I’m not a huge fan of books on marriage. It may because I’m newly and until recent I have never felt a deep motivation to read books about marriage. Of course I have read The Five Love Languages by Chapman like most people, well part of it at least. I know the gist of the book so I’ll finish it one day. But recently I finished a “marriage” book that I think every married, and future married, man must read. It’s called Date Your Wife by Justin Buzzard.
I’ll be honest, this is a hard review to write. Not because it wasn’t a good book, but because it was such an excellent book I don’t have much to say other than get yourself a copy and read it as soon as possible! I’m going to take a different approach than I normally do when I review a book so hopefully by the end of this you will be motivated read this book yourself. Or if your a wife, buy your husband a copy of this book as my wife did for me. Here are a few reasons why I believe this book is one of the best books on marriage for men.
It challenges men to be men. Let’s face it, most marriage books tend to speak in a way that woman understand while men just don’t get it. I believe it’s because most marriage books aren’t challenging men to be men. In a sense many of them are speaking the language of woman so they motivate the wives but the husband is left in the dark. Men need it straight forward. Men don’t need someone to speak softly to them, they need someone to tell them to man up and be the man God created them to be. Don’t get me wrong, there are a some good marriage books that speak to men like men, but Date Your Wife has to be the best I have seen so far. In the opening chapter of this book, Justin says, “My assumption is that all of our first date stories have one thing in common: we acted like men. We pursued our wives-to-be. We made the move. We intitated. We took the risk. We took the lead…I’m calling you to do one thing. The action I want you to take is summed up in just three words: date your wife.” This book challenges men to do what they did before marriage, date their lover. It’s simple, easy to understand, and has the power to radically change your marriage.
It lays the responsibility of marriage on the man. If your easily offended than this book my rub your the wrong way. As I said before, Justin speaks to men like men. He lays the responsibility of the marriage, whether that is a good or bad marriage, on the man. In a culture where men are not seen and challenged to be the leaders in marriage, this is a timely warning to men. If your marriage sucks it’s your fault men! Men are the leaders and everything rises and falls on leadership. The bulk of this books is six chapters split into three parts that explain where marriages go wrong and where marriages goes right. In both of these the responsibility is laid upon the men. This is how it should be. This is how God created it to be. God created Adam first and then created a help mate for him. This help mate would be Eve, Adam’s wife. Adam was commanded by God to love, cultivate, and protect her. It’s still the same today. Men are the called to be the leaders in their marriages. If your marriage goes wrong, it’s your fault men. And if it is to go good than it will take you stepping up and being the man God created you to be.
It’s Gospel-Centered. By far this is the main reason I loved and recommend this book. It’s not a self-help book like many marriage books are. It’s not filled with moral commands that are encouraged to be applied as we just “try harder.” Justin makes sure the central theme of this book is not try harder, but to let the Gospel go deep into your heart and life so as a result of the Gospel you radically change the way you think, act, and pursue your wife. All throughout this book Justin pleads with men to remember the good news of the Gospel. It’s the Gospel that helps men date their wives. It’s the Gospel that changes the man which then changes the marriage.
Bottom line is this: every man who is a husband or hopes to be one in the future needs to read this book. It will be worth the money and time it takes to read this book. I believe this book has the power to change marriages like no other marriage book has ever done before.