a golf course, and I find that it’s the best area for me to pray. I can be alone with a beautiful setting and just enjoy the presence of God. I find time to write after the boys go to school, and I’ll spend time up at the office when the staff needs me. I love being home when the boys come home from school. Lisa does a great job of making sure that we have at least one meal a day that we eat as a family. Food is definitely an attention getter for our boys, so that’s when we have our great family time and discussions.
Lisa: I’m not sure if there is a typical day! But it usually starts with John jumping out of bed ready to take on the world and all of its problems. I tend to stumble out and make my way to our espresso machine. After a chocolate cinnamon mocha, I’m starting to clear the haze in my brain. Then it’s the frantic race to get the kids off to school on time, and with three boys still in school, it can be a chore sometimes. Peace usually descends on the household for a few hours while the boys are at school. This is when I usually try and write for a few hours before answering e-mails and going into the ministry. When the boys come home from school it gets crazy again! Soccer practice, homework, dinner, games, and getting everyone in bed consume the rest of the day.
Q: What do you enjoy doing most with your family?
John: Definitely playing games. Anything competitive will keep me interested. I love playing golf with my sons as well; it’s a great time to have those father-son talks.
Lisa: We’re Italian, so we love being in the kitchen. It’s a place where we can congregate and play games, talk, eat and laugh. There is a lot of laughter in our home. My favourite game that we play as a family is Settlers because I’m winning. Seriously. I’m ecstatic to be winning something right now. With five passionate men in the house, we always find a way to make anything competitive. We could play Candyland, and we would find some way to make it about world domination. We tend to not watch much TV, but we have been enjoying watching the TV show Lost on DVD. I don’t think I would watch it live on TV because of all the commercials, but the storyline is incredible.
Q: With four boys, I’m sure that you have quite a mix of personalities. What are some of the favourite qualities of your boys?
Lisa: You’re right. Each boy does have a distinct personality. We’re not trying to create John and Lisa clones; in fact, we’ve learned to celebrate and encourage the differences in our family. Our oldest son, Addison, has an incredibly strong sense of justice. He loves people and actually works for the ministry as our Church Relations Supervisor, talking with pastors all over the nation. Austin has a deep sense of who he is in Christ. Alec is Alec. He’s the jokester of the family and loves making people laugh. Arden is the compassionate one. He draws you in and has a very tender heart. I think the most important thing a parent can do is to understand their children and create an atmosphere where they can be different and not judged.
John: My boys are all incredible men of God. That’s one of my favourite qualities about them, their passion for Christ. Addison has a tender heart that is sensitive to God and His direction. He’s an amazing communicator who is very respectful to others. Austin is very consistent and organized about his life. He internalized his relationship with God, and it comes out in the way he lives his life. Alec is a people person. He’s passionate and hilarious. Arden is so considerate of other people and very tender. As I said, I love that all of my boys love Christ with all of their heart.
Q: What do you do for spiritual recharging?
John: I love praying early in the morning. That is how I recharge. Lisa and I tend to only pray together about very specific issues in our lives. As for our family, I really feel the most effective family devotions are done each night around the dinner table. The boys will bring up real-life situations to us, and we use that time to encourage them to handle it the way God would. This is really where the teaching and training of my boys comes from, just being together as a family.
Lisa: I love praise and worship and journaling. These activities are intimate and hard to do with another person. Of couse, I love reading the Bible as well. I tend to read and pray with the boys as I’m putting them to bed. I feel the best way to minister to your kids is to live day in and day out as a Christlike example. When your children see you living consistent lives of prayer and surrender to God, it encourages them to do the same. I have a burning desire to live what I preach.
Q: What do you feel makes your marriage and family successful?
John: Lisa and I do life together. I really feel like that is the key to our success as a married couple, that we just interact together. I am constantly learning more about Lisa every day. I don’t consider marriage to be a destination, I feel that we will continue to grow and learn until the day we die. We apply those same principles to our family life. We just love being together as a family. We took a vacation this year as a family that really was one of my favourites. We didn’t go to some tropical location; we didn’t even stay at a hotel. All we did was turn off the cell phones and unplug the laptops, and we just enjoyed each other. We went shopping, went to a water park, and generally just hung out as a family. Those are some of my most treasured times when we can just focus fully on the Bevere family.
Lisa: John and I are incredibly passionate people. We’re passionate about our marriage and family. We love each other more today than ever, and we love our family. If we make a mistake, we are quick to repent and forgive. I think that John and I live out our love in front of our family on a daily basis. This creates a sense of security for the boys so that they have the freedom to grow. We love laughing as a family. Oh, and John and I have learned the art of conflict resolution. John has a ‘conquering’ personality, and I used to escalate conflicts to battles. But I’ve learned it’s not smart. I now appeal to our desire for godliness and believe the best in him. Also, I don’t throw plates at his head anymore. That definitely helps our conflict resolution!
Q: What book is the favourite that you have written, and why?
John: Drawing Near has definitely been the favourite that I’ve written because it’s my passion in life to draw near to God and helps others do the same. Driven by Eternity has been the book that has most impacted my life. This message has riveted me and caused a new passion and urgency to grow in my life.
Lisa: It’s a toss up between Kissed the Girls and Made Them Cry and Fight Like a Girl. I have talked to so many women who have been healed and restored from the messages in these books. Young and old women alike have told me that questions they had for their entire lives have been answered. I love writing books that rebuild people’s lives and restore what has been lost.
Q: Do you have any advice or parting words for our readers?
Lisa: Drop the dynamics of who’s wrong or right and embrace our differences. The world needs men and women to fulfill their roles in this world. We are allies, not opponents. When men and women unite, we’ll see what we need to see. Victory will come when the true image of women is revealed. The enemy is blurring gender lines in the hope that men and women will continue to battle each other. There is incredible power in women being women and men being men. When we get that in our hearts, we will see great strength enter back into the Church.
John: I believe that God is calling people to draw closer than ever to Him in this next year. Through that, we will begin to see people enter into their callings and fulfill the destiny that God has for them. I also believe that everyone needs to invest heavily in their families. The institution of the family is under heavy attack in the western world, and we need each of our families to be in a position of strength for the coming year. I hope that everyone will plant themselves in a local church.
Psalm 92:13 says, “Those who are planted in the house of the Lord will flourish in the courts of our God.” Being planted does not mean that we just attend; we need people in the church to get involved. Serve in the youth department, be an usher, sing in the choir, but whatever you do get planted - and you will flourish this year.