The one book you HAVE to read before you get married (And a few others!) / by Hannah Byrne

So there are TONS of books out there all claiming to be "game-changers" for your life, marriage & relationships. And if you find yourself engaged, I'm sure you already have a lot of things on your to-do list. Planning a wedding can be a little overwhelming!  Adding 10 different books to that list might just push you over the edge!

But here's the thing (and I've said this before), your wedding is ONE day. Your marriage will hopefully last decades.

So what's more important to plan for?

The biggest advice I can give, go to a premarital counselor! If you have married friends, a church community (or a computer for that matter), you can find a great counselor! Start there and make a commitment to a few sessions. Your future marriage will thank you.

THE ONE BOOK YOU HAVE TO READ:

If you have the time, I also recommend reading The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller

When Stephen and I were engaged we actually listened to this book while driving to South Carolina. And then I actually read it again because a re-fresh is always a good idea!

I will warn you, it's written by a Christian pastor. It's based on Christian values and works off of that foundation. So if that's not your thing, no worries. I honestly think it's worth reading no matter where you are in your faith journey!

A few of my favorite quotes:

“In any relationship, there will be frightening spells in which your feelings of love dry up. And when that happens you must remember that the essence of marriage is that it is a covenant, a commitment, a promise of future love. So what do you do? You do the acts of love, despite your lack of feeling. You may not feel tender, sympathetic, and eager to please, but in your actions you must BE tender, understanding, forgiving and helpful. And, if you do that, as time goes on you will not only get through the dry spells, but they will become less frequent and deep, and you will become more constant in your feelings. This is what can happen if you decide to love.” 

“Within this Christian vision of marriage, here's what it means to fall in love. It is to look at another person and get a glimpse of what God is creating, and to say, "I see who God is making you, and it excites me! I want to be part of that. I want to partner with you and God in the journey you are taking to his throne. And when we get there, I will look at your magnificence and say, 'I always knew you could be like this. I got glimpses of it on earth, but now look at you!” 

“Friendship is a deep oneness that develops when two people, speaking the truth in love to one another, journey together to the same horizon.” 

I asked Facebook friends what books they would recommend an engaged couple read and got TONS of responses! Here three more books people suggested (that came up over and over!!)

The five love languages

 Love and Respect

You and Me Forever: Marriage in Light of Eternity

 

So if you're looking for ways to prepare for your marriage,

any of those books would be a great place to start!