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Love and War: Finding the Marriage You've Dreamed Of Hardcover – December 15, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. The Eldredges' newest book has bestseller written all over it. The pair addressed men and women separately in Wild at Heart (John) and Captivating (Stasi) and now put that knowledge together in a book on marriage. Christianity, they say, is a love story set amid war, with marriage a living, breathing portrait laid out before the eyes of the world so that they might see the story of the ages. For them, marriage is the perfect storm that brings together basic differences in men and women, individual styles of relating, sin, and brokenness. The Eldredges offer sound advice on topics such as the delights of companionship, understanding the enemy is Satan and not your spouse, finding your marriage's mission, taboo topics, and, yes, sex. They are honest and forthright, never skirting a difficult issue; instead, they offer hope, insight, and their own lives as examples of what God can accomplish. Their summation of marriage: It can be done. And it is worth it. So is this book. (Dec.)
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Love & War: Finding the Marriage You’ve Dreamed Of
The Eldredges’ newest book has bestseller written all over it. The pair addressed men and women separately in Wild at Heart (John) and Captivating (Stasi) and now put that knowledge together in a book on marriage. Christianity, they say, is a love story set amid war, with marriage “a living, breathing portrait laid out before the eyes of the world so that they might see the story of the ages.”
For them, marriage is the perfect storm that brings together basic differences in men and women, individual styles of relating, sin, and brokenness. The Eldredges offer sound advice on topics such as the delights of companionship, understanding the enemy is Satan and not your spouse, finding your marriage’s mission, taboo topics, and, yes, sex. They are honest and forthright, never skirting a difficult issue; instead, they offer hope, insight, and their own lives as examples of what God can accomplish. Their summation of marriage: “It can be done. And it is worth it.” So is this book.
--Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“John and Stasi nailed it. This book opens to an untouched snapshot of a real, live redeemed marriage and closes with hope and hunger for our own. These two have proved again and again that they’re willing to put themselves out there for somebody else’s sake. Is it any wonder God uses them like He does? The moment we decide to throw more energy into fighting for our mate than with him, the crack of a fist on the enemy’s jaw splits the ears of angels.”
Author of Get Out of That Pit and Breaking Free
“John and Stasi Eldredge lead us into the heart of marriage...not as we always dreamed it would be, but as it really is... a relationship between two flawed individuals who are discovering together that marriage is difficult. Their willingness to speak honestly about their relationship proves their point... that “loving costs everything but loving is always worth it.” If you are willing to fight for the love and happiness God intended your marriage to provide, every chapter of Love & War will cheer you on!”
—Dr. David Jeremiah
Senior Pastor, Shadow Mountain Community Church
Founder & CEO, Turning Point
“I need help to grow as a husband. I have written a few books on marriage, but I am never done reading, reflecting or wrestling with the issues that keep my marriage from being sweeter and deeper. John and Stasi offer a courageous, honest, and compelling picture of what is involved in growing beyond one’s initial commitment and desire for intimacy. This is a book of wisdom and hope for those who want more than mere complacency or convenience. It is a beautiful labor that will move your marriage to far deeper joy.”
—Dan B. Allender
Professor of Counseling Psychology, Mars Hill Graduate School
Author, Intimate Allies and To Be Told
Top customer reviews
This book aims to provide a biblical view on why marriage is hard and why those feeling that way, might just be in he situation God planned. I found the openness and honest of the authors to be refreshing, rift down to the fact both admit to sexual activity before marriage. This resonated because so many books start off with all the perfect setting a marriage should take place in, while books like these should actually be for those of us that have not travelled that perfect path.
Towards the end the editing gets a bit less refined with several easy-to-spot typos. Getting past that is easy though. Overall I enjoyed it, and hope to think about my own marriage a little bit differently because of it.
This is a book we recommend for all marriages, young and old, and one I recommend with couples I counsel. Thank you, John and Stasi for your openness with your own story.
I originally decided to buy it because my husband is a big fan of John Eldredge and I knew that he might read it as a result. I purchased a copy for him and for myself. I think the plan was to read it together and discuss each chapter (he works out of town), but I was so enthused by my reading that I couldn't put it down. I generally hate non-fiction books, but this one revolutionized the way that I looked at my marriage. Being pretty young, we've had a lot of bumps over the course of our marriage; and to be frank, I've wanted to leave on multiple occasions. After reading this book, I was able to better identify why I feel the way that I do, and how to deal with those feelings. The authors of this book are Christian and stress the importance of having a relationship with Christ. Since both of those applied to me, this book affected me all the more (for the better). My prayer life has improved 10 fold. I'm not sure how a non-believer would react to reading this book. It does have many priniciples that could apply to a non-believer though.
In the end, I would whole hearted recommend this book to anyone who is married or about to be married, and especially for those who might be limping along in their marriage and are looking for real, lasting change. I warn you--it won't come over night, but you will find yourself better equipped to handle the downs better. It really re-enforced my decision to stick things out. It's interesting that going into reading this book, I was doing it because I wanted my husband to too. I don't think he has read much of the book, but I am so much better for reading it. God does work in mysterious ways.
The Eldredges start by acknowledging that marriage is fabulously hard, and yet we often treat it as we do our health... doing the bare minimum to get by and hoping for the best.
They explain that marriage is a love story set within a war. This war, with the devil, the world and our flesh, is worth fighting. It's a fight for each other, not against, as we often let it become.
Sadly, I've known several couples who have divorced because `they just don't make each other happy anymore.' It's hard work to keep your spouse happy, right? Well, guess what? It can't be done. The Eldredges use scripture to show how the unending love of Christ is what we long for. Once we remove the expectation that our spouse is the source of our happiness, the marriage can be filled with joy.
John and Stasi openly share their relationship, the ups and downs, modeling how to deal with brokenness and spiritual attacks. Their short personal stories are refreshingly honest. I appreciate how John and Stasi shared their individual perspectives on various experiences.
For me, there were many `ah-hah' moments throughout the book. In fact, my copy is covered in sticky notes marking points I want to reread again soon. I highly recommend this book to every married couple.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Waterbrook Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."