Saturday, November 15, 2014

Review: The Top 10 Most Outrageous Couples of the Bible: And How Their Stories Can Revolutionize Your Marriage by David Clarke


SUMMARY FROM NETGALLEY.COM:
Improve your marriage—and have some fun along the way—with Christian psychologist David Clarke’s latest book, The Top 10 Most Outrageous Couples of the Bible. Drawing on the stories of Adam and Eve, Abraham and Sarah, Jacob and Rachel and Leah (yeah, one guy with two wives), and several others, Clarke provides both biblical teaching and real-life counseling expertise to help you see what will work—and not work—in your marriage today. Written with plenty of humor, The Top 10 Most Outrageous Couples of the Bible proves that “outrageous” isn’t a bad thing—as Clarke says, “It’s not always pretty. But it’s always powerful.”
MY TAKE:
The simplest way for me to describe this book is "a do-it-yourself couples therapy guide and workbook."

In The Top 10 Most Outrageous Couples of the Bible: And How Their Stories Can Revolutionize Your Marriage, the author discusses various couples found in the Bible and what husbands and wives can learn from both their good and their bad behaviors. The couples' stories serve as a starting point for discussions on how to improve yourself and your marriage.

Like most Christian relationship advice books I've read, the book mentions putting God in the center of your relationship. However, that's only a small part of the book. The focus of the book are the things that husbands and wives can do individually and as a couple to better themselves and their relationship.

The author is a psychologist with extensive experience and it shows. Some people may say he makes generalizations which may or may not be fair. Personally, though, he says a number of things that are applicable or similar to how my husband and I are like during both our good and bad moments.

There are plenty of useful tips, steps and suggestions here. Some of them may feel difficult to do, but if you really want to change for the better, it's probably not as hard as you think it is. One example is Couple Talk Time. When you don't have kids, you probably still have time to do this, but if you have kids, especially young kids who need your attention a lot, it becomes harder to feel like you can make the time for it.

One of the parts I enjoyed most was the discussion on divorce. The author doesn't believe in divorce even though he acknowledges that there are a couple of biblical reasons for divorce (adultery and physical desertion). He lists several reasons couples or individuals have given him over the years and his usual response to these reasons. I found his responses on point. Of course, in my country, these responses won't even matter that much, since the Philippines is only one of two countries (the other is Vatican City) that doesn't allow married couples to divorce. What we do have is annulment and legal separation. Annulments are tricky, though, and if you are only legally separated, you're not allowed to remarry. There are congressmen who have tried to introduce divorce bills, but so far they haven't prospered.

Anyway, back to the book. I found the book to be entertaining and funny. The author managed to turn what could have been a boring and dry topic into something interesting, practical and accessible to every Christian.

Thanks to NetGalley and Shiloh Run Press for the e-copy.

THE GOOD:

  1. There's plenty of good advice and tips here.
  2. The anecdotes of Dave and Sandy's married life is always interesting.
  3. The author makes a lot of good points. 

THE BAD:

  1. It's more of a couples book than something for just one individual. 

FAVORITE QUOTE/S:
After one month of doing everything, Sandy opened her mouth andsaid the four words that turna husband's insides to jelly: "We need to talk."
READ IT IF:

  1. You feel like your marriage could be improved upon.
  2. You feel disappointed in your spouse.
  3. You are engaged or newly married.

RATING:
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Note: This post may contain Amazon affiliate links.

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