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Let's Get Real is a comprehensive look at marriage as a whole, the potential pitfalls, and the real ways to make positive changes.
By studying seven essentials based on God's Word and His Son for a fulfilling marriage, you and your spouse will be inspired to make your marriage thrive.
The Let's Get Real workbook outlines the same principles for revitalizing marriage that the Forehands teach at conferences across the country. Through practicing these principles, you’ll become empowered by God’s truth to be more authentic and intimate with one another.
Book works best with the DVD set.
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700 Club Interview with Dale and Jena
Let's Get Real
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3/29/2013 1:50:00 AM
Good, But It's Not Whole w/out the DVD
As individuals we need God in our lives, so it only stands to reason that we need God in our marriages. Dale and Jena Forehand's book: Let's Get Realfocuses on putting Christ first in your marriage in order to have authenticity and wholeness. The book starts out with the story of their marriage, which ended in a broken home and divorce. When they turned to Christ, they reconciled and remarried. Their son came into their room and said, "Since you two are getting back to together, I would like to get together with God" (p 18).
The book basically tells about the lessons they've learned so that others might be spared the pain they experienced.
I love that the Forehands attribute all their success in marriage to God and base all their advice on relationship with Christ and bringing God glory. I've read a few Christian marriage books, and the only other two I've read so far that do this are Love and Respect and Sacred Marriage, which ask the question "what if God made marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?"
All that said, I recommend Let's Get Real with some reservation. While the principles are sound, much of the book is missing. At the end of every chapter is a "listening section" with fill in the blank questions based on the accompanying DVD. Unfortunately the book and the DVD are sold separately--an inconvenient marketing ploy for someone buying this book because their marriage is in trouble and their life is falling apart.
A review copy of the book was received from the publisher. All opinions are my own. This review was originally posted on my blog: Manifest Blog: Entering the Manifest Presence of the Divine.
7/15/2011 10:21:31 PM
Amazing lessons learned from a less-than-perfect marriage.
Dale and Jena got married, divorced and remarried one another. This is a book directed at married people. I am not married. And yet I found it hugely helpful and challenging. And emotional. Both in the happy, excited sense, and in the "stop-reading-now-before-you-burst-into-tears-on-the-bus" sense. It is easy to read, with many examples from their own experience which they honestly and humbly give, and practical questions with space to answer for yourself. They give advice that is Biblical and gentle, without sugar coating.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is ready to let God use their relationships to sanctify them. There is a lot of thought provoking material and practical application to be had in this book and I know that God will use it for His glory and your benefit. Obviously, this is primarily directed at your marriage relationship and some of the points are not altogether appropriate or applicable to any relationship other than that between a husband and wife. However, authentic forgiveness, humility, conflict resolution and accountability all have a place in other relationships, and this book helps make positive changes towards these things.
7/12/2011 10:01:53 AM
Is marriage really so difficult?
My wife and I have been together for almost 15 years. We have been through more than many other couples we know, including deaths of our dads, illnesses, children and I think we still have a pretty good marriage. It’s not perfect, but I think we make a great team. Still, every now and then, I believe it’s good to read a marriage book to prevent our marriage from getting stale.
So when I received Let’s Get Real, I was looking forward to it. My wife snatched it up first and read it and took copious notes. She said to me “Dale and his wife ripped each other apart, went through a brutal divorce, received forgiveness from God, then got remarried and lived to tell about it”
So I read the book. It’s true, those folks did some horrible things to each other. I thought to myself “They call each other Christians?”
But then I quickly realized that I have said some horrible things in arguments also, and so has my wife. But this couple got caught in a rut, and never was able to get off the skipping record. So it ended in divorce. Personally, I can never think of anything that warrants a divorce. My wife is the person I fell in love with, and I made a solemn vow to be with her in sickness and in health, richer and poorer. We’re been through all of those so the rest is cake, right?
Well, it’s still hard work. Being completely selfless is definitely work, especially when there is someone else who tests that characteristic everyday.
So the book doubled as a workbook by asking questions such as “Fear can be an enormous motivator. Circle the fear based reason that motivate you to avoid conflict: 1) fear of being hurt 2) fear of confrontation 3) fear of failure 4) fear of having to change 5) fear of being wrong 6) fear of being caught”
The only flaw in the book, and I’m not sure if it’s even a flaw, is this book seems to need BOTH people involved. When your at the point of divorce, it’s hard to get your spouse to do anything with you, and that’s even if you want them there! I’ve read marriage books where it focuses on your job, and not to worry about the other person. While both views have their merits, I’d find it rather difficult if we’re at the breaking point to work on things together.
So if you are on the precipice of divorce, this book probably is NOT for you. But if you are having major difficulties and can’t seem to work them out, this book is definitely a book to have in your arsenal. Be sure to answer all the questions honestly, along with the scripture verses! Because if you are trusting the Lord, you have to listen to what He says!
7/8/2011 12:48:07 AM
Let's Get Real
I'm probably not the best person to be giving this book a review. It's designed to be most beneficial to a married couple working through it together. I read it by myself, so while I did gain some great pointers, I think I could have gotten a great deal more out of it if it was a study with my husband. We don't all have reading husbands, though. ;)
When I first started reading Let's Get Real, I wondered if I should really be taking advice from this couple. They start the book out telling what happened before, during, and after their divorce. It's really a horrible story! But then I thought if they could go through what they did, and FORGIVE each other and get remarried, then maybe I could learn a few things from them!
There's good things and bad things about Let's Get Real, like probably most books out there. I liked that they keep God the main focus. They teach that God has to be the center of a marriage. There's several thoughts that I have taken away from the book that if I practice, I know will strengthen my marriage. There's also a few bits of parenting wisdom tucked in the pages, too.
I don't like that some of the advice is with the assumption that certain things are true for everyone. For example, they say the most important need for a man is to feel important and a woman's is intimacy. While that may be true for most, I don't think that's true of everyone. I remember reading the book His Needs, Her Needs by Willard Harley awhile back. (I'm not necessarily recommending this book, because it's been so long since I read it, so I would need to refresh my memory). It lists ten different needs of both men and women. We're all different.
I think this book can be studied by any "religion" as long as you believe in God. The one exception is the last chapter on how to be saved. They have the Prayer of Salvation included. That's just not my personal belief. I believe in baptism(full submersion under water at an accountable age for the remission of my sins). I do believe before that "hear, believe, repent, confess", and then baptism. Again, that's just my personal belief. Since it is in the book, though, I feel the need to point it out. :)
Overall, this is a good "in general" study if you are doing it by yourself. If you read and study it as a couple, I THINK you could come away with a great deal more at the end.
*I was provided a review copy from Navpress in exchange for my honest opinion.
7/6/2011 8:06:12 AM
Let's Get Real by Dale & Jena Forehand
Based on the Bible and the Forehands' experience, Dale and Jena's aim in this book is to inspire and equip couples to live an authentic marriage, giving husbands and wives the tools to communicate better and not present themselves as the perfect couple while remaining hostile behind closed doors.
I found this book a refreshing detour from the typical marriage books I find myself reading. Far from the dream couple who are showing off how great their marriage is, the Forehands have experienced unimaginable pain through marriage breakdown and divorce before having experienced grace and reconciliation through a successful remarriage.
I like the underlying goal of this book, and I like the specific advice given to couples. The characteristics that the authors say husbands and wives should aim to be are spot on, and are rarely mentioned so it's good to see them here. Perhaps this is my naivety but I think that the majority of the tips given are likely to already be a part of many happy marriages so for a lot of readers this may be more an encouragement than a significant step forward, but that doesn't undermine the book's excellent content.
I also really liked the fact that the book so regularly went back to what the Bible said; at every stage the Forehands humbly acknowledge that the only reason they were reconciled was a result of God's power, and that's really good to see.
I wouldn't recommend this book to every couple. For a healthy Christian marriage I think there are better books out there that will motivate even more growth in intimacy, but this book is designed very well for couples who are going through a tough time. I'd recommend this book for any marriage which is experiencing any level of struggle, and I'd recommend you read it as a couple with another couple you're comfortable with, to mediate if necessary.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
6/20/2011 5:31:31 AM
Choosing God First and Loving Each Other
This is a good book for couples wanting to improve the quality of their relationship within their marriage. It has many questions for exploration and is strongly based upon scripture with readings throughout and questions from those readings. I found the book to be very positive and I think if many couples would take the time to examine their relationship, we would have less marriages ending in divorce. The couple that wrote this book did divorce, but that was only the beginning for them. They chose to work on the relationship and ended up getting remarried again. Any couple could benefit from this book, new and old, especially those who are feeling stuck. It is not the solution to all marital problems. I don't think any book could be that, but it certainly can give some strong Christian guidelines for couples.
This book shows couples how to put God first in their marriage. It could be read individually or be done as an eight week study.
6/7/2011 2:51:08 AM
God has a story in your marriage and in your life, and through your marriage He is crafting you into His image. You can read more about this theme as well as how to bring authenticity and wholeness to your marriage in Let’s Get Real, by Dale and Jena Forehand.
This book is divided into an 8-week study that can be read simply as a chapter book or used as a study to do together as a couple or small group. Each chapter includes encouragement, advice, illustrations, and mini Bible study sessions with a listening guide at the end of the chapter should you choose to watch the DVD designed to supplement the book. Learn what happened to marriage at the first Fall, how to be a safe mate, how to get off the shame train, dealing with conflict, forgiveness, and showing your love physically.
I found particularly interesting the Forehand’s explanation of the shame train – the differences between conviction and shame, causes that lead to the stronghold of shame, and how it leads to either performance or destruction as well as other strongholds that keep us personally and relationally imprisoned. They also adequately address how to experience authentic forgiveness when you are suffering the consequences of a conflict that wasn’t handled in a godly manner.
Aside from the shame-train topic, I didn’t find a lot of new information in this book that I didn’t already know, but perhaps that is a result of 19 years of marriage and my involvement in many marriage books/studies over the years. This would definitely be a great resource for either newlyweds or those who find marriage difficult due to continual conflicts rooted in differences on how they were raised.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
6/2/2011 2:45:02 PM
A Pleasant Surprise
I am very skeptical when it comes to marriage books, especially by authors I have never heard of. I usually avoid them altogether, but because this was my anniversary week, I thought I would give a newer book on marriage a chance. And I was quite surprised.
Let's Get Real by Dale & Jena Forehand is a helpful book for marriages that are in trouble, as they deal with issues that tend to find their way in and destroy the marriage. They begin by telling their story of their marriage, divorce, and eventual remarriage. They attributed their eventual remarriage to Christ and the gospel. At the very beginning of the book, they say what I have said to so many couples, "as long as we have Jesus, we have hope" (7).
It is a very unique book, for it is a book, but it is also a workbook. Every couple pages in the book, they pause and ask some very direct questions (and leave space for you to fill in your answers). There are many passages of Scripture they ask you to look up and write down thoughts. I do not know if I have ever read a book like this. It is not just a study guide, for much of it reads like a book. But it is not really only a book either. Being different made it really work. I think it probably would be best if accompanied with the Let's Get Real DVD (although I did not go through the book with it, I am assuming it would be helpful as there are spaces to take notes for each lesson).
Who Should Read This Book?
That's a good question. I could probably direct many people to some better marriage books. But after reading this book, I would certainly direct those whose marriage is "in trouble" to read it. The process of Scripture and answering questions as you read will be helpful for you. The book is very gospel-centered. For instance, they make statements or ask questions like these:
Just as Christ is available to us, we must also be available for one another! Unfortunately, many couples today are simply too busy to be available. (23)
Is it more important to you that your spouse look like you or that he look like Jesus? (32)
How do imperfect people strive for a perfect marriage? They follow a perfect Savior who supernaturally transforms them through His workmanship toward perfection. (48)
If you're a child of the King, Satan will do whatever he can to steal your joy, kill your passion, and destroy your marriage. (70)
We believe that God does His deepest transforming work in the marriage relationship. We also believe God does His deepest work in the midst of trials, stress, struggles, and conflicts. No wonder marriage is so hard. No wonder conflict in marriage is so critical. No wonder we need to see our conflicts the way Christ sees them. (128-9)
Overall, though, a decent book that I would not hesitate recommending to someone who's marriage is on the rocks.
6/1/2011 1:43:27 PM
Let's Get Real
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Let's Get Real by Dale and Jena Forehand. Dale and Jena teach about developing an authentic and whole marriage relationship. They bring helpful insights into the discussion as they share the story of their own divorce and remarriage to each other. It is amazing to hear how God has healed their marriage and I think that their story along with the wisdom they share in this book will bring hope and encouragement to many couples.
The downsides to this book are the cover art and the title. I don't feel like the title tells us what the book is about and the cover art seems a bit dated.
In contrast, there are so many positives about this book that it's hard to know which ones to share. I like that the book is in workbook format. There are a lot of places to write in your reflections. The questions are pointed and helpful. I think they would guide a couple well in discussion important issues and working toward resolution. My favorite part of the book is that each chapter directs the reader toward a lot of scripture. Several questions have you look at 7-8 verses on a topic. I think this is really important and I'm so glad that this is part of the book.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
5/29/2011 9:14:17 AM
Let's Get Real
Let’s Get Real by Dale and Jena Forehand is a book of God’s power in the lives of a husband and wife, willing to work at their marriage and totally surrender to the Lord’s plan. Dale and Jena Forehand were very busy for the Lord. They had been married eight years, had misplaced priorities, Dale a deacon and Bible teacher, and Jena a leading soloist and musician in their church. The one area of their lives they neglected was their marriage. In July 1996, Dale asked his wife to leave. In September 1997, they were granted joint custody. They walked away feeling everything was lost. But after much counseling and work, a miracle occurred and they remarried on December 21, 1997. This book was birthed from their struggles.
Dale and Jena are frank, open, and honest in what they reveal to the reader. This book is one of the best couples Bible studies on marriage I’ve read. Whether you are preparing to marry, your marriage is in trouble, or you just need a touch up , this book is for you. Although it is divided into chapters, a couple could easily do this study in small bits, stopping to discuss and evaluate their marriage . In each chapter, the authors share personal stories from their relationship. Scripture and discussion questions are woven throughout, with many opportunities for couples to open up to each other. Concluding each chapter is an opportunity for the couple to dig deeper, bring authenticity and wholeness to their marriage. The areas of study include:
■creating safety in your relationship
■discovering the needs of your spouse
■examining our family trees and determining what we carried into our marriage
■making love a priority
Although this could be done in a classroom setting, I believe it will be most beneficial read and studied together as husband and wife. I read this book to review, but we, as a couple, are going to do this study together each week until we complete this book. Thank you Dale and Jena Forehand for opening your lives so that we might be blessed.
Dale and Jena Forehand are sought-after speakers and conference leaders through their Let’s Get Real marriage conferences. They are also regular keynote speakers for Lifeway’s Festival of Marriage. The amazing grace story of their own divorce and remarriage to one another adds powerful credibility to the messages they share about building authentic, God-honoring marriages. Together they founded Stained Glass Ministries and have published numerous books and study guides. They reside in Birmingham, Alabama, with their children, Cole and Jorja.
5/27/2011 6:09:57 PM
A story of reconciliation
LET’S GET REAL
When confronted by a book on marriage written by a couple, you may have the pre-conception of a duo whose lives have been perfect and whose wisdom has come from blessings showered upon them through high achievements.
‘Let’s Get Real’ is an appropriate title and “Bringing Authenticity and Wholeness to your Marriage” as a subtitle even more so. Dale and Jen Forehand speak from the experience of a relationship in deep trouble – while from outside, they had a perfect set-up, the reality was that they were neglecting their marriage while making their mark on the world. This competiveness between them built up pride, anger, bitterness and resentment driving them eventually to divorce.
On the one hand, this is a study designed to look at the word of God to learn to have better relationships. The authors belief is that fulfilling lifelong marriages come from partners who desire to grow in their personal relationship with Christ. With revealing honesty, they disclose how their marriage was reconciled and saved by the grace of God.
Equally, it is a book about reconciliation with God. I was struck when reading this journey of the ‘death, burial and resurrection of a marriage’ how much their rediscovery of their love for God rekindled the couple’s love for each other. While the couple were both actively involved in church activity, there was no depth to their spiritual intimacy. I enjoyed the way that their journey unravels and the lessons they have for others, but I was also interested and intrigued by their insights into authentic and lasting love.
This book is a useful resource and necessary reading, not just for people whose marriage is struggling, whose relationships have fractured or who feel unfulfilled. It is also a plea for understanding to those who see relationship breakdowns as an irredeemable failure. There is healing and there is understanding in this kind of book. I liked it and think that pastoral libraries would be all the better for this title’s inclusion.
I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
5/20/2011 7:58:46 AM