Sometimes I’m browsing the web and I find some awesome stuff about marriage.
I don’t really have a regular way to share those with you, so I thought I’d save up a bunch and put them in a post! So here we go–10 things I’ve come across lately that are worth your time.
1. The Worth of a Woman
I really appreciate Gary Thomas, and one of the guest posts he wrote for me based on his book Loving Him Well garnered a ton of interest–from commenters who believe that biblically, women don’t have the right to confront their husband on anything, because God made men to rule over women (seriously, the comments got bad. And I didn’t even let 80% of them through because they were nasty and gross).
Recently Gary wrote more about how much God loves women, and I think many of you need to read this today. And if you’re in a church that believes that men should rule over women absolutely–well, just know that this is not the heart of God. And I’ll be saying more about that in a series in September!
2. Tamar Listens to Psalm 61: Reflections for Spiritual and Sexual Abuse Survivors
If you’re a survivor of abuse, sometimes the Bible can be a difficult read. Can you see God as a father? What about all the people in the Bible who did pretty reprehensible things? Why does God still seem to like them?
Here’s a really insightful reflection about what David’s daughter Tamar would have felt when her brother Absalom revolted against David.
“David was “a man after God’s own heart” (I Samuel 13:14) but not a man who had arrived at God’s heart.”
If you want to think–Read Tamar Listens to Psalm 61.
3. A High View of Marriage Includes Divorce
Before you dismiss the premise out of hand, please read this. I think Christians have gone really far off base by saying “God hates divorce” without looking at the scriptural context for that statement. Which does God hate more: divorce, or abuse? And what does God love more–marriage, or the people inside the marriage?
She argues something here very similar to what I said about how I’m anti-divorce but pro-remarriage. I mourn every divorce, and I try so hard to help people deal with real issues so that the marriage can succeed. But I’m also well aware that some marriages need to end.
Lest we get too depressed about divorce from the preceding article, here’s a “happy” one–the divorce rate is falling. And it’s falling because of one particular generation that all too often gets beat up in news reports. Maybe we should listen to them!
But increasingly there’s a class divide in marriage which is worrisome:
“One of the reasons for the decline is that the married population is getting older and more highly educated,” Cohen said. Fewer people are getting married, and those who do are the sort of people who are least likely to get divorced, he said. “Marriage is more and more an achievement of status, rather than something that people do regardless of how they’re doing.”
Many poorer and less educated Americans are opting not to get married at all. They’re living together, and often raising kids together, but deciding not to tie the knot. And studies have shown these cohabiting relationships are less stable than they used to be.
5. How One Woman Hacked Online Dating
I don’t know if there’s anything profound here, but this woman made me laugh so much! She may be Jewish, but I saw so much of myself in her–I would totally do the whole data analysis thing, too.
What I would take away from her story: If you’re trying online dating to meet someone, have an idea of what sorts of things are important to you, and look for them. And as I’ve said before–make sure someone is truly a believer!
A lot of these are intuitive–they wish they had listened more, had spoken more–but I absolutely love that #1 is #1. I talk about this very small thing so often, and it really is one of the best things you can do in your marriage. It’s one of the 5 big mistakes I think so many couples make in the first year of marriage. It’s little. But it makes a difference!
7. Give Your Spouse the Benefit of the Doubt
Gary Thomas writes such a relatable post here–about how all too often we get into these RIDICULOUS scenarios where we assume our spouse doesn’t want/love us, when nothing can be further from the truth. This is great–but what I really liked was the part for “The Husbands”. I think many of you will relate to that scenario, even if you have to reverse the roles!
This is a really insightful post. Some language in it, but I found it a great read. Here’s a good quote from it:
“This leaves a lot of young men growing up confused. We don’t engage in the healthy types of play we need to bond, and we don’t get the emotional connection we need from fathers or other men. This leaves men apathetic and indifferent when they feel they can be neither, and thus we retreat into our digital worlds of lethargy.
Today, many good men sit on the sidelines while evil continues to infect the masculine soul like a cancer. We’re not teaching young men virtue or character, but vice. We’re telling them, tamp down your feelings, but also don’t be too masculine because that’s bad. The internal warrior gets crushed, and the poet is labeled a sissy.”
9. Robot Brothels?!? Won’t Stop Human Trafficking
Okay, this one isn’t “worth reading” per se. It’s just something that I think we have to be aware of. Apparently sex dolls are becoming a serious thing. They’re very realistic. And child sex dolls are in great demand. I didn’t even know this was happening until about two years ago, but the market has exploded. Amazon is getting criticized for carrying some. And now apparently they’re coming to brothels near you, with the argument that they’ll reduce human trafficking.
I don’t think everybody has to read this (it’s very disturbing), but I do think we need to be aware of where the culture is going. We can’t keep our heads in the sand. And we have to keep speaking out against this. Women are not commodities. Sex should be intimate, not something where a guy just uses someone. This is terrible.
10. Ultimate Intimacy App
I know #9 was awful. But here’s how we fight against it: We get a healthy view of sex, and we have a lot of fun at it! The more we present the face that Christians have fun, and that sex in marriage is awesome, the more we can prevent people from getting sucked into gross things in the first place.
So it’s okay to have some fun! And if you’re having trouble, or if you just feel like things have gotten boring, I want to introduce you to my sponsor The Ultimate Intimacy App. It can do amazing things to spice up your marriage. It has a super fun game you can play that I explained here, but it also has articles to read on how to improve technique, how to have fun date nights, how to plan a weekend getaway, and more.
Read anything worth reading lately? Leave it as a link in the comments! Or did any of those stand out to you? Let’s talk!