Intimacy in marriage is one of my core values. A marriage hurts when intimacy is not present. Intimacy is not just sex, although it’s an important component. It’s agonizing to hear of sexless marriages; they are out there, some anorexic at best. When someone asks “how often should you have sex in marriage?” My answer is “as often as possible.” I have scripture for that. Check out proverbs 5:15-23 How’s that for a hook? The message is clear, when things are cooking at home… I think the words “always,” and “at all times,” are used in v. 19 ( at least in my NKJV)
We are created as sexual beings without shame, for God’s purposes; through His power, we steward our sexuality to bring Him glory through our marriage, and avoid shame, by not taking sex, in any form, out of the context of covenant. Can she trust you? Can you trust her? Do your actions warrant trustworthiness? We are what we do and think about.
Someone said intimacy is “into-me-see.” Kind of like in Avatar; “I See You…”
This is not a married singles model, where you are both doing your own thing, meeting your needs outside the relationship. That’s a recipe for eventual disaster, with a nuclear meltdown in the relationship, usually not salvageable. Emotional honesty, and willingness to press into truth together, as a couple, produces intimacy. You push past pretense, ego and power games, involving manipulation and control, and “deal with the real.”
Where do you sabotage, because you can’t trust? Get honest, and talk about your styles, and what you do to each other. Own It. Try to avoid dead ends in your communication. Learn to press beyond where you normally get, by discarding hurtful patterns that are immature. Paul said “When I became a man, I put away childish things.” “C’mon man!”
You learn how to resolve conflict, and deal with the baggage of your past that wants to hang on. You don’t make your partner pay your emotional bills, because you aren’t willing to face the truth about yourself and grow. You stop the blame game, leave the victim role, and learn to take responsibility. That’s what becoming one is, it isn’t a game. It’s two people growing together, with a mutual commitment to deal with the weeds that are choking out intimacy. You tend the garden together, for fruitfulness.
Linda and I had a little blow up yesterday morning. Omg. I liken it to stepping on a mine in a minefield; you don’t know it’s there, and boom, without warning, and you’re left checking for all your body parts. You have to find a way to stop the bleeding. Tourniquets and such.
We haven’t unpacked it yet, but we will. We have the security in the relationship, that we don’t have to be 100% resolved, 24/7. That’s perfectionism, and setting the bar too high. We won’t punish each other emotionally, or manipulate to get our way though. That’s dishonoring, and breaks intimacy, creating distance. No sulking and pouting!
We refuse to curse each other with our words, or use sarcasm. (unless we are depleted, and the flesh takes over), then we have the security, and permission to call each other out on it. We hold each other accountable, and refuse to let things deteriorate, and become destructive. We’re better than that.
Refuse to escalate. Break it off if you have to, but set a time to come back to it later, and unpack it without electronic, or other distractions. Give yourselves time to process it, and let God show you what’s going on in your heart, then disclose it in humility to each other, during quality time together. It hurts, but that’s how we grow, and the rewards meet our deepest needs.
And we know we’re in a warfare, the enemy smells blood in the water, and seeks to devour us. We have to resist him together with his lies and offenses. I like the image of us back to back in our armor facing out to fight the enemy and not each other. We have each other’s back, and forgive and resolve as much as possible.
You can’t have the intimacy I’m talking about unless you have security. That means you are safe enough, to handle the truth in yourself and your spouse, without invalidating, and dishonoring each others hearts, and feelings.
The key to intimacy is developing the communication skills to honor and validate each others hearts, desires, and feelings.
It’s hard work, requiring surrender of your insecurities, inadequacies, and identity needs to Jesus, letting him nail those to the cross. Then you aren’t defending yourself, being right, trying to get your needs met from your spouse. If you don’t do this, you will default and make it about you, remaining unable to see their heart that needs your love to heal, as much as you need theirs. Narcissism blinds you to everyone except yourself.
These words are strong because they need to be, and the truth sets us free. I’m sure you’ve noticed how sick and twisted the world is we live in. We owe it to God and ourselves, to deal with our stuff, and honor Him with Godly marriages. We ourselves will benefit by going into the promised land of intimacy, by learning to love unselfishly and unconditionally, becoming one, as safe places for one another to grow and heal.
I leave you with a trust poem I wrote;
Can I Trust You?
Can I trust you with my heart, and the things that are inside?
Will I be accepted for who I am , or will I run and hide?
There are things about myself, I’m not sure it’s safe to share.
It hurts when I’m mishandled, I need love and tender care.
Can I trust you with my heart, to tell you how I feel?
Can you handle what I tell you, and love me so I can heal?
I really want to trust you, and make you my safe place,
To know that you won’t judge me, and you will give me grace.
I really want to trust you, and run to you at last,
I need to overcome my hurts, and betrayals from the past.
I opened up my heart to them, risking all to love,
But only got a broken heart, rejection, and a shove.
I really want to trust you, with all that’s in my soul,
You can help me do that, and offer love to make me whole.
A love that’s unconditional, without it’s harsh demands,
A love that’s understanding, with kind and gentle hands.
A love that can listen well, accepting every part,
A love that has the mercy to heal my broken heart. Dan XO