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The Man You Always Wanted Is the One You Already Have [Kindle Edition]

Paula Friedrichsen
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Hubba, Hubba!

Check Out Your Hubby

He’s predictable, proverbial, and prone to leaving his dirty clothes in a pile beside the laundry basket. He’s the big lug lying next to you every night–and believe it or not, he is your Prince Charming!

But what happens when a man other than your husband begins looking and sounding more appealing?

Transform your marriage with the realization that the man you always wanted is the one you already have. Striking biblical insights, combined with Paula Friedrichsen ’s candid revelations about the inappropriate relationship that nearly destroyed her marriage, will help you see that no man compares to the one you already have.

Discover how to:

- embrace the differences between you and your spouse,

- revel in the freedom of forgiveness, and

- draw near to the only Source of lasting fulfillment.

Story Behind the Book

“Twelve years ago, I became romantically, though thankfully not sexually, involved with my then-pastor. This resulted in the church’s devastation and a great deal of harm to both of our marriages. But God used the difficult lessons I learned during that arduous time to reshape my thinking about marriage and to plainly show me that the man I always wanted was the one I already had. By using my own story of failure and forgiveness as a backdrop, this book illustrates how our heart’s desire is often found no further then the big lug lying next to us in bed each night!” –Paula Friedrichsen

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Paula Friedrichsen is an experienced freelance writer and enjoys speaking at women’s retreats, conferences, and church meetings across the country. Paula’s messages can be heard and seen weekly on Christian radio and television stations in Nigeria, West Africa. She and her husband of more than twenty years, Jeff, have two children and live in Bishop, California. The Friedrichsen family is actively involved in a non-denominational church in their area.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Playing with Fire

I loved my new church. It was vibrant, exciting, and contemporary. When the pastor preached, the Bible came alive to me as never before. He was like no other speaker I had ever heard, and my excitement held no bounds. I felt like I had won the lottery just to be able to attend this extraordinary church.

In addition to his marvelous preaching, this pastor could compose and sing music beautifully. I remember how sometimes during the Sunday service he would spontaneously walk over to the piano and begin worshipping the Lord in song while running his hands over the ivory keys. He would bring the congregation along as he led the way into astonishing worship.

My husband, Jeff, was starting a new job, so we had just relocated to this new city. Although he was not a Christian at the time, Jeff was supportive of my desire to get involved in a new church. I quickly made friends and started serving in different areas of church life, such as planning retreats for the ladies, helping in the nursery, and eventually even preaching and teaching on occasion.

This period in my life represented a wonderful awakening to the presence and reality of God. There were days when I literally could not stop smiling as I went about my daily chores. God was so real to me. He was making His Word come alive to me…and I was being changed. I was falling more and more in love with Jesus. I was also beginning to get a glimpse of my future, which clearly seemed to include a call to the ministry. Like a brilliant sunrise, Christ took my breath away with His presence and promises. My new church and my new pastor were being used by God to facilitate these remarkable changes in my life.

I was a happily married woman, a doting mom, and a strong Christian. That’s why nothing could have prepared me for what came next.

A Too-Close Friendship

Over time, I developed a close relationship with the pastor and his wife, along with several others in the church congregation. My new friends and I would get together regularly for picnics while our kids ran around and played together. What fun we had discussing the things of God, enjoying mutual excitement over our wonderful church and what God was doing there. We planned for the future and anticipated many years of exciting and productive times of ministry together.

Jeff was seldom a part of these get-togethers, as he was working during the day. But during this time he was accepting of the amount of time I was spending with my new friends.

One of the most exciting events at our church each week was the Sunday night service. The worship team was let loose, and without the constraints of time, the sounds of adoration and praise would fill the sanctuary for as long as an hour. After that, the congregation was invited to take turns sharing what God was doing in their lives. The pastor would then preach for a while, and we would end the service with prayer.

These Sunday night meetings would go on for hours. The presence of God was so real. God was manifesting Himself, and nobody wanted to leave. We would eventually take pity on the poor nursery workers and end the meeting somewhere between 10 and 11 p.m.

Who wanted to go home after that? I sure didn’t! So a big group of us would then head over to the local Denny’s restaurant to enjoy each other’s company and have some lively conversation. We would laugh and talk, and relive the extraordinary church service that had just taken place.

There were many evenings that winter when I would call my husband just before we went into the restaurant, to see if he minded my going. Now, my conscience minded my going… the Holy Spirit who lives inside me minded my going…and even my common sense minded my going. But no, I had to call to see if my husband (who had now been alone for the last five hours) minded my going.

As I stood outside Denny’s in the darkened phone booth, I could hear in his voice that he did mind my going. His voice said okay, but his tone whispered no. I chose to ignore that. It was one of many red lights that I eventually drove right through.

More Red Lights

Over that winter and into early spring I found myself spending more time socializing with the pastor and his wife. Sometimes my husband would be included, such as at dinner parties or sporting events, but many times I would just hang out with the pastor and his wife in their home without him. Jeff was being increasingly isolated from my new life.

As the spring days grew warmer, the pastor’s wife and I began spending a lot time together. She was such good company, and our friendship grew steadily. She seemed to have no awareness of the developing flirtation between her husband and me.

Many times when the pastor’s wife and I were having lunch at her home, her husband would drop by for a few hours and we would chat. Our personalities were similar, so of course we found each other charming, witty, and irresistibly funny. We could laugh and talk for hours.

I received great pleasure and validation from my relationship with the pastor. I was flattered by his friendship, feeling a type of approval and affirmation that I had never known. The inordinate amount of attention I was receiving swelled my ego, causing me to become somewhat self-absorbed.

By the time summer arrived, we had begun talking on the phone regularly, expanding our relationship beyond the already too-loose boundaries. He began calling me each day while his wife took an afternoon nap with their children. Of course Jeff had no idea that the pastor and I were chatting regularly–this was something I was hiding from him.

This seemed wrong…I knew it was wrong. But there I went, speeding through another red light.

Then came the dream.

In my dream I saw the pastor come around the corner of a building. As he approached me, I heard the voice of the Lord above and behind me saying, “You are spending too much time together!” I sat bolt upright in bed, knowing I had just had an encounter with God. I was literally shaking with fear.

I called up my trusted friend Debbie, who was a mentor and older sister in the Lord. She listened as I told her all that had been happening in my life. I held nothing back, doing my best to be as transparent with her as possible.

Her counsel was that I leave that church immediately. During our long, tearful conversation, she literally begged me to get out of the pastor’s life that day, and to run to a different church–as if my life depended on it. She rebuked me in no uncertain terms and corrected me like a mother in the Lord.

I vowed that I would obey. I promised to do exactly as she said. I pledged to extract myself from this man’s life quickly.

But I did not. I chose not to.

You see, at first I was convinced that Debbie’s advice was 100 percent correct. Then, little by little, I decided that I could handle the pastor’s escalating attention. Leaving a church I loved so dearly seemed too drastic.

I would make a concerted effort to put some distance between the pastor and myself. How hard could that be? I loved my husband. In my heart of hearts, I knew that I would never betray his trust. Jeff was a wonderful man–hard working, kind, so good to our son. So what was the problem here? Nothing, really…just a little harmless flirting, that’s all.

So on I went, careening recklessly through another red light.

All hell broke loose one hot July afternoon. My little boy was napping, and I was having my daily chat on the phone with the pastor…when he revealed his interest in me as more than just a friend.

Thus began the worst season of my life. I had played with fire, enjoying the attention and flirting shamelessly, and now I was getting burned. I had no intention of leaving my husband. I had no intention of having a sexual fling with this man. I was just enjoying a little harmless flattery, a perk of being the pastor’s favorite “sheep.” But now I was in deep trouble, and I felt guilty for not following Debbie’s advice from weeks before.

I didn’t know how to get out of the mess I had made of my life. There were many times when God had tried to stop my descent. So many times He had tried to correct me. But I chose not to give up my relationship with the pastor…or his wife…or the many church members that I had grown to love so deeply over the years. I chose not to give up all the fun and fellowship that came with attending the church.

Bottom line, I chose not to relinquish the emotional attention I received from my inappropriate friendship with the pastor.

Exposure: The Ticket for Running Red Lights

The church was run by a board of three elders and their wives, in addition to the pastor and his wife. By late summer the elders got wind of the fact that there was a too-close friendship going on between the pastor and me, and they took action to see that it went no further. At the elders’ request, I met with them and was asked at that time to leave the church permanently.

The thing I remember most about that meeting was the unconditional love I felt in the room. It was the tangible love of God. I knew the elders were doing their best to prayerfully handle this uncomfortable situation, and God in His love confirmed their decision.

You may wonder if the pastor was also asked to leave the church. Yes, eventually the elders decided that this would be the best course of action for all involved, and the pastor and his family relocated to a different city.

The church survived, but it was never again the same. The damage was irreversible, the breach irreparable; many people were deeply wounded as a result of our actions.

Shortly after that meeting with the elders, I came clean with my husband about the whole ugly situation. To say he was disappointed would be an understatement. Jeff wa...

Product Details

  • File Size: 534 KB
  • Print Length: 242 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1590527666
  • Publisher: Multnomah Books (January 21, 2009)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #889,522 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Warning to Kindle users!! June 1, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
THIS IS FOR VIEWERS THINKING OF GETTING THIS IN KINDLE FORMAT: The book itself is good and helpful, thus the four stars. However, an FYI, the Kindle edition is quite bad. There are so many typos, weird combination of words, symbols, etc, throughout the entire book, I had to guess at what some of the words were! It's SO frustrating, you can tell there was no care watsoever putting this into Kindle format. I would think the printed book is fine and dones't have the errors, that may be the way to go. It's sad Amazon would allow such a bad job as this.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Saved my marriage \0/ November 12, 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Paula came to our church in Reno and spoke about her book and I had just recently gotten married for my first time... I had been going thru a challenge with my husbands personality and my personality....when I ordered the book and started to read about the four temperaments - it just clicked and wow I was just amazed - I am so thankful that Paula was able to use the wonderful gift that God gave her of writing and use it to help marriages...Thank you Paula
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Recycling your marriage is a novel concept in this day of wide-ranging disposables; everything from diapers to dinner plates are designed to be tossed in the trash. The frequency with which some people change spouses indicates that many have extended that idea to relationships as well. And, if we personally haven't, then we've become very accepting of those who do, which also helps to promote it. This is not to say that divorce is never acceptable --- merely that there may be other alternatives when a relationship seems "used up."

Paula Friedrichsen is a freelance writer who speaks at women's retreats and conferences. Her insights and commentaries can be heard on Christian radio and television. Now she has taken her experiences and put together an inspiring self-help book that may begin to help reverse the pervasive trend of divorce-as-the-solution-to-relationship-problems.

The author writes from the heart of a woman who has been transformed by the Grace of God. During the early years of her marriage, Paula and her husband Jeff had moved to a new town. Jeff was not a Christian at the time, so Paula went to church by herself and soon got caught up in its activities and the teachings of its dynamic pastor. Need I say more? The closer she got to the pastor through services and projects, the further away she grew from her husband. The better the pastor looked, the worse her husband looked by comparison. While the "affair" was never consummated, its effects were far-reaching. The pastor was asked to relocate, and the damage done to the church was, in many ways, irreparable.

As a result of this experience, Paula came away with many truths, and these have formed the framework for this exciting little book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read that makes you think... July 21, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I loved this book, and the author does a good job with assisting you in looking at your husband in a new light. It helped me to find ways to fall in love with him all over again!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I heard the author on an edition of the Focus on the Family radio show. She talked about watching her husband, who was sitting on the couch without a shirt on, hunched over and clipping his toenails..... or something like that...... and her almost-repulsed thoughts about the "big lug who sleeps next to her at night." Not such a Prince Charming moment.

Have you ever wondered just how green the grass is on the other side? Maybe you've already hopped the fence; or maybe your feet are firmly planted in your own yard. Either way, if you are a married woman, your marriage will no doubt benefit with the flip of each page of this masterpiece. Paula Friedrichsen uses her personal experience of a "too-close relationship" and the wisdom she gained from it to help the rest of us. I can't say enough about it. This book will keep you in check and give you an attitude adjustment in your marriage. You'll want to have a highlighter in one hand as you read because there are so many "WOW" nuggets that you'll want to look back on. I am so thankful to Paula for reminding me and teaching me what a Christian marriage should be and how much it needs to be FOUGHT for! If every woman could only read this book and heed the biblically-based principles, our world would be in much better shape.

I think the last paragraph in her introduction does a great job in summing up the book:

"Along with the realization of this blessing that has been right under your nose all along, joy bubbles up from a place long dormant. You are renewed, and your marriage is renewed, too. With your new lens, you'll see that even in an imperfect world, with an imperfect guy, living out an imperfect marriage--you serve a perfect God. A God who delights in making all things new...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Pamela
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Paula Friedrichsen lays it out very clearly in this book about how, as Christian wives, we should look at, honor, and better serve our husbands. Her writing is filled with such tangible honesty that I found myself walking beside her, often holding my breath, as she took me through a series of events that changed her life. Her openness to share all the intimate details brought me right into her world and her fresh sense of humor made me laugh through it all. Whether you are newly married, married thirty years, or just hoping to be a wife one day, I would recommend you read this book. Paula's insight overflows with seeds of wisdom. Take them, plant them, and then glean from the harvest for years to come.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars I Recommend this book!
You will not be disappointed with the transparency of the author. Many testimonies and lessons from this book. This book show the good, bad, and ugly. A must read!
Published 5 months ago by Daniel T Adams
3.0 out of 5 stars The Man You Always Wanted is the One You Already Have
I bought this book after hearing Paula Friedrichsen on Erin Campbell's radio show, Water through the Word. Read more
Published on September 7, 2008 by Moving On
4.0 out of 5 stars Words of Wisdom....
I am still reading this book but have found it enjoyable for the most part. It is easy reading and is good food for thought. Read more
Published on July 20, 2008 by Deb
5.0 out of 5 stars Founder of Christian Women's Resources
The Man You Always Wanted Is the One You Already Have is a wonderful book that all married women should read whether they think they are already married to their Prince Charming or... Read more
Published on February 1, 2008 by Lori L. Arriaga
5.0 out of 5 stars Honest & Insightful
In this book Paula challenges us as Christian women to rise above our emotional response, and choose to do right by our husbands, by honoring God and what he has called us to as... Read more
Published on July 3, 2007 by K. Blanco
5.0 out of 5 stars The Friendliest Fire
Reading this book is like cozying up with a friend who knows your heart and all your struggles intimately. A friend who's uppermost concern is you! Read more
Published on May 1, 2007 by Genie Goodwin
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for those interested in a successful, lifelong marriage!
Paula Friedrichsen has captured the reality of marriage with sincerity and humor, yet not 'sugar-coating' it with 'fluff.' The reality is... Read more
Published on April 26, 2007 by B. Hicks
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More About the Author

Paula is an ordained minister and published author who speaks nationally at church conferences and women's retreats. The hallmark of Paula's ministry is her ability to communicate with unassuming authenticity and transparency. By using Scripture, personal stories, and laughter, she presents Biblical insights and principles to her listeners.

Paula has been featured on many Christian radio and TV programs, such as 700 Club Interactive, Moody's Midday Connection, Lifestyle Magazine (seen on TBN), Lutheran Hour Ministries, and Living the Life (seen on ABC Family). Her articles have been featured in dozens of print and online magazines, including Charisma,, Proverbs 31, In Touch, and Sign of the Times.

Visit Paula's website at


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