my husband asked me to marry him. Well, to be precise, he asked me the day before on Feb 13 so that we could spend Valentine's Day in an engaged state. We were married 3 months later. We only had two dates, although I did spend a week with his family the previous Christmas, but that was only as "prayer partners"! We had no pre-marital counselling although we did read a few books about s - e - x beforehand.
We had vastly different backgrounds although we both had praying parents. I was a city girl, he was an m.k. (missionary kid) from the jungle. We are both head-strong firstborns. We spent our first anniversary looking after a missionary guesthouse in Borneo and lived in Indonesia for the next 16 years of our married lives. Our kids look at us and marvel. "We can't believe you made it!"
We look back over the last 35 years and are pretty surprised ourselves! We could have saved ourselves some tears and trouble if we had read the following:
Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman Did you know that this was even recommended on The View? It truly is that good. Don't get all bogged down with its simplicity. Just read it and take it at face value. You really do have a "language" that you use to show and receive love and care.
I simply could not understand why my husband didn't fully appreciate all the shirts I ironed for him! Sure he was glad to see them all lined up neatly in his closet, but what he REALLY wanted was my company! And I certainly could not grasp why he thought I wanted jewelry. What I REALLY wanted was for him to tell me how beautifully I baked bread, how nice those ironed shirts looked, how clever I was at Indonesian. Words of affirmation are SUPER important to me. For many years we muddled along and we are still learning to use the correct language with each other, but at least we now know why we experienced so many unmet expectations.
I have a stack of wonderful books about marriage here on my desk and I'm mad that I don't have more time to sing their praises. All I can do is to tell you their titles and hope that you will find them helpful. They have all been read either by me or other trustable people.
For Women Only by Shaunti Feldhahn
Love & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs
Have a New Husband by Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman
Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas (highly recommended by my boss's wife)
Love Dare by Stephen & Alex Kendrick
All of the above get 5/5 stars*****
~~Becky (Love you Loren! Looking forward to another 35!)