Review of Love to Stay: Sex, Grace, and Commitment
Reviewed by Jane P. Ives
Love to Stay: Sex, Grace, and Commitment
by Adam Hamilton
(Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2013)
Marriage “has its ups and downs, its ebb and flow, and it requires perseverance, hard work and from time to time a bit of help.” That’s how Adam Hamilton describes the reality of marriage in Love to Stay: Sex, Grace, and Commitment, an effort to provide that “bit of help,” practical advice and encouragement for married couples or for people contemplating marriage. He explores the little things (annoyances or habits) and the big things (emotional or physical abuse; addictions to drugs, alcohol or pornography; and infidelity) that can hurt marriages, offering strategies for dealing with them.
Each chapter ends with discussion questions and valuable suggestions for couples, for individuals within a marriage, and for single people. He also draws on feedback and survey results from thousands of people to help illustrate some basic truths. He encourages people to take the long view and “do love until you feel love.” When it is difficult to feel love, the trick is to hold on to the knowledge that it will get better and to avoid doing anything stupid in the meantime.” (review by Sarah Lowther Hensley, shared by permission)
This book would be an excellent addition to a church library and a resource for a study group. The Love to Stay Leader Guide includes a DVD with six ten-minute clips related to the book chapters and everything you need to facilitate sessions appropriate for the time and learning style of a group.
See also “Marriage Education and Enrichment” articles under “Best Practices and Recommended Resources” at the United Methodist Marriage and Family Ministry website (www.marriagelovepower.net) and at www.umcdiscipleship.org/leadership-resources/marriage-family-ministries.
Jane P. Ives, United Methodist Marriage and Family Ministries Consultant
10 Quaker Lane, Portland, ME 04103, 207-797-8930, [email protected]