Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Marriage Builder

I'm not married. Nor have I ever been married. So when I recommend the thing I'm about to, I want you to know that it's coming from a perspective of someone who watches other people's marriages and hears the marriage secrets of her married friends, but has no first-hand experience.

For a class this semester I'm reading The Marriage Builder by Larry Crabb. This might be a broad statement, but I honestly believe that anyone is married, will be married or has even thought about getting married needs to read this book. And even if marriage isn't on your mind, this book has some great insight for relationships in general.

Crabb writes from a counselor's point of view for other counselors, but he writes from a personal perspective of his own relationship with his wife. His intention is to help couples find that elusive "oneness" that most people expect in their marriage but can't seem to find. The crux of it all isn't better communication, better sex, or better action, but resting in the love of Christ. "Suuuure..." you say, "It's as easy as that." I have problems as a single lady resting in the love of Christ; I can't imagine what life would be like trying to live with someone else who also can't find rest in Him and both of us are struggling to have the other person meet our needs that can only be fulfilled in Christ.

Most devotional books really bother me because they say a lot but don't help see how to put those principles into concrete practice. Crabb, on the other hand, has concrete ways to daily practice ministering to one's spouse.

I have about 9 pages to go to end this bad boy. So if on page 147 he says "I love satan" or something like that, I'm very sorry (for SOOO many reasons). But if it ends as well as it has been going this whole time, you'll be in for a very helpful and eye-opening read.

Is anyone else reading something that we should all be reading? If so, what is it?


Christopher Maples said...

Contrarian's Guide to Knowing God by Larry Osborne. It basically suggests that we have taken methods of knowing God (studies, quiet times, etc) and made them necessary standards for everyone. It doesn't say those are bad, but it suggests that, as we don't have the exact same relationship with all of our friends, perhaps God doesn't want the same exact relationship with all of his children. Maybe we have unique traits for a reason. (Same depth, but different ways of hanging out, so to speak.)

JD said...

the next christendom by philip jenkins. not necessarily a must read, but is very informative in the realm of world missions, global church history, and the implications of an ever growing base of christianity in the third world.

first book in a trilogy. read the second book, the new faces of christianity: believing the bible in the global south. excellent book as well.

the last book in the trilogy is about islam in europe. can't remember the title, but look forward to reading it also.

he also has ANOTHER book (really, among many, many others) called the lost history of christianity, which explores the 1000 year history of christianity in the middle east before islam.

must reads for anyone who is interested in world missions, church history, or the future of the church.