Two years ago I discussed on Instagram how Christian romance, but specifically the popular book Redeeming Love, have acted as a “gateway drug” to pornography and erotica in the lives of many young women. Testimonies flooded in from women who were recommend this book by older mentors, aunts, friends, and pastor’s wives. Now that the movie is coming out January 21st, I have moved the content of that Instagram talk to a podcast episode and blog post.
As Josh and Phy wrap up their series on marriage, they conclude by discussing growth: how do we grow together practically and encourage one another to be diligent workers for the benefit of the covenant? There are practical things we can do along with the more fundamental actions of prayer and communication. In this episode, Josh and Phy discuss the practical things they do to stay on the same page, set goals together, and encourage growth in the areas in which they need it.
When Josh and I started dating we didn’t have many things in common. We didn’t like the same music (and I liked concerts; Josh didn’t); we didn’t like the same books, games, or hobbies. We were drawn together instead by mutual values, which worked until we tried to decide what to do for fun! As time went on we discovered just how different we actually were (not just in hobbies, either – we are opposites on every single personality test, and have completely opposite rankings for our love languages, apology languages and more!).
How do we cultivate friendships as a married couple – both together and separately? In this episode of the Honest Marriage series Josh and Phy discuss the nuances and difficulties of friendship after marriage. Some friendships are for seasons, others are longterm. Making friends as adults can be hard, especially when you have to take into account your spouse’s preferences and opinions.
In honor of the NEW book launched by Phylicia and her friend, Lisa Jacobson, this week Josh and Phy talk about FLIRTATION! Is it wrong? What happens when we’re told flirtation is wrong and then get married? How did Phylicia’s 30 day flirtation experiment on Josh turn into a book??
Marriage and family take place within the larger family of Christ’s church. Church is not just a building or a dutiful Sunday attendance; it is a community of faith and accountability, and for marrieds, a support system and place to serve. Churches are made up of imperfect people and are therefore imperfect institutions, but it is within our church family that our marriages have a place to thrive.
For years it seemed like Josh and I could not come up for air. During engagement, Josh struggled to find a job after college. The job he found was unpredictable and kept him on the road every day, sometimes away for a week or more at a time. Once we were married, not much changed. We found out we were pregnant on our first anniversary and from then on experienced a succession of job changes, losses, financial set backs, out of state moves, more babies, moving again, starting a business – it just didn’t end.
If you’ve ever perused the Facebook comments on a popular Christian page, you know exactly why I’m writing this article. Facebook comment threads are a window into raw humanity, are they not? And this is true of all social media, not just Christian pages! So why do Christian commenters seem no different from their unbelieving associates? The attitude, tone, and name-calling is exactly the same – maybe with a few less swears. It doesn’t take a biblical scholar to say: Something isn’t right.
We’re told that having kids can be the death knell of a marriage. We’re told kids can ruin, wreck or render painful a relationship otherwise well preserved. But the truth is that kids don’t ruin marriages; they reveal them. Serving the children God blesses us with will expose our patterns of sin and selfishness, things we were better able to brush under the rug without little humans around. In this episode of the Honest Marriage series on Verity Podcast, Josh and Phy talk about how parenting changes marriage, how they get on the same page, and how to communicate about parenting decisions (especially in the little years).
We know God is holy. We know is kind, good, just, gracious, and all the spiritual qualities we observe in Scripture. But if we are image-bearers of Christ… created to echo His creative and loving power… is our playfulness an echo of His heart?