Free Kindle eBook Hits a Nerve

My new book, “Money & Marriage”, free on Kindle and Nook this week only, has just been released and is already causing something of a stir.

The first reviewer on Amazon slammed the book, complaining that I and/or my publisher “left out the very pertinent fact that this is a religious book.”  The reviewer went on to ask, “Did they think they were going to trick us into downloading and reading it, and then we would magically convert when we all read the Bible quotes?”

That review is generating many additional comments.  Some are siding with the reviewer, complaining about “stealth Christianity” and “stealth evangelism.” Others are defending the book.  One wrote: “I certainly wouldn’t want to read a book on marriage and finances that wasn’t founded on the truth of the Bible.”

The Heart of All of My Work

I have never made a secret of the fact that I am a Christian.  It’s the most important part of my life, so it only makes sense that my faith would be at the heart of my financial teaching.

By the same token, I never want to hit people over the head with the Bible.  The book contains no attempt to “convert” readers to Christianity.  It simply makes the case that biblical teaching is timeless teaching, and I believe one of the take-aways from all the economic problems we’ve experienced in our country of late is that we could use a healthy dose of timeless financial truth.

It doesn’t take much effort to look around and see that something is wrong with how many people manage money.  Unfortunately, it also doesn’t take much effort to notice that money is a very common source of stress between husbands and wives.  It’s even a primary factor in many divorces.

So, with research showing that 44 percent of all married people say it’s okay to keep financial secrets from their spouse, what’s so wrong about using biblical teaching to encourage oneness in marriage?  And with research linking debt to more frequent financial fights between spouses, what’s so wrong about referencing the biblical warning that “the borrower is servant to the lender” and to then teaching readers a process for getting out of debt?

If You Live in a Hurricane Zone…

Jesus once compared two people who built homes in a storm-prone area.  One built on a foundation of sand.  When the wind started to blow and the rain started to fall, that house quickly fell apart.  The other built on a solid foundation of rock.  When the rain came, the streams rose, and the wind blew and beat against the house, the house stood strong.

Of course, the solid foundation was God’s Word.

Life is a hurricane zone.  It can get windy and rainy, often without much warning.  Jobs can disappear.  Our health can fade.

Most marriages go through their share of storms as well.

Call me crazy, but I believe we should build our lives on solid, timeless principles, not the shifting sand of the latest fad.  I’ve never found any more solid principles than those I’ve learned from the Bible.

I guess I really am trying to convert people.  I’m trying to convert them to a way of using money that’ll give their marriages the best chance of standing strong no matter what life throws at them.

Whether you agree or disagree, I invite your comments below and on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Of course, if you want to support my work, I’d also greatly appreciate you buying a copy of the book, whether for yourself or as a gift for someone else.

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10 Responses to Free Kindle eBook Hits a Nerve

  1. Matt Bell December 20, 2011 at 4:48 PM #

    Wow, Miriam, that’s a really encouraging note. I’ve always wanted to strike the balance of incorporating my faith in what I write while connecting with all people regardless of where they stand on matters of faith. So, it’s encouraging to read your note. Thank you for writing and for your Christmas wishes. Happy Hanukkah!

  2. Miriam Kearney December 20, 2011 at 4:36 PM #

    Matt, I am Jewish and usually sensitive to anyone attempting to influence me in my faith. I haven’t read your book AND I have always been aware that you were Christian but never felt evangelized by your column. I agree with the philosophy you espouse although I come to mine by a slightly different path. There will always be people who feel slighted or mislead because they didn’t pay attention. Merry Christmas.

  3. Matt Bell March 17, 2011 at 11:03 AM #

    Thank you, David. Word of mouth “advertising” is hugely important — encouraging to hear you say it’ll “spread like wildfire” in your church. I would love to see this book be used to help as many couples as possible.

    Thanks again!

  4. Matt Bell March 17, 2011 at 9:14 AM #

    Amen to that, Martha!

  5. David Nienhueser March 17, 2011 at 8:58 AM #

    My wife and I really enjoy (and learn from) your email newsletter. So I of course pre-ordered your book earlier this week (full disclosure: I ALSO downloaded the free version to my Nook today). I have passed your website and book’s info on to our small group, and I’m sure it will spread like wildfire through our Church. Please keep doing what you’re doing Matt, we could all use financial and spiritual advice these days.

  6. Martha March 17, 2011 at 12:52 AM #

    My question for Law Geek, why was it assumed that it was “not” a religious book?

    God is a God of order.

    1 Corinthians 14:33 (King James Version)
    For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

    We are to be responsible with our finances. It is God’s law. How could the book “Money and Marriage” be anything but biblical!


    Orderly financial management as well as all other orderly practices in life, only come from God.

  7. Matt Bell March 16, 2011 at 8:37 PM #

    Thanks so much, Ruthmary. I appreciate your wise and encouraging words!

  8. Ruthmary Thomas March 16, 2011 at 7:51 PM #

    I applaud your sticking to your Christian principals. If we can’t be Christian in our every day life, what good are we? Our whole life should be based on the Bible and it’s teachings. Otherwise how are we different? Finances are a big part of our life. Keep up the good work.

  9. Matt Bell March 16, 2011 at 3:59 PM #

    Thanks, Chell. I appreciate your encouragement!

  10. Chell Perry March 16, 2011 at 3:45 PM #

    Matt, hold to your Christian values & foundation. If we all believed Jesus Christ is Lord, nothing else would need to be said.

    Thanks for sharing! I appreciate it immensely.

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