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“This is a book of wisdom and hope…a beautiful labor that will move your marriage to far deeper joy.” Dan. B. Allender, author of The Wounded Heart
From the Hardcover edition.
Introduction: It Can Be Done 1
1 Remembering What We Wanted 9
2 Love and War 23
3 A Perfect Storm 40
4 The Greatest Gift You Can Give 57
5 More Than Just Roommates 73
6 How to Have a Really Good Fight 88
7 A Shared Adventure 107
8 Back-to-Back with Swords Drawn 125
9 The Little Foxes 141
10 When Storms Descend 157
11 The Chapter on Sex 175
12 Learning to Love 192
Appendix: Prayers 212
Posted July 29, 2011
"Marriage is fabulously hard." That's one of the first statements that John & Stasi Eldredge make about marriage, and they just get more real from there. They don't sugarcoat things in Love & War, they tell it like it is, and it's not easy.
Throughout the book they discuss their own marriage, with honesty and openness that is both refreshing and endearing. You see their own brokenness and heartache, and read how they have worked to keep it together. They talk about how they each contributed to that, how their own individual issues, if you will, contributed to the issues in their marriage, and how they both worked to save what is so dear to them.
I have to admit that I had a hard time getting into this book, but once I did it really registered. Whether you are having problems in your marriage or if you are newlyweds who think you never will, this book is for you. If you are engaged and preparing for marriage, this book is for you. Love & War is a true, open, honest look at what marriage is and how it really works. It's not sugarcoated and full of platitudes about how much we have to work but if we do it will be smooth sailing. They are honest that it takes work, and work, and even then work some more. But something beautiful is there, and you can find it, with work.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group through the Blogging for Books program. 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."
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Posted February 13, 2010
While there were some things that I have a different opinion of, for the most part while reading this book--I said WOW. I have one question. WHERE was this book 28 years ago? John and Stasi have gone beyond skimming the surface of the sometimes rough waters of marriage and dove straight down to the heart of so many problems we have as couples. While some writers may hint at some issues they've endured as a married couple, John and Stasi get real. The honesty shared in this book will absolutely shine a light in the dark places of your life where you thought up to now were hopeless. From the nit-picky--to the really difficult relational issues. They cover them all with a rare honesty that will have you recalling many of your own problems--even those you simply brushed aside thinking there was no help for them. If you read and enjoyed Wild at Heart (written by John) or Captivating (John and Stasi), LOVE & WAR is the book you should read as a married couple! I would even recommend it to be read before you tie the marital knot bow. It is the vitamin tonic that will help stave off many marital diseases before you are maritally destroyed. You will even find yourself chuckling at the ridiculousness of some things they share, that is until you remember some of your own laughable times of marital bliss. Not only will this book help the individual, but it will be a great tool for young married Sunday School classes. Read it as a couple, but my advice, get two copies--I have a tendency to highlight and write my own notes by the author's words! My husband would rather read a book before I get my hands on it! This will make a great Valentines gift for any couple!
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Posted February 7, 2012
This book is being used in my CANA Class, (Couples Achieving Newness Again), at The New Olivet Baptist Church. Kenneth T. Whalum is pastor.
Love & War is designed for married couples to examine their marriages inside and out.
It gives you insight on how the devil can destroy what GOD has put together if there is no ANNOINTING on your marriage.
Love & War is about how to keep the spark going and how to get it back if it is gone.
So, if you are looking for Love & War as well as Love after War, this is the book to have.
If you want it first hand, come to The New Olivet Baptist Church for Sunday school @ 9:30 am. You won't be disappointed!
Posted December 24, 2011
To be upfront, I'm not one who raved over John Eldredge's book Wild at Heart like many men did. It didn't connect with me. But I did enjoy Love & War. In it the Eldredges talk about building a marriage that will last.
John and Stasi are very open and honest about the struggles in their marriage, including a couple times when they almost threw in the towel. They share openly about how they turned their marriage around and have weathered the storms--not just for the sake of making marriage last, but for the sake of making a marriage that works. They clearly love eaach other and view their marriage as a place where God is glorified and where they can mminister to others. Anyone who is maried, and who truly desires a better marriage, should read this book.
I recieved a free copy of the book in exchange for the review, but my opinion is unbiased.
Posted August 13, 2011
Few people have blessed Christians by their words of what it means to be a man or woman of God than authors John and Stasi Eldredge. John, author of Wild at Heart, and Stasi, author of Captivating, team up in their latest book, Love & War, to discuss the realities of Christian marriage and to offer truths they have discovered through their twenty-five years of marriage. Their primary goal is to assure the reader that marriage is indeed difficult but that it is always worth fighting for. For it is when Christian couples dedicate themselves and their marriages to God that they will truly learn to love themselves, their spouse, and others as God intended them to love. A primary theme appears several times throughout the book: "We live in a love story that is set in the midst of a very real war." The love story is twofold; not only does the Bible begin with the marriage of Adam and Eve in Eden and end with the marriage of Christ in Revelation to his bride, the church, but the love story also includes us in that God is at his very essence love (1 John 4:16), that he demonstrated his love for us through his offering of his Son, Jesus Christ, and our greatest commands in the Bible revolve around the idea of love (Luke 10:27, among others). Though the enemy attempts to infiltrate our marriages, God ultimately fulfills his purposes. As a part of a love story in the midst of war, John and Stasi argue that God created marriage to be a "living, breathing portrait laid out before the eyes of the world so that they might see the story of the ages." That is, God uses marriage as "the image of his love for his people, and our love for him." One of the most profound moments I experienced while reading this book was allowing this truth to sink in, to recognize that God gives marriage such an important evangelistic role (and humbly acknowledging that I had not fully appreciated it before). Moreover, I was most moved by a section explaining how God utilizes marriage not only for evangelistic purposes, but to transform those who are married. John and Stasi write: "God lures us into marriage through life and sex and loneliness, or simply the fact that someone finally paid attention - all those reasons that you got married in the first place. It doesn't really matter, he'll do whatever it takes. He lures us into marriage and then uses it to transform us." Though we may enter marriage for any number of reasons (as noble as they might seem), God will use marriage to reveal to us our brokenness and cause us to rely more on him. Overall, John and Stasi Eldredge encourage their readers to reflect upon their marriages and to prayerfully consider the issues contained in the book with their spouse rather than relying on the ever-so-popular "follow these simple steps and experience everlasting joy now" approach. John and Stasi are extremely honest in this book, sharing many stories from their own marriage (both highs and lows). Love & War is an excellent book for couples to read together to consider their own patterns of living, the way they relate to their spouse, the way they interpret their spouse's actions, the way they think about spiritual warfare, and how they can better meet the needs of their spouse - all while seeking the Lord's will together through their marriage.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 19, 2011
Posted June 28, 2011
Having read and loved Captivating by Stasi Eldredge last year, I had high expectations for Love and War, and it did not disappoint. This book should be required reading for every married couple. honestly, it's that good.
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."
Posted June 12, 2011
Love and War: Find Your Way to Something Beautiful in Your Marriage by John and Stasi Eldredge
Step One involves a change in our perspective. We take the life we have right now, and we say to ourselves, We are in this together." Pg. 118
It's difficult to read a book aimed at challenging marriages when my marriage is healthy. I am not and never have been "disappointed" in my marriage and never felt "responsible" for his unhappiness when we've always discussed any object of his happiness. Overall, the mix of humor, wisdom and personal experiences make this book ideal for troubled marriages, except for the introduction.
Introduction: It Can Be Done goes very slowly. I began to wonder about how this related to the rest of the book and finally after struggling and skipping a couple of pages, I got to the point of the introduction at the end of the book. This caused me to dread the remaining chapters. If the introduction went this slowly, how am I going to get through the rest of the book?
Stasi likes to talk. Especially in the morning, as we're heading into the day. Or in the evening, when we are getting ready for bed. I'll be standing in the kitchen in the morning, and she'll start a conversation from the bedroom and she'll just carry right on even though I am running the blender and no rabbit could possibly hear a thing she's saying. Then she'll walk into the room and ask, "Well?" Or at night (from a room away) and I've got the sound of a car wash in my head and I can't discern half of what she's holding forth on. - Pg. 41
John's humor surprised me. He won my favor by simply mentioning that he likes to hunt and loves the outdoors. The humor broke up the seriousness and helped me to relate in most instances. Not in all instances. There is much wisdom in these pages. It's helpful for new marriages and I'd recommend this book to new and troubled marriages; maybe even required reading for those engaged to be married. The writing is good and biblical. The humor fades.
The topic gradually became more serious and I interrupted my reading less to read parts of it to my husband (who laughed). The book is written to include both John and Stasi's points of view in the marriage. It was interesting to note the man's point of view in a common marriage discussion. I reached the last chapter about sex and laughed. What Christian book speaks so candidly about sex? It's not x-rated. It's a candid discussion.
I was eavesdropping on a conversation between two couples-both empty nestors-about what it's like when the kids are gone: "It's wonderful-we have more time for Bible study," one couple said. Bible study?! Are you crazy? "We get to walk around the house naked and make love whenever we want!" the other couple said. - Pg. 176
While the book (for me) was difficult towards the end to finish I did finish it. Except for the introduction it was well written, well thought out and well organized. If your marriage is troubled I would recommend this book. After all, the vows you made on your wedding day aren't to be taken lightly.
Book provided by the publisher. All book reviews are objective.
Posted June 7, 2011
John and Stasi Eldredge have been married for over twenty five years, and know without a doubt, that marriage is difficult. The premise of this book is that marriage can be wonderful, but also is "fabulously hard". By using their real life experiences, John and Stasi both contribute wisdom in this book by sharing how God (and the Enemy) has worked in their marriage. They candidly share their faults and sin issues that led to deep hurts and struggles in their marriage. They bring biblical truths in showing what God purposes for marriage (not your personal happiness!)to bring reality to the reader.It is sobering to realize through the chapters how much work marriage really is and how much continual effort is involved for the LONG HAUL. They do cite that although many marriages do stay together, they are loveless and lifeless. As they have done in their other books, I enjoy their life perspective that this journey is an adventure, one to be lived with a courageous and adventurous heart. Since I have personally experienced the negative side of marriage from a past divorce and also am experiencing a marriage that is full of life, I felt that their input was spot on. I love all of their books, and recommend all of them.I received this book from the publisher. 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."Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 28, 2011
If you are married and ever felt any truth to the idea that "marriage is a submarine with Cinderella and Huck Finn shut inside," then the book Love and War: Finding Your Way to Something Beautiful in Your Marriage is for you. This is not your typical marriage book. With frankness and inclusion of many difficulties they have faced, John and Stasi Eldredge speak from their 25 years of marriage to each other of the things that they are just beginning to understand. The battle that strives to tear apart a marriage is real, and we can draw up our swords in a united front to turn our marriage into something beautiful.
Marriage is hard work, and when two broken people join together, as soon as they say "I do", the pieces gradually start coming to the surface. We are not to ignore them, but deal with them, and the Eldredges show us how without using clichés. They also explain how marriage goes through ebbs and flows, and if you think a marriage always has to be happy, then you will turn a simply low season into something worse. We are to allow for the ebbs and flows by checking in with God, and they provide practical advice on how to get through these times with God at the center. Without glossing over the issue of sex, they also explain that sex is the barometer of a marriage, and they attack the issues that lead to difficulties in a straight-forward manner. At the end of book, they provide a series of prayers as a resource that can be prayed together as a couple to bring health and restoration to marriage and maintain it.
Even though I was convicted, the Eldredges didn't make me feel guilty for not being good enough or more discontent with how my marriage is, like some marriage books do. In fact, while I found myself thinking, "wow, I'm glad my marriage isn't THAT bad," I also gave further evaluation to some areas I had not considered previously. I feel motivated to not always fall into the easiest way of doing things and driven to make my marriage even better.
This book is great for any married couple, especially those you have at least a few years under their belt and as well as those with many. Even if you feel like your marriage is good, this book will help you appreciate it even more by sharpening your perspective on the purpose and beauty of marriage.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for this review. The opinions I have expressed herein are my own.
Posted May 8, 2011
I wasn't sure what I would find when I began this book, Love and War. Since it was endorsed by Beth Moore, I thought I would give it a try. The book deals with several different marital issues and it encourages couples that marriage can be done. But do not expect marriage to be easy! One thought that I really liked from the book was: "You play the most critical role in your spouse's life. No one will have a greater impact on your spouse's soul than you. No one has greater access to your spouse's heart than you." (pg. 38) It was a great reminder to me of the impact I have on my husband. Overall, I wasn't impressed with the book. I thought it was pretty shallow and not very deep when discussing subjects. I was a little surprised by the vocabulary that was used in this book. There were phrases that I do not use in my vocabulary and I didn't appreciate having to read it in this "Christian" book. I was also taken aback at all the references to movies throughout the book. I thought that they didn't add any depth to the message and were unnecessary. I wouldn't recommend this book. **I received this book free from WaterBrook Multnomah's Blogging for Books program in exchange for an honest review.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2011
Finally, a real world Christian look at marriage between fallen people! thank you for the many eye opening truths penned within! A must read for any marriage, troubled or not.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 16, 2010
The Love and War Devotional for Couples book by John and Stasi Eldredge is a wonderful resource and daily study to share along side with your spouse. My husband and I jumped into this book right away and have really been enjoying growing closer to Christ and each other from reading it and applying it to our lives daily! We've even been deeply touched enough and decided on sharing this book with our small church group. It's a great conversation starter in discussing what we've been learning about our spouses, ourselves, and our personal walks with Christ.
This devotional book isn't very big and it doesn't have to be. It's broken into eight weeks worth of studies with five devotions to read each week. Each devotion is only a page or two long. It's perfect to discuss and read along side your spouse. Being a parent of young children or if you and your spouse have very busy schedules it can be hard to find time to read let alone do anything along side your spouse without interruption so I really have been enjoying the consideration of not making each daily devotional too big. If it honestly was any bigger it could be overwhelming and discouraging to keep up with and I am so glad that's not the case with this book.
Each devotion begins and ends with scripture and there is also a prayer meant to pray alongside your spouse. At the end of the 5th day of the week devotion there is a exercise that pertains to what you read all week that pertains specifically toward you and your spouse. The exercise is awesome and you'll probably learn a thing or two or just be reminded about certain likes, traits, and just overall more about your spouse and your relationship together.
I highly recommend this book and feel that whether you are newly married or have been married for quite sometime that Love and War Devotional for Couples would be a great resource and study to keep your marriage flourishing.
Disclaimer: WaterBrook/Multnomah Publishers provided me with this book free of charge for review.
Posted December 8, 2010
This book caught my eye for one simple reason, I love the writings of John and Stasi. They write in such a way that it makes you feel like you are talking to friends instead of reading a book. They also write in a very blunt style sometimes that I like. It's not sugar coated. "Love and War" starts out like that. In the first three devotionals they mentioned every time that marriage is hard. And it is.
I wasn't able to finish the whole book in time to get this review done but what I did read is fantastic. It's a way to sit down with your spouse every day and get insight into what the other is thinking and feeling. There is a prayer every day and a scripture verse that goes along with what they are talking about for the day.
I highly recommend this book for married or engaged couples. It's only 8 weeks and it won't take up much of your day. It's a great way to make sure that you have time for your spouse and God every day.
Posted October 8, 2010
It's easy to begin something new excited and optimistic. And then the moment something less-than-perfect happens it might seem like the whole world is crashing down. John and Stasi Eldredge offer guidance to husband and wives who find themselves wondering what went wrong in their marriages. People aren't perfect. Instead, the Eldredges point out that people are insecure about themselves, unreasonable in their expectations, and inapt when it comes to effective communication. But they tell us that marriage is used by God to transform us into better people. That means making sacrifices for someone else, even when you're not feeling up to it. A union will always face difficulties, but the benefits of having each other through life will be worth the effort. Although this book is directed towards the married demographic, as a single I still found insightful lessons about the right and wrong ways to approach a new relationship.
This book was provided for review by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group.
Posted October 4, 2010
It's only natural that, after writing about the topics of God's design for men (Wild at Heart), women (Captivating), spiritual warfare (Waking the Dead), and the parallels between human romance and our relationship with God (The Sacred Romance), it's only logical that John and Stasi Eldredge expound on, and combine, all of those ideas in a book about marriage. Those already familiar with the ministry and writings of both Eldredges will see many similarities in their latest book, Love and War. But it's not merely the same old regurgitated stuff. Love and War is full of fresh ideas, filtered through the familiar Ransomed Heart framework.
Marriage is perhaps the most covered topic in all of American Christianity. And judging by the way marriage among professing Christians has been getting bludgeoned, it's understandable why. But Love and War differs from the bulk of marriage-themed books in most Christian bookstores in at least two major ways.
First, there's the transparency of the authors themselves. John and Stasi share their victories, their defeats, their success, their failures, their ups, their downs, their fights, and their sins. They are open about the topic of sex as it has played out in their marriage. They are open about expectations, and falling short of them. They are open about their pre-marriage pasts, each of them. The authors are open even as they urge the reader to adopt the same kind of transparency.
Secondly, the authors are not afraid to point out that marriage is hard. Some marriage books will tell you that marriage is hard work. But this is the first I have seen which says, in frank terms, that marriage will, at times, test you, break your heart, confound your expectations, and ultimately drive you to God as the only One who can answer your questions and heal the damage done in the process. Like other Eldredge books, a certain amount of emphasis is given to the topic of past hurts, and the need for healing.
Although I was provided a free copy from Ransomed Heart for review purposes, I am free to say what I want about Love and War. That said, I highly recommend the book for all people who are married, or someday wish to be.
Posted May 6, 2010
I can always count on Barnes and Noble to have exactly what I am looking for and always at a competitive price. I am always looking for the best deal and when it comes to dependability and trustworthyness, I rely on Barnes and Noble. My order was shipped to me quickly and the book came in perfect condition. Thank you Barnes and Noble, keep up the great work!
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Posted April 25, 2010
I enjoyed this book on marriage. Marriage is special to God and it should be to us too. What do you do in marriage when the hard time comes? How do you handle those times together and come out ahead together instead of fighting each other through? The authors show how we come from different backgrounds and this affects how we relate to one another. We must realize that we have an enemy to our marriage who will try to destroy it and be on guard against his attacks. This book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 27, 2010
Love and War is a story of getting the most out of a marriage. What makes this book so good is that the authors use their own personal testimonies for this journey.
Another aspect that makes this such a good read is that the truth found in these pages can be easliy applied to realtionships apart from marriage. I'm in the early stages of building a relationship with a lady that has absolutely captivated me and captured my heart. A lot of John and Stasi's story helps me understand some of what I'm going through to understand my love interest.
The Lord has used their experiences to speak strongly to what He's doing in my life with me and my lady friend.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone seriously considering a love relationship with their special someone.
Posted February 13, 2010
John & Staci have written a book on marriage using a little different view than most self help books on marriage. It is a book that I think helps you to understand yourself and why you do or react to things in your marriage, When you realize why you are reacting in certain ways it helps you to understand your spouses reactions as well.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.