Here is a little bit of what I am reading lately....
Here is the downside of living together before marriage from the NY Times. I know a lot of people will disagree with me for my views on living together before marriage, but I believe that it is wrong biblically, but even from a secular perspective, I think it puts you in a holding pattern. IE, Joe and Sally are dating and have dated long enough to see some flaws but not all flaws. But they have seen enough to know that they want to get married and work through whatever conflict/flaws/disagreements they discover in marriage....so when they get married and she is moody or they disagree on how they want to raise their kids, etc, there is more commitment and more reason to get married. If they do a "trial run", its like an unending tryout for marriage...they learn some of those flaws and disagreements early-- he's grumpy in the mornings, she's a slob....they keep waiting (because after all they are getting many of the financial, emotional and sexual benefits of marriage so no motivation to actually get married) until all disagreements are solved...the only catch is once issue is dealt with, another one comes up....so they never get married, or they do after years.
What have men you dated done right in relationships? and wrong?
I hope next year is a good one for Auburn (on a side note, the Dyer stuff is upsetting me, shows how quickly all of us can go from the top to trouble by a few bad decisions. Although he is no longer at Auburn, and thats a good decision by the coach, I do hope for his sake that he gets his life back together)
There is this blog I follow and the couple is adopting from ethiopia (not an adoption blog, but it discusses adoption a lot lately since they are in the process...) I have been touched by reading their story. I am happy to report they just picked up their daughter. I encourage you to check out her blog and pray for safe journeys for this family and a smooth transition.
Here is an article from the economist entitled The Waiting Game - about chasity before marriage.
I thought this article on spouses not witholding affection was great. I had never seen it this way. Surely we have all heard about how they should not withold sex-- his body is hers, her body is his, but this author points to 1 Cor 7:3 which states each should render to the other the affection due. Witholding affection via the silent treatment, refusing to touch and be kind, etc is wrong too. Not that spouses are never mad at eachother, but I guess the proper way to deal with it is talk about it, not manipulatively punish them into realizing what he or she did wrong.