This distinctive book addresses topics that are often overlooked in the glow of the engagement and honeymoon. Once the wedding is over, though, couples may face obstacles regarding sex, in-laws, communication, money, conflict, submission, spiritual unity and more. Uniquely presented in a flip-over format, half of the book is for women; the other half for men, and each features questions and exercises the couple can work through together. A Focus on the Family Recommendation.
Your marriage could be one of history's great love stories! As newlyweds, it's time to ensure that your marriage can meet the challenges it will face right around the corner. Cultivating good habits during these first twelve foundational months of your marriage and knowing what to focus on will set the stage for years to come. Robert and Bobbie and Mark and Susan know that there's a big difference between preparation and actual experience. This is your guide to actually dealing with all the things that come after 'I do.' In this unique flip-over format, the chapter topics are the same but one half is written by men for the husband, and the other half is written from a women's perspective for the wife. As a couple, you'll each progress through your part of the book and meet somewhere in the middle. Become an expert on what really makes your spouse happy, and enjoy the benefits of a great partnership. Take an honest look at the family you grew up in: its unwritten codes, how it has shaped you, and the ways it affects your relationship with your mate. Learn how to speak each other's 'language' and appreciate the qualities each of you brings to your marriage. You'll also get an eye-opening look at communication skills, secrets for a great sex life, budget basics, dealing with in-laws, navigating tough times, and much more. Above all, you'll cultivate a spiritual unity that draws the two of you closer to each other as you draw closer to God. Start reading, and make this first year together what it was meant to be: the most important year in your life.
Robert Wolgemuth graduated from Taylor University (Biblical Literature) and received an honorary doctorate (LhD) from the same university in 2005. He is the author or coauthor of over twenty books, including Men of the Bible. He and his wife live in central Florida.
Mark DeVries is pastor of youth and families at First Presbyterian Church in Nashville, Tennessee, where he has served for the past seventeen years. In addition to authoring several books, including Family-Based Youth Ministry and True Love Waits, he is founder of Youth Ministry Architects (www.ymarchitects.com), a strategic-planning service for churches facing transitions in their youth ministries. He and his wife, Susan, live in Nashville.
Bobbie Wolgemuth is the author or co-author of several books including With Love from Mom, the four-book series Great Hymns of Our Faith, and Hymns for a Kid's Heart with Joni Eareckson Tada. The Wolgemuths have two married daughters, five grandchildren, and live in central Florida.
Susan DeVries has made a career out of being a wife, mother, and supervising editor of every word Mark has ever written. Over the past twenty-three years, Susan has partnered with Mark in providing premarital counseling and leading marriage retreats and classes for couples. Mark and Susan have three children and live in middle Tennessee.
The Wolgemuths (he's an author and owner of a literary agency; she's an
author) and the DeVries (he's a pastor and author; she assists him in
premarital counseling and marriage retreats) offer here a two-in-one,
flip-over-format volume aimed at newlywed Christian couples. Recognizing the
success of their own marriages, the authors decided to share their experiences
and advice with couples in that make-or-break first year of marriage. Both
"books" have the same layout and cover topics such as money, sex and in-laws,
but they cater, thematically and tonally, to the gender of their audience. The
man's chapter on sex, for instance, playfully employs a baseball metaphor
throughout: the male authors fondly recall boyhood discussions of "getting to
first base," and offer suggestions for how husbands can please and love their
wives without immediately going for the "home run." The woman's sex chapter, on
the other hand, skips the metaphors, and instead gently explains that
communication is key in the first year, and that the wife needs to teach her
husband how to satisfy her. The authors consider "normals"-things one spouse
grew up thinking was natural but might seem strange to the other (such as the
belief that no house is complete without "a really big dog," the conviction
that husbands should make more money than their wives, or the assumption that
being late is fine). Addressing these "normals" help spouses understand why
their partners behave the way they do, which in turn can ease conflicts.
Boldly, the authors address the sometimes controversial Biblical principle of
submission: "No relationship, in fact, can succeed without submission," they
claim. It needs to happen voluntarily (neither spouse can force their partner
to submit), and when both people actively and humbly work to yield to each
other, "the marriage always wins." And the secret ingredient to successful
marriages? Friendship: "it is only in the fields of friendship that the
long-term passion and intimacy you long for can grow and flourish." Each book
is neatly wrapped up with a "Meet in the Middle" section, which offers
questions and exercises the husband and wife can work through together to
continue to build upon the lessons they've just learned. (May) Copyright 2003
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