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Drew's Reviews #27 – “Rock Solid Relationships”

I just finished reading “Rock-Solid Relationships” by Wendy Watson Nelson

Quick Take: Solid read on applying the gospel of Jesus Christ to our relationships.


Longer Take:


In “Rock-Solid Relationships,” Wendy Watson Nelson uses her 25 years of family therapy experience and her knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ to teach several valuable lessons on how to strengthen our familial relationships.


In each chapter, Wendy pulls a specific gospel principle to illustrate how the scriptures can teach us to be better spouses, parents, children, etc. I enjoyed the way she highlighted various scripture lessons in ways I had not thought of previously.


The main theme can be summarized with this excerpt from the book:


“So how can we build rock-solid relationships? The only way is upon The Rock, the Rock of our Redeemer. Rock-solid relationships, have as their foundation, Jesus Christ. … I am convinced the scriptures are the very best ‘how to’ books on relationships.”

Marty and I read this one together. We didn’t love every chapter but overall really enjoyed “Rock-Solid Relationships.” I appreciated the connection between striving to live as a disciple of Jesus Christ and striving to be a good husband and father. A good reminder that the teaching of Jesus Christ needs to infuse every area of my life.


So… Not my favorite marriage book, but I would still recommend it.


Some of My Favourite Quotes:

Rock-solid relationships are built upon The Word, who is Christ, and His words, the scriptures. The prophet Nephi, taught, “Feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do” (2 Nephi 32:3). All things? Yes. All things.


Ask yourself what problem concerns you most in that relationship. Now, think about the smallest amount of change—in yourself, the other person, or in your relationship—that would indicate that you are making progress. Most of us are tempted to think of large changes, especially when we’re craving relief. But, just for a few minutes, rein in those tendencies and really think about one small change you would like to see. What could you do, or not do; say or not say; feel or not feel, that would indicate that something is different.


… the husband bravely began giving to his wife exactly what he wished to receive from her. … This husband learned that in situations where intertwined or “twin feelings” exist, it takes only one person who is willing to suspend his or her fears and needs and courageously go where neither have previously dared to tread—to heal both parties. He did so by offering that which he wished to receive.

When we are finally ready to enjoy true love and peace and joy in our relationships, we need to be like the Anti-Nephi-Lehies who “buried their weapons . . . of war, for peace.” We need to gather our swordlike thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and “bury them deep in the earth”


All that is required to nurture a relationship is to give all we are presently capable of giving, and to treat others as if they are doing the same. We need to cut others some slack. We need to believe, and show through our actions that we believe, that others are bringing their very best and giving their all—all that they presently can—to the “party,” just as we are.


Just as every peek into the oven dispels some heat and slows the baking of the dough, every peek into the past—after we have confessed to those we need to, after we have made restitution, after we’ve sincerely started down a new and better path—slows our progress because it shifts our focus, dispels our energy, thoughts, and desires, if only momentarily.

Imagine what might happen if you developed amnesia and could not remember any horrible, disappointing thing that you or a loved one had done or endured? Where would you spend your time and energy as a person without a troublesome past? How would your behavior change toward yourself and toward others? What would be different? Do you have a relationship that you believe could benefit from a case of selective amnesia?

If today were the only chance your children would ever have to learn about how a husband and wife converse, show love to each other, forgive each other, and solve problems together, what would they learn from observing you and your spouse?


If you are to be a source of light, you need to make sure your own wattage is high enough. … Pursue those things that generate light and power. Pray with more feeling, fast with more purpose, study the scriptures more consistently, and participate more often in temple worship, and you’ll be ready to glow!

Perhaps you feel you already know the desires of your loved one’s heart. But chances are, it may be more accurate to say that you used to know. Desires can change because circumstances change. … Do you know what your loved one most desires today?

Are you settling for a less-than-marvelous marriage because you are not willing to invest the time and make the effort it will take to build a stronger, more fulfilling relationship with your spouse?

If you were to increase by just 10 percent the way gospel truths about life and love influence your thoughts about yourself, your loved one, and your relationship, what would you be able to do that you can’t do now?

We uncover one concept or spiritual insight only to find another lying beneath it, and it becomes a search that literally never ends. Tutored by the Spirit, the deeper we delve, the more we find. We keep uncovering more. Understanding more. Discovering more.


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