Kiss Me Like You Mean It by Dr. David Clarke

After years of marriage, many couples find their relationship at a standstill.  In the routine of everyday life, they begin to feel more like roommates than spouses.  With jobs to work, errands to run, and kids to raise, who has the time or energy for passion and romance?  And so, passion and romance dwindle, and in the process, emotional connections are severed.  Is it any wonder then that there are so many divorces in today's society?

In his book, Kiss Me Like You Mean It:  Solomon's Crazy in Love How-To Manual, Dr. David Clarke, an esteemed Christian marriage counselor, deals with passionless marriages in a very blunt, head-on fashion.  To be honest, he stomps on a few toes, but I'm here to tell you that his counsel is wise and effective.  My husband and I have read through many devotional books for couples.  Most of them were okay, but they didn't really make a mark.  We read the devotion, said a prayer and then went about our routines, vaguely aware of what we had read.  Their messages, while pertinent, were rather shallow.  Dr. Clarke's message is not.  He digs down deep to uncover the hidden reasons for lack of passion and romance in a marriage.  And while I don't agree with everything in the book, I have to admit that our marriage has improved greatly since reading it.

The thing I really liked about the book was that Dr. Clarke went beyond the philosophy of "men and women are different, so deal with it".  He explained how we are different and how to better understand one another.  He has several chapters dealing with communication and how to get to know each other on a deeper level, even if you've been married for years.  One chapter presents a "passion test", that I'm sorry to say my husband and I failed.  We were perpetuating our "roommate experience" without even realizing what we were doing.

After following Dr. Clarke's advice, we are now having devotions together daily, as well as communication times (no interruptions allowed).  We have also committed to one date night each week, which can consist of staying in and watching a movie, playing putt-putt, window shopping, going to see dramas, etc.  It doesn't matter what we do, but that we commit to the evening together.  No phones.  No computers.  No cancellations.  It's our night!  We've also put into practice our new communication skills and passion principles.  It's amazing the difference it has made in our relationship.  We feel like newlyweds again!

Allow me to stress again that I don't agree with everything Dr. Clarke says.  His book deals mostly with passion and leaves out vital information about building a strong friendship and marital bond.  That being said, I still think it is a good book for any married couple to read, whether you've been married for six months or sixty years.  There was a lot of valuable information, and unlike many other "spiritual" books, Kiss Me Like You Mean It is written in a comical, conversational tone that is sure to have you laughing while you learn.