The Beautiful Wife: Focused on Christ, Fulfilled in Marriage

Overview

There was a time when author Sandy Ralya’s marriage was in trouble. She needed help but she was afraid to ask for it. At the time, she didn’t know that hundreds of other wives were struggling with the same issues she was. Though Sandy eventually sought guidance from godly mentors and Christian counselors, other women remain silent. Many churches lack ministries and resources to reach out and help these women.

Sandy Ralya founded Beautiful Womanhood in 2003 to provide the same ...

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The Beautiful Wife: Focused on Christ, Fulfilled in Marriage

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Overview

There was a time when author Sandy Ralya’s marriage was in trouble. She needed help but she was afraid to ask for it. At the time, she didn’t know that hundreds of other wives were struggling with the same issues she was. Though Sandy eventually sought guidance from godly mentors and Christian counselors, other women remain silent. Many churches lack ministries and resources to reach out and help these women.

Sandy Ralya founded Beautiful Womanhood in 2003 to provide the same nurturing and mentoring that changed her life and her marriage and began to speak to hundreds of women each year. Hearing the stories of women like herself, Sandy realized the need for resources based on practical teaching, sound research, and real-life experiences. The Beautiful Wife uses these inspiring stories along with biblical principles to guide and encourage any wife looking for God’s best in her marriage. The Beautiful Wife answers serious questions women have about their roles as wives. Discussing everything from romance and money to beauty, communication, and sex, Sandy challenges women to open up and share their journeys so that together they can see God’s plan for their marriages. “It is my passion to help women discover God’s heart for their marriage, just as other women helped me,” writes Sandy. “When women share with each other the details of their journeys with God as wives, it’s a beautiful thing indeed.”

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Editorial Reviews

Gary Thomas
"The Beautiful Wife is a practical, catch-all book for women who want to explore and discuss what it means to be married in every sense of the term--Sandy Ralya covers everything. Chapter 7, on communication, is worth the price of the book in itself, one of the best discussions I’ve read on that topic."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780825442209
  • Publisher: Kregel Publications
  • Publication date: 2/10/2012
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 434,424
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Sandy Ralya is the founder and director of Beautiful Womanhood and speaks to hundreds of women each year at MOPS groups, women’s retreats, and church leadership conferences across the country and in Canada. Sandy and her husband, Tom, have been married since 1980 and have three grown children and and growing number of grandchildren. Sandy bases her ministry near Grand Rapids, Michigan.
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 23, 2012

    “I believe this book will be life-changing for many, many

    “I believe this book will be life-changing for many, many women and their marriages.”–Shaunti Feldhahn, For Women Only (Jeff Feldhahn has a book, For Men Only)

    My Review:

    The Beautiful Wife, by Sandy Ralya, is based on Titus 2:2-5, “Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, … so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, … children, … being subject to their own husbands, so that the Word of God will not be dishonored.”

    Sandy’s book is instrumental in teaching wives how to become a Christ-centered wife that complements her husband and cares for her family. Sandy doesn’t just tell you what you should be doing, but gives personal and other examples that help you understand the concept. She’s very transparent about her own marriage so you know that everyone has struggles.

    The first chapter, Equipping for the Journey, is pivotal to the rest of the book. Sandy lists several steps that are vital:

    Turn to God: Be Still; Worship; Read the Bible; Pray
    Understand Your Role: Equal Partner, Friend, Helper, Prayer Warrior
    Share Within a Community of Women: Humility, Transparency and Accountability

    The rest of the book is centered on these three important issues. Part of it is accomplished by the Reflection section, where you answer questions about yourself with deep honesty and transparency. The First Steps section will give you some goals/steps that you will be expected to follow through on, and will be held accountable for at the next meeting. As Sandy would ask, “After all, isn’t that why you’ve made time to study The Beautiful Wife?”

    The other chapters include the following. They are in-depth and handled with grace.

    Self-Care
    Living Genuinely
    Cultivating Mystique
    Inviting Romance
    Thoughts About Sex
    Opening Communication–Speaking the Truth in Love
    Managing Money
    Creating a Culture of Beauty
    Professionalizing the Roles of Wife/Mother
    Choosing God’s Best

    One thing I suggest when you read the book, is to remember it’s written for wives, not husbands. I struggled with some of the concepts because I felt it fit both spouses. And a lot of it does, but Sandy is only focusing on the woman’s part. That will help calm down some of those hackles that start to rise when you think the woman has to do all the changing.

    My biggest complaint is that this book wasn’t available when I first got married! Growing up with three brothers, being a tomboy, and not getting much motherly advice on the ways of women made our marriage difficult for a number of years as well. I could have used a lot of the advice written between the covers of this book! So much practical and Scriptural advice! Also, please heed the advice about sexual and physical abuse issues. You will most likely need professional help.

    If you whole-heartedly persist with God and the Holy Spirit, your marriage can be changed to be a light to others, while creating a peaceful, loving home environment for your husband, your children and yourself. It’s a win-win situation.

    This study can be implemented in home groups, church-hosted meetings, or one-on-one mentoring. I would recommend Sandy’s book for single women thinking about marriage as well as engaged women.

    This book was provided by Cat Hoort of Kregel Publications. My review is my own honest opinion. No monetary compensation was exchanged.

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  • Posted April 4, 2012

    The Beautiful Wife discusses topics such as self-care, romance,

    The Beautiful Wife discusses topics such as self-care, romance, communication, truth in love, the roles of wife and mother, and choosing God’s best. The author recommends following the chapters, encouraging a small group of women who will support each other, and holding one another accountable for implementing the suggestions in the book. There are also companion books for the mentor of the small group and a prayer journal for each individual. In the journal, Bible passages for contemplation are suggested - as are prayers focusing on your husband and marriage.


    Ralya’s marriage mentoring ministry would seem to be a terrific offering. I would have reservations about joining a small group and removing my “mask” as the author recommends. I think my friends like my “mask”. If I had many problems, my poor friends would probably feel helpless and embarrassed by my troubles.


    However, Ralya’s insights seem to ring true. As she says, “Be direct.” Hints to my husband only frustrate good communication. Also, she suggests appreciating rather than criticizing. That realization early in my marriage helped turn frustrating moments into moments of love and laughter. These relationship tips have been suggested in thousands of books, but Ralya’s sincerity, scripture passages, and organization might win many readers over. Many women, like me, might feel more comfortable using the text and the companion books for individual reflection and study. A few less than “politically correct” comments surprised me. Some women may feel that the book puts too much emphasis on fixing ourselves - rather than on our husbands taking part in the process. However if the results are good, why worry about pointing fingers or who made more of an effort? These books, because of the author’s sincere intent, could improve the lives of married women who really wish to connect with their husbands, becoming caring partners again.

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  • Posted February 27, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Every woman needs to read this book!

    The Beautiful Wife is a book for the gloriously messy woman who has serious and not-so-serious questions about her role as a wife. It's a book for the woman who longs to develop deep relationships with real women who don't gloss over the dirty realities of life. It's book for the woman who wants to experience more fulfillment, passion, and meaning in her marriage.

    It can be a difficult thing to understand the role of a wife in this day and age. As a matter of fact, it's always been a hard role to understand. After all, it's not a one-size-fits-all kind of job, and it may require tweaking with each new season of life. Your marriage is different than mine, and both of our marriages are different than your friend's. Recipe theology - living by a one-size-fits-all formula - leaves all women hungry. But there are answers that satisfy.

    In the book The Beautiful Wife, you will find some of those answers. In fact the more you work through the book, the more you to turn God and talk vulnerably within a loving community of women, the more answers you'll find. The stories of imperfect women with imperfect marriages will refresh you and also challenge you to make changes in your role as a wife, which will improve your marriage. You can use this book with small groups of women, alone, or with a mentor and I truly believe it will change your marriage for the better and teach you that there isn't such a thing as a perfect marriage or husband.

    I received the book, The Beautiful Wife by Sandy Ralya compliments of Litfuse Publicity for my honest review and this came at a perfect time for me. I'm always evaluating how my own marriage can be better and how I can improve as a wife. Just the first chapter alone was like a breath of fresh air to my heart and soul as Sandy explains her own personal struggle in her marriage and trying to find a better way to make it work. I felt as if her words were my own and could relate to her story, realizing I am not alone in my thoughts, actions and worse yet, words. However through simple instructions, I saw how I could improve my husband through my actions alone and not anything I say or try to get him to do.

    The biggest eye opener for me was when Sandy taught about the unique differences and roles we each bring into the marriage, though we are equal, we are not the same. Clearly Adam needed something he didn't already possess or there would be no need for Eve. It's realizing what strengths each of us brings to the marriage and how we can use those strengths to build the other up and strengthen our marriage. Men need our strengths in encouragement, our ability to find solutions in the midst of storms and instead of us dwelling on all the things we find fault with in our husbands, we need to think about all the positives, (Philippians 4:8). I can wait to see what blessings our marriage will bring as we both work through building our marriage and work towards being the best we can be in our roles as husbands and wives.

    I easily rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and highly recommend it to any woman who is currently married or considering marriage. It's also great for women's Bible Studies and for Couples Counseling as well.

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  • Posted February 26, 2012

    Encouraging and Inspirational

    I have to be honest, when I first signed up to be a part of this blog tour I was a bit worried that I’d signed myself up to read another overwhelming book on being a “good wife.” I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. In fact, the last book I read on this subject left me feeling super guilty that I wasn’t running around 24/7 on 4 hours of sleep a night. Sometimes books on this subject are more condemning than encouraging, or at least that’s how it feels to an already frazzled wife. Because of these past experiences I was a little scared to read this one.
    I’m happy to report that Sandy Ralya’s new book, The Beautiful Wife, is not overwhelming, guilt-inducing, or scary!
    This book is full of encouraging, helpful information aimed at really helping wives to look at their hearts and inspire them to become the wife God calls them to be. Sandy offers tips and inspiration that are practical and applicable in real-life in way that is hopeful and helpful. The information and guidance provided are all backed up with biblical principles; there is no shortage of applicable verses in this book. It was such an encouragement to me that I read it all within a few days, usually a book of this nature takes me quite a while to get through if it’s not for an organized Bible study. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for encouragement and inspiration in being a beautiful wife.
    I was also given the opportunity to review the prayer journal and mentor’s guide that accompany this book. Both are done beautifully and in a way that will be highly effective in aiding this study. The prayer journal follows information provided in each chapter and gives you a chance to journal your responses and further reflect on what you’ve read. The mentor’s guide is unlike any other I’ve seen before; the entire first half of the book talks about being a mentor and how to best help this study along, it’s not a just a book full of discussion questions. The mentor’s guide also gives the mentor quite a bit of useful information to aid preparation for each week, as well as how to guide discussion and lead the flow of the meeting. I would love to use the materials to lead a study and may look into doing so in the future.

    Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to post a positive review.

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  • Posted February 25, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Being Truly Beautiful

    Beautiful. The word brings up many images in our society today, but none that really touch the heart of a Christian woman. What does it mean to have a beautiful spirit? to be beautiful to your husband and family? to see yourself through God's eyes? In this wonderful book, Sandy Ralya addresses these questions and more. She equips women with answers so that they can not only help themselves, but also help others to be fulfilled in their marriages. The topics addressed include: finances, sex, diet, style, and so much more. If you want help with how to be balanced and happy in your marriage with God's help in today's world, this book is a great choice for you.

    My package also included two companion books - "The Prayer Journal" and the "Mentor's Guide." The "Mentor's Guide" answers the questions women might have before mentoring someone, and also gives ideas on working with a group and how to lead a discussion. It really helps allay some of the fear that accompanies leading a group. The "Prayer Journal" is a wonderful tool to help you stay on track with the lessons and set up invaluable new habits for prayer and Bible study and memorization.

    These books are wonderful tools for women's group leaders! The Scripture and lesson/story really attack the topics on the minds of Christian women today. I especially like the "Reflection" and "First Steps" that go along with each lesson and wholeheartedly recommend it to church groups everywhere. My free review copies were made possible by the blog tour from Litfuse, and I thank them and the publisher for the opportunity. This is a set of books I will use over and over, and give as gifts.

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  • Posted February 10, 2012

    Meets a need

    In this book the author meets a need of many women: how do we rise above the demands everyone puts on us and focus on being the wife we need to be. If you're a Christian, it's often hard to get help because of the pressure to look perfect and like you have it all together. The author wrote this book to help fill that need. This book is designed to help women mentor other women in marriage by providing points of discussion on important areas like money, self-care, communication, speaking the truth in love, living genuinely and sex. The accompanying mentor's guide provides strategies for how to translate the book into an effective study. This combination could feel a need for mentoring ministries in many churches.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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