Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Movie Review: The Intern - Everything Old Is New Again

My hubby and I finally got around to watching a movie released in 2015, The Intern, starring Robert DeNiro as Ben, a 70-year-old widower finding retirement unsatisfying and Anne Hathaway as Jules, the hard-charging founder of an online clothing site. Through a senior internship program, Ben is assigned to Jules, who is not at all interested in this social experiment.

What I enjoyed most about this movie is the depiction of class, dignity, and old-school work ethic aiding the Fish-out-of water  to swim elegantly in his new ocean. Ben's ignorance of technology is more than compensated for by his work and life experiences. We see a group of millenials being mentored as well as the baby-boomer happily embracing lifelong learning.

My husband noted how much we need wise older men/women and , regrettably, how often age does not equal wisdom. As I'm in my 50s, the comment prompted me to pause and assess what wisdom I could bring to my younger friends and what foolish tendencies I need to purge. I was reminded of Paul's exhortation to young pastor Titus:
     But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience; the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things - that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.
     Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded, in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you
. [Titus 2:2-8 NKJV]
The movie has a definite feminist sensibility (which made the resolution rather puzzling to me). DeNiro plays an old-school gentleman that current generations of emales would love to see reemerge. What's particularly interesting is Jules scornful evaluation of the men of her generation:
Nobody calls men "men" anymore. Have you noticed? Women went from "girls" to "women." Men went from "Men" to "boys"? This is a problem in the big picture. Do you know what I mean?...How, in one generation, have men gone from guys like Jack Nicholson and Harrison Ford to...[looks at her male friends]...take Ben here. A dying breed. You know? Look and learn, boys. Because if you ask me, this is what cool is.
Our protagonist finds herself longing for the very old-school masculinity her feminism has helped to erode.  The Law of Unintended Consequences. The character of Ben really is charming; he is a true gentleman. [Note: Masculinity should never be confused with its cheap imitator machismo.]

Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway have wonderful chemistry. The secondary characters are believable and actually somewhat developed considering their limited screen tie.

Writer/director Nancy Meyer's The Holiday is watched every December in our house.  With The Intern, Meyers has added another movie to my favorites list.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Crazy for Cozy Mysteries

When it comes to fiction, my hubby says I don't read books as much as I devour them! With my current job, I often have an hour or two to read, albeit with lots of background noise. Thankfully, I  discovered the Cozy Mystery genre.

Usually written as a series, in a cozy mystery the sleuth is typically an intelligent, observant woman whose business finds her in various locations where a mysterious death occurs. The cast of characters are family, neighbors, friends, and other business owners in a small town and recur in each of the books. [Think: Murder, She Wrote or Nancy Drew] These are fun books I can usually finish off in two to three hours. Cozy mysteries typically also feature a romance and very little, if any, objectionable material. When purchased as an eBook, they are also very affordable. I have gotten books on eBook promotional sites for free or under $1, but usually they are under $10 and often under $5.

Nancy Drew's The Mysterious Mansion taught me about Persian rugs. I was introduced to falconry in the Hardy Boys' The Hooded Hawk Mystery. Cozy mysteries continue this education by offering up tidbits pertaining to the heroine's line or work or interest and sometimes offer recipes as well.  Here are some of my favorite series:

Raine Stockton Dog Mysteries by Donna Ball
     The first cozy series I read and probably still my favorite. Raine Stockton, formerly with Search and Rescue, finds herself investigating mysteries in her small North Carolina community located in the heart of the Smoky Mountains while navigating a complicated love life.
     I'm a dog lover and what I appreciate the most about Ball's writing is the way she captures the personality of animals. Cisco and the other canines are characters, while never being more than dogs.  Another plus: Balls writes like she has actually been to North Carolina and knows Southerners! Her books don't pile on southern stereotype. As a southerner myself, I recognize the traits and tendencies of her characters. As a side benefit, each book contains within the story helpful dog training tips.
     [While not mysteries, another charming series by Ms. Ball is the Lady Bug Farm books and the accompanying Hummingbird House books. These books feature well-developed characters and uplifting stories.]

Tourist Trap Mysteries by Lynn Cahoon
     Jill Gardner relocates to South Cove, California and opens Coffee, Books, and More. She is the business community liaison to the city council, which often puts her at odds with her nemesis, the major. Along with this and selling books, Jill gets involved in solving murders much to the dismay of her police officer boyfriend.
     This is a very close second to the Raine Stockton series. I read these books as much to catch up on the goings on in South Cove as for the mysteries.

Caprice De Luca Home Staging Mysteries by Karen Rose Smith
     Caprice De Luca is an aficionada of all things vintage and the owner of a home-staging business. The De Lucas are a tight-knit family and Caprice's siblings and other family members always play a role in the stories. This series is set in Pennsylvania.
     I'm not as big a fan of  the author's writing style as I am of the above authors, but Smith's stories have a wonderful sweetness to them. I have come to care about the De Lucas and look forward to a return visit with them in each book. As an added bonus, each book features recipes.

Caught Dead in Wyoming by Patricia McLinn
     Former big-time TV journalist Elizabeth "E.M." Danniher finds herself doing consumer protection stories for podunk KWMT-TV in Sherman, Wyoming after a messy breakup with her vindictive ex-husband, a powerful news executive. In between her "Helping Out!" segments, she finds herself investigating murders and juggling love interests while learning the ways of the West.
     After I finished the first book of the series, I quickly downloaded the other three and had read all four books within a week. This series caught my imagination and the characters won me over quickly. I am rooting for E. M. Danniher to get the best of her station's pompous anchor (a written version of Ted Baxter from the old Mary Tyler Moore series).

Mainely Needlepoint Mysteries by Lea Wait
     Angie Curtis returns to her hometown after her long-vanished mother's body is found.Another murder is tied to her mother's case and soon Angie is stitching together clues while working with the Mainely Needlepointers in her needlework business.  Set in the fictional mid-coastal town of Haven Harbor, Maine, the books' location is very picturesque. Plenty of needlework history and tidbits are woven into each story.

Hampton Home & Gardens Mysteries by Kathleen Bridge
     After a rough breakup with her fiance, Meg Barrett flees glamorous Manhattan and her job at a top home and garden magazine to the small to the small town of Montauk on the outskirts of the tony communities of the Hamptons where she begins Cottages by the Sea, an interior design business.  She soon finds herself in the middle of murder mysteries among the rich and famous.
     This new series (two books as of this writing) captured my attention quickly and I finished both books in short order, which means I now must twiddle my thumbs impatiently while waiting for the next entry.  Meg Barrett and her cohorts are fun characters and the location is intriguing. The books include interior design tips and recipes.

These are my favorite cozy series, but I'm always open to suggestions for new ones!

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

The Subtle Danger of Me Before You

Her text read something like this: "Please read this book! I'm dying for someone to discuss it with." So at my friend Rose's urging, I was off to obtain a copy of the wildly popular Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. Because the film version is opening this summer, I moved it to the top of my long, long, long to-read stack of books.

If you haven't read the book: READ NO FURTHER. SPOILERS AHEAD.

The book opens like a typical romance novel. We are introduced to Will Trayner, a strong virile man with implied serious wealth, enjoying the morning after with his equal female specimen of perfection. However as the Prologue ends, we know this is no typical romance novel.

We next make the acquaintance of Louisa "Lou" Clark, she of eccentric fashion sense and newly joined to the ranks of the unemployed. Lou's family is somewhat dependent upon her wages, although curiously not all that supportive or edifying of her. It is this need for money and her limited job prospects that sends Lou to Granta House, the stately home of Will, who is now a quadriplegic requiring constant care following an accident. We discover Will lives in the home's annex, a visual picture of his diminished life. With no discernible skills pertinent to the job (or so the reader thinks), Lou is hired.

An unlikely friendship develops between these two disparate characters and one might assume a new spin on the Romeo and Juliet story is about to unfold until the plot twist is revealed. Will has attempted suicide in the past and still has this intention. Lou's contract is for six months, not as a trial basis, but because that's the delay Will promised his parents before carrying out his plans. Upon learning of this, Lou first resigns before being begged to stay by Will's mom.  Mrs. Trayner has seen the difference Lou is making in Will and pleads with her to find a way to change his mind. Thus begins Louisa Clark's mission to give Will a reason to live. Along the way, as we already suspected, the friendship deepens and Lou falls in love.

There will be no happily ever after ending. Will Trayner flies to Switzerland to a hospital that provides assisted suicide services. After initially walking away from Will devastated, Lou comes to terms with his decision and at the last minute joins him there to say goodbye. When Lou's mother learns of this, she is appalled by her daughter's decision:
It is not my decision, Mum. It's Will's. The whole point is to support Will.
Support Will? I've never heard such rubbish. You're a child, Louisa. You've seen nothing, done nothing. And you have no idea what this is going to do to you. How in God's name will you ever be able to sleep at night? You'd be helping a man to die. Do you really understand that? You'd be helping Will, that lovely, clever young man, to die.
When Louisa doesn't change her mind, the scene continues with:
If you go, Louisa, you needn't come back.
The words fell out of her mouth like pebbles. I looked at my mother in shock. Her gaze was unyielding. It tensed as she watched for my reaction. It was as if a wall I had never known was there had sprung up between us.
I mean it. This is no better than murder.
Louisa's father and sister try to intervene and plead Lou's case, but her mother is unmoved. This is the exact moment Moyes lost me.

Don't misunderstand - I finished the book, going through a box of tissues in the process. This is a well-written, page turner with characters you grow to care about. And there's the problem.

Assisted suicide sounds so noble. Choosing how to end one's life in light of suffering or, in the case of this fictional character, life-altering injuries. We are heartless if we stand opposed to this choice. Or are we?

Will Trayner, a man with seemingly unlimited means and a high degree of intelligence, chooses to die rather than live a life disabled. His disability has rendered his life meaningless. He can't handle being dependent on others, not scaling mountaintops, or the inability to do all the other things in his previous active life. Louisa's mother opposes Will's choice, so of course, she's wrong. The whole second half of the book builds to the reader's coming to acceptance (and endorsement?) of his suicide. Why can't Louisa's mother see this?  Heck, Louisa is going to travel and be wealthy as a result of his death! Even Will's mother comes to terms with it. By opposing the book's hero and heroine, it is implicit we are to see Louisa's mother as wrong. But she's not wrong; she's principled. And she sees Will as he is - a selfish coward.

Murder is wrong, including self murder. One reviewer called this "tragedy porn," which I found to be very insightful. The book subtly tries to persuade you Will's disabled life is not worth living. His life had setbacks, serious setbacks, and so now he doesn't want it. He has an attractive woman in love with him, a supportive family, means to accommodate his limitations so he can still be active in different ways, but that's not enough. He can't have the life he had, the life he wants, so he's going to end the life he does have.

As a Christian, I believe when the Lord's providence for our life is hard and painful, we still must cling to the promise it is for our good and His glory. We must insist the disabled person has worth. We must insist suffering has worth. Caregivers bless and are blessed. If we still draw breath, we still have purpose. My husband and I  have each cared for a dying parent. It is painful, frustrating, exhausting, and emotionally wrenching, but after their deaths we each were richer. The experience taught us things we wouldn't, or perhaps couldn't, have learned otherwise. Our parents' suffering had purpose.

The book's ending sends the wrong message about how to measure a person's quality of life, a life's worth, what love is, and the possibility of overcoming obstacles and challenges to live a fulfilled, if altered, life. The ending didn't just make me sad; it made me angry. 

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Honest Confessions

I've written before about how every church has a liturgy, a pattern, for worship. In my church, part of this liturgy is a corporate confession of sin. It is a responsive, that is participatory, part of worship. It looks something like this:

Leader:     If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Silence for reflection and self-examination.

Leader:     Let us pray.

All:     Almighty God, our heavenly Father, we have sinned against You and against our fellow men, in thought and word and deed, in the evil we have done and in the good we have not done, through ignorance, through weakness, through our own deliberate fault. We are truly sorry and repent of all our sins. For the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ, who died for us, forgive us all that is past; and grant that we may serve You in newness of life in the glory of Your Name. Amen.

I did not grow up reciting written prayers and when I first encountered them in a worship service, I was somewhat taken aback. It was pointed out to me that were I to speak with the President, visiting royalty, or some other notable figure of great importance, I would probably have a speech prepared or at least a series of talking points to ensure my part of the encounter was coherent. Why then shouldn't we prepare our words for the Almighty God in the same manner? That explanation resonated with me to the point that I now often write out prayers in a journal as a means of truly shaping my words so they express properly my praise, thanksgiving, and requests.

Another benefit of having a prepared corporate prayer of confession is I am confronted about sinful habits or tendencies I might, if left on my own, gloss over or even ignore. Such is the case with the above confession: ". . . through our own deliberate fault." Ouch. If we're honest, don't we all like to excuse away our sin? It was a mistake, a misunderstanding, the result of incorrect information or some other reason that gives us an out from some or all the responsibility for our failings. A written confession makes us admit there were times when we sinned deliberately. It is very reminiscent of David's confession written in the psalms. The gut-level honest confession and the familial tone of a son to his Father of this psalm makes it precious to Christians:

Have mercy upon me, O God,According to Your lovingkindess;According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,Blot out my transgressions.Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,And cleanse me from my sin.For I acknowledge my transgressions,And my sin is always before me.Against You, You only, have I sinned,And done this evil in Your sight - That You may be found just when You speak,And blameless when You judge.~ Psalm 51:1-4

David was far from perfect, but he didn't let sin remain between him and God. We know from Scripture God affirms David as a man after His own heart. Our corporate confession also ends with an affirmation:

Leader:     Lift up your hearts and receive the sure promise of the gospel.  The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and great in mercy. "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." To all who believe and repent, this promise is most surely given. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."

That's the beauty of confession; through Jesus we have been made clean and affirmed as loved by our Heavenly Father.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Crafting Sunday School (or God Bless Pinterest!)

My church is small and as such we have only one children's Sunday School class with ages ranging from Preschool to I'm-old-enough-for-the-grownup-class. It's a challenge to develop a lesson appropriate for such a wide age range, but it is one homeschool moms are very familiar with.  Not having kids of my own, I enjoy this weekly interaction and watching the one-room schoolhouse experience come to life before my eyes.  The older kids are wonderful in helping out the younger ones.

Currently, the class has a majority of females; in the past, we've had mostly boys.  The gender difference has had a big influence on occasion in determining crafts and activities.  One activity for which I'm rather infamous happened in October.  We were studying through the Book of Judges and the next lesson would be in Judges 4 where we find the story of Jael and Sisera.

Inspiration struck in the produce section of Walmart!  There was a sale on pie pumpkins and I loaded up my cart with these pumpkins and a package of plastic tent pegs.  The following Sunday, I hauled the pumpkins, tent pegs, a couple of rubber mallets, and box of markers down to our classroom.  We read our story about our heroine Jael's ending of Israel's enemy Sisera.  Then we drew a face on our pumpkins and the kiddos pounded tent pegs into the them!  That year several families had "Sisera" jack-o-lanterns!  One dad remarked, "Only at our church."  I'm not sure it was a compliment.

Sampling fruit
We recently finished a series of lessons on The Fruits of the Spirit. I tried to bring in unusual fruit for the kids to sample from time to time. I am so grateful to various Pinterest users for the great ideas I used in this series. The biggest hit was this song which helped the kids learn all the Fruits of the Spirit.  My boys and girls both love it!.

We just started a new series on The Armor of God.  I found this great poster at Lifeway.  This great web site has some wonderful lesson ideas and this site had templates for wearable armor that I modified slightly. The generosity of these ladies in sharing for free their hard work and creativity is just incredible!  Here's a picture of some of the kids wearing their Belt of Truth.
I'm hoping the kiddos will have the complete armor completed by the time Harvest Parties or Trick-or-Treating comes around.  There is a great song I downloaded for these lessons.  It has a good "hook" which should help the kids memorize the armor pieces.  

I have a board on Pinterest for Sunday School crafts, so if you're a teacher who has drawn a blank please check it out.  

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Christmas Trees and Memories

Our Christmas tree tells our story.  The ornaments are an eclectic collection gathered over 23 years of marriage.  For the last few years, we have been blessed to have Mom with us and her story ornaments are also placed on the tree.

When we first married, we were unsure what directions our tree should take, so we opted to play it safe and stick to ornaments which had a decidedly biblical theme (music, angels, nativity, etc).  When I stretched plausibility with a cuckoo clock to commemorate our honeymoon in Germany ("to everything there is a time and a purpose under heaven..."), we had to acknowledge our tree theme had significantly broadened.

Each year, as we take out our carefully wrapped ornaments, we are reminded of moments in time,special trips,pets, friends, and loved ones long passed.  I smile through tears as I hang the ornaments Dad patiently helped his "three girls" (Mom, my sister and me) make.  These simple pine cones mean so very much to me.

There is an ornament on the tree from my childhood and a green bell from Mom's.  Many ornaments were given as gifts by students, friends, and loved ones and they always bring warmth to us when we placed them on the evergreen.  I have a few that remind me of the precious children I teach in Sunday School.

Our Christmas tree helps me remember.  I think I understand a Christmas standard better now than I did in my younger days.  At Christmas, I find myself going home, but it is to the home of yesteryear.  I relieve treasured memories and revisit scenes from a time long ago:

I'm dreaming tonight of a place I love
Even more than I usually do.
And although I know it's a long road back,
I promise you
I'll be home for Christmas.
You can count on me.
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents by the tree.
Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love light gleams.
I'll be home for Christmas,
If only in my dreams.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

What's Doctrine Got To Do With Me? Some Thoughts for Women Married to Christian Leaders, Teachers or Pastors

Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine . . .Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.  Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine.  Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

For any endeavor undertaken by two or more people to be successful, there will need to be a division of labor.  Each person works within their strengths - the salesman sells, the accountant manages the books, and the organizer structures.  However, while your husband may be the theologian of the family, this does not mean theology  is something at which only he needs to work.

In his second book to Pastor Timothy, the Apostle Paul writes, "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."  I am fairly certain we have all heard many Sunday School lessons or sermons where that verse was used to motivate all Christians to be diligent in Bible Study - and rightly so.  While the epistle was originally written to Timothy, its message is applicable to us all, in a secondary way, even if we are not pastors.

Tom Wright has some interesting comments on this verse as it relates to pastors and teachers:
In particular, [Paul] wants preachers and teachers to 'carve out a straight path for the word of truth.' Some translations say things like 'rightly dividing the word,' and it's possible Paul means something like that (in other words, 'being able to show how the sentences work, what each part means, and how they all relate to each other').  But it's more likely that the picture he has in mind is of a pioneer hacking out a path through the jungle so that people can walk safely through it.  Part of the job of the teacher is to do what Paul himself is doing in this passage: to see where there are brambles, creepers, and dead trees blocking the path which the word should be following to people's hearts and minds, and to shift them out of the way."  ~ Paul for Everyone: Pastoral Epistles
If we take a quick walk through the Psalms and Proverbs, we will see the theme of a straight path comes up over and over again and the admonition to keep to it is not directed at pastors and teachers alone:

The righteousness of the blameless makes their paths straight, but the wicked are brought down by their own wickedness.  Proverbs 11:5

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.  Psalm 119:105

In the way of righteousness is life, and in its pathway there is no death.  Proverbs 12:28

So you may walk in the way of goodness, and keep to the paths of righteousness.  Proverbs 2:20

Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it.  Incline my heart to Your testimonies, and not to covetousness.  Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things, and revive me in Your way.  Psalm 119:35-37

Concerning the works of men, by the word of Your lips, I have kept away from the paths of the destroyer.  Uphold my steps in Your paths, that my footsteps may not slip.  Proverbs 17:4,5

So we have established as a Christian, we are responsible for being diligent in the Word and thereby staying on the straight or righteous path.  This path theme is of particular importance to you as the wife of a Christian leader.  If you are not traveling along the same path as your husband, your path could become rocky.

Notice in several of the verses above, the word "path" is in the plural, "paths."  On a personal level, we are all on our own Pilgrim's Progress journey, going down our individual Christian paths.  While people from different denominations are able to stand together and in agreement recite The Apostles' Creed, they do so while traveling different theological paths.  This became of particular importance to me when my future husband switched paths after we became engaged.

Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.  Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine.  Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself  and those who hear you.

My husband and I met in my childhood Southern Baptist church. He also attended a Baptist church, but not of the Southern Baptist tradition with which I was familiar at the time.  He used words like "Reformed" and "Calvinism."  Back then, I had no idea what a difference these new words would make in my life!  During our engagement, my fiance presented me with a required reading list.  (Whenever I tell people this, he indignantly says, "Oh, I did not!" but the list was real.)  Here I am planning a wedding, my mind consumed with hearts and flowers, and my sweetheart is giving me Calvin's Institutes, Lorraine Boettner's Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, and other tomes.  Our engagement was full of theological discussions and debates.  I read the books and found myself drifting more and more over to his path.  This would happen again after we married when he found himself in closer alignment with the Presbyterian church.  In short order, this born, bred, and burped Baptist found herself leaving that denomination and becoming a congregant in the Presbyterian Church in America.  It is a good thing my hubby had taken heed to himself and to doctrine, because I confess when first presented with these changes, he did not encounter a quiet and gentle spirit.  I rebelled!  Fortunately, the more I read and the more we discussed doctrines, the more I found myself agreeing with his new direction.  Now I remind him if he can persuade me, he can persuade anyone.

Lest there be any confusion about it, let me state clearly my purpose in sharing this is not to convince you to explore Presbyterianism.  Pastors are to be students. It was because of his studies that my husband changed denominations.  Over the course of our marriage, I have seen him not necessarily change, but refine his theological views from time to time.  These matters are the topics of our conversations and as he shares what he is learning, I can see the way his mind is working and get a good feeling for where he is going.  I have learned it is important that I take heed to myself and to doctrine to be able to be the helper my husband needs and walk in unison down the same theological path.  The book of Amos sums it up nicely, "Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?"  Billy Graham and his wife Ruth, who was a lifelong Presbyterian, may just be the exception that proves the rule.

Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

There are other reasons for staying sharp theologically. Church members and others will pose theological questions to you.  Again, church members and others will pose theological questions to you.  The biggies you can easily defer with a sweet smile and, "You'll have to talk to my hubby about that."  However, there will be situations, conversations at church get-togethers or casual parties, where in the midst of a general discussion a theological issue will be raised. This is true for all Christians, but remember your opinion will reflect upon your husband.  You represent him...always.  An off-the-cuff remark can cause him headaches. [Trust me - I have personal experience here.]  That is why it is so important that we are that workman who needs not be ashamed, the woman who is striving to bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

Another reason to stay theologically sharp is the opportunities your spouse's vocation will present to you.  Whether it is standing in line at Wal-Mart or making chit-chat in a waiting room, when people find out I am married to a pastor, I am continually surprised by how often the conversation will take a decidedly personal turn.  A complete stranger will share an intimate situation with me and seek counsel as if I were the one wearing the clerical collar!  When faced with a hurting person, I silently pray that I will not be an ashamed workman and ask the Lord to bring to my remembrance His Word.

As husband and wife, we are to be one flesh and I think within that is an exhortation for a theological oneness.  We have a biblical example of this in the pages of Acts:
Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus.  This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of John.  So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue.  When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.

Notice:  Scripture says, ". . .When Aquilla and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately."  Priscilla was being a helper to her husband in this circumstance as well.

You are not just married to a theologian, ladies; you are expected to be one.

[Ladies, if counseling opportunities keep finding you, here is a very good resource: Women Helping Women: A Biblical Guide to the Major Issues Women Face by Elyse Fitzpatrick & Carol Cornish, published by Christian Counseling & Education Foundation.  Kindle edition here.]