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The 4 Seasons of Marriage: Secrets to a Lasting Marriage Paperback – August 31, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.; Reprint edition (August 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1414376340
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414376349
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #58,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Chapman, author of the longstanding megaseller The Five Love Languages, uses his years of marriage counseling and leading marriage seminars as the basis for his thesis that marriages repeatedly go through periods that can be characterized by the seasons of the year. He begins by describing winter, times when marriages are marked by "coldness, harshness, and bitterness." Spring is "where most marriages begin," while summer is filled with fun. He compares an autumn marriage to "the falling of the leaves." Chapman offers detailed explanations of the emotions, attitudes and actions of the marriage seasons as well as the pros and cons of each. The book's second section provides seven strategies to enhance or change the marriage seasons, from dealing with past failures and speaking your spouse's love language to "maximizing differences" and becoming a positive influence. Chapman also specifically addresses how to improve a marriage where a spouse has no desire to change. While it's valuable to have this information in one place, this book isn't different from what Chapman has written, said and taught many times before. Clear writing, tested strategies and good stories are here, but new revelations are not. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

Which season of marriage are you in?
Marriages are in a perpetual state of transition, continually moving from one season to another—perhaps not annually, as in nature, but certainly and consistently. Sometimes we find ourselves in winter—distant, discouraged, and dissatisfied; other times we experience springtime—filled with hope, openness, and anticipation. Sometimes we bask in the warmth of summer—satisfied and comfortable, simply enjoying life together. In times of fall, negligence and uncertainty creep in, leaving us feeling unsettled and apprehensive.

The cycle repeats itself many times throughout the life of a marriage, just as the seasons in nature repeat themselves. Each season presents its own unique challenges, and each holds the potential for emotional health and happiness. This book will help you and your spouse identify which season your marriage is currently in, give you a common language with which to discuss your marriage, and provide practical strategies that will help you strengthen and enhance your relationship.

More About the Author

Married more than 45 years to Karolyn, Dr. Gary Chapman is just the man to turn to for help on improving or healing our most important relationships. His own life experiences, plus over thirty-five years of pastoring and marriage counseling, led him to publish his first book in the Love Language series, The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate. Millions of readers credit this continual New York Times bestseller with saving their marriages by showing them simple and practical ways to communicate their love to their partner.
Since the success of his first book, Dr. Chapman has expanded his Five Love Languages series to specifically reach out to teens, singles, men, and children (co-authored with Dr. Ross Campbell).
He is the author of numerous other books published by Moody Publishers/Northfield Publishing, including The World's Easiest Guide to Family Relationships, Anger, The Family You've Always Wanted, The Marriage You've Always Wanted, Desperate Marriages, God Speaks Your Love Language (Jan 09), Parenting Your Adult Child, and Hope for the Separated. He co-authored The Five Languages of Apology with Dr. Jennifer Thomas.
Chapman speaks to thousands of couples nationwide through his weekend marriage conferences. He hosts a nationally syndicated radio program, Love Language Minute, and a Saturday morning program, Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, that air on more than 100 stations. Dr. Chapman also serves as senior associate pastor at Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Dr. Chapman holds BA and MA degrees in anthropology from Wheaton College and Wake Forest University, respectively, MRE and PhD degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and has completed postgraduate work at the University of North Carolina and Duke University.
Dr. Chapman and his wife have two adult children and two grandchildren, and currently live in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Customer Reviews

This book is very informative, practical and easy to read.
Mava
It doesn't take that much effort to read a book every year on marriage and it will help you stay committed and hope for a good future.
jessicaa hip
I highly recommend this book for single and married couples.
Amy Gallager

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

88 of 91 people found the following review helpful By FaithfulReader.com on September 30, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Is your marriage in the season of summer, spring, winter, or fall? Find out in THE FOUR SEASONS OF MARRIAGE, from bestselling author Gary Chapman who penned THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES.

Chapman's tone is that of a friendly, empathetic counselor. First, he invites you to discover which season of marriage you and your spouse are in. These seasons don't progress in order; rather, your marriage is probably fluctuating back and forth between all four, he writes. After you identify your season, Chapman offers seven strategies to help you make the most of that season, and ideas for putting the strategies into practice. As he unpacks the characteristics of each season, Chapman includes profiles of married couples who have come to him for advice and counseling. His hope is to help couples move their marriages from fall or winter into spring or summer.

Marriage, Chapman writes, is both intimate and purposeful. When intimacy --- sharing life in a deep way --- is not attained, we feel troubled. Marriage is also purposeful. It helps us raise our children, and in nurturing and developing our gifts and abilities. "Life is easier when two hearts and minds are committed to working together to face the challenges of the day," he writes.

Spring is where most marriages begin. There is joy, excitement and an anticipation of the future. It's a time of new beginnings and positive changes. Summer means happiness, peace, satisfaction, fun and comfort. There is a sense of accomplishment and a desire to keep growing as a couple. You overlook your spouse's shortcomings, and there is a growing sense of togetherness.

Fall, of course, is a precursor to winter, characterized by sadness, apprehension and rejection. A spouse might feel insecure. The couple drifts apart, disengages.
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46 of 48 people found the following review helpful By M. HOLCK on September 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
One of the most beneficial features of this book is the fact that Dr. Chapman describes the emotional seasons of marriage and gives them names we're all familair with - using the seasons. (You can take a free quiz to see your marriage season at 4seasonsofmarriage.com - no personal infomation asked for, either, not even email!) This season idea is very easy for any married couple to grasp and, once a couple identifies the season or seasons they are in, Dr. Chapman's book provides the language and the guidance for a couple to talk about their relationship openly and in a somewhat more observational role when one uses the seasonal analogy. The book is written for any married couple - no matter how many years married. It addresses happy couples and how to sustain the happiness as well as couples in trouble and providines strategies for improvement. A great tool to have on the shelf for all the years of marriage! I find it invaluable.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca of Amazon HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"My experience both in my own marriage and in counseling couples for more than thirty years, suggests that marriages are perpetually in a state of transition, continually moving from one season to another..." ~ Gary Chapman

While "The Four Seasons of Marriage" can be read in a matter of hours, the lessons learned are quite valuable. You can instantly put the ideas into practice because they are practical and wise. Instead of taking a complex problem and making it overwhelmingly difficult to solve, Gary makes everything more simple.

Once you have determined your season (winter, spring, summer, fall) then you can decide to try to stay in a season (summer is comfortable) or move out of a season (like winter which is harsh) more quickly and into a situation you prefer. All that is needed is a little motivation and a sense of determination.

What is the secret to getting your spouse to listen to you?
How can you work on your marriage alone?
How can you affirm your spouses thoughts?

Gary Chapman answers these questions and more.

What I found interesting is that you can experience spring after twenty years of marriage or winter in the first year. Since each relationship is totally unique some seasons may feel more familiar than others. However, Gary believes that you go through the seasons on a continual basis. I have personally found this to be very true.

After reading numerous books on marriage and relationships I think this is one of the best books on the subject. It really makes sense and is written by an author who has been married for over forty-two years. This book also contains a summary of the five love languages.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kita on October 19, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book introduced a new way of looking at marriage and issues we go through comparing it to the seasons of nature. Summer being wonderful and Winter being bitter and cold. Wow, the seasons really compare to life. Very interesting book.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Darcie Caudillo on February 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover
My husband & I are teaching a small group on this book. We've taught "The 5 Love Languages" several times and find this book as an excellent follow-up study. Dr. Chapman is very insightful in the realm of marriage. We have seen many marriages do a 180 in our small groups because couples have taken to heart the suggestions in these books by Dr. Chapman. God really uses him through his counselling and writing! Praise the Lord for Dr. Chapman's obedience!
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