Thanks for feedback in emails and Facebook! We had a great start with last weeks post regarding breaking the silence that keeps intimacy from growing. If you missed the post, check it out here: Sex Position: Developing a heathy marital stance on intimacy.
A simple TRUTH to kick-start today’s blog: sex is important. Husbands and wives find joy in it and they get in arguments over it. Some greatly indulge in it or they can’t seem to find any enjoyment in it at all. I could go on and on. Yet, you won’t find a marriage relationship that hasn’t dealt with the issue of sex and intimacy. Stop downplaying it. Sex is a big deal in marriage!
To explain today’s subject, “Sex and Fruit“, I’ll give a TRUTH:
Sex is not the fuel of a good marriage, but the fruit of one.
Great sex doesn’t necessarily equal a great marriage. In our sex-crazed society, it really seems the opposite. There is such a saturation with the subject that it seems that if you have sex perfected in the relationship, the marriage will last forever. If you watch enough television and/or movies, you think that quantity equals quality (not that I’m against quantity…I felt I needed to say that ). But, like a fine wine, the quality of sex should be increasing within the marriage as the marriage grows. The vintage of sex becomes a result of a great long-lasting, time-enduring marriage.
Whether you realize it or not, you always drag more than just your bodies into bed. Under the covers of the marriage bed, there is nakedness. Emotional, mental, spiritual, and sometimes even physical nakedness appears under the sheets. It’s there where you bring your character AND the character of the relationship into the marriage bed. You bring unresolved arguments, just as much as the romance from a night out. When I think of some of the deepest talks, the most intimate moments, some of the most meaningful times of prayer that I have had with Anne…they all took place in our bed. Everything that we are is exposed there.
It’s no surprise why so many people have intimacy issues. They have separated the bed from everything else in life. Where a spouse assumes it’s a time for embrace, the other hasn’t gotten over hurt and bitterness. Then rejection hits. Now the bed seems the source of bitterness. When the bed shows the fruit of what was brought into it.
God has given us this awesome gift of sex for three reasons:
1 – Consummate our marriage. It’s a bond between husband and wife
2 – Provide enjoyment. God built your body for you to enjoy your spouse.
3 – Procreation. That’s a fancy way of saying “having kids.”
When God has set something up to bond spouses and bring them together is going to be tricky to figure out navigate. Because God set it up, it is going to have a target placed upon it by the enemy who comes to steal and destroy marriages. I’ve said for years, God made man in His image. And God is so complex and deep that His image couldn’t be confined to one sex but needed to two to become one to give the best image of who He is. Because of that sex needs our time and attention. God’s desire is for it to be a blessings.
For it to be a blessing, you have to watch what you bring into the bed. Foreplay is a word that most people know. (If you don’t, you may need to ask your spouse what it is. He/she will help fill you in. Finding out the what and the how may fix some of your issues…crud…I got off subject.) The problem lies when you don’t realize that foreplay exists before foreplay starts. Foreplay, by my definition, is the activity used to stimulate towards sexual intimacy. I’ve made reference before to the book, “Sex begins in the Kitchen.” Without rehashing that, I’ll say that your character and the character of your marriage is the “foreplay that leads to foreplay.” It’s will be very difficult for you to try to stimulate your wife in bed if you haven’t spoken kindly to her all day. You’re husband may not be very responsive if you have been critical of him earlier. Your day together feeds into the responsiveness of your spouse. And until you understand that, your intimacy will struggle to be less that what it could be.
If you are using sex as the fuel of your marriage, you are living shallow at best. And when the difficult storms come. There won’t be any fuel to help the marriage through to the other side. But when you pour into your character and the character of your marriage, the “quantity” may increase, but I promise the “quality” will. Raise the vintage of your sexuality by raising your character.
Some tips to help develop healthy “fruit” in marriage:
1 – Humility comes before honor. Proverbs 18:12
– On a personal level, humble yourself before the Lord. Ask Him to reveal areas of pride. Ask Him to reveal selfishness (which is pride but most people don’t see that). Ask Him to help you be humble before your spouse.
– On a marital level, humble yourself before your spouse. Ask him/her about some of the things that keep him/her from wanting to be intimate. Be teachable. Be willing to ask for forgiveness.
2 – The mind of change. Romans 12:2.
My dad always talks about “stinking thinking.” For too long we have been dealing with sex by the patterns of this world. We need our minds changed to know what God’s will is for our intimacy is–his good, pleasing and perfect will. God made it. He wants you to enjoy it
3 – Patience is a virtue. Galatians 5:22.
Curly, from the 3 Stooges says, “Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was Syracuse.” Change takes time. Vintages take time. As Christ takes the center of your marriage, the fruit of that will be patience. Be committed to the vintage. Be patient.
4 – “What would you like?” Philippians 2:3
This is one of my favorite verses for marriages. Put your spouse’s needs first. Whether you lack desire or you have “too much” desire (according to your spouse). Put his/her need first. The beauty of both of you being other-centered in bed is you both are seeking to please each other.
The sexual enjoyment in your marriage is the fruit of what you bring into the bed. Facilitate that enjoyment by cultivating humility, change, patience, and selflessness.
Thanks for letting me ramble…