I have been, or can be if you click on a link and make a purchase, compensated via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value for writing this post. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all my readers! In the spirit of this ‘holiday’ and its call to love, I have a review and giveaway of The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted by Dr. Gary Chapman to share. It’s a ‘short’ book, but one that I am thrilled to have read and am working to put into action within my own life.
About The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted
You can picture the perfect marriage in your mind, but re-creating it in reality doesn’t come easy. Trusted counselor and relationship expert Dr. Gary Chapman reasons that the most sought-after ingredient in any marriage is true oneness. In The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted, he presents expert wisdom and common sense methods to establishing that true unity on emotional and practical levels. Discover the wit and insight that makes his worldwide presentations and marriage conferences so popular. Are you trying to change your spouse? Do you know what it means to really love someone? Do you feel ignored or even alone in your effort to improve your marriage? Dr. Chapman has answers and action steps on topics from expressing your emotions to managing your money, all in a format that will have you and your spouse talking and learning with every page.
The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted is available in paperback format with a suggested retail price of $15.99.
About Dr. Gary Chapman, author of The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted
As anyone who has attended one of his marriage conferences knows, Dr. Gary Chapman’s expertise in marriage begins with the success and failures he and his wife Karolyn have experienced in their marriage for more than 45 years. He is just the man to turn to for help on improving or healing our most important relationships. His own life experiences, plus over thirty-five years of pastoring and marriage counseling, led him to publish his first book in the Love Language series, The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate. Many of the millions of readers credit this continual New York Times bestseller with saving their marriages by showing them simple and practical ways to communicate love.
Since the success of his first book, Dr. Chapman has expanded his Five Love Languages series with special editions that reach out specifically to singles, men, and parents of teens and young children.
He is the author of numerous other books published by Moody Publishers/Northfield Publishing, including Anger, The Family You’ve Always Wanted, The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted, Desperate Marriages, God Speaks Your Love Language, How to Really Love Your Adult Child, and Hope for the Separated. With Dr. Jennifer Thomas, he co-authored The Five Languages of Apology.
Dr. Chapman speaks to thousands of couples nationwide through his weekend marriage conferences. He hosts a nationally syndicated radio program, A Love Language Minute, and a Saturday morning program, Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, both airing on more than 400 stations. Dr. Chapman and his wife have two grown children and currently live in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where he serves as senior associate pastor at Calvary Baptist Church.
Dr. Chapman holds BA and MA degrees in anthropology from Wheaton College and Wake Forest University, respectively, MRE and PhD degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and has completed postgraduate work at the University of North Carolina and Duke University.
Check out the Small Group Curriculum to use with this title.
My Thoughts on The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted
This title might be short at only 144 pages, but there is a wealth of information and food for thought within those pages. I love the set up with action steps under the ‘your turn’ section at the end of each chapter. Reading is one thing, but putting what you’ve gleaned from your reading into action takes this powerful resource to a whole different level. Working through the book with your spouse would be ideal. However, Dr. Chapman does point out at the end that even if only YOU are working on things as suggested in this title, there can still be positive changes within your marriage.
Many of the points that Dr. Chapman raises are not completely foreign to me. However, I know that I’m one of those individuals that sometimes needs to hear the same thing three or more times before it truly sinks in and I begin to embrace the truth and act accordingly. So, I really relished the opportunity to be reading this title while I’ve been in a small group study that has looked at the marriage relationship as God intended with a mixture of Scripture and real life examples.
There are so many positive things that I took from this book. I loved the way Dr. Chapman handled the issue of headship as some people try to equate it to dictatorship by the husband, something which it is NOT. Man and woman are equal, but not identical, and through the Bible we are instructed as to the hierarchy (God, husband, wife, then the kids) within our family structure. Even with this structure in place, the husband and wife should be working as a team (after all you become ONE through marriage) and that includes the need for communication and learning the strengths and weaknesses of each party.
I will share that there is one small part of the book which takes less than a page where I did disagree with Dr. Chapman. When discussing the topic of sex within marriage, he shares about how children are a blessing from God and that we are called to be responsible parties. This responsibility extends to the issue of children and considering how many are reasonable for your and your spouse to manage.
I don’t disagree with this need to act responsibly and feel that my husband and I have done just that through the use of natural family planning which includes prayerful consideration of whether to engage in the act of marriage. My issue (as it conflicts with my Catholic faith) comes from his suggestion of couples to consider birth control as a way to use God’s gifts in a responsible manner. He doesn’t push any one method, but the implication is that any method of controlling the number of children is considered acceptable and highly encouraged so as to be a good steward. I share this in the spirit of full disclosure for those who embrace the same call to constantly remain open to life rather than embracing the contraception mentality that is now mainstream in many Christian communities.
While I disagree with that point, it is a small thing in comparison to the wealth of wisdom that flows on the pages. I most heartedly recommend that all Christian couples consider reading through this title and possibly working through the material together so you can grow in relationship.
Win a Copy of The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted
I am thrilled to bless one lucky blog reader with their own copy of this fantastic title. Entries are through the Rafflecopter form below and accepted through February 24th. The giveaway is open to US and Canadian mailing addresses.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
What are some challenges you’ve experienced in the marriage relationship and how have you approached working towards a solution?
How to you actively seek to grow the relationship with your spouse?
“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”