That's right, this post is a review of a Christian marriage book... :-)
It's Wednesday, which means it's time for another book recommendation. It's also June, which means you may be looking for a wedding gift or you may even be planning a wedding yourself. Let me start this recommendation off by telling you that we generally scoff at marriage books. In our personal experience, it often seems like the people who write them are out in left-field. We received several books as wedding gifts ten years ago and after giving them a casual glance and mocking most of them (yes, we did), they either went to the used book store or were passed on in a future wedding gift. I'm willing to admit that some people might actually find marriage advice books useful, and if you are one of those people - good on ya! Please don't be offended by what I'm saying - just understand that not all marriages are created equal and not all marriage books speak to the person who is reading them. So...my recommendation today? It's a marriage book. Are you thoroughly confused yet? :-)
Today's book recommendation is Sheet Music: Uncovering the Secrets of Sexual Intimacy in Marriage, by Dr. Kevin Leman. I don't even remember how we got a copy of this book, but I know it was around four years ago. We were open to reading it because we had read other books by Dr. Leman and we really liked his style. For example, I read his book, First Time Mom, before giving it away as a gift and I was impressed by his no nonsense approach to parenthood. I figured if he had such a practical side to him when it involved raising kids, he might view marriage in the same way. Peter and I had a very happy marriage when we sat down to read this book - again with the view of giving it as a gift - but we ended up laughing heartily and, dare I say it, even learning a thing or two before we were done! There were several times when one of us would look at the other and say, "Is that what you think/do/feel/want?" and it opened up a lot of really good discussion - and even more laughter. :-)
Shortly after we read Sheet Music, we ran across a book that literally had us laughing until the tears ran. However, unlike the "hey, we've been there!" laughter that Sheet Music brought about, we were guffawing over the totally impractical suggestions in book #2. Although it was written by a well known Christian couple, we decided that 1) They had to be unhappy and 2) In order achieve the "perfect position", one or the other of us would need to grow extra arms and legs to make their suggestions work! Where was the fun, adventuresome, spontaneous romance? There is no room for that - sex between a husband and wife is not fun. I beg to disagree...strongly. And so does Dr. Leman.
I realize this is a very different book recommendation, but in this world where marriages are falling apart right and left, I feel it's very important to do what you can to strengthen yours. Sex is very much a part (and a fun part at that!) of a happy marriage. Even if you have a "healthy" marriage, I would recommend picking up a copy of Sheet Music and seeing if there's anything you might be able to change or work on to make it better - or at least different! I also recommend reading it with your spouse so that you can discuss what you've just read. If you're preparing for marriage, pick up a copy (but follow Dr. Leman's instructions on the first page and only read chapters 1-4) and get mentally ready for a lifelong honeymoon! If you're looking for a book to throw in a wedding gift - this one has my stamp of approval. :-)