Michael and Debi Pearl received national attention when CNN interviewed them in August 2011 about their views that spanking children is "a divine gift." Penning numerous books as part of their "No Greater Joy" ministries in rural Tennessee, the fundamentalist Christian couple were at the heart of a controversy in light of a case involving Kevin and Elizabeth Schatz of Paradise, California, jailed for spanking their two adoptive daughters so severely that one died. The surviving adopted child, as well as their biological children who were also victims of severe punishment, are in foster care. At that time, District Attorney Michael Ramsey said there is no doubt in his mind that the Pearls' advice influenced the Schatzes and that they share some responsibility for the abuses and death. A copy of their book, To Train Up a Child, was found in the Schatz home, marked and underscored. His office decided not to prosecute the Pearls because they had a "First Amendment right to say awful things."
Lauding the fact that they were on CNN and other news outlets, No Greater Joy Ministries issued a press release touting Michael Pearl's latest book, Created To Need A Help Meet – A Marriage Guide for Men. According to the press release,
Created To Be a Help Meet by Debi Pearl had a focus on the women's role in marriage. The focus on women created a growing demand for a similar marriage book for men. Michael's response to the demand is the much anticipated Created To Need A Help Meet: A Marriage Guide For Men. In his direct, no-nonsense style, Michael gets real with men, giving them insight into themselves and helping them to better understand what they can positively contribute to their marriage. Topics include the anticipation of marriage, the different personality types, and the harm that anger and pornography cause within a marriage.
Just as he has brought much needed attention to child training, Michael is prepared to bring attention to the man's role in creating a successful marriage. The marriage revolution that Debi started among women, Michael is ready to start among men.
Debi's book has been reviewed extensively on No Longer Quivering, a site dedicated to the dangers of the so-called "Quiverfull Movement," a sect of fundamentalist biblical Christianity that advocates that couples have as many children as possible and avoid birth control. No Longer Quivering extracted some quotes from Created To Be a Help Meet, including (but not limited to) —
- A wise woman gauges her husband’s needs. She seeks to fulfill his desires before even he is aware of them. She never leaves him daydreaming outside the home. She supplies his every desire.
- A wise woman does not dream of what “could have been.” She sees clearly that she is not God’s gift to men; thus she is blessed in her present circumstances. She learns to be content.
- A wise woman understands that her husband’s need to be honored is not based on his performance but on his position. She learns quickly to defer with enthusiasm to his ideas or plans. She looks for ways to reverence him. She knows this is God’s will for her life.