Length: 287 pp
Author: Paul David Tripp
What Did You Expect? bursts your rainbow-hued bubble of marriage utopia and trades it for storm clouds. But for those honest with themselves, those who realize that they are sinners married to sinners, the bubble bursting makes way for the refreshing, life-giving rains of grace. Play as if your marriage has no death in it and you will find death. Own up to all the ugliness you both bring to this glorious thing called marriage, and Beauty will invade.
Praise God there are several good books on marriage that I recommend, but this one might just be the most helpful for me for the task of counseling those who tried to live myth of sinless matrimony.
Marriage is a beautiful thing that only reaches what it was designed to be through the methodology of a painful process.
So, what does give you reason to continue when the little problems have gotten under your skin or the big problems have left you devastated? What does produce a marriage with sturdy love, unity, and understanding? I think the answer I am about to give will surprise many of you. Here it is: a marriage of love, unity, and understanding is not rooted in romance; it is rooted in worship. Now, you may be able to read all the words, but you still might not understand the depth of the insight of this principle.
What does it mean to say that a marriage is “rooted in worship?” The word worship is a tricky word. When the average person hears the word worship he thinks of a gathering, of hymns, an offering, and a sermon. But there is a biblical truth embedded in this word that is vital to understand if you are ever going to figure out why you struggle in your marriage and how those struggles will ever get solved. Worship is first your identity before it is ever your activity. You are a worshiper, so everything you think, desire, choose, do, or say is shaped by worship. There is simply no more profound insight into the reason people do the things they do than this, and once you get hold of it, it opens doors of understanding and change that were never before opened to you.
I have become more and more persuaded that marriages are fixed vertically before they are ever fixed horizontally. We have to deal with what is driving us before we ever deal with how we are reacting to one another. Every relationship is victimized in some way when we seek to get from the surrounding creation what we were designed to get from God. When God is in his rightful place, then we are on the way to putting people in their rightful place. But there is more. I am convinced that it is only in the worship of God in our marriages that we find reason to continue.