I won't do a whole review, as I probably wouldn't do all that good of a job, but I'm re-reading it because a friend from church asked to borrow it, and I thought I would read through it again before I loaned it to him, so I could better recommend it appropriately.

Dave Skiles recommended the book to me, and added his own subtitle, What's Wrong with your Marriage, and Why it is Your [the husband's] Fault, and while some might end up in condemnation thinking about that title, I have found it quite good, and when I'm tempted to wonder why Heather is doing such-and-such, I can think back on this, and realize (or if I don't realize it, Heather can tell me, like she did yesterday) how my attitude and how I am leading the family is affecting everyone.

I read the chapters on "Effacacious Love" and "Keeping Short Accounts" this morning, and was thinking that there was so much good stuff that I should write a blog post about it, but now when I go back, I think perhaps there is too much to quote, and I'm having a hard time picking which things to mention.

He has a section on beauty and speaks about the bad tendencies in our culture to place focus on outward things (one example he gives is the difference between playing with dolls with the girl in the role of the mother versus playing with Barbie dolls with the girl playing the role of the doll) but goes on to say that some in the church react to that by saying beauty is only inward, and ignoring the outward beauty that God has created.  He quotes various Old Testament scriptures that speak of the outward beauty that the women had (Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel, Abigail, Bathsheba, Tamar, Esther)  He humorously says that you may be saying, "Duh, everyone knows there are pretty women..."  But, he also says, "a man who marries biblically should expect his wife to be visibly lovelier on their tenth anniversary - and if she is not, he knows that he is the one responsible. But as the one responsible, he has to know where true beauty begins."  As Heather and I approach our ninth anniversary, I can say with confidence that Heather definitely is on the right track, despite my failings.

"When a woman is lovely in her spirit, that loveliness cannot be contained.  It enchants her husband."

"As he loves her, she bears fruit.  As she bears this fruit, it delights him.  In this delight he loves her more, and she bears more fruit.  The wife is to cooperate fully, receiving his love, but he is the one responsible to give it."

Another challenging and convicting quote:

"A husband cannot say, 'All my behavior notwithstanding, I still honor my wife, even though I never show it.' Husbands must honor their wives.  This is a demonstration within marriage of an attitude which we should see elsewhere in the church."

In the "Keeping Short Accounts" chapter, I found a good analogy in picking things up off the carpet and confessing sin immediately.  That while the end result looks the same, picking things up immediately, rather than letting them sit for 6 months is quite different.

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." -- 1 John 1:9

He says that while our justification is not affected by confession of sin, "refusal to confess sin does affect the quality of a person's enjoyment of his justification."  And reminds us of Psalm 51, "Restore to me the joy of Your salvation".

Posted by Jon Daley on March 22, 2010, 9:00 am | Read 37320 times
Category Reviews: [first] [previous] [next] [newest] Bible: [first] [previous] [newest]
Comments

I'm glad to see Christian authors rediscover beauty, which seems to have been pooh-poohed in too many books (which for instance is in my opinion the main fault of the otherwise excellent every man's battle series). It's additionally ironic to me that we claim all other created beauty as evidence of a loving creator and then proceed to recommend not looking at any women but our wives, totally ignoring that portion of created beauty - which probably speaks to us of our Creator more deeply than the beauty of a pinto horse.

Of course, in our fallen world the longing that the beauty of other women may evoke in us is a temptation to be fought, but I believe it echoes the noble desire for pre-fall peace and community, albeit in a corrupted way.

Posted by Stephan on March 23, 2010, 4:56 pm
Add Comment
Add comment
E-mail me when comments occur on this article