I am often asked to recommend books on marriage restoration. As someone who talks to a lot of Christian couples, I know that they want books that are in line with their Christian beliefs. Thankfully, there are a lot of Christian books on marriage restoration out there.
Christian books can be of great help, regardless of whether you have a Christian marriage or not. One good thing about Christian books is that they do not tend to delve into the specifics of their religion. Rather, they mention the core principles of honesty, love, and affection. This makes them accessible to everyone.
We take a look at 3 such marriage books and how they can help revive your marriage. Even if you have a great marriage, some of these books can be of use to you. One piece of advice that I love to give to happy couples is that happiness has no limits, and they have no idea how much happier they can be!
Best Books on How to Save Your Marriage
I have regularly talked about all the complexities that marriage brings to your life at different times. However, it is impossible to go into the kind of depth that some of these books go into. It is never a good idea to fix your marriage on a wing and a prayer. There is a reason why marriage advice is a billion-dollar industry, and the reason is that it works!
Marriage books can be a great tool to supplement your relationship. Just remember that not everything that you read in these books will apply to you. Each marriage is unique, and there is no de-facto perfect book for marriage that can solve all your problems.
One thing I suggest to couples looking to improve their marriage is to make notes of the important points as they read along. When they finish a chapter, they should analyze which of these points are applicable to their marriage. Then, they should try to integrate them into their lives.
An additional tip is to read marriage books together with your spouse. I do not mean that you should be reading from the same book. Rather, you should be finishing the exact same book that your spouse is reading. This way, the two of you can openly discuss how the book may improve your marriage. Discussions at the halfway point and at the end of the book are the most useful in my opinion.
What if I Don’t Have a Christian Marriage?
The great thing about the books that I mention here is that they can be applicable to all couples. In fact, it is best to not think of these books as having been written for a Christian marriage. In fact, some of them do not even refer to Christianity in their content.
I consider these books as ideal for a Christian marriage because they are in line with all the teachings of Christianity. They do not try to get Christian couples to do anything that they may not agree with. For example, some books explore polygamy as a viable option for a successful marriage. This is obviously against Christian principles, and such books are not included on this list.
Simply put, the advice offered here is applicable universally to almost every single marriage. No matter what your religion, the following books will offer timeless advice that can bolster your marriage in ways you never thought possible!
If you have been looking online for books about marriage, then you have probably heard about John Gottman and Nan Silver. This book is considered by many to be the one single book that can make a marriage successful.
The reason why I am including this first is that this is a book that can help all marriages. Chances are that your marriage is not going well if you are reading this. However, even those in a successful marriage can follow the seven principles.
I have seen this book help couples who married recently as well as those who have been married for decades. Roughly paraphrased, these are the seven principles discussed in the book:
- Expanding your love maps.
- Learning to properly love one another in a practical manner.
- Finding solutions to problems through each other rather than through external means.
- Learning to be influenced by your spouse.
- Solving the problems that can be solved first.
- Figuring out the solutions to difficult problems.
- Creating meaning together.
These principles should be considered as the foundation for each marriage. Not only do they help ensure proper communication between your spouse, but they also help you better understand how they may be different from you.
The One Problem With The Seven Principles
Gottman and Silver do tend to stereotype the genders a fair bit in this book. While the stereotypes are generally accurate in my opinion (e.g. men tend to open up less, whereas women tend to be a bit more emotional), they are not applicable to everyone.
The role of the genders in a marriage has consolidated a lot in recent decades. As such, you should take extreme care to make sure that everything mentioned here applies to you before you act on it. That said, the principles themselves are applicable to pretty much every single marriage.
Combining The Right Principles With The Right Questions
I recommend this book to couples constantly. Usually, I combine it with 5 real questions that can save a marriage. This book deals with communicating effectively quite well, and the 5 questions can act as a supplement to that.
These 5 questions usually deal with your day-to-day interactions with your spouse. The book acts as an overarching framework that can help any marriage blossom and stay on the right track. Using the two together is a recipe for happiness.
The previous book was a general guideline for a successful marriage. Fighting For Your Marriage is for those who are simply looking for a Christian book on marriage restoration. I have discussed divorce repeatedly before, and this book directly deals with how to prevent it.
The book is based on the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program. This program has received wide acclaim, and there are numerous studies that show couples communicating better after going through the program.
Even those who have recently married can learn a lot from reading this book. Mainly, you can understand what not to do, and how to predict conflicts long before they actually emerge. Overall, this book is the definitive guide for you if your marriage is in trouble.
Be Wary of The Book’s Nature
Many readers have complained that the book gets boring at times, and I have to admit that can be the case. Due to the way it is written, there is a lot of explaining that takes place in the form of examples and quotes.
You may feel like you aren’t actually learning anything concrete. I would still advise that you finish the book if you feel this way. You will be surprised by how much you learn simply by going through the examples.
In fact, a lot of these examples and quotes will be directly relatable to you and your spouse. As such, you may be able to simply copy what has worked in the past.
One of the most painful parts of a marriage is when only you want to save it. Usually, I notice people trying twice as hard, thinking that they can make up for their partner’s lack of enthusiasm.
This almost never works. However, this book does guide you through the 3 steps required to save a marriage. Loosely put, they are the following:
- Communicate effectively and admire and respect each other.
- Make sure to give your marriage the time that it needs.
- Prioritize your relationship above everything else.
You may be apprehensive about the last point. However, this only means that if your marriage is in dire straits, only then do you need to prioritize your relationship with your spouse above your career, children, and anything else that may come in the way.
The 3 steps may seem simple, but they aren’t. What the author does particularly well here is explained how you can practically assimilate these steps into your life and your marriage. The book also helps you understand how to behave when your spouse is not interested in saving the marriage.
The Book Can Sometimes Feel Like an Advert
This is a problem that many readers report, and I have to agree. Occasionally, it does seem like the author is simply trying to push his marriage recovery program onto the reader.
The program is definitely not bad, but you may not need it. Chances are that the book will be enough to get you and your spouse back on track. If you notice that your relationship has improved but you need that extra help to fully restore your marriage, then you should think about opting for the program.
There are literally hundreds of books that can help you restore the spark that your marriage once had. The aforementioned ones are a great place to start. They are in line with Christian principles, and they provide valuable advice that is applicable to most marriages.