Five Solas Press

Literature  For Your Joy and God's Glory!

What’s Inside

Finding the Right One in Light of the Beatitudes


Donald Thomas

When the divorce rate of professing Christians mirrors that of an unbelieving world, something is terribly wrong. Often that “something” dates back to the selection process itself. Sadly many singles make the fatal error of looking on the outside rather than the heart.

Be prepared to discover:

  • God’s role of the father through the selection process;
  • How to apply our Lord’s eight Beatitudes to discern the presence of a spiritual heartbeat;
  • Four ways the single life can best advance the kingdom of God;
  • How to be proactive in finding the right one;
  • How to have full-assurance that you are the right one.

What’s Inside... is a must read for every Christian parent and single person seeking God’s will for a happy marriage.

What The Readers Are Saying

Christian parents long for their own children to know the Lord and live for His glory. This often means, although not always, that they will marry and raise families. Marriage choices are so important. It seems to me that Christians often fall to extremes, either they create a new legalism with regulations, stipulations and standards that are probably more Victorian than biblical, or they take the approach that “any ol’ pumpkin will do.” Pastor Don Thomas gives some good challenges for parents and young Christians seeking a spouse. Although we do not infallibly know a person’s heart, and many professing Christians have turned away years into a marriage, we do need to do our best to seek those who love the Lord Jesus and exhibit Christian character. One may not agree with every point of application, but Don has given Christian parents and young people much to think and pray about!

 Brian Borgman

Pastor of Grace Community Church, Minden, NV

Author of Feelings and Faith and After They’re Yours: The Grace and Grit of Adoption

This is a great book! Don Thomas’ call and direction to look to the Beatitudes for insight into finding a kindred spirit to marry is spot on. His book “What's Inside” has served as a valuable guide to our whole family as we navigate the courtship of our daughters. It’s packed with insight on how to look for manifestations of Christ in prospective mates with specific application to parents, sons/daughters and church leaders. This is a wonderful tool in the Master’s hands to encourage, exhort, and inspire every reader toward spiritual discernment and will serve to challenge personal growth.  Rob Fawcett

What's inside is a much needed resource today. Don Thomas uses a winsome writing style combined with solid Biblical exegesis, sound application, and helpful suggestions to assist those seeking marriage and their parents. Chapter 2 and Appendix 2 addressing the parental, specifically the paternal, role is completely counter-cultural, yet thoroughly Biblical. It is addressed in a thorough manner for the everyday churchman without bogging down into too much detail. The use of the Beatitudes as a guide in discerning the heart of a potential spouse is at once obvious, yet brilliant in that we have a tendency to not see the forest for the trees by clouding our judgment with extraneous issues. The Beatitudes focuses the reader onto the core issues of the potential spouse's relationship with Jesus Christ and helps to cut through the confusion. Each Beatitude is properly explained and applied to the issues surrounding dating or courtship (or whatever term you want to use) and gives practical guidance in how to stay focused on the Biblical issue, what to look for, how to discern and evaluate and fold all into a wise and Christ honoring decision. There is the hidden, yet essential benefit that this also produces self-reflection in the reader regarding the state of one's own heart in relation to Christ, the readiness of one's own self or child for marriage and where one needs to grow to be ready and prepared for the joy and trials of marriage.  Pastor Timothy Feathers

The Beatitudes found in Matthew 5:2-11, famously open the Lord Jesus' Sermon on the Mount and contain key characteristics found in the truly born again believer. In "What's Inside", Author Donald Thomas focuses on the premise that these Beatitude qualities can be invaluable, God-given guides in the decision-making process of any Christian man or woman seeking a Godly spouse. Thomas makes a strong biblical case that if you want a truly "blessed" marriage featuring a God-honoring, Christ-centered home and family life, you would do well to hold potential marriage partners up to the measuring stick of the Beatitudes.

"What's Inside" has exegetical and Theological depth and is yet winsome and wholly accessible to the average reader. The book has an easy flow with each Beatitude given its own full chapter. Pastor Thomas' writing is rich with personal and relational anecdotes that make the reader feel they are enjoying a conversation with the author at the dinner table.

The life-giving Gospel is rightfully and necessarily woven throughout this book as the author seamlessly demonstrates how it should permeate the Christian life and provide firm-footing and constancy in every aspect of the courtship process. In this Gospel-centered vein, Chapter 3, "Marry a Believer", provides a practical outline of the recognizable elements of a true Christian confession of faith (pg.31-32). Similarly, Chapter 6, "Marry the Sad" (Matthew 5:4) ,holds a particularly instructive discussion contrasting the God-given, true repentance that leads to salvation and remains as a lifelong hallmark of Christian lives in the throes of sanctification with a more common worldly sorrow, rationalization, and excusing of sin found in the lives of unbelievers (2 Corinthians 7:10).

A major theme in "What's Inside" is the importance of protective, prayerful, humble, and loving parental involvement throughout a child's upbringing, courtship, and marriage decision. Specifically, Thomas uses scripture and context to underscore the paramount importance of the Father's role as a strong, wise, Christ-centered, servant-leader of his family. Thomas asserts that the father, in loving biblical fashion, is to be instrumental in the guidance and protection of his children as he helps them to make God-honoring choices in courtship that will result in a strong, healthy Christian marriages. Often, Appendices are overlooked but be sure to take a look at them in this book as they offer further information and discussion on the church's current understanding of the paternal role in courtship within the interpretation and application of 1 Corinthians 7:36-38.

It's refreshing to note that while many today dismiss, compromise,and twist the Word in an attempt to be newly 'relevant' or perhaps more palatable, Thomas maintains a resolute faithfulness to Scripture. With confident assurance, "What's inside" reiterates that God's Word is timeless, realistic, practical, and all sufficient in matters pertaining to family, courtship, and marriage.

"What's Inside" is a wonderfully insightful and instructive resource. I would recommend it as a valuable read for Christian singles; their parents, grandparents, pastors, relatives, and friends. In addition, any member of the church family who influences teaches, and counsels youth would also most certainly benefit from this book's practical and easily relayed content.

In conclusion, I will add that this reading this book has a dual effect. Yes, it promises and delivers advice, insight, and biblical application for courtship and the marriage decision but in addition, the reader will find that they are held up to the Beatitude mirror as well; a convicting exercise and a good, healthy spiritual test of the faith.   Michelle Hartman

About the Author

Donald Thomas, has been the pastor-teacher of Trinity Bible Church in Powell, Wyoming since 1994. He received a Master’s Degree from Talbot Theological Seminary and a J.D. from John Marshall Law School. He practiced law in California and served as a professor at the Simon Greenleaf School of Law. He and his wife Mary have seven grown children and sixteen grandchildren.

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