Marriage and Sex (2)

clip_image001.jpg"Faithfulness."  I suppose the word might sound old, boring, and vanilla.  Maybe the couple eats at the same restaurant every week and they order the same thing.  "Why try something new instead of going back to old faithful?"  They don’t need to see the menu.  "I’ll have the usual."  Doesn’t sound very exciting, does it?

Yet, in a marriage, the word "faithfulness" may actually be what creates the environment for a wonderful life together.  A part of that wonderful life includes a couple’s intimacy — sexual intimacy.  Faithfulness is a word that finds its color and shape in the very character of God.  Now that character is anything but boring.  After all, he demonstrated faithfulness through thick and thin.  Through the lives of men and women in Scripture, he demonstrated over and over that he would be fully present with his people.  Such a constant presence freed his people to abandon themselves to his care, his love, and his will.

A part of faithfulness in marriage is the commitment to mutual service.  We can either voluntarily serve and give to our spouses or we can be self-centered.  Most of us are well acquainted with this one.

Far too many couples zero in on their "sex life" while they ignore their "life."  Most of the time, what would bless couples is to focus on the way they treat one another throughout the day.  After all, the most intimate moments of marriage are really a by-product of the way we are treating one another all day long.

  • Are we tender with one another?  Tenderness all day long goes a long way toward enhancing the most intimate moments of marriage. 
  • Are we considerate with one another?  Consideration is love with its eyes open toward your spouse. 
  • Are we gracious with one another?  Men and women feel safe and secure with spouses who never seek to embarrass or humiliate.

Tenderness, consideration, and graciousness create a powerful atmosphere in a marriage (and family) where the faithfulness of a man and woman to one another is a constant.   In such an atmosphere,  married people find the freedom to experience real intimacy with one another.  Marital sex becomes something very powerful that only matures over time.

Where do you begin as a married man or woman?   You might pray about these qualities in your own life: faithfulness, tenderness, consideration, and graciousness.   You might pray that God might help you be aware of moments where these qualities are slim if non-existent in your life with your spouse.  No, this doesn’t solve everything.  However, don’t underestimate the power of this kind of love.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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11 thoughts on “Marriage and Sex (2)

  1. Jim,
    Rich thoughts as usual!  The more we try to get our way, to make ourself happy, the more frustrated we become.  We weren’t made to run off of egocentrism but grace–to give it and receive it; to give it even when we’re not receiving it.  If two will take the risk of being totally for the other then they’ll find moments of bliss that will become more lasting and consistent with age.  Our fear is that we’ll get short-changed.  But intimacy means being vulnerable.  I’m happiest with my beautiful wife when I least concerned about myself.

  2. I am a very competitive person and was married for almost 10 years to a very competitive person.  We had a lot of fun with our silly games and competitions until, one day I realized that if there’s a winner, there’s a loser.  We had tried to out do each other for so long that I guess, looking back, I wasn’t that surprised when he found someone else.  He left me for someone who needed him financially and that made him the winner.  Our marriage was the loser.  I’ve grown since then and hopefully, become a better person but I hate that I had to learn in that way

  3. This is a wonderful article brother.  Ellen and I went through Joe Beam’s Family Dynamics course and were facilitators for a class on one occasion.  It was rich. 
    One of the things learned in that course is the importance of looking out for the emotional needs of our spouses.  When we do that, we get our own needs met naturally through genuine love.  For some reason this seems more difficult for men than women.  I think it’s because, as a general rule, we are more selfish than women. (Don’t get mad at me guys, it’s just the truth, at least with me.)
    Living for the other is such a key to marital happiness.  That is no less true for the sexual aspects of marriage.  If my #1 emotional need is sexual intimacy and hers is conversation, we must both mutually agree to fulfill those needs.  Chances are (and Terri’s wonderful testimony above is proof) if we don’t meet those needs, someone else will.
    I want to say too that I appreciate Terri’s remarks above.  They show insight that married and not yet married couples need to understand.  Terri thank you for your honesty and sharing your wisdom from experience.

  4. Ben,You express this so very well!  I really like your first sentence.  The more we try….the more frustrated we become.You are right on regarding our fear.  We fear getting short changed.  So—we feel like we have to "take over" and take care of ourselves, our needs, our desires etc.Thanks Ben.  You always cause me to think. 

  5. Terri,Thanks so much for your comment.  Your honesty and candor are very refreshing.I am especially glad you chose to comment on this post regarding marriage.  Comments like yours are a wake-up call to the rest of us.Thanks Terri– 

  6. Hi Keith,Thanks for this comment.  I’m glad to hear of your and Ellen’s involvement with Family Dynamics.  Some very good material that has blessed many people.Hope you are doing well.

  7. It all works together, I agree. And when some part begins to crumble, it all begins to fall apart. Which also means that a couple might sometimes benefit from physical intimacy (even when they don’t feel like it) as a way to encourage relational tenderness.

  8. Jim, we (Pamella and I) are both enjoying reading these timely reminders about our relationship.  Thanks you for sharing wisdom in such a godly and effective way.   You have helped create "discussion" for us.  Shalom,Bobby Valentine 

  9. Good thoughts and a good reminder. When I think of faithfulness I sometimes start thinking about the covenant language of the Bible. God is 100% faithful to us and he uses marriage as a model for us to better understand our relationship with him (Eph 5:21ff).

  10. Thanks Matt!  So glad you stopped by.  You are right in that faithfulness is so dramatically displayed in the God’s willingness to both make and keep his covenants.