For those of you who don’t know my husband Isaac, he is an entrepreneur at heart. This is just how God wired him. He’s a natural born leader, an innovative thinker. And people like him, don’t THRIVE being put in a box. Who does really? But you get my point.

For the entirety of our marriage, Isaac has enjoyed being in the business of ‘building’ people. Anyone who has ever been married to a self-employed, entrepreneurial spirited individual knows that, because they work for results, growth, and the mission rather than money, what often follows is hard work and commitment.

At least for a season{s}. Many marriages die to save the business and many businesses close their doors to save a marriage. But Isaac and I believe that isn’t necessary.

In fact, we have always believed that not only can both exist thriving together, but they both can contribute to one another’s growth. How? Well this would be an entire book, in fact we have taught Leaders Marriage Seminars over the years solely focused on this and I have written a 6 Part series on Thriving Marriages and Thriving Businesses here as well.

What does Isaac do for work? He is co-owner and founder of Choose Growth. A Company of Thought Leaders. He is also co-owner and co-founder of Throwing Boulders, Web-based Communication Tool Company.

thriving Marriage

You can read some of our most popular marriage posts here:

Thriving Marriages Choose Growth 

  • 3 FREE Visioneering/Mission Statement Handouts

Choosing to Lead Your Wife by Isaac Tolpin

Social Media Accountability | Marriage on a Mission

Does Your Husband Know He’s Your Hero?

Marriage Pity Parties

To read all posts on marriage go here.



Yes, I believe sharing a common relationship with the Lord is the #1 Key Ingredient to a Thriving Marriage. How can one find a greater mission transcending selfish gain without it be founded on fulfilling your greater purpose in life… as a married couple as well.

But the Belief I am referring to here is…

BELIEF in your spouse. 

Building your husband’s self-esteem {or me, building your wife’s} is the single greatest thing you can do to create a happy marriage.

As many of you know from reading my last post, Every Leader Needs Encouragement, you know that I recently found another tumor and am currently waiting to hear results. As I shared, though my faith and trust in the Lord is unwavering, my belief in my self, or my usefulness for the Lord was shaken. I have learned over the years, that when God allows us to walk through those valleys, He does so because He loves us. The depth of my walk with the Lord is always deepened during such journeys. But I have had two nights where I was weak and didn’t exercise self-control over my thoughts and my emotions began to run wild leading me down a very destructive road. I verbalized quitting writing altogether, closing down both websites, quitting home schooling the kids, and on and on. Nothing Isaac said could pull me up out of this pit I was digging for myself.

Then a few days later, on Christmas Day, my husband spoke to my heart BELIEF, in me. He spoke belief in God, in me when he bought me a new laptop. You see about 4 weeks ago, my battery exploded in my laptop, warping the keyboard and unhinging the screen. This gift was literally one of the most memorable gifts he has ever given me, more than diamonds, simply because it reflected his BELIEF that what I had to share was worth it and that God wasn’t finished using me yet. It gave me HOPE to keep on keeping on. After having already written a book, and having been so supportive through that whole process, for him to do this spoke millions to me.

Even though I had exploded a computer and was potentially facing who knows what with this tumor, my husband believed I had much to contribute to the world yet. He believed so much in God’s call on my life, and the mission of our marriage, that He went above and beyond for me. I was so shocked.

BELIEF is powerful. Especially when it comes from the one who knows you better than anyone in the world.

I know I am blessed to have a husband who believes in me and leads me like he does. But I want to share a little secret with you. For the first thirteen years of our marriage, I focused my energies on supporting him, believing in Him and God’s purposes for his life. I spent years intentionally building his self-esteem and being that team-mate he needed while building our businesses, planting our vineyard, and growing our family. It wasn’t always easy. There were many seasons of hard work, for both of us. Him at the office, me in the home. Long hours for Isaac meant long hours for me. And that is still our reality, but we are living our purposes.

My advice to unwed or newly engaged women:

Choose well. Fawn, shares this in her book… choose a spouse that is willing to fight for your marriage. {Click to Tweet} And all I can say is AMEN. Choose a man who is not only willing to fight for your marriage, but also choose one that is willing to grow and let you grow. Growing up or old together means you grow, but often times couples don’t let one another be the change they have become. They hold onto grudges and can’t forgive. You have a choice. Choose wisely when you choose your team-mate for life.


One of my friends Fawn Weaver has written a great resource for marriages “Happy Wives Club.” I have joined in with many other bloggers to help get the word out about her book because, like Fawn, Isaac and I are deeply concerned for our culture’s standard for marriage.

Divorce rates continue to get worse, and now more than ever we feel called to encourage others to fight the good fight– the fight for the sanctity of marriage. The unfortunate reality of today is that thousands of young people do not even believe in marriage anymore. They call it old-fashioned, a trend of the past, ‘stuck,’ and the timeless old ‘ball and chain.’ When the going gets tough, many believe they deserve better and simply ‘move on’ expecting ‘love’ to be better right around the corner. I could write endlessly of all the ways marriage is under attack, but you know that already, don’t you. You’ve seen what our world accepts as their ‘normal’ view of modern marriages today through media, all in the name of tolerance, haven’t you?

That is why I am so in support of Fawn, this website… no, this movement… and this book. It’s not revolutionary. No, in fact, most of the ‘secrets’ shared in this book are timeless. But that’s the point. It’s this kind of mentoring I am so in support of. She didn’t just go to counselors, pastor’s and their wives, missionaries, or any experts alone. No, Fawn sought out marital wisdom of ordinary older, wise women who have lived life in all it’s joys and challenges. She met with them and their husbands, which is SO much more authentic. They didn’t have anything to prove, they were just sharing from what they had learned and lived first hand and they practice what they preach. She listened to them share their stories, together, as couples at times and then one on one with these women who have all been happily married for 20 years or more. Isn’t it sad to think that marriages that make it this long are hard to find these days. But it’s true.
When Isaac wrote the chapter for husband’s in Redeeming Childbirth and helped me write the other chapters on marriage, the theme was one of engaging life’s journeys, both challenging and joy-filled, as a TEAM. He encourages husbands to lead their wives hearts during the childbearing season, when we have so many hormones tempting us not to have control over our thoughts and emotions. I love that this same truth is taught in the Happy Wives Club. Simple truth, with applicable stories.


If I was to write a post with my top books to give a bride before her wedding day, this one would be in that top ten… simply for the basic advise and wisdom these older women share.  This isn’t a book about faith. Although, I am sure many of the women are women of faith… no this is simply focused on what you can do to choose a happy marriage.

The reality is that with divorce rates sky rocketing the past few generations, most have not lived to testify to a happy marriage. I love that some of these women walked through some really rough marital seasons {infidelity even}, but in the end, because they worked at their marriage and forgave, they now experience the reward of the hard work they put into rebuilding their relationship, rather than running.


Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the Happy Wives Club: Tweetables

“I should have never allowed those negative thoughts to grow… you can either feed negative thoughts, or starve the suckers.” {Click to Tweet}

“Rather than being upset about his working long hours, she began to appreciate that the reason he works such long hours is to provide for her and their four children.”

Fawn Weaver, the founder of the Happy Wives Club wrote a book about the best marriage secrets the world has to offer. They say the book is like “Eat, Pray, Love meets The 5 Love Languages.” I say the book is inspiring. You can grab a copy HERE.


20131005-tolpin-5603Believing in You to Choose Happiness,

Angie Tolpin

I would love to invite you to connect with me on my facebook page, pinterest, or twitter. Or leave me a comment and let me know a little about yourself. Thanks for stopping by! Also have you checked out the new online Bible Study Redeeming the Division: The Quiet Fight Between Women?


If you are expecting a baby, I would like to invite you visit my other ministry website, Redeeming Childbirth. We also have a facebook page and pinterest for spiritual encouragement! I hope you join us.

We have a bunch of free resources, a prayer team, and an online private mentoring group to help encourage you.