This post is part of Alisa DiLorenzo’s Called to Love Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with many other inspiring bloggers. To learn more and join us, CLICK HERE.
My husband and I have been married for 10 years now…but we’ve been together for almost 17! And you know what? We are still getting to know each other.
You would think that after being with someone for so long you’d know just about everything there is to know about them. The truth is, getting to know your spouse is a lifelong journey. We all experience seasons of change, and how we handled things when we were dating will be different from the way we handle them now as husband and wife, and as parents!
I’ve had my fair share of good, and not so good examples of what a marriage should look like. I knew what I wanted and what I didn’t want in a marriage. And although I knew marriage wasn’t going to be easy, it was something I always wanted. I am grateful every day that God saved my husband just for me. He really is my gift. I realize now every marriage is different. And how it remains is ultimately based on the work and prayers you both put in.
I’ve learned that in marriage it really is not about how my husband can serve me, it’s about how I can serve my husband. When we get into heated arguments and I finally calm down, I get a little tug at my heart that reminds me to apologize and find out what he needs. It’s not always easy, but imagine if we both were concerned about serving each other all the time. We’d both be pretty happy, right?
In the Beginning
Before we got married we went through pre-marital counseling. I recommend it to every engaged couple I meet. We also read a book called, “His Needs, Her Needs” that opened up a world of knowledge for us. For 13 weeks we dug deep and discussed topics that broke us emotionally. There were moments of discovery, forgiveness, relief and even pain…especially pain. There was so much we needed to work through both individually and as a couple. In the end, it made us stronger and more vulnerable to one another. It was a beautiful thing.
The first few years of marriage were truly amazing. Sure we we had our hard times but we also had a ton of fun. For me, the most challenging season in our married life began as we started growing our family. I wasn’t ready, then again, no one ever is. I barley started my career only to be laid off just few days after buying our first home. I was working on my graduate degree and then I was pregnant. The most exciting and most terrifying time in my life. Things definitely change after kids.
10 years and two kids later, still in the same condo we promised to graduate from after 5 years, we are still together. As we neared the 10 year mark I wondered if there was a counseling program or a new book that would help me get through some of the challenges I was facing as a wife, as a mother, as a woman! I thought surely there is a post-marital counseling session we can sign up for.
Things just got harder!
But, I’m happy to share that I have found the book. Or should I say, the book found me.
Called to Love
I’m excited to share this book with you 1) because it’s what my marriage needs this moment in time and 2) because my friend Alisa Dilorenzo, marriage coach, speaker, best-selling author, and co-host of the ONE Extraordinary Marriage Show wrote the book!
Friends, it is my pleasure to introduce you to, “Called to Love: Experiencing Your Best Marriage Through the Words of Jesus.”
After reading the first few pages, I knew it was a gift from God. I’ve already shed a few tears!
I’m grateful that Alisa has answered her calling to love on married couples and serve them through sharing her stories, expertise and experience. If you haven’t listened to the ONE Extraordinary Podcast I urge you to check it out. And hey, while you’re there check out the 7 Days of Sex Challenge! Seriously, it’s the best podcast ever. Alisa and her husband Tony get real and raw about intimacy in marriage. They share so many valuable resources for married couples.
Back to the book. Called to Love is a 40 day devotional that teaches married couples how to look at their spouse through Jesus’ eyes. Alisa shares her story about how she was called to read the Gospels again because it contained the “blueprint for marriage.” Gasp! Isn’t that what we all need? A blueprint or instruction manual on how to do this thing called marriage?
Here are a few reasons why I love this book already…
- It’s broken down into short but powerful devotions I can read daily
- At the end of each devotional is a thoughtful prayer
- There is a space for you to write down your thoughts and prayers after each devotional – I left a few notes for my husband already for when he reads it
- It makes me think and it makes me pray, not that I don’t already, but it is keeping me accountable to pray over my husband and our marriage
As I began to read this book there were a few messages that stood out. There are a few things I need to do in order to get the full experience. If and when you pick up this book, and I hope you do, here is what I encourage you to do…
Be Expectant. Alisa starts the book off by telling us to, “open each day with an expectant heart…expect that you are going to have fresh insight into your actions, your heart and your marriage.” What does this all mean? It means to claim the changes you want to see, be open and positive to the changes that will happen. Expect it and it will come.
Be Willing. Be willing to make the changes you know you need to make. Be willing to try new things. It might not be easy, but it will be worth it.
Be Vulnerable. I used to think that my vulnerability made me weak. Now I know that it makes me human and it makes me strong. Embrace vulnerability with your spouse. Open up to them in a way you never have before.
Be Intentional. Just as you should be expectant, be intentional. Invite your spouse to read this book with you. Set a time for when you will read the book. Use the space provided, or your personal journal, to document your thoughts and prayers. Write down the things you want to change, ideas on how you can serve your spouse, reasons why you love your spouse. Write down the nice things they do for you, count your blessings, share what you’re thankful for…track your progress.
I believe that when we do these things we will begin to fall in love with our spouse all over again. And in turn make an even deeper connection with them. If that is what you are looking for I invite you to join me in reading Called to Love.
Learn more about Alisa and grab your copy here TODAY!
“When you and I take a stand for our marriages, when we say that it’s going to be different, when we say that we are taking divorce off the table, generations are changed. One couple living out God’s word, serves as light to others. Our couple choosing to not let anything separate them impacts everyone in their community and ultimately in the world.”
Called to Love Day 1: More Than Just Words for Your Wedding Vows
I love this powerful quote from the book that shares how a strong marriage, not perfect a marriage, can make a difference in generations to come! I want my kids to see my husband and I and say, “I want that kind of love when I grow up.”
Let’s be the change, let’s make a difference, let’s be the examples the world needs to see and let’s stay married to our spouses!
What challenges are you facing in your marriage today? What are your favorite resources for married couples? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Bestselling author Alisa DiLorenzo has written a new book about what it means to be Called to Love. Many call this book “inspiring” and “fabulous.” I call it a game-changer. You can grab a copy at https://goo.gl/LsU62g.
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of Called to Love as part of the Blog Tour. All opinions are my own.