So, I finally finished “Real Marriage” by Mark and Grace Driscoll. Apparently this Pastor Mark guy is kind of a well-known pastor — I’d never heard of him. My husband and my brother-in-law started to fill me in a little bit, and I guess Pastor Mark is the founding pastor of Mars Hill Church. I guess some people also find him a bit controversial, but what “celebrity pastor” isn’t? Anyway, for the sake of an unbiased review I did not research Pastor Mark any further and continued on reading “Real Marriage”. And guess what, I quite liked it.
The book begins with testimonies from both Mark and his wife Grace, who co-authors the book with him. I really appreciated their honesty and transparency and felt connected to them right away. Mark and Grace shared openly about their lives, their sin, and their marriage which offers the reader a soft place to land. Mark and Grace then move forward with the first part of the book, called “Marriage”, in which they discuss a number of different issues within marriage, the roles of men and women, respect, forgiveness and friendship.
The second part of the book is called “Sex” and discusses God’s design for sex, how men and women may view sex based on their life experiences (both good and bad), and pornography. I found the chapters on abuse and pornography to be particularly difficult to read, but I 100% appreciate Mark and Grace’s honesty about both subjects and definitely feel like they are topics that need to be discussed and that we all need to be aware of. At times, the chapters were disturbing to read, but very beneficial and I’m glad that I made my way through them. There is also a chapter all about what is appropriate for a married couple to participate in within the marriage bed, which I think would be very good for any married couple to read or anyone who hopes to marry in the future.
The third part of the book is called, “The Last Day” and is a set of questions for couples to spend time pondering, journaling, then discussing together. The questions are all about your life and your dreams and where you might see yourself in the near future so that you and your husband may work together as friends and allies and not fight one another as enemies.
I found that I agreed with a lot of the Driscoll’s views on marriage, and would recommend this book.
“Advanced Reader’s Copy of the book has been provided courtesy of Thomas Nelson and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Thomas Nelson”.