King Solomon wrote in Song of Songs, “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.” (Song 2:7) Ted Cunningham in Young and in Love declares that love is pounding on the door of young couples’ hearts! Young and in Love is written for singles and young couples who have found excuses to not marry, or have delayed marriage all together for inadequate and selfish reasons. Cunningham uses his life experiences and personal perspectives along with biblical evidence and modern sources to argue why young people should find love and keep it for a life time.
I was married at the age of 22 and my wife, Robyn, was 20. We were at the point in our dating relationship that we would either chose to marry or move on! I chose wisely. In February of 2007 we were engaged and by August of the same year we had begun to share our lives together. Although I believe Young and in Love is a good book with plenty of beneficial advice and biblical wisdom (it certainly does apply retrospectively to relationship experiences) I cannot agree that it is for everyone; however, Cunningham still makes sound points that every young person can garner insight from including his writings on adolescence, purity, and the four C’s (Character, Chemistry, Competency, and Calling). For those that may disagree, Cunningham states, “You may not agree with every argument in this book, and that’s okay. But I want to give you a better answer than those who tell you, ‘Wait until you are older.’“Young and in Love certainly does give many better answers than that.
Throughout Young and in Love Cunningham questions the modern day perspective on marriage. He makes several challenging statements on topics such as singleness, adolescence, what it means to be a godly “man/woman”, and unnecessary marriage delays. Cunningham gives great God-honoring perspective on marriage throughout Young and in Love. From Solomon’s Song of Songs to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, every chapter lists biblical evidence for his arguments. Cunningham lists 24 “foxes” that are known to detract from young love and there is also a list of questions at the end of each chapter that are designed to initiate conversation or journaling for the reader(s). I found the questions to be challenging and intriguing, although some questions were rather leading toward a specific “this is what I should say” answer instead of driving toward an open discussion for couples.
Overall I found Young and in Love to be a worthwhile read (even though I am married) and would recommend to young couples or singles who have delayed marriage yet are seeking to grow. Having attended Cunningham’s church I found some of the material to be repetitious; however, this proves him to be very consistent in his personal conviction on marriage doctrine.
I leave you with a scripture from Solomon’s writings in Ecclesiastes that Cunningham echoes in the last chapter of Young and in Love, “Enjoy life with your wife, whom you love, all the days of this meaningless life that God has given you…” (Ecc 9:9)
(Props to Steve Jobs, Verizon’s iPhone 4s, and my mega hot/awesome wife Robyn for the photo)