What Did You Expect?: Redeeming the Realities of Marriage

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A longtime Christian counselor presents reconciliation as a lifestyle for all marriages and illustrates this grace-based approach with six daily commitments that will equip couples to navigate the day-to-day realities of married life. He is also the president of Paul Tripp Ministries. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife Luella and they have four grown children. For more information and resources, visit paultrippministries. She looked completely exhausted and defeated.

Sam just looked angry. He didn't want to be with me talking about his marriage to Mary. In fact, if the truth be told, he didn't want to be married to Mary. He'd had it! No one you know lives in a house like yours. No one you know has the things I've provided for you. No one has had the wonderful experiences around the world that I've given you.

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But, no, it's never enough. Mary, I'm tired of your constant complaining. I'm tired of daily criticism. I just don't want to do this anymore, and I don't think you do either," Sam said, as his voice trailed off. I looked at Sam and Mary, and I knew it had not always been like this.

ISBN 13: 9781433511769

I've sat with many couples while they were in the process of considering marriage, which has often been a bit of a frustrating experience for me. No, I haven't been frustrated because they were "madly" in love; I think it's wonderful when a man and woman adore one another. I think it's wonderful when they decide to spend their lives with one another.

I understand that in the throes of the romance of the moment, they find it hard to concentrate on the preparatory work that needs to get done. None of this has frustrated me. I think that deep mutual affection is a beautiful thing.

Here's what has frustrated me again and again: unrealistic expectations. There — I've said it. I am persuaded that it is more regular than irregular for couples to get married with unrealistic expectations. Again and again I have sat with couples who simply do not seem to be taking seriously the important things the Bible has to say about what every marriage will encounter in the here and now.

Unrealistic expectations always lead to disappointment. You know this is true if you have ever looked at a vacation Web site before traveling there. No vacation site will actually look as nice and function as well as it does on its promotional site on the Internet. You inevitably end up disappointed because you started out with unrealistic expectations. We took our family on a vacation to Disney World. We looked at that beautiful Disney literature. But we weren't told that we would stand under a blazing sun for 90 minutes in degree heat and percent humidity to ride a ride that takes 33 seconds!

What Did You Expect? : Redeeming the Realities of Marriage by Paul David Tripp | eBay

My son, who was at this time just a little guy, saw a ride that he wanted to go on. We walked for what seemed like forever and finally found the end of the line. We stood in line so long that my son and I had this conversation: "Dad," he said, "why are we standing here? Part of the problem is the way we use Scripture. We mistakenly treat the Bible as if it were arranged by topic — you know, the world's best compendium of human problems and divine solutions. So when we're thinking about marriage, we run to all the marriage passages. But the Bible isn't an encyclopedia; it is a story, the great origin-to-destiny story of redemption.

In fact, it is more than a story. It is a theologically annotated story. It is a story with God's notes. This means that we cannot understand what the Bible has to say about marriage by looking only at the marriage passages, because there is a vast amount of biblical information about marriage not found in the marriage passages. In fact, we could argue, to the degree that every portion of the Bible tells us things about God, about ourselves, about life in this present world, and about the nature of the human struggle and the divine solution, to that degree every passage in the Bible is a marriage passage.

Every passage imparts to us insight that is vital for a proper understanding of the passages that directly address marriage, and every passage tells us what we should expect as we deal with the comprehensive relationship of marriage. One of our problems is that we have not used the Bible biblically, and this has set us up for surprises we shouldn't have had. But the unrealistic expectations have another source. It's almost as though the potential husband and wife are motivated not to hear the truth about what they will inevitably face, because they don't want anything to mess up the unfettered affection that has left them in a virtual romantic delirium.

Now again, I want to say that I think that deep and mutual affection is a beautiful thing, but we must not let it motivate us to deny reality. That dynamic is like what happens to you while you are consuming a wonderful meal of deep-fried fish and chips, which will be followed by a dessert of rich chocolate cake and ice cream. You simply have no interest in considering what this meal is doing to your heart and waistline.

You do not want to discuss calories and cholesterol. You are not very motivated to consider fat and sugar content. No, you want to savor every delectable morsel. You want to consume all the fish and fries you can while they are still warm and crunchy. And no matter how full you are, you are planning to consume a hearty piece of that four-layer, double-chocolate mousse cake.

What is love? - Paul Tripp Highlight

You see, in the midst of the power of premarital romance, it is very hard to get yourself to want to take a hard and honest look at reality, that is, those things that every couple will face someday, somehow, someway. You are scared that under the heat of the light of truth, your affection may evaporate.

You fear that something is going to mess up the delight of what you are experiencing at the moment. What you are experiencing is one of the most powerful things a human being can experience. Love is compelling. It is motivating. It is intoxicating. It can command your mind and control your emotions. You sit with the one you love, considering your marriage to come, and you want what you are now feeling and experiencing to last forever.

And you're not about to do anything that will mess it up. Here's how it tends to work: you're in love and convinced that the love you are now feeling will get you through anything you might face. You simply don't want to dig up potential difficulty. You don't want to consider what could be. You don't want to let the future get in the way of what you are experiencing in the moment. Your attention span is short. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife Luella and they have four grown children.

For more information and resources, visit paultrippministries. Wise words. Authentic experience. Provocative application. Turned a long trip into a fruitful two-person marriage seminar. In What Did You Expect? I, personally, found the book to be helpful, and we use it extensively at the Village Church. Paul Tripp allows readers to examine marriage through a biblical lens so that we understand how God can graciously heal our hurting homes.

As a pastor, I will implore our people to read this book as soon as it is available. SlideShare Explore Search You. Submit Search. Successfully reported this slideshow. We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime. Upcoming SlideShare. Like this document? Why not share! Embed Size px. Start on.