Much of my time spent away from the blog was joyfully spent in reading books that have gathered in my bedside basket. One of the best was Gary Thomas' Sacred Influence. Written for wives on topics that may not be so comfortable, Sacred Influence preserves the Biblical dignity given to women in Scripture and by Christ when he was on earth, but at the same time it does not allow for a post-modern view of marriage or the abdication of our God-given calling as wives.
Like Mr. Thomas' book entitled Sacred Marriage, Sacred Influence reminds its reader that marriage does not exist to make us happy. Marriage exists to make us holy. Thomas begins with me, the wife, and what God may be trying to teach me through my husband and marriage. He encourages wives to be contrite, honest, and introspective before turning an eye toward our husband's faults. But he does so in a way that my friend Heather describes as "smooth chocolate". Who can resist a book like that?
From Sacred Influence:
"The good news is that you and God are in this together. He knew, even before he created you, whom you'd marry. And he will continue to give you the tools you need to become the person he's called you to be and to do the work he's created you to do within your current relationship. God would never leave you alone in any situation: "He will never leave you nor forsake you" (Deut 31:6). Even if you married a non-Christian, God's grace is sufficient for you. You cannot dig a hole so deep that it cuts you off from God's provision, care, and life-giving strength.... "