How does a couple build oneness into their marriage? Jerome and Kellie Daley try to help in Not Your Parents' Marriage.
The cofounders of oneFlesh Ministries, the Daleys advise husbands and wives on the importance of leaving the parents emotionally, as well as physically, on fitting into the spouse's extended family and other aspects of marriage from a contemporary perspective. They discuss including God in the romance, traditional versus contemporary understanding of roles in marriage, and offer a simple personality test to determine whether you are a "warrior" or an "artist."
Writing in a conversational style which incorporates anecdotes from their marriage, the authors include their own conversations, discussion questions at the end of each chapter, and boxes for both readers to write their answers to application questions.
The Daleys offer some helpful advice on separating from the family, having a shared destiny, enjoying intimacy with God and your spouse, and the two responses to conflict. However, they make some assertions without Scripture to back them up. For example:
"God intends to unveil the values of community, equality, and partnership not exclusively in marriage, but uniquely in marriage. And as God does this, the face of marriage will take on the radiance of heaven itself and will advance the cause of Christ on the earth. This is part of God's design for this generation" (p. 20).
How do they know this is Godís intention scripturally? At other times the Daleys assert that Scripture supports an idea that it doesn't. Such as, the passages in Proverbs which personify wisdom as a woman really show the feminine characteristics of God.
Their interpretation of the curse passage in Genesis 3 differs from any I'd heard before. Instead of the traditional understanding of Eve's sin bringing God's judgment on her by her "desire" being to her husband and his "ruling" over her, the Daleys believe that God "knew...wives would forsake their dependency on God and would 'desire' their husbands" (p. 41). They reject the traditional masculine and feminine domains at home and in the church, do not deal with the verses that do not fit, such as Titus 2:5, and suggest improvements on Proverbs 31. Thankfully they do not suggest that the virtuous woman was a real estate agent because she bought a piece of land as some preachers have preached.
Because Kellie Daley's personality is that of a "warrior" and Jerome's is that of an "artist," they present some valuable insights on making that type of marriage work. I think in their eagerness to help couples, however, they try to conform the Scripture to their ideas rather than conform their ideas to Scripture. They also underestimate the beauty of a "warrior" woman going into spiritual warfare through more scriptural roles. Ė Debbie W. Wilson, Christian Book Previews.com
Itís not just the two of you and God. The truth is, you bring your family into your relationship in more ways than you realize. Yet God has plans for your marriage that differ from the expectations of your parentsí generation. Looking at the past, how do you know what to jettison and what to keep as your own?
Jerome and Kellie Daley have wrestled with the tough questions about which spouse is responsible for what and why, how last nightís fight could help you love each other more, and what it really means to leave your parents and become full partners in marriage. As you practice the freeing biblical truths about marriage, you discover that many of the practicalities that worked for previous generations are a poor fit in your relationship.
Not Your Parentsí Marriage examines Godís dreams for marriage today, based on the scriptures and including honest dialog, fun questionnaires, and space for journaling. Itís time to honor what God has done in the past while unlocking the creativity and passion that are unique to your relationship.
Whether you are engaged, married, or somewhere on the way, God wants to do a new thing in your relationship. Are you ready to experience it?