Reviewed by Melissa Lockcuff
Becoming Your Spouse's Better Half
by Rick Johnson
"...a great resource for marriage, a great resource to help you understand each other better."
Rick Johnson explores Why Differences Make a Marriage Great in his book, Becoming your Spouse’s Better Half. The book is meant to be read by couples together in order to spark discussion over the things that they read. The first half of the book focuses on men and their “modes”, while the second half of the book focuses on women and their “moods.” Modes and moods could easily be translated “needs.” At the end of each chapter, there is a Get Inside Their Head section, a Words that Heal section, and a Words that Hurt section.
The author is a proponent of the theory that men’s minds are compartmentalized, meaning he can break a situation down and focus on just one part of that situation. Everything else in life takes a backseat to the one little compartment in his brain that he is focusing on. Women, however, see the bigger picture and focus more on the “whole.” One fact that Johnson gave that just really took a hold on my heart was the fact that marriages are Satan’s biggest stronghold. Marriage is the one thing that Satan wants to destroy because it is a picture of Christ and his bride, the Church. That really put marriage, divorce, and all of the statistics into perspective for me, personally. It’s a very motivating fact and very true.
Throughout the first part of the book, Johnson focuses on men. He talks about sex, work, play, a man’s role as protector, spiritual relationship, the need for guy time, etc. There were so many things I found myself nodding my head with right along with the author, simply because I could see my husband in a new light from reading these chapters. I found ways in which I can encourage my husband and help to build him up . . . and ways in which I can unwittingly tear him down. It really opened my eyes to certain aspects of our relationship. This is not to say that I agreed with everything the author wrote . . . when it comes to sex, if one partner isn’t feeling well, I believe the other should try to understand. It almost felt as if the author was saying that no matter what, if the husband wants sex, he should get it and that less sex is a reason why husbands have affairs. To me, that is not an excuse, and I don’t believe the author was trying to make it an excuse, but I could not agree with him on that point . . . both men and women have free will, a good choice or a bad choice is theirs to make. However, I do agree that intimacy is a key aspect to a good marriage.
Throughout the second half of the book, the author focused on women and their needs. He talks about romance, the home and its importance to the wife, the nurturing aspect of a woman, a woman’s cycle and PMS, the spiritual relationship, and the importance of girlfriends, etc. He gave men ways that they can help to bolster their wife’s sense of security, the feeling of being loved, and even ways to romance her. He uses stories from his own marriage as examples throughout the book, and at times I found myself laughing. He really tries to dig down deep and give a deeper meaning behind why we sometimes behave the way we do as women. In my opinion, he did a pretty good job, as he explains physical, spiritual, and emotional aspects to a woman’s mind and heart. To me, the content in this part of the book felt more objective, yet with a personal touch as well.
I would definitely recommend this book to any married couple . . . it’s a great resource for marriage, a great resource to help you understand each other better.Melissa Lockcuff: Mel is a homeschooling mom who never tires of reading with her two adventurous little boys. After working as a nurse and a teacher, she realized where her personal priorities truly lay, and she made the decision to stay home with her boys. Mel has since found a true passion for writing. Right now, she writes articles and short pieces, and she is also learning how to write literature for children. She loves all things blogging, and her personal blog, Real Heart Prints, has topics like motherhood; homeschooling; recipes; devotionals; crafting; reviews on books, movies, and other products; giveaways; and all things home and garden; etc. She currently writes reviews with the TOS Crew, and she has also partnered with a friend and fellow writer to form MamaBuzz, where she enjoys writing reviews for children's products and ministering/writing to women through that venue. She has started work on her first book, which she hopes to finish within the next few months.