Every married couple (and every Biblical counselor) knows that marriages grow in grace (or become progressively embittered against each other and hardened to the gospel) one ordinary moment at a time. In Marriage Matters, Winston Smith reminds the reader from 1 John 4 that God is purposefully in those so-called ordinary moments, that extraordinary change occurs as we seek to live out the gospel in practical Christlike ways in those “ordinary” situations, and that God desires to use those seemingly mundane situations to glorify Himself and conform us to His image as we love our spouses consistently, over time, as an overflow of our own growing relationship with the Lord. Smith employs this framework to help us grapple with our relentless idolatry, our tendency to manipulate others for our own advantage instead of honoring them, honesty and speaking truth in relationships, conflict, forgiveness, headship and submission, intimacy and sex, and the growth in grace necessary to persevere and “stay on the path.” Marriage does matter – to us and to God. Marriage Matters is solid and worth reading if you are married or thinking about it, or if you are in a position to counsel those who are.

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