Book Review

Book Review of The Respect Dare

Respect Dare

The Respect Dare: 40 Days to a Deeper Connection with God and Your Husband

There is an UPDATE at the bottom of my review!!

I'm always interested in learning how to be a better wife or how to participate in my marriage in a more biblical way, so when I saw The Respect Dare was available for review, I jumped at the chance to check it out. The Respect Dare is a book featuring a 40 day challenge for wives to grow biblically in their marriages with down-to-earth suggestions for improving interaction, communication and yes, learning how to better respect your husband.

From the introduction:

"If there were a way for you to greatly influence the state of your relationship with your husband while growing spiritually, would you want to know about it? And more importantly, would you take action upon that knowledge? What if in forty days, you could change how alone you feel? Or how much peace and joy you have in your life? ...This is a book that works."

With each chapter there is a Bible verse followed by a "true story" that deals with a specific trait you can work on. After that there are some questions for you to think about and a prayer that you are supposed to pray. I'm not so sure I like the scripted prayers. I think prayer is more effective when it comes from your heart, not the pages of a book, however they are good "starters" for you to think about. Topics covered are varied such as:

Overcoming childhood experiences that may be coloring your present relationship with your spouse

Being quick to listen and slow to anger

Acts of kindness you can do for your husband

Not trashing your husband's reputation with your mom or girlfriends

Learning how to deal with conflict God's way

Being an encouragement to your husband

Think about how you treat your husband in daily interaction

Be an encouraging wife

Loving communication

...And then surprisingly a LOT of of "dares" that don't seem to have anything to do with respecting a husband at all and just seem to be thrown in the book to fill up the pages or seem repetitive when compared to other dares because they deal with similar issues that really stem from one larger problem (if that makes sense).

While the premise of the book is terrific and does contain a few solid suggestions for becoming a more godly woman, I found the stories used to illustrate the concepts rather trite. They didn't feel very real to me. Instead they felt totally contrived and flat. I also thought a great deal of the book covered the same topics in different ways. It wasn't so much about how to respect your husband as how to apply the Bible in common sense ways. I was really wanting a book that would teach a woman how to better respect her husband. That's what the title promises but in my opinion, the book itself just did not deliver, at least for me. Everything came across as nothing new, nothing special and totally common sense for anyone who has a basic knowledge of the Bible. I felt like I was entering Barbie-world with sweet and charming little stories that didn't make one bit of impact or help with any real introspection. That isn't to say all of the stories and examples are froo-froo and useless. There were certainly some good examples, but taken as a whole, they didn't connect to ME.

The worst thing was that I felt there was a constant commercial for the author's Daughter's of Sarah training course (for a mere $250!). I counted the references via my Kindle: NINETEEN. Seriously? It was intrusive and made me question the motives of author. I felt like...Was she trying to teach women to respect their husbands or was she trying to sell her Daughters of Sarah course?

UPDATE!!:

I received an email from the author concerning this review. The reply was so humble, kind and the perfect example of a loving Christian. Talk about living what you teach! :-) It spoke volumes to me and made me feel that the author cares and is just doing her best. It also had some statements about the Daughters of Sarah ministry and why a specific amount was charged, what it was being charged for and how that was currently trying to be addressed as well as the author's writing experience, etc. I won't quote it, since it was a private email, but I can say I was impressed by how the author took the criticism in my review with such grace and explained her heart concerning the book. Even though the book didn't teach *me* anything new (and my criticism is based on my honest experience of the book), I see fruits of the spirit behind the book in the author herself. If you can take even just that small bit of how to interact with your husband (or fellow Christians!) from this book, then it's worth every penny.

BTW, I was in NO WAY made or asked to change or update my review. I've left my original criticism (and amount of stars) as it is *my* honest experience concerning the book, but again, I believe the author was trying to connect and do her best. It wasn't a worthwhile read for me, for the most part, but as the positive reviews proclaim, it's certainly something that is helping others.

*I recieved a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.


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