Kathy: Toni Nieuwhof is my guest today.
I am looking forward to hopefully getting you and Carey on the program sometime. Early 20 21, I hope. But today we’re going to talk about your new book before you split.
Tell us a little bit about you and Carey, just for some background. How long have you guys been married?
Toni: Well, this year we celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary. So, it’s thank you. Thank you. It’s slightly more challenging to celebrate when we were actually in lockdown at the time. And we had, we had had plans to travel but we’ve of course that those on hold but we’re just super excited and cannot believe that.
It’s actually been 30 years. Where did all those years go? So we, we originally met at law school and were married during our law school. And we started out in Toronto, but we’ve ended up just North of Toronto in a small community where we have been since 1995. So it’s been a place where we’ve raised our kids.
We’ve founded Connexus church here and we love this community an, love being a part of it and serving people here. So yes, that’s where we’re planted.
Kathy: Fantastic. And boy, if this year has taught us anything, it’s the power of community.
Toni: Absolutely. Yeah. Even if it is community, a social distance,
Kathy: This is true, this is true.
At least you can go on a walk or something, you know, six feet apart or whatever. And tell us a little bit about your family. Kiddos.
Toni: So we have two sons, they’re grown and one of them lives close by, within about a 20 minute drive. The other one lives on the East coast of Canada, a very beautiful spot by the ocean and yeah, we’ve, we raised them in this community and just love spending time with them whenever we can.
Kathy: Fantastic. So they’re, they’re how old now?
Toni: Oh, at this point they are 24 and 28.
Kathy: Oh, wonderful. It’s a good time of life. Isn’t it?
Toni: Yes. Yeah. We are really enjoying the empty-nester days, but also just leaning into these adult relationships we have with our sons. And we admire what they’re doing so much and just treasure, the conversations we get to have as, as adults.
It’s, it’s just we’re loving this space.
Kathy: Fantastic. Well, I look forward to hearing more of your marriage journey from both of your voices. When Carey can join us, your book is written from your perspective. So that’s really what we’re going to focus on today. You know, many marriage books are written by counselors, pastors, or coaches who work directly with couples to help improve their marriage.
Your professional background comes from a different perspective as a divorce attorney. What motivated you to write this book and who is it for?
Toni: That’s a great question. I’ve gone through a phase in our marriage that Carey and I have spoken about publicly where we were desperately unhappy. And I’d like to say it was for a short season, but actually it was quite a lengthy season of years where Carey and I just hit, I would say rock bottom in our marriage.
And so We’ve gone through this experience of, of those desperately unhappy days. And but also now are living to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary in a marriage that we would both say really exceeds our expectations when we were married. So I’m motivated by that, Kathy, just by my desire to give people who are in that desperately unhappy place, that there’s, there’s hope there’s a chance that you too could transform your marriage that dramatically, the other.
Reality is that I did practice as a divorce attorney for several years. And I know that I could have been the person sitting in my client’s chair. And I had a few clients who came back to me after their separation agreements were done. When they dotted the I’s crossed the T’s and said, If I had known, then what I know now I would have worked harder to save my marriage and it was compelling to me because I could hear their.
There’s sadness. Sometimes there was there were hints of regret and while they were accepting of their current circumstances, it motivated me to, to share with people what I’d seen as a divorce attorney, what I learned personally, as Carey and I went through our struggles and to, to combine those insights so that people who are in that place where we were could at least see their options more clearly and have more food to food for thought before making that all important decision about what to do next.
Kathy: Did you ever have anyone that got back together after they divorced?
Toni: I can say that I didn’t have anyone among my clients who did, but I personally know people who have, and I’ve, I’ve heard their stories.
And so, yes, I I, I personally know, and I actually interviewed, one couple who had that story included their story in the book.
Kathy: Okay. One of the reviewers, John Acoff said, “I don’t like when perfect couples write perfect books about their perfect marriages. It feels discouraging, unattainable and above all fake.
I want real books about real marriages that offer real hope.” And your book certainly does this. It really is the story. I mean, you include a lot of. Stories about you and Carey. And so I appreciate that because I would agree with John Acoff, that there are a lot of books that have great ideas, but when you’re in a place that you’re hurting, I think we tend to think, well, that’s great for them, but that doesn’t apply to me.
You know, and being so open about your marriage can be risky, especially, you know, Being a pastor on staff at a church. I’m curious how much of your story is already known to your congregation and how have people received hate that?
Toni: That’s a really great question. Carey and I have been speaking publicly about our marriage, I would say for several years now, maybe the first time we, we spoke about it, might’ve been.
2012 or so. So it has been several years. It’s definitely no secret to our congregation that Carey and I went through years of deep struggle. I think one of, some of the stories that I’ve, laid out in the book in a bit more detail as a. As a springboard to helping people with very specific practical suggestions.
Some of those stories we haven’t talked about before but I, you know, I’ve had friends make the comment to me in the past that, Oh, you don’t know what it’s like, you’re a pastor’s wife. Almost as if to say you’re a pastor couple. You’re in, you’re in a different category or you get a buy on what the rest of us have to experience in marriage.
And I wanted to dispel that notion, and I have not overblown any of the stories in this book. The are. True and real stories as embarrassing as it is for me to say that. But I want to highlight that no, it’s not different for us. We went into ministry with all of the purest intentions of serving Christ and we got married anticipating a life of.
Bliss. And also some struggles, of course, everyone tells you there’s going to be struggles. And so we can accept that. But, but essentially we you know, we started out together and with this attitude of, well, what could go wrong? What could possibly go wrong with this wonderful relationship that we both have?
And after several years with our busy lives, professional lives being parents. And in particular being, I would say emotionally unprepared for marriage. We both had significant. Experiences in our past, that led to wounding that we didn’t understand we were without mentors. When we moved into the new community, we were relatively isolated and, and so all of those things put together, made our marriage problems complicated.
And and so. I do, I do have to trust that people wil, take what we’ve exposed in the spirit there intended that yes, we had to go through a healing process and it was real and difficult. And gut wrenching at times. But on the other side, we’ve also experienced great joy. There’s a depth in our relationship that is irreplaceable.
And and I, I hope that it really truly will be a source of hope for other couples who are struggling.
Kathy: Yeah, absolutely. I think that if people or to meet you and Carrie now, I haven’t met you guys in person, but have heard great things about our mutual friends, the miles. People would probably look at you in, and you know, if they’re in a place that they’re struggling, look at you and carry now on think, well, they’ve just always been happy.
They’ve always been this in sync and great communication skills, but the reality is marriage is hard work. Some of the time, not all of the time, or I don’t think we would ever get married, but there is work. And you, yeah. Talk in your book a little bit about expectations. I think that is one of the biggest things that trip up many couples is.
They have unrealistic expectations that well, because we love each other. Everything is just going to work out, but that is not the case as you and I know, and, and we, we bring our own baggage mud. You refer to in your book where you bring in this mud, our history, and we all have history. We are. No matter how good a background growing up, someone comes from, they still come in with some brokenness because you just can’t get to 20 or 30 and not have some pain in your life that has impacted you, you say in your book, Toni that “We, we went from that bad.” I’m putting that in air quotes “to this good.” Can you give us a snapshot of what your marriage looked like then and what it looks like now?
Toni: In those conflicted years? It seemed like Carey and I were on this downward spiral, spiral of negativity. I think it didn’t help that both of us were trained as lawyers. So we went through a long period of, we would, we would fight for our own position and our own perspective. And it was almost like we were many warlords fighting for our turf right.
Was big Valley, a chasm in between us and and sometimes our fighting, would get personal. And so it was like we were
shooting arrows at each other from our invisible fortress. And that conflict style was just futile. It, it was taking us down and not only us, but it also. I think at times poisoned the atmosphere at home.
It was, it wasn’t good for anyone. In those days it was almost like this tension just simmered under the surface and it only took you know, a slight ,a snide comment, backward. Insult to bring it back to life again. And we were always struggling in that negative atmosphere these days, Carey, and I have just learned so much more about our own triggers, what we need to do when we’re triggered.
Our personalities. The Enneagram has been super helpful. It really helps us to know our conflict styles and even ha how our wiring sets us up for resolving conflict. I mean, everyone has their own conflict style, but the Enneagram is also an insightful tool of self-awareness. So these days when Carrie and I have differences, we.
We just don’t have that same emotional you know, fighting for my own turf approach to it where it’s much more intuitive these days for us to take a United approach to approach the problem as, as if we’re fighting for a, we instead of fighting for me and to understand and appreciate. The strengths that each other will bring to this conversation, as well as our own personal weaknesses we are much more emotionally responsive to each other, which in, in the earlier days, when we were stuck in that cycle of conflict we would either dismiss or ignore each other’s emotions or even.
You know, even tell each other that we were wrong for having those emotions. Like we’ve we made all the mistakes. But now at this point, we’re far more likely to just to understand where the other person’s coming from, or even to, to say something like, Oh, I can see this is making you angry. What can I do?
How can I help? And even just being able to recognize each other’s emotions and validate them builds a closer bond. So to sum it all up, it really is a world of difference. I think it’s fair to say that it was that bad and now it is that good.
Kathy: So I’m curious now, what. Types. Do you each identify with on the Enneagram?
I’ve done quite a bit of. Well, all kinds of personality profiles, but I really love the Enneagram for it’s many, many layers of growth that really help with self-awareness as well as understanding the other person.
Toni: Absolutely. Yeah. So I don’t think it would be a surprise. Two people to know that carries in any gram eight.
And, and I know I shared that in different conversations as well. So he’s an eight with a seven wing and that fun side of him also does come out. I think if you have a conversation with them, you’ll end up seeing it one way or the other. And, and I’m a five, so five is an investigator, sorry. An eight is challenger.
So he’s a challenger. You know, that tends to be a leadership style personality. He’s driving for the truth. He’s loyal, but there may be bodies flying in the meantime, and I’m wired as an investigator. So I tend to be much more private. More of a researcher personality. But I have a four wings.
So my, my four wing also leads me to be a little bit more creative and tune with, the emotions of people around me. So yeah, I feel like the five with a four wing is almost a little bit schizophrenia. But there you go. We’ve, we’re definitely wired differently.
Kathy: Yeah, well, we all are right, but that’s another one of those expectations is that well, we’re in love.
So we must have everything in common and nothing could be further from the truth. Most of the time. Forgiveness is a concept we all need, regardless of religious affiliation. I know you and Carrie are very involved as Christians and very involved in your faith community. Not everyone who listens to this necessarily has that same orientation and that’s okay.
Much of what I’ve tried to address in this podcast is. Covering principles that applied to most, any marriage? I think it was Anne Lamott that said, and I believe it was in traveling mercy. She said not forgiving. Someone is like taking rat poison and waiting for the rat to die. I have remembered that quote for a long time.
Can you talk about a difficult scene where you and Carrie had reached a place of mutual contempt? John Gottman, the infamous relationship expert. He’s written many books on marriage and relationship, but he calls contempt one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. In other words, this relationship is in need of the ICU.
What were the steps you took towards forgiving Carrie, since I only have you here. So would love to hear your perspective, how and how did that change her marriage
Toni: approaching forgiveness from that place of contempt is very difficult because you have not only the layer of Broken trust. I think by the it’s fair to say that by the time you’ve reached mutual contempt, your trust has been broken and layered on top of that is just the, the, the strong emotion that goes along with contempt.
So, yeah. In that place. It was, it was a challenge for us. No doubt. Because when your trust is broken, you, you feel like you’re really putting yourself out there. If you do something. If you’re the one who makes the first move, if you’re the one who makes the the, the risky move of maybe. Saying an apology or extending the olive branch in some way.
You have that human tendency to fear what the result will be. Am I just going to be a doormat? You know, is this kindness? Yeah, I’m going to be rejected. Will I be abandoned? Will I be laughed at, will I be humiliated? I mean, there’s all kinds of possibilities that, that run through your mind. And I remember that years before we ended up in this desperate place Carrie’s father, who is a just a, a beautiful Christ following man had said that that love is an act of the will.
And when he said that in our earlier days, it struck me as. Very unromantic. I mean, when you boil down love in a marriage to to being an act of the will it’s, it’s something that I thought, okay, well, I can, I can agree with that. I can assent to it, but I certainly don’t aspire to it. But in that place of contempt, that is.
Precisely what love becomes. It becomes not only the willingness to, to act in loving ways toward your spouse when you don’t have the emotional motivation to do it. But also just that that. Willingness to lean in instead of leaning away from the pain. When you, when you reached that place in your marriage there has to be something that will cause you to take steps forward.
And since that time, I, I love. What the Psalmist says in Psalm one 26, verse six. It says those who go out weeping carrying seed to sow will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them. And the reason I love this song is that it paints that picture. It, it, well, it carries the principle of the harvest.
So the overall the principle of the harvest is that you, you reap what you sow, you reap later than you sow and you reap more than you. So. And so here you have a picture of, of the farmer carrying seeds out to the field, but weeping as they go. So obviously there’s hardship. We don’t know what the hardship is, but there is something that is causing the farmer to grieve walking out into the field.
And I think this is such a fitting picture for what to do when you’re in that desperate place or even a place of contempt. And what. We we really were called on to do in those days was to, even though our emotions were a mixture of sadness, anger, frustration desperation, to still plant seeds of love, plant seeds of kindness.
Plant seeds of respect, even if it’s just the tiniest bit. If all you can manage is one tiny bit. That’s okay. We’re talking about a seed and that by just planting one seed, you are planting in the hope of that later harvest that this, this marriage that. Seems like there’s no life in it right now can actually return in the future.
Not only with. And adequate or you know, the calm state, it’s not re promised civility. We’re actually promised songs of joy and, and not only songs of joy, but then carrying sheaves with them that the farm has come forever, comes back with an armful where he had handful of seeds. Now. He, she has a, an arm full of sheaves, which represents the abundance of the harvest.
And so that, I love that picture because there is a promise and I do believe sincerely that where a person we’re supposed decides to plant seeds of love, regardless of what that outcome is, they’re still going to reap a harvest and it’s going to be good. Errands and hope. And I hope people really meditate on that song.
It’s helped me so much.
Kathy: That’s a beautiful picture. And what, like you said, it’s no guarantee of like in marriage, it doesn’t guarantee that the marriage survives, but what it does do is you can look yourself in the mirror and know that.
Kathy: truly did everything you could, you know, a marriage takes two people and sometimes the other person is, you know, they’ve gone to contempt and there’s just no moving them back.
But I think too, as you said, keep sowing seeds, little steps, and sometimes it takes time. For I use the analogy sometimes of a bank account and think of a healthy marriage is one that has a healthy balance. Right. But that balance doesn’t come overnight. It doesn’t come in a week. We can make withdrawals that are pretty big, but if there’s a healthy balance, even a big withdrawal, doesn’t end the relationship.
It’s those little niggling things that. Drip drip, drip away. A lot of times in a relation that really, you know, you okay. And up in contempt. And for those that may not understand the idea of contempt it’s when you lose all respect for the other person and just the side of them or the sound of their voice just is like nails on a chalkboard or something.
So that, that’s kind of what we’re talking about.
Toni: And can I just say one more thing, Kathy, that in our, uh, depths of our own happiness we both said things we didn’t want to say did things we didn’t want to do, but we were unhappily married. Our marriage wasn’t harmful. And I want to raise this because when we’re talking about contempt for some couples that that situation looks different and there could be people listening right now whose marriage is actually harmful, not unhappy.
I don’t want to give an unclear message about people who find themselves dealing with spouses behavior that. Toxic or potentially destructive. And sometimes it’s difficult to know the difference. I would encourage anyone if, if you’re currently wondering, well, I’m really not sure if my marriage is unhappy or whether it’s harmful.
I strongly encourage you to open up to someone in your circle who is wise who you, you. Feel that you can share with openly and honestly, or maybe you have a mentor, maybe you have a relationship with a counselor. And even if you don’t have an established relationship with a counselor, this is a question that’s worthy of taking to a counselor.
I do want you to have that conversation and to, to get advice. Over whether your marriage is unhappy or harmful. I don’t want anyone to stay in a situation that’s unsafe.
Kathy: I’m so glad you brought that up because I couldn’t agree more, you know, home should be a safe place for everyone. And so thank you for that clarification in your work.
As a divorce attorney, you identify three options that couples have. When they think we just can’t do this anymore. What are those options that you talk about in the book and the potential outcomes?
Toni: I talk about three options, split, survive, and save. And. Splitting is obvious to people. I think everyone has, has known one close to them.
Who’s gone through a separation or maybe your own parents went through a separation at some point in your life. And so. The consequences of splitting are pretty obvious, in one sense, that if your parents, you do need to figure out how you’re going to divide your parenting time with your kids and how you’re going to make decisions on behalf of your kids.
There’s financial consequences often. There’s. Lifestyle changes or maybe even constraints that come into play and questions about, are we still gonna live in the same community or is one of us going to move and so on. There’s a whole list of potential consequences for splitting. I think what people don’t.
Necessarily understand is that the situation you’re in right now is unique. And when, when the pain in your marriage is great enough that you’re motivated to leave it, you may not see clearly what the consequences will be in your particular case. And. What I heard from many of my clients was a sense of surprise or even shock over what they did actually experience.
So they expected that walking away was, was going to result in a certain picture. And that the picture that they ended up with was different. And maybe not. Any it didn’t, didn’t meet with her expectations. So some people, it felt like they, they thought they were walking away from a set of problems and that they would have a blank slate in front of them and the ability to create the story they wanted and what they ended up with was a different set of problems that may not have felt like an upgrade.
I talk about
surviving in marriage. And often we think about the options as being binary. You know, if you’re struggling, you’re married, do you think about, should I stay or should I go? But I think it’s clarifying to recognize that there is actually a third option. The third option is staying together, but with emotional.
Disconnection. So being emotionally disconnected, but staying under one roof is a reality for couples and it might, I’ve heard of people. I’ve heard people talk about it as being roommates or. Perhaps, it seems more like a business arrangement where each spouse gets something from the relationship, or it gets a set of benefits.
So maybe he gets a golf membership. She gets to go to the savant. He gets a hunting week away with this. Friends. And she gets a week at the all-inclusive with her girlfriends. And there it’s, it’s not, of course not written out like a business contract, but that’s the way it functions. And there’s something missing at the core that, that something is there.
Their emotional bond and surviving in a relationship is not necessarily a bad thing. It can be an advantage. It might need, it might be what you need to do to work on rebuilding a heartfelt. Emotional connection. And so I would say for people who are surviving in their marriage that maybe something that you want to view as, as temporary in the sense that yes, it’s good for us to survive in our marriage, but recognize that that’s what we’re doing right now.
And then go for something. That fills that need inside. And, and that’s what I call saving a marriage. So the third option is to to transform your marriage into one where you, you do feel fully satisfied and connected with each other. You both feel loved and cared for. And, you know, if someone had told that to me, if someone had said well, you can transform your marriage and save it.
When I was in that desperately unhappy place, I would have thought, Oh, sure. That’s that may be true for someone else, but. I can’t see it being true for me. Because when, when I know what it’s like to be in that desperately unhappy place, and it feels like maybe you’ve signed up for a lifetime of misery, like, is this really as, as good as it gets?
And so I just want to encourage people that that there is hope there are ways to reestablish that emotional connection. And some of it has to do with. Becoming more emotionally at, in. In sync with each other attuned to each other. I mean, we, we often think about it infants or children as needing, you know, needing that emotional attachment with their parents.
And we don’t think about it though, for people who are older, we don’t think about it in our marriages. But actually we’re, we’re wired to crave intimacy and to be emotionally close to the people who are, who are. Closely around us, like in our immediate family, in our marriage. And so that is that emotional attunement is like learning emotional intelligence emotional intelligence, isn’t static.
It’s, it’s something that you can learn. And there are skills that you can adopt in your marriage to, to rebuild that bond. If it’s not there. And so yeah, there, you have it, the three options split, survive or save.
Kathy: Yeah. And just to be clear, you have a chapter in your book where you talk about, if you have children thinking about how it impacts them.
And I don’t think you’re advocating for couples to go into survival mode and just stay there forever. You know, some people say, well, we’re staying together for the sake of the kids, but. There’s a lot of research about the emotional damage done, especially if they’ve moved to contempt and continue to live together and how damaging that can be for children also,
Toni: well, staying together for the sake of the kids is, is something that people choose to do. And who am I to judge one way or the other? The only point I’m trying to make by, by pointing out that one of the options is to survive. Is that a marriage that’s surviving. Is a marriage that is at risk and it’s at risk because at some point, one of you may feel the emptiness of that lack of emotional bonding and.
And recognize it as emptiness and want something more or, or many be responding in an unhealthy way to that feeling of emptiness by you know, any one of a number of addictions or just unhealthy behaviors. And so. I would just encourage people who are who are staying together for the sake of the kids to, to really step back an, and look at the, the issue of.
You know, if there’s a wall between you, why is that wall there? If there’s a wall well between you, that forgiveness might possibly be able to dismantle, then what steps can you take toward forgiveness, such a crucial issue. And it it’s, uh, it’s painful, right? To approach forgiveness when you’ve probably each got your long list of grievances toward each other.
But having said that, you know, forgiveness takes the essential elements of really recognizing and getting down to the facts, the facts of what has actually happened and who has in fact hurt. The other, and then how do you view each other with, with eyes of mercy? And then how do you view yourself with the humility that you need to be able to own your part of building that wall.
And I think when, when, when Carey and I took that, those steps of forgiveness seriously, then. It, you know, we were able to start dismantling that wall and I believe that if you’re in that place right now you, you can go pretty far by building a practice and a habit of forgiveness in your marriage.
Kathy: And I think ultimately the bottom line is it comes down to doing your own individual work, not waiting for the other person to change. So we always have that option of doing our own work, growing and understanding our own inner life, what healing we need to do emotionally, spiritually, physically, whatever it is.
As you know, the focus of this podcast is entrepreneur marriage. Many principles of marriage obviously apply to all marriages, but the entrepreneur marriage is a little more challenging. There are, there’s more financial risk at stake, and there just are some unique challenges. Some people talk about or speculate, I guess I would say that there’s a higher rate of divorce.
Amongst entrepreneurs. And I’m just curious what your experience has been is is that your observation or not?
Toni: I tend to agree, although I don’t have the stats to back that up, Kathy, but yeah,
there is that that extra, level of intensity, when you, when you have risk and financial ups and downs and. And sometimes the long hours, you know, there are seasons in entrepreneurship where you do really need to treat your business like a baby and it, you know, you can’t leave it alone and expect it to survive on its own.
Right. So I would say that that is.
I would say it does line up with what I observed in my practice. So it wouldn’t surprise surprise me at all, if that, if there was research done on that, and it would show that entrepreneur marriages were more at risk and curious. Yes. Yeah. But I mean, having said that there are many people.
Well, you know, I’m sure you know who have thriving marriages and are managing to build their business. I think they, the additional challenge is really staying United as a team. I mean, if there’s ever, you, you really need to have that sense that the two of you are connected together and that the business is not a part of your identities?
It’s not. You know, if, if your business dies, you don’t die and you both need to be able to at least separate yourselves to the point where you can both face whatever issue you have connected with, with the business as a team that you can face those issues with your own partnership and, and the business being what you can build up together. You both bring your strengths to it. But it doesn’t own you and it doesn’t dictate your decisions. It also needs to not separate the two of you. I mean, if you, if running the business means that you no longer have any date, time, or any margin in your, in your family, then it may be time to question.
What you’re doing or how you’re doing it.
Kathy: Yeah. And I would include that starting a business with starting a church as well. I think that’s our history Mark and I started a church. Well, goodness, back in the mid eighties and long before we really knew the term entrepreneur, but I think a lot of those principles applied to those that start churches as well.
And keeping your identity whole apart from your ministry even. Well, I know our time is almost up Tony and I have appreciated so much your wisdom, but I have one final question. And that is with all that you know, now about marriage, what would you say to your younger self? The Tony before she got married?
Toni: I think I would have made sure along the way that I was deliberate about having a mentor for life not not simply for leadership in the church but just someone who is a stage ahead who, whose marriage. Was in good shape who had a reputation for making wise decisions and, and having a nurturing that connection all the way along.
Because in those early years, we, we truly were lacking mentorship. And I think there are Just so many advantages to having that that wise voice and that compassionate person you can turn to. So I think that would be number one, you know, becoming isolated is just such a problem. And whether you’re, whether
you were an entrepreneur, whether you are a church leader. It’s easy in those circumstances when, when life is going a hundred miles an hour, and you’ve got so many things competing for your attention to allow your relationships to become superficial and. And w when that happens, we tend to become isolated.
And I did find myself in that place where I was, functionally isolated from anyone who, you know, really who I really had an intimate connection with somebody other than Carey, because your spouse can’t bear the weight of being your only friend. So you need to have other connections and I would say, make sure you have a mentor in your life also.
A close friend or two who you can really be honest with would just take you so far. Don’t let yourself become isolated because I, I really believe that’s a playground for the enemy and we’re not meant to be isolated God, himself, God, Jesus, and the Holy spirit, our community, that the essence of God.
Is community and we’re wired in God’s image made in his image and we need community as much as God is designed and encompasses community
Kathy: Yes, wise words to end on Tony. I thank you so much. And your book releases January 12th, 2021. I can remember that date because it’s our anniversary. So I’ll look forward to picking
it up in advance
and this will probably release shortly after her book.
So I just want to encourage people to pick it up. It is a great piece of hope with some very practical things that you can do. Really today, you can take the first step in your marriage. So Toni, thank you so much. And I look forward to meeting with you and Cary, very soon.
Toni: This has been such a pleasure, Kathy, and and I can speak for Cary.
We look forward to talking to you too in the near future.
Kathy: Wonderful. Thanks. Bye.
Toni: Bye. Bye.