The Passion Principles
The hype for this book exceeds the content ...
When I read the initial information provided to me about "The Passion Principles," written by Shannon Ethridge (published by W Publishing Group, an imprint of Thomas Nelson), I was excited about reviewing it.
The sub-title proclaimed this book to be about "Celebrating Sexual Freedom in Marriage." The endorsements inside the front cover lead you to believe it's a great book on the topic of sexuality for couples. And the other information contained on the book would cause you to assume their would be some significant content of a more profound nature that could greatly benefit the sexual relationship of couples.
Unfortunately, the hype and promotion of this book exceeds the actual content.
Having served as a minister and a clinical counselor for close to three decades, and having counseled thousands of couples (including in the area of sexuality), I have read some great works for couples on the topic of sexuality. This is not one of them.
To be fair, let me state there is some good information in this book, just not as good as it is represented to be.
Let's start with the title, "The Passion Principles." Nowhere in the book are there any kind of clearly delineated "principles" for the sexual relationship of husbands and wives. My best guess of what these "principles" are comes from the back cover of the book where it states, "Divided into four sections, The Passion Principles helps couples celebrate the spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical dimensions of sexuality." The book is then vaguely divided into these four sections, but the content is made up of an odd and confusing format comprised of 40 broadly varying questions and answers to them. Some of the questions are of a more significant nature, but some are not. The questions range from, "Why does God say we have to be married to have sex?" or "Why is the Song of Solomon even in the Bible?" to "Why do humans think about sex so much?" and "What is the secret to staying together forever?"
The result of this random question format is disjointed and disconnected content that fails to congeal into a whole school of thought since there isn't any rational developmental flow of fully interconnected sub-topics.
Thus, the content is very inconsistent. Some questions are addressed with depth and useful information, while other questions are addressed in a far more elementary fashion. This could be because the author is identified as being a certified life coach, not as a clinical expert on a topic as significant as human sexuality. There are some stories in the book that can capture the attention of readers, but I don't think it could be said the book is uniformly written in a compelling manner.
I found there to be a lot of author opinion in providing the answers to some of the questions offered, and sometimes the answers to the questions are too light on providing scriptural substantiation for the spiritual matters raised. For example, on pages 57-59, Ethridge writes about a question posed to her, and things she contemplated, and stated spiritual answers without a single Bible verse to validate her positions. This book is theologically light, even though at times I found the writer's tone to be a little preachy.
If you're looking for something somewhat on the topic of sexuality that is more wandering and mediocre in substance, you may find some things you like in this book. But if you're looking for something with significant content that dives deep into sexuality in both a compelling and comprehensive manner, this is not the book for you. Either way, it's not a book I would recommend.
I received this book free from HarperCollins Christian Publishing as part of their BookLook book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade CommissionÃ¢ÂÂs 16 CFR, Part 255: Ã¢ÂÂGuides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.Ã¢ÂÂ
March 12, 2014
Why yes, you did read that right. A sex book review up in here, woo! Before you start blushing, remember God created sex for husbands and wives to enjoy together. And that, my dear sisters, isn't shameful at all!!!
Shannon is a million-copy best-selling author, international speaker, and certified life coach with a masterÃ¢ÂÂs degree in counseling/human relations from Liberty University. Her passion for healthy sexuality actually began in Mortuary College. Her first career choice, becoming a mortician, led Ethridge to work on dead bodies. Many she embalmed were young people who had died from AIDS or committed suicide as a result of an HIV positive diagnosis. Because of her own promiscuous teenage years, she knew it was a miracle that she was standing over the embalming table rather than laying on top of it.
What I liked the most about this book is that Shannon holds nothing back, much like myself. She doesn't dance around a subject, skip the hard stuff or give a candy-coated answer. I could totally relate to this book from front to back. The questions on this book are questions we have all had at one time or another and Shannon answers are based on Biblical truth, what other kind if truth is there?
There are a few things the world (and the enemy) want to see fail. Christianity and marriage rank among the top of that list. And when you put them together, a Christian marriage, you get hit that much harder. The enemy wants to keep sex and intimacy in marriage in the dark so their continues to be disillusionment. Thankfully Shannon wrote a book that is full of grace, freedom and encouragement that matches with GodÃ¢ÂÂs plan for sex in marriage!
My favorite question that she answers...will there be sex in Heaven? What? The thoughts of that never even entered my mind, ever. So I was totally intrigued!
This book is an amazing read for engaged couples right up to couples married for 30 years. If you want to read an honest book of what is right or wrong, or normal or not when it comes to sex with your spouse you should consider grabbing a copy. It will open your eyes in a brand new way.
This book was provided to me free of charge by Book Look in return for my honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
February 24, 2014
On My List of Top 5 Marriage/Intimacy Books
Finally! It was like a breath of fresh air reading ShannonÃ¢ÂÂs latest books, The Passion Principles: A Celebration of Sexual Freedom in Marriage. I cannot express how much I loved The Passion Principles! Not only did she hit all of the hot and vital topics, she dove deep into scripture and GodÃ¢ÂÂs amazing plan for sex in marriage. There is great freedom and blessings for sex in marriage and sadly many of us have a skewed view. Thank you Shannon for finally writing a book that is full of grace, freedom and encouragement that matches with GodÃ¢ÂÂs plan for sex in marriage! Bravo and thank you for speaking truth and light into this darkness. The enemy wants to keep sex and intimacy in marriage in the dark so their continues to be disillusionment. I am thankful there are people like you willing to bring God light to it! Thank you, thank you!
I was given a copy of this book by the publisher for an honest review.
January 22, 2014
Answering the tough questions
I have read most of Shannon's other books and have enjoyed them. Actually, they have been life changing for me. So I was eager to review The Passion Principles.
What I like about Shannon is she holds nothing back, she doesn't skip the hard stuff or give fluffy answers. The questions on this book are questions we have all had at one time or another and Shannon answers are based on Biblical truth, what other kind if truth is there?
At the end of some questions (chapters) are a prayer you can do with your spouse or thoughts for your to ponder and discuss. What a concept. That's missing from so many marriages. Praying with your spouse is a huge step in making your marriage strong and having open conversations about sensitive topics is also so needed but rarely done.
If you struggle with what is right or wrong, or normal or not when it comes to sex with your spouse you should consider grabbing a copy. It will open your eyes in a brand new way.
A ebook copy of this book was given to me by the publisher through Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
January 11, 2014