Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Mark and Marriage

One of the greatest perks of working in a bookstore is that we get to take books home to read. As long as it's  returned in perfect condition, we don't have to purchase it.  If I sold bed linens or egg beaters, or dishwashers, I bet I wouldn't be allowed to do that. I think that Purdy's Chocolates does allow its employees to eat as much candy as they want, knowing that they will soon be "fed-up"  Mercy.  How did I get from Mark Driscoll's new book on marriage to Purdy's Chocolates? Well, I do love both.

I was given a preview copy of  Real Marriage last fall. Co-written by Mark Driscoll and his wife Grace, this is hands down one of the best books on marriage I have ever read. Sub-titled "The Truth about Sex, Friendship, &  Life Together", it covers all of these topics most satisfactorily. It releases today in Canada, and high time too!

I did blush as I read, as in typical Driscollian fashion, Mark is very open and direct.  I am quite shy about discussing matters of s - e - x in public places, but Mark is not. He and Grace have counselled thousands of folks over the years.  It is out of those years of ministry to both the healthy and hurting that he and his wife have addressed issues that pre/post/currently married people will appreciate. Mind you, he pulls no punches. He is blunt and sarcastic, especially when referring to "boys that shave".  Mark doesn't have much patience with them.

The pages contain a mighty call to MAN UP! Be the man, the husband, the father, the guy that God created you to be! Get a Bible! Get a job! Get a clue!
And both Grace and Mark speak frankly to women. Mark apologizes early on in the book for his harsh, dogmatic advice to women in his early days of ministry.  His loving, growing relationship with his wife has clearly tempered his views and expectations. But he does not let us off the hook! There is no ambiguity about what he believes God is saying to women. 

Both Driscolls recount stories of their life, love and learning together. Mark refers to himself as a high maintenance, drama queen of a husband. For years, Grace "served" him, all the while bottling up resentment and hurt. A victim of sexual abuse herself, she shares from the heart about how that experience affected her relationship with Mark.  They write out of the depths of their pain and mistakes and personal process and rather than shaming us, they give us the gift of hope.

I love their emphasis on friendship. They would both agree that they are each other's best friend, and that close intimate friendship affects every other part of their marriage.

Watch Mark and Grace talk about their book, their marriage and the plans to take this message to the world.  ~~Becky


  1. I found this review by a pastor for whom I have tremendous respect. I think it might be worth reading! http://www.dashhouse.com/blog/2012/1/24/real-marriage.html

  2. The book has certainly generated an enormous amount of controversy. I hope that the main message of the book will not be overshadowed by one spicy chapter.

  3. I have not read the book nor do I intend to. It is true there is much controversy around this book, but most of it goes beyond the Can We__? chapter. The review I linked to raises deeper questions than that, and the reviewer is probably the most fair and level headed pastor I know. I have issues with Driscoll's views on gender and all that goes with it, and that is much more fundamental issue than the sex questions.


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