About a month ago I stumbled upon this book set on Facebook and decided to order it. For the past 27 days Matthew and I have been working through these books and they are a game changer.
I’m not typically one to get on and endorse a certain book or form of counseling, however… Matthew and I spent a year in counseling that left us more confused than when we started but these books and what they are teaching us are doing something that counseling could not.
If you have been following us for the past year you know we have been struggling. Between a brain injury that has created a new norm in our home and our inability to figure out how to navigate the new norm we had just about lost hope.
In December, if you came to our vow renewal, you heard Matthew talk about how we like to keep things real. We are two people who are crazy in love with each other but we struggle. Granted our real struggles did not truly begin until after Matthew’s accident but our struggles have been great and oftentimes felt impossible. Our hope in sharing and being transparent has been that of wanting to help others who might be losing hope. We both came from difficult marriages and learned a lot from those marriages. We’ve come to truly appreciate our marriage and what we have and how blessed we are to have it. We want people to know that marriage isn’t easy. Life can make it even more difficult. For us when one of you deals with anxiety and CPTSD from an abusive marriage and the other a brain injury from an accident…you’re almost destined to fail. But that is where these books have come in to play.
I grew up surrounded by a lot of good people and saw a lot of good marriages. However what I have learned from this book in the last month has been life-changing for me. There was a lot I didn’t see growing up. It has taught me to be more selfless. It has taught me to be a different kind of wife than I was before. It’s taught me that I can change the atmosphere of my marriage by loving like Jesus. What a concept!
Matthew and I have not really struggled with typical marriage issues. We’ve been one another’s best friend from the get go, and have never really argued about spending time together, intimacy, or had issues over money. Instead we were hit by an event we had no control over which changed our lives drastically. We’ve had to learn how to relate to each other in a whole new way. It is been a lot of hard work. There has been a lot of tears shed. But imagine my surprise when I began going through this book, which pointed me to Jesus first and my husband second, that changed everything! Each day the book begins with a new day that points us to Jesus first and then gives us practical advice for marriage, and then a fun, serious or romantic (selfless) challenge for us to complete each day for one another.
We have enjoyed going through this book so much that we decided to go through it again when we finish because we are continuing to work at making our marriage better. And because each day is a great reminder of the place we hold in the life of the other and the responsibility we have as wife and husband.
I don’t know where you are in your marriage. I don’t know if everything’s great or if you’re looking at everybody else’s marriage wishing you had one like that. Either way…. this book opens new doors because it points to Jesus and He is a life-changer!
I know we still have a ways to go and things to work out. Things are not perfect but they are progressing. It truly is amazing what can be accomplished when we turn things over and trust God‘s hand instead of our own.