The Intimate Mystery : creating strength and beauty in your marriage by Dan Allender and Tremper Longman III (InterVarsity Press, 2005) is a short book (about 100 pages) that restricts itself to three things about marriage, leaving, weaving and cleaving. In discussing leaving the authors talk about the importance of a new family unit beginning at marriage. There is a definite need for a separation, but not a severing, from the families of origin for each person.

I found the discussion on weaving to be the most interesting part of the book. Here they discuss how oneness and a sense of togetherness can be created through deliberate conversations and casual moments. They talk about the significance of sharing past histories and stories with each other and how this bonds the couple.

Thirdly they discussed cleaving which was about sex. They looked at sex from God’s perspective and how God is not embarrassed to use sex as a picture of His covenant relationship with His people.

The book contained many great insights and helpful thoughts. However, I sometimes felt I was missing important points because the authors employed theoretical concepts and theological words to convey their ideas. It was disappointing that they couldn’t have written more simply.

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