When we began to think about writing a book on parenting in 2008, we decided to write a marriage book first since we taught that a healthy relationship between husband and wife is a key component in meeting the core emotional needs of children. Therefore, we decided to put a parenting book on the back burner and write I Choose Us. At that time, we were overseeing a large ministry in our fellowship of churches, and we were very much in “love connection”, the optimum state for married couples.
This was the case until a few years later, about the time we were becoming empty nesters, when we let our busy work and travel schedule and the challenges we faced writing our parenting book get the best of us. In hindsight, we had stopped “practicing what we preached” in our own book…we had arrogantly taken on too many roles and were not making sure our hearts were soft towards God and each other.
Over the next few years our marriage deteriorated, and the dysfunction caused us to not be able to lead anyone in a healthy way. We stepped down from leadership roles for several years in our Southeast Asia church family, went on a sabbatical and I (John) resigned from being an elder. A number of close friends helped us (some of it we did not appreciate at the time) and we are grateful for their perseverance with us amidst our many weaknesses.
We wanted to write this statement on our website to let people know that we are not teaching from a pedestal of having done everything well – far from it – rather from a place that has woven together our experiences of highs, lows, grief, loss, victory, defeat, mercy and hope. Secondly, we openly welcome any questions written to us personally or if you prefer, you can contact some of our mentors/ministry partners:
Harliem Salim: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vincent Sim: email@example.com
Mike Fix: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bill Hooper: email@example.com
We hope that even as we are still getting help and making progress, the resources on this website will be useful to you.
John & Karen Louis