Real Marriage is both a book and a DVD series tackling issues in marriage and is summed up well in the title "Real Marriage; The Truth about Sex, Friendship and Life Together". The DVD package includes 11 weeks of DVD lessons, a participant guide and a leader manual. Though I was reviewing the DVD package, I also read through the book Real Marriage, since my husband ordered it for his blogger review! It was actually really nice to go through the book and the DVD series at the same time! I found the book expounded a little more than the DVD lessons, though the DVDs were more interactive and allowed us to work through the content together as a couple.
I enjoyed this series and found it a great springboard for discussion on many different topics within my own marriage. I would recommend it to other couples and definitely suggest being a part of a group of friends who would go through it if the opportunity arises. Mark and Grace tackle some very honest and sometimes uncomfortable topics that are necessary to discuss and be honest about if you want an intimate, deep relationship with your spouse. One thing I also liked was that the series is formatted so that someone who is single could do it to and even participate in the activities and homework. There is a section for singles each week.
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÃÂ®.com <http://BookSneezeÃÂ®.com> 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 Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
The DVD series takes the 11 chapters of the book, and turns them into a very interesting 11 week course. I feel that it worked very well together with the book.
After reading each chapter of the book, there is a short (10 minute) DVD film to watch in which Mark and Grace talk about that weeks topic. Then there are discussion questions for group-time, so the material can be looked at in a small group.
Then there is a series of questions for both the wife and the husband to answer separately as homework, and another series of questions to discuss together as a couple.
I liked the fact that there were very practical ways to engage with the book, and also the group-time/private-time/couple-time aspect. I also liked that each week had ideas for a date night, including such ideas as "Invite a married couple over for dinner, and ask them questions about marriage." Very practical and fun.
I liked that the weekly sessions were done in a way that there are activities and homework for singles as well, so engaged and non-married persons can learn from this teaching.
What I did find was this_.
This DVD series is NOT a replacement for the book. The DVD covers about 5-10% of the material covered in the book, and in a lot less depth. It is not a replacement, but rather a 10 minute discussion of what you have learned to start you talking about it in groups. Do NOT buy this DVD series without buying the book as well.
(NB, there is no copy of the book in the box-set, only the DVD and the study manuals. You will have to buy it separately)
Would I recommend this series? Yes, totally. It is great for personal study, or a group study. Just don't think it will replace reading the book.
This isn't your grandmother's marital advice. In fact, this study may make your grandmother uncomfortable. Mark and Grace (Driscoll) talk openly and honestly about their marriage...the good times and the bad. They also, boldly talk about issues in marriage that the vast majority of Christian leaders are afraid to discuss from the pulpit or even in their own writings. Sadly, these are the very issues that every married couple faces on a day to day basis. It's time that Christians stop "acting" like everything is okay and show the world that we also struggle in our marriages and in life. As a Missional Community Group leader, I can tell you that this study is a great way to introduce non-Christians to the gospel while also giving them some incredible perspective and advice on marriage. Needless to say, I highly recommend this book and study!
This is a book and dvd based study. It was my first experience with a dvd based study. I wasn't sure what to expect. I received this study a few months ago and it took several weeks to fully evaluate. I used this with my spouse as a way for us to discuss our marriage and what it means for our faith.
I feel that this study would be a good resource to use for a marriage seminar with other couples. The book which came with the study, supplemented the dvd, and it would be an excellent resource for the leader to have and use, but found it not necessary for participants to have. The Dvd is divided into 11 short segments around 10 minutes-15 minutes each.
As we are a relatively young couple, 30 years old, and without children, some parts of the study weren't really applicable to us at this point in our lives. For myself, being a young Pastor I'm not sure if I would feel comfortable leading some of the sessions due to my own inexperience.
I found that the study guide contained many good questions and I could easily see this resource being used in a group to help facilitate discussions. I am wondering also how comfortable some people would be in participating in conversations around sexuality while in a group setting.
Overall, I found the study interesting and engaging. I will be interested to try it in a group setting and get some feedback on it.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÃÂ®.com <http://BookSneezeÃÂ®.com> 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 Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."