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Reviews from pastors, people in various classes, seminars, readers:

Pastor Brad Bigney, Grace Fellowship Church (KY)

I’ve been a pastor for 21 years and doing counseling for over 15 years now – with marriage being 85-90% of all the counseling I do, and so I can say, “We needed this book!” It’s not just another marriage book. Karen has put into words the struggle that so often exists but doesn’t get addressed. I see this struggle so often in marriages – but I’ve never had a great resource for wives (Of course I was already hammering away on the men with great resources like Lou Priolo’s ‘Complete Husband’ and Doug Wilson’s ‘Fidelity’). This is a NOT a basic marriage book. There’s no chapter on communication, or sex, or in-laws, or parenting. This is also NOT a book that is pushing the old ‘shut up and submit and just serve your husband’ concept.You’re going to want to get this book… read it… and get copies to give away to others.

[email from Marian, study group member] It’s been a good week here. In fact, my husband called me on the way to work yesterday to ask me something, and ended the conversation by thanking me for my support (with his health issues) and for being such a good wife. And he verbally recognized that I’m changing and wants me to know he notices and appreciates it. He even said its important that we keep praying for each other (and that when he couldn’t sleep the night before he actually laid in bed and prayed over me). Wow! God is Great!

Jeremy Lelek, President, Association of Biblical Counselors (TX)
I’ve been reading through your book. Its FANTASTIC. Its also a VERY fresh voice in biblical counseling.

L.C. (Georgia, USA)
I just wanted to tell you how moved and well, actually “convicted” by what I read from God Empowered Wife. I am a godly woman in many ways and want to do right, but I am also a really strong person and certainlyd don’t submit to God or my husband the way I should. Karen’s insights into the history of women’s movement in our country, the wars, and all that has impacted our culture regarding men and women’s roles and the family were powerful and articulate to me. She made me WANT to submit and respect and honor my husband because it is MY choice to decide to do that. I tried one little thing with him in a phone conversation this afternoon and I could hear the warmth and response and appreciation in his voice over the phone. We are not perfect, but we have a very godly marriage and relationship. We both try to put God first, we talk, we pray together, we h ave deovtions and Bible study together. And I have told him before many times that I respect him in my heart and mind much more and better than I actually act or treat him. This book made me want to try to submit to him in the Right way..the godly way. Thank you for taking the time to write it.

.N.M. (Australia)
I’ve just attended your GEWife seminar this morning. I had no real idea what it was about, all I knew was that it was called “God Empwoered Wife” – how women can help their husbands become Godly leaders. This excited me as my heart is to heolp my husband be the leader God has desstined him to be. My husband is the most inspiring person I have met. We are leaders in our church, etc. so I have no issues of getting him off the couch, attending churchl, treating the children right, etc. I have been blessed with a man who loves God more and more each day. Even though, I just want you to know how much I am blessed to have sat in just the one class with you. What you spoke this morning challenged me, inspired me, and confirmed things for me. I rang my husband as soon as I left class and cried as to how blessed I am to have been able to attend this seminar, that God has heard my cry to be a spirit led, not emotionally led nor circumstance led, wife. Thanks and I’m really looking forwrd to the next class.

C.R. (VT)
Right after I found out my husband was still spending time with another woman (emotional adultery, as you taught), and I had felt God’s call to stay with him no matter how many times it happened, I was looking for confirmation from teh Bible on where I was feeling God leading me. I turned to 1 Peter and ended up being late for work becuase it was though Peter had written it to me. Granted, I wasn’t enduring physical suffering as they were, but the first thing that hit me was in v 22 where he says, “Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart.” I could hear God telling me “You have obeyed my voice, now continue in that to love your husband deeply from the heart.” Tears came to my eyes as my previous resolution had been to simply endure living with him despite my “knowing” he would disappoint me in this area again. In v. 23 I read, “When they hurled insults at Jesus, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats.” I felt a wave of conviction because in my talk with my husband I had told him I was thinking of leaving if he couldn’t get this relationship out of his life. God told me I needed to ask my husband’s forgiveness for threatening to leave and He impressed on me the last part of the verse, “he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.” As you said this weekend, God was asking me not to trust my husband, but to entrust myself to Him.

Julie (VT)
We just got back from St. J. I didn’t tell my husband where to park or to drive slower. I sat by him quietly in the car, let him talk first, then tried to “mirror” him in our conversation. I heard a lot about big trucks…a lot!!…But I also heard his thoughts! At the mall later, he asked to carry my bags. I handed them over, smiled, and said thank-you. Not the usual, “No, I got ’em.” We had such a good time!

Jackie, Shelbyville, Indiana
I am so thankful for your book! It has been in my stack of books to read for about 6 months, and I finally read it this week in preparation for a research paper I am doing for my master’s degree in biblical counseling. I’m grateful that God gave you those insights regarding submission and encouraging godly leadership in your husband and am going to begin implementing those ideas immediatley in my marriage. I am very excited to finally have a book to recommend to women that offers very practical, yet very scriptural, steps for women to learn what submission looks like and how they can help their husbands step up to the plate.

Amy P.
This weekend hubby and I had a little tiff. I was continuing the fight in my own head and had come up with a plan to send him an email that would “make him look” at what he did. Then the little voice in my head said, “here is your chance to trust God. Whatever you do has to be with a pure heart not to manipulate him.” I argued with God for a while. “God, how can I just let him do that without letting him know what he did wrong? That feels like just rolling over. What if …” God finally convinced me try it His way on this one small thing so I focused on constructing an email that would please God, not try to get my husband to do what I wanted. Just then I got a text on my phone. It was my husband apologizing!! I picked my chin up off the floor and wiped the tears from my eyes and theni sent a text to him asking for forgiveness for my own selfishness. Trusting God works! Thanks, Karen..

Once I got alone with God in my car, after our class, I was completely broken. I cried out to Him and sobbed all the way home. I so badly wanted all our problems to be my husband’s fault but my eyes were opened to the idol worsipping in my own heart. I I knew the idols were there I just wasn’t sure what they were, but when you said the word “entitlement” it clicked a switch and I knew I had that idol in Bronze, Silver and Gold! It sounds like this: “I deserve….more free time, financial stability, a God fearing husband, etc.” I remember our pastor saying we all deserve nothing but death. I knew it was true in my head but it just didn’t hit mymheart until today. I knew my husband would be wondering why my eyes were so swollen and I didn’t want him to think I had a cry fest compaining about him, but also didn’t feel comfortable going into detail with him yet. So I simply told him through tears that I had been hoping it was his fault but I had been made aware that it was in my own heart where the problem was. I cried and he hugged me and I didn’t feel like pulling away!

I’m sure, to my husband’s utter amazement, when he asked me to go motorcycle riding with him and I simply said yes. He was shocked. You see, I’ve said yes before but usually with questions and stipulations. Not this time. We just took off on a crisp, beautiful, early Saturday morning and had a great time. As I was riding along and reflecting on the points your book has brought out, it occured to me that when we were dating and first married, that is how I responded to everything with him. I didn’t care what we did . . . or even how comfortable I was. I just delighted in being with him as he was always so attentive and loving. But slowly the questions, responsibilities, and burdens crept into our marriage and soon I was blaming him for his lack of care. I really didn’t think I had much responsibility in how our marriage got of kilter. So now, 35 years later we may slowly get back to where we started as I get myself in alignment with God’s will for my marriage. Marriage should be a lot like that motocycle ride. As I held on to my husband and moved as he did, with total confidence he would take care of us, the ride was smooth. Imagine though if when he went to turn, I sat straight up and didn’t lean with him–the smooth ride would be gone.

Amy S.
It was a little over a year ago that you with me and three other women as we poured out our marriages that were in turmoil. I remember at that time listening to you and thinking, “I hear her, but I don’t see how this could really even apply.” It became a large topic of discussion as we all struggled through our marriages. But soon there was a realization that what you were sharing was just simply biblical truth. It was not “magic” or another “how to approach.” Later, as I read through your book, it continued to be the tool that set me free in my own marriage and learn that there is so much I can do to change my own heart, even if I can’t change the circumstances in my marriage. God is teaching me to love my husband in spite of how I may be “feeling” in the moment. It is so very freeing. And as far as the other three women . . . their marriages, which you remember were wracked by adultery, alcoholism, anger, and pornography are now restored and reconciled and bringing God glory. Thank you for being an interpreter of God’s Word to women. We needed this simple explanation of how to do this difficult thing called marriage.

While sitting in your seminar I had a panic attack and feared to blow my second marriage again, because all these mistakes you talked about seemed so familiar!
So I was determined to prevent a failure by studying your book. I diligently did all the homework tasks. The last one in chapter 1 I answered: No! meaning I do not agree with him, that women have to submit to their husbands.Now at the end of the book I am changed. You managed to convince me with all those practical and vivid examples. Thank you. My new husband and I will start living together next month, and now I am confident that it will be a happy marriage, because I will keep your book with me and will do my best to please God.

Before I read your book it seems as though my husband and I were traveling in a circle that always ended where we started. The arguing, accusations, bitterness and anger. When I started reading The God Empowered Wife I went wow…the things I thought I was doing right were all wrong. But, now I’m headed in the right direction. I’m headed towards seeking God for His perfect will for my life, and since I’ve read your book and applied it to my marriage, I have seen God move.

Dee Ann
I received a copy of your book from my grandmother as a gift and it has already (in just a couple of weeks) changed my life, my marriage and my relationship with the Lord. I can not even begin to thank you for sharing your wisdom. I enjoy each day with my husband and am very encouraged to grow deeper in my relationship with the Lord. And my husband has really stepped into his role as a leader lately. I am so encouraged at what God’s word can do! Thank you!!!!!

I wanted to tell you “THANK YOU!” You spoke to my heart and my situation with such biblical correctness and honesty that I wish I had talked to you many years ago. I have begun reading your book and it is wonderful – thank you for writing it and coming to speak.

“Praise His Name”
All I can say is WOW! I have always been “aggressive” and made to feel that this part of me that God created was wrong, but in this book Ii have learned how to allow God to use ALL of what He has put in me to be a blessing to my family and especially to my husband without suppressing the woman God has created me to be. There are some hard pills to swallow, but the encouragement that comes from understanding what God wants to accomplish in me and in my marriage is AWESOME. I pray that God will create numerous opportunities for me to introduce other young wives to the wisdom He has placed in this book.

I am almost finished (with the first reading) of your book. Are you sure you were writing about yourself? I swear you’ve been spying on me for years and wrote about me! Talk about one convicting book.

I attended the conference at Cross Timbers and LOVED IT!!! Wow- it was liberating. All along I had been thinking “How do I change my husband?” I don’t have that burden now, and I would like to start a small group with about 7 other committed ladies to share this information.

I am reading the book that I bought in Portugal and there is so much that pertains to my life, wow, I am reading it slowly, re-reading and using it as a study, my life can change in this sphere and I will be the wife that God wants me to be. Tomorrow we embark on a six-week vacation to Australia . . . the book goes with me! Will let you know how we all got on.

I started reading your book, “The God Empowered Wife,” last night and couldn’t put it down. It really spoke to me. I thought at one point that it was actually my own diary! I met you at the conference in Portugal and as I listened, I found myself relating and recognizing some of my own weaknesses and mistakes . . . living in an idolatrous world, worshiping man (and man-made things) while at the same time wanting to be a self-suficient and independent woman! It’s too hard (of course!) and not God-planned! I am SO glad that you are sharing your testimony with others . . . I feel inspired to speak to my sister and girlfriends and help them to see too, and now, recently married . . . to submit in the way that God intends us to and to make my marriage one that brings God glory.

I finished The God Empowered Wife this morning and cried during the last couple of pages. This book is of the Lord. No doubt He guided you to write each word because it was constantly touching my heart and it wasn’t with just “feel good” words but great challenges too- and my husband is reaching for me more and making changes that I had given up on.

I’m so thankful that the Lord allowed me to meet you this year! You have definitely grown me in knowledge that He is sovereign, and all is rubbish outside of knowing Him and wanting what He wants. I am not saying that I don’t battle fear, or that I have gained this power to see everyone the way Christ does, but I do know that He is faithful, and when I can’t feel Him, He is still working.

I just had to drop you a quick note and say that I LOVE YOUR BOOK!!! I’m trying not to allow it to control my family time this weekend because after reading a couple of chapters I have really had the desire to hide with it in a closet and read!!!! I have already cried a few tears thinking, “Father, this it!!!! This book is going to break many into a life of freedom.” . It’s already changed my life. Karen, your ministry could help so many in Bible study groups. Now, I need to stop emailing and go read another chapter !!

I spoke with a few women at my lifegroup on Wednesday about the biblical concepts you presented, and had a terrific response. Each of these women had gone through experiences in their walk with God in which they questioned why they were growing, but their husbands weren’t. I’ve always been such a strong and independent woman. I can relate so much to understanding that my husband loves my strength, but also have seen how much he’s been withdrawing. Your book is very good with giving details and specifics on things that many women understand and discuss theoretically. All week, I have been practicing a lot of the simple things you teach. I had been praying for him, but also had my own concerns because I could see (he also told me) that he was feeling spiritually lost. But this week, I saw many concrete changes in him, just from low-risk changes on my part, that let God do His work in his heart.

I have been emailing my husband the prayers for each chapter and he has never responded. Today I sent him the prayer for Chapter 10 and got this reply: “Ever since you started, well, listening to me when I ask you to do something, once I realized it was happening, I felt this huge responsibility. I’ve always thought about what I was asking you to do, I’ve always asked myself, ‘Is this really what I think is best?’ But then I knew that if you didn’t like it you would just argue and say no anyway. But now, it just feels different. I find myself asking a different question, ‘Is this really what God wants for our family?’ It’s a much bigger responsibility than just telling you what I think is best. Ironically, now that I believe that when I ask you to do something there’s a pretty good chance you’ll do it, I have more of an urge to collaborate with you, to seek your thoughts on the matter before I make a decision. ‘What an odd change,’ I thought when I realized it. Your loving husband.”

I am a new Christian and not only am I reading the book but I have had the honor of participating in Karen’s class. She is an amazing teacher, a strong, independent, successful woman who has defined for me how a person can be successful and also fulfill God’s will to be a godly wife.

Dealing with our teen girls (especially when I felt a spiritual lesson needed to be taught) was an area where I really struggled with my husband and letting him take the lead. Reently, our daughter needed some reprimanding and I felt God telling me I had the perfect opportunity to step out of the way and let my husband lead. I talked to my husband before hand, “convincing him” to agree with me that the consequences of her behavior would be losing the privilege of going to the winter formal dance. (Do you hear me continuing to control the situation, even as I was inviting him to lead?!) When the time came to talk to our daughter, as hard as it was . . . I decided to get out of the way and “let go” of the outcome. Believe me when I tell you it was HARD!!! Well, God so honored my decision. I saw my husband lead in the spirit and our daughter opened up her heart in repentance and confession. Amazingly, when my husband did NOT take away the dance rights as we had “discussed,” I had an incredible sense of peace instead of anger! (Totally GOD!) I felt that God was showing me what it felt like to be under the protection and covering of my husband. Two days later, I told my husband how God was moving in my heart in this area and the peace I had had about his decision to let her go to the dance. He was blown away, to say the least. After thanking me, he told me to please continue givin gmy input because he really valued it. The absolute miracle of it all was how God worked in our daughter’s life. She decided–on her own–not to go to the dance after all! (I would have taken that choice and opportunity for growth away from her.) What an absolutely incredible experience of God’s blessing and faithfulness. She, in turn, was blessed by her obedience to God to not attend the dance, that God used her to go evangelizing instead with a group of teens fro the church that night. It was so evident to her and to me that she was blessed for her choice to please God rather than herself. God is incredible!

Just wanted to tell you Thank You! My husband struggles with some health issues and we’ve decided I should be the money manager in our family, so I was curious to see how you addressed this issue in your book. You showed me how to give him leadership opportunities even in this area in a God-pleasing way. The other day, our hot water heater broke. My husband wasn’t home when the repairman came by. Normally, I would’ve just paid the repairman and been done with it. However, instead of making the decision without my husband’s involvement, I excused myself from the repairman and called my husband, gave him the facts and asked his opinion of whether we should buy a new one or repair the old one. He was so surprised! When he got home he thanked me for calling him. Then, when I was at the store the other day, I called him from the checkout line. I told him, “Honey, I’m not going to have enough money to pay cash for all the items, so I’m going to have to charge some of it. I just wanted to let you know.” Again, he thanked me for keeping him in the loop. And I also asked him to pray for me the other day when it was pay day. As you suggested, I said with a pure heart (not manipulating to get him to pray), “I know I handle all the bills, but will you please pray for me to make Godly decisions in paying them? It gets overwhelming and I would appreciate if you’d pray for me.” He was happy to do so and glad I asked! You know, I’m not even done with the book yet and so much is already happening. I’m sure I’ll have plenty more things to share later! Thank you!!


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