Becoming Compatible: A Book Review

My wife and I are blessed with many Christian marriages that encourage, challenge and mentor us. One such couple leads the marriage ministry at our current church. With much gratitude and thanks, we were invited to a wonderful Saturday morning marriage conference, Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage. The speaker, comedian, and pastor, Mark Gungor, provided challenging and insightful wisdom regarding marriage, both founded in Scripture and cloaked in laughter.

Becoming Compatible

Part of our registration included a short book entitled “Becoming Compatible: How to Succeed in Any Relationship by Understanding the Key Motivations of Yourself and Others” by Mark Gungor. This book is actually an updated edition of Mark’s original book, “Discovering Your Heart with the Flag Page” written in 2011.

The premise of the book is based on the online website and personality assessment, The Flag Page. In essence, everyone has a certain combination of four distinct countries that make up their personality profile. These four countries include Control Country, Fun Country, Perfect Country, and Peace Country. Mark does a masterful job of summarizing each country in simple language, but with profound accuracy. In addition, the web assessment tool offers a plethora of additional information helping each participant to truly analyze and understand their internal motivations, desires, and goals.

Through the course of reading Becoming Compatible, and analyzing our personal results from The Flag Page, my wife and I understood each other in a new light. The saying is true, you reap what you sow, and applying that saying to marriage is beneficial. We reaped the rewards of sowing into our marriage by going to the seminar, taking the online assessment, and talking through our results. We also read the companion book, diving a bit deeper into the countries and ourselves. 

Mark reminds his readers that everyone may have a bit of each country in them, but it was amazing how accurate the flag page assessment categorized my wife and I. My beautiful, smart, and funny wife is a primary resident of FUN country. She enjoys friends, fun, and a good time. I myself, am only an adopted citizen of fun country, my second highest country. My dominant country is CONTROL country, and my dominant language includes words like achievement and goals. My idea of fun may include writing a book, preaching a sermon, or setting financial goals. Knowing the dominant desires and traits of your fun country helps you to understand yourself and others. When you learn to speak the language of other countries, and appreciate the differences between your country and another, compatibility is far greater, 

One of the best insights into marriage includes Gungor’s illuminating revelation concerning the definition of the word companionship. The word means “to suffer with” and is often used incorrectly in many conversations concerning relationships. The premise behind Mark’s book, and assessment is helping spouses to understand each other which enable better companionship.

Not included in the book, but highlighted in Gungor’s marriage seminar,  issues like sex, pornography, and masturbation were addressed with incredible honesty and hard truth. This unexpected topical study proved beneficial for both men and women in attendance. With that said, your marriage will only benefit from Mark’s ministry, and Gungor himself shares a fitting testimony revealing God’s companionship with him in directing his steps to minister to marriages today. 

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