Categories: books

Book: Real Marriage

  • Read: April-June 2013
  • Rating: 7.0/10

Real Marriage by Mark and Grace Driscoll is interesting. While I could go into massive details about the supposed controversies (you can find plenty of that online), I’d rather focus on the positives, or at least the things that I personally found relevant and/or insightful.

Quotes / My Notes


  • Fruitful
  • Reciprocal
  • Intimate
  • Enjoyable
  • Needed
  • Devoted
  • Sanctifying

Men are supposed to be producers, not consumers.

Honor your wife: physically, emotionally, verbally, financially, technologically.

Get involved in a good church.

Agree on What the Bible says.

Respectful Wife- defining respect.

Disagreeing Respectfully, Counseling Respectfully, Encouraging Respectfully, Submitting Respectfully.

Repentance and Forgiveness are how a couple takes their trash out.

The beginning of a conflict sets it in a direction- watch out for criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling.

Repentance is NOT:

  • getting caught and coming clean.
  • denying our sin.
  • diminishing our sin.
  • managing our sin.
  • blame-shifting our sin.
  • excusing our sin.
  • about someone else’s sin.
  • about manipulating God or people for blessing.
  • worldly sorrow.
  • solely grieving the consequences of your sin but is hating the evil of the sin itself.
  • mere confession.

Repentance is a combination of three things.

  • Repentance includes confession.
  • Repentance includes contrition.
  • Repentance includes change.

We cannot accept forgiveness from God without extending it to our spouses.

Forgiveness is NOT:

  • denying, approving, or diminishing sin that is committed against us.
  • naivety.
  • enabling sin.
  • waiting for someone to acknowledge sin, apologize, and repent.
  • forgetting about sin committed against us.
  • dying emotionally and no longer feeling the pain of the transgression.
  • a one-time event.
  • reconciliation.
  • neglecting justice.

Forgiveness is loving despite sin.

People do not embitter us, but provide an opportunity or temptation to choose bitterness, for which we remain morally responsible.

A Good Fight:

  1. Decide if your spouse hase committed a sin.
  2. Decide how you want to deal with the conflict.
  3. Do not fight when either of you has any substances in you, such as alcohol, that alter your emotional state.
  4. Before you fight, stop to pray, asking God to help you control your tongue.
  5. Do not use fighting with your spouse as your release valvue.
  6. If you cannot come to an agreement, ask whether or not the issue is really worth holding your ground on.

The reason that sex is fun, pleasurable, and wonderful is because it is a reflection of the loving goodness of God, who created it as a gift for us to steward and enjoy.

Your spouse is your standard of beauty.

Our thoughts, words, deeds, health, dollars, and days are consumed with religious zeal for the cause of our idol (don’t make sex your God).

Sex is for:

  • Pleasure
  • Creating Children
  • Oneness
  • Knowledge
  • Protection
  • Comfort

When someone other than the Holy Spirit controls where you go, whom you see, what you wear, and what you do, it’s emotional abuse, and it affects your life deeply.

Chemicals (released during a male’s orgasm) heighten pleasure for a man that essentially bind him to whatever caused it (such as porn).

Pornography is the consumption of sexual poison that becomes part of the fabric of the mind.

Porn is a horrific evil with no redeeming value.

Becoming porn free:

  • Be honest with yourself.
  • Be honest with God.
  • Be honest with your spouse.
  • Put your sexual sin to death by the grace of God.

The naked people you like looking at are hot… but so is hell.

Spend more time thanking God for what you have from your spouse than you do picking at what she or he does not have or give, and your attraction toward satisfaction with your spouse will increase.

Without humility we simply cannot serve in an ongoing and loving matter.

If we do not choose humility, God will choose humiliation for us.

Marriage is for our holiness before our happiness.

The biblical pattern for Christian marriage is free and frequent sex.

Wisdom dictates we do all we can to serve our spouses and reduce the opportunities the Enemy has to attack our marriages.

Ways we are selfish lovers:

  • Rarely have sex.
  • Take too little time and too little effort.
  • Only have sex when we both feel like it at the same time.
  • Rarely initiate.
  • Let ourselves go— become undesirable.
  • Commit sexual sabotage.
  • Make our spouses earn sex.
  • Share our beds with children and pets.
  • Have separate beds or bedrooms.

Reasons why whe are selfish lovers:

  • Difficult seasons.
  • Secret sins.
  • Sins committed against us in the past.
  • Inappopriate sharing with others.
  • Fatigue.
  • Lack of pleasure.
  • Insecurity.
  • Wrong perspective of the body.
  • Boredom.

Can we ___? Just read the book for this laundry list of things.

Reverse-engineer your life and plan with your spouse where you want to be in (2, 5, 10 years)…


  1. Write out priorities.
  2. Envision the future. Things to consider: spiritual, health, employment/career, financial, marriage, sex, family, housing/living, bedroom, technological, family, friends, learning, daily habits, weekly routine, weekly date night, quarterly get away.
  3. Identify and make changes to succeed.