Thursday, July 15, 2010

Love and War

Mike and I are reading Love and War by John and Stasi Eldredge. I love their book Captivating (most favorite EVER!) and Mike has read many of John's books and really thought they were great. (They are on my "to read" list.) When we heard they had a new book out on marriage we were excited. John and Stasi write from the heart and are vulnerable in their sharing. They are human and aren't afraid to admit it! Plus... Mike and I have had some tension in our marriage for a while now and have been working on working that out so a marriage book by some of our favorite authors... a good thing.

We had bought a copy of the book and then a week or so later I got an email update saying they were giving away free copies to bloggers who would write a review of the book on their blog. So I signed up and got another copy. Mike and I are reading through it together and discussing it along the way. When we are done I will give a copy away here on my blog. It may be a while though because we are going at a pace that is about one chapter a week.

We just finished chapter two.

I like it!

They start out with the story of how they were about two years in to their marriage and when they were sitting at the table one day Stasi looked to John and said "maybe we should get a divorce." John was shocked. He had no idea things were that bad.

And lets be honest... how many of us have been there? Maybe not the whole divorce conversation but one of us felt that things were horrible and the other was clueless. Mike and I have been there. A couple of times now.

The first chapter discusses how we are hurting people and we bring our hurting hearts in to our marriage. We often expect things from others that we shouldn't. We make promises to ourselves that we shouldn't. And when we don't deal with life (past and present) it causes trouble.

John writes:

This should have been our announcement in the Sunday paper wedding column:

Will Anyone Ever Love Me? was joined in marriage to I Will Never Need Anyone last week. The groom, Mr. Insecure Perfectionist, wedded his bride Miss I Know I'm a Disappointment at the Congregational Church. The lovely train wreck has taken up residence in Monrovia. A public reception and private disaster are soon to follow.

We don't need to be embarrassed for having a less than perfect marriage. NO ONE has a perfect marriage and those that think they do aren't being honest with themselves.

I'll leave you with one last quote today...

I [John] wish some older man had pulled me aside a few weeks before our wedding, and said,

Now listen, son. You're a fine young man; Stasi is a wonderful girl. I think you two are made for each other. I'm very excited about this marriage. But now listen to me, lad--are you paying attention? You are also, both of you, deeply broken people. And all that brokenness is going to start coming to the surface as soon as you say, "I do." Don't let this throw you. It happens to everyone. It doesn't mean you've done something wrong. But what would be wrong would be to ignore what surfaces. God is going to use your marriage to get to issues in your life he wants to address. You've got a way of making life work, and you're going to discover that Stasi does, too. That's all going to collide sooner or later. You might make it a year or two on young love, and thank God for it. But don't ignore this stuff when the fairy tale hits the fan. Get some help.

Are you dealing with the issues or stuffing them and hiding and putting on the "I have the most wonderful marriage in the world" mask every time you leave your house?

I choose to deal with things.

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