I picked up Dr. Emerson Eggerichs book on marriage (a focus on the family distribution) when some great people from The Grove were interested in leading a life group that would be a marriage investment. They had heard of this material and we checked it out. So, I read this in one day and would not say that I was an expert at all.
Eggerichs leads Love and Respect Ministries, so this book is basically the sum total of the ministry, in book form. It’s a pretty basic system of help with a nice theological basis in Epsheisans – without becoming a male dominated chauvinistic fundamentalist manifesto with a pretty picture in the back book jacket (not that I was worried about that from focus on the family :). With the risk of over-simplification, Eggerichs’ message is for husbands to love their wives – fully and unconditionally. That sounds simple and easy, but in reality, it is the most challenging and sacrificial (and rewarding) decision a man can make. Then, at the same time, the wife is called to respect her husband – fully and unconditionally. Which, again, sounds simple, but when you know exactly what your husband struggles with and how he isn’t perfect, it is the most challenging and sacrificial (and rewarding) decision a woman can make.
What I love about this book is that it calls for husbands and wives to live the most sacrificial love oriented lives that the world will ever see – short of the sacrificial love of Jesus. In this, the world will see a beautiful image of the love God has for humanity. And thus, marriage is no longer just for the husband and wife…it is for the gospel, for God and for the world.