Generation Next Marriage
By Tricia Goyer
Review written by Martha Artyomenko

I read this book the other night. I usually never read marriage books. I find they either have one-size fit all approach or they leave me feeling dissatisfied with my married life.
As part of the review, I am supposed to pick one chapter and share how it made a difference in my marriage, so as I am reading away, I keep thinking to myself “This is the chapter I will have to write about.” Then I would read the next chapter and think to myself “This is the chapter I am going to have to write about!”
Well, it was hard to pick a chapter that I can see means the most to me or the one that can really make a difference in my marriage, not because this book did not do anything for me, but it is one of the more interesting marriage books that did not feel like a marriage book, but more like a hard hitting good talk with a good friend. <p>
 I was born in 1978, so I am on the younger end of Generation- X. I grew up without dating; I went to public school for driver’s education and otherwise was homeschooled or went to private school. So, the music I listened to tended to be the stuff my mom and dad liked which was eclectic mix of Keith Green, The Beatles, classical music and then a few musical movie records. I did not watch much TV at all, and when I was 17, watched the most I ever had with my Great-grandfather, when I watched Saved by the Bell, gave me an informative speech on why it was not a show that taught you about respecting those in authority and how they were trying to teach bad values while watching a funny show. Anyhow, so probably most of the TV, music and movie references went over my head, but I could really relate to the values we have had taught to us, even though I was not part of the normal sort of life, I still am part of this generation.
So, which chapter has impacted my marriage and me the most?
I have to say the one that really made me sit up and think was “Dirty Laundry- Everyday stuff of life” (Chapter 9)  <p>
I was like so many girls that figured when I gave in to the idea of marriage that romance was just an automatic part of it. I knew how to run a house, I was in charge of meals at home for 17 people before I got married, and I knew how to cook, clean, wash clothes and all that good stuff. But I was taken for a loop when I got married. I was very ill when I got married, more so than I realized and was very weak and sick for the entire first year as well as getting pregnant after 2 months of marriage, combined with morning sickness, that lasted for 9 months. I found out my husband could not speak English as well as I thought he could and my Russian was not very good. The practical part of marriage was much harder than I thought.  We were living in a mobile home for that first year. My Mother-in-law came over and was going to teach me how to cook Russian food. We made three very large pans of food. It was good, but we ate it for a week and still had most of it left. That was not up to par for my mother-in-law. My decorating style was not right either; she chose these large presidential style blue drapes for the front window, with lace curtains in back of them, in case a small amount of sunlight wanted through, it would stop it. I told her kindly, I thought, but we just kept the lace ones, with tiebacks. We had a rug in our living room, which attracted all kinds of lint, and even if you just vacuumed, it seemed there was still something there. 
I really related to the short comment here:
My husband came from a very traditional home, – my mother-in-law had a degree in home economics from an Ivy League college. Talk about intimidating! She has always stayed home. I cannot compete with Betty Crocker, and I really don’t want to either. I am not cut from that cloth. But it has created tension in our marriage because I feel my husband is trying to stuff me into his mother’s mold or compares me and finds me lacking- often subconsciously. 
– Cara born 1974 Indiana married eleven years


 This chapter has and will make a difference in my life as I do the six steps Tricia lays out for us here.
1. I thank God for my role“This makes me think of something a friend once said to me “God cursed Eve by giving her pain in childbirth. God cursed Adam telling him he had to make a living from the earth by the sweat of his brow.  Eve must have not thought her curse was bad enough as she on Adam’s too.” Quote from Page 101 “Everyday stuff of life”
2. I ask for help. “John cannot read my mind. What a concept!! I remember spending days cleaning the house, cooking, answering the phone and stewing (in my emotions, not my Crock-pot) Why? Because amid my mad scramble John would walk in, give me a kiss, and immediately head to the back room to hang out with the kids in front of the TV. At dinnertime, when my eyes brimmed over with tears, he would ask, “Honey, what is wrong?” “You should know what you did wrong!!” I would fume. But of course he didn’t.” Quote from page 102
3. I focus on my family“ Will life really fall apart if I leave the dishes in the sink overnight?”  I do not want to pass up making a memory to clean the kitchen that will be dirty again tomorrow.” Quote from page 103
4. I will make a plan and stick to it- “”Not having a plan sets myself up for failure.” Quote from page 104
5. I will remember that rigid people are brittle and break easily- “I try to be flexible in my expectations. I also try not to fret over the little things, especially when they do not meet my standards.” Quote from page 104

6. I can turn to God when I feel discontent and unsatisfied- “Can I glorify God by serving my spouse? I believe the answer is yes.” Quote from page 104

In conclusion, I would have to say this is a marriage book that has and will change my outlook on marriage especially in the everyday matters. It does not matter that I cannot live up to my Mother-in-law’s expectations.  I am thanking God for my role as a wife, I will ask for help and communicate, I will focus on my family, I will follow a plan, I will not be rigid, and I will turn to God!
I thought it was interesting I was reading this at this time of year, as we are soon to have our 11th wedding anniversary. It gave me new resolutions to follow, encouraged me to reach out, love, respect and be joyful in the place God has given me!
Thank you, Tricia for this hard hitting good talk! 
– Tricia Goyer is  the author of 12 books of fiction and non-fiction, including the Gold Medellion finalist “Life interrupted” Tricia writes for  Today’s Christian Woman and Focus on the Family, speaks numerous times each year to women’s groups and has been a workshop presenter at  MOPS national convention. Generation Next Marriage is a companion book to Generation Next Parenting.  Tricia and her husband, John, live with their family in Northwestern Montana. Check out her blog here for links and leave a comment on her blog to be entered in to a drawing each week. Also, she has a great contest going on related to this topic of marriage, where you can win all sorts of great prizes! <p>Share your story and WIN a dinner for TWO to the restaurant of your choice! ($50 maximum)

Tell us the story of how you and your spouse met. If you have photos, send those along, too! 

The winning story will be the one with the most comments…so tell your friends. A winning story will be chosen at the end of the blog tour and will be published in Tricia’s monthly newsletter! (Just think, you’ll be famous! Contest Entry Form
<p> Also, check out this blog for the complete blog tour! GenX parenting blog

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    Sounds like a very encouraging book! I enjoyed your review.

  2. Anonymous

    I enjoyed reading your honest thoughts. You seem to have your relationship with your MIL all figured out! Of Russian decent? Awesome.

    I'm here by way of the book tour. I'll be reviewing this book in about 10 days too. Please stop by anytime and say Hi!

    e-Mom @ Chrysalis

  3. e-Mom

    I enjoyed reading your honest thoughts. You seem to have your relationship with your MIL all figured out! Of Russian decent? Awesome.

    I'm here by way of the book tour. I'll be reviewing this book in about 10 days too. Please stop by anytime and say Hi!

    e-Mom @ Chrysalis

  4. Anonymous

    Thanks so much for sharing…being newly married is "fun" enough…I can't imagine doing it with a language barrier too. 🙂

    Thanks for participating Martha!

    Blessings, Tricia

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