Book Review: Love, Sex and Happily Ever After

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

When I first picked up this book, I had hoped to find some encouraging words for enriching my marriage.  Every couple could use some insight into marriage, even when things are good in the relationship.  In my mind, the title suggested a book for married people. I was a bit disappointed when I realized that the bulk of this book was not geared towards those who are already married.  Rather, it seems to be directed at singles or unmarried, dating couples.  Of course, that is fine- I wish this book had been around when I was just dating!  But there did seem to be a bit of confusion in regards to who the target audience is... Singles?  Dating couples?  Married couples?  I suppose you could say that there is a little something for everyone in this book, regardless of their relationship status.  But for me personally, it made the content of the book irrelevant in many places and only applicable in a few.  I almost wish the content was split up into several books: before marriage and after marriage.  The intermingling of the two just didn't work for me.  

However, having said all of that, the content is excellent.  Groeschel is spot-on in his Biblical accuracy and doesn't mince words when it comes to difficult topics like living together before marriage, or sex outside of marriage.  His words are hard hitting, but feel like they are coming from an older brother or trusted best friend.  He addresses difficult issues that every couple will deal with- spiritual leadership, spousal roles, sex, money, arguments, etc- and gives solid advice.  I particularly appreciated his chapter entitled, "The Problem With Playing House."  It addresses the popular belief/myth that living together is both morally acceptable and beneficial to the future of the relationship, when in fact, it is not.  He used relevant illustrations, coupled with Biblical truths to illuminate the holy nature of marriage to which all Christians are called.  

My husband is a youth minister.  He has had the opportunity to do pre-marital counseling with just a few couples, but I know in the coming years, he will have many more opportunities to lead Godly couples in this critical time before they take their marriage vows.  I have already highly recommended and encouraged him to read this book and even to recommend it to seriously dating couples.  Though I was a bit disappointed that the book as a whole was not more geared towards life after marriage, I am wholeheartedly recommending this book to my single friends and soon-to-be married friends.  Groeschel does a great job of encouraging readers to make God their "Number One" and their future mate their "Number Two."  

There is a lot of real-life application and challenges in this book.  It also comes with a study guide at the end, which includes deeper questions and provides more opportunities for discussion in small groups or just more self examination.  

You can read the first chapter of this book ON SCRIBD HERE.

To purchase this book, check it out on AMAZON HERE.

(Full disclosure: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.)

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