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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elewechi Ngozi Okike is an award-winning author, who has touched many lives through her inspirational writings. She is a motivational speaker, life coach, mentor, wife, mother and grandmother, who has been married for over 41 years. She is an experienced counsellor, who has spent almost four decades in the higher education sector and has supported and mentored hundreds of young adults. Her counsel and guidance have restored positive mental health to students, saved numerous marriages and provided hope in situations that many considered hopeless.
Elewechi is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. She shows love and compassion in meaningful and practical ways. This is reflected in all her writings.
Her desire to make a difference in the lives of others led to the establishment of BOOK AID FOR AFRICA, a UK registered Charity that is addressing the imbalance in educational provision in Africa.
To find out more, visit www.bookaidforafrica.com.
This book is already five years behind schedule. My intention was to publish it to commemorate our 35th wedding anniversary in 2014, but I couldn’t get round to it because of other commitments. However, the subject of marriage is one that is dear to my heart. I also know that it is dear to God’s heart, too. In 2001 I started writing a series of newsletters, titled TOGETHER FOREVER and I was surprised to see the effect it had on some couples, whose marriages were at the verge of falling apart. Some wrote to thank me for sending it to them, confirming that God had used me to save their marriage. I can only ascribe all the glory to God. And, if there was ever a time to write a book on the subject, it is now. Indeed, the institution of marriage is under serious attack, and I am hoping that this book will play a big part in salvaging some.
Do I qualify to write a book on the subject of marriage? Well, after 40 years of being married to the same man, besides 9 years of courtship, I would think I have a thing or two to say about marriage. God has used my marriage to prove to me that with Him ‘all things are possible’1. If my marriage can survive 40 years, I believe that many other struggling marriages out there can survive too. The title of this book, TOGETHER FOREVER: 15 SECRETS TO LIFELONG MARRIAGE captures the very essence of this book. There are many secrets to keeping any relationship together, and it is not possible that any single book can claim the exclusive reserve to contain all the secrets there are in a marriage. However, some very essential secrets that have worked and saved many marriages, including ours, are contained in this book.
Someone might ask, but why do we need another book on marriage, given the many already out there? I would like to think that given the ‘quick fix’ micro-wave age in which we live, people have become more visual and like to see concepts and principles presented in a rather crisp and easy to digest manner. The approach adopted in this book, based on the letters of the title of the book, will hopefully make it much easier for readers to not only engage with the book, but also to remember and retain the secrets for everyday application.
I count it a real privilege and an honour to write a book on this very important subject of marriage. God is the originator of the marriage institution. It was the first institution He established. Appropriately, therefore, this book is based on God’s original idea of bringing a man and woman together in a relationship. It is expected that people of all faiths or no faith at all should find the secrets shared in this book beneficial to their marriage. Any couple who would truly want to enjoy a lifelong relationship in their marriage will find the secrets shared in this book to be truly insightful. And, it is my hope that this book would be an invaluable resource for keeping many marriage relationships alive and together, and helping to minimise the heart aches and social ills that result from broken marriage relationships.
Elewechi Ngozi Okike
“The book, Together Forever, was launched to commemorate the author’s 40th wedding anniversary. Elewechi Ngozi Okike, in the preface had wished that the book would have been published about 5 years earlier, but as it is, God always has a perfect plan for His children.
The book is a masterpiece, extolling the sanctity of marriage, and highlighting God’s recipe for God-centred marriage. It is highly recommended to all married couples, especially in these trying and difficult times.“
Sonny Iroche, Lagos, Nigeria
“Both Monica and I thoroughly enjoyed reading Together Forever, it is a good and interesting read that is both practical and informative, enabling readers to identify how they can face and overcome the issues and challenges that they face within their marriage.
We truly enjoyed reading this book and are very impressed in how good an author you are, the amount of research and detail you must have had to do is truly remarkable.
Monica and I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is either considering marriage or married. Elewechi, has captured the true essence of what builds a happy, stable and loving relationship, which we have experienced within our 46 years of marriage. Congratulations!“
George & Monica Hanlon, Penshaw, Tyne & Wear, UK
“Together Forever is not just another book on marriage. It comes out of the author’s own experience of 40 years marriage. The book is easy to read, comprehensive, biblical and up to date for the 21st Century. This is for those who are about to embark on marriage and a useful tool for those who want to enhance their marriage relationship. For wedding preparation classes, the chapters could be easily used and adapted.“
Ann Finlay, Newcastle, UK
“It is a great privilege and an honour that I am able to use my 45 years experience in a blissful marriage to review and attest to this wonderful book on marriage.
Elewechi Okike has been divinely prepared to make wonderful spiritual and secular exposition on this revered and yet grossly abused institution of marriage that was ordained by God Himself. It is such a great exposition backed with contemporary statistics of the failure of such an important and germane institution which men have neglected. Therefore, the book calls for redress through government policies that could make every couple conform to the Manufacturer’s instructions (as contained in the Bible) and thereby result in a society where love will grow and blossom. This will restore mankind back to Eden where our mandate is joy, prosperity and fruitfulness.
From the conceptualization of the title, Together Forever, and the use of the title’s acronym to form the 15 chapters of the book (and the 15 marriage secrets), it shows that deep thinking went into the writing.
The application of knowledge in using every letter from the title to draw home the lessons of what we should be doing to preserve and enjoy the institutions of marriage is amazing.
Surely, the need to create a solid and mandatory, and a must attend, pre-marriage counselling school has become expedient, as the book highlights. Together Forever has exposed to us the essential ingredients to use to cool the wheel of the marriage institution worldwide. The call to action here is to make this known to all. If possible, this concept of Together Forever should be taught as part of civic education from upper primary (middle) schools. This will enable the younger generation to better understand the expectations of society on them and their future.
As the United Nations continue to advocate for a better society as enshrined in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) (2015-2030) and the 169 targets to make the planet earth a better place to live and pass on to future generations, I strongly align with the author’s recommendations about the need for formal training in preparation for marriage, which would minimise the incidence of broken marriages, and the subsequent effect on society.
The book has been lucidly written to catch the attention of the reader. It is such that once you start reading it, you’re so captivated by it that you can’t drop it until you finish it. It is highly recommended that those in courtship should get hold of this book, as well as those who are looking for ways to make their marriages more enjoyable.
Overall, Dr Okike’s request that we all invite Jesus into our marriages as the Producer of the best wine to come into every marital union, to enable us build better homes and better societies, needs to be considered as the panacea to the global challenges of broken lives, broken homes and broken nations.
Nothing is too difficult for God. Therefore, I believe that her prayers for the RESTORATION of broken homes will be answered. May the will to establish better marriages be established in many lives, and may every home hang the frame, “GOD’S LOVE CARRIES AN ETERNAL GUARANTEE” on their walls, as the reminder of the reward of making marriage work honourably as an enduring institution that the global human society needs.
Having authored a book on marriage myself, “52 Wisdom Tips for an Enduring Marriage”, I attest that Dr Okike’s book is a well written piece and is a must read by every married couple and those intending couples, for informed decision making.“
Chief Grace Oluwatoye, Founder, Lifebuilders, Nigeria