Your wedding day: don’t you remember how it was?
All the beauty and fun in the midst of the mishaps?
I don‘t really remember a whole lot about my wedding, but I do remember the sweet look on my husbands face in the moment of truth right as he was lifting my veil to kiss me. The vows had all been said; he knew I was his, and I knew he was mine–forever. We belonged to each other. In that moment and every moment since.
“The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.” 1 Corinthians 7:3-5
Our bodies belong to each other to be able to enjoy one of God’s greatest gifts to mankind–intimacy in marriage.
What a gift! What a blessing! Yet, at certain times in our lives, just having the time and energy to enjoy this gift can cause a bit of stress and turmoil in our marriage. There are stages in marriage that can make the gift seem like a challenge:
Newlywed Stage: Newness, fun, a time of learning how to be a couple.
Babies and Toddlers Stage: Can be a very challenging time of life. Exhaustion and sleep deprivation are tough.
Teenagers: Late nights talks and waiting up for kids to get home can be emotionally draining at times.
Getting Older: Sometimes accompanied by physiological issues.
The most important question to try to answer and practice with each stage is: “In the power of the Holy Spirit, how can I bring life to my marriage and make the best of each stage in our lives?”
When our children were young, it was a very challenging to have time and energy to be intimate. We found that if we *gasp* scheduled the time in our week to be together, it always made a difference. I could be intentional with the kids that day and get them to bed on time. If it was not at least a bit scheduled, the weeks could go by and we would not have been intimate.
With teenagers in the house, I was emotionally drained from late night talks and different issues in our home. It has been a time of blessing, but also a time to look toward the future–to nurture our marriage so that when the kids leave we will still have a strong relationship. It’s so easy to drift apart during this time and to allow our love to grow stale.
Last summer, we had a terrible fire here in Colorado. Several of our friends had to be evacuated and some were constantly in a state of “Pre-Vac,” which means they were packed up and had to be ready to leave their homes at a moment’s notice. It was during that time that my adult daughter, Christie, and I went over to a dear friends house to help her pack up.
We were packing up her clothes when my sweet friend directed me to her closet to pack up her lingerie. Really? Lingerie? Here we were, packing the items that she needed the most, and she wanted to include her lingerie in her boxes of things to take with her.
As we packed up all of the beautiful, tasteful (and plentiful) lingerie, I was so convicted! My friend had been married for 26 years and still uses her beautiful and feminine lingerie. As you can imagine, it gave me a lot to think about and, as a result, I went to my local Macy’s and bought something beautiful!
Oh, the value of Christian friendship!
The moral of the story is this: we never outgrow the need to tend to our marriage and our intimacy with our husbands.
So, what do we do if our marriage or our intimacy is difficult?
God knows you, your husband, and your circumstances. Pray as often as you can for God to bless your marriage and your intimacy. If you feel like you have lost the love, closeness, and fun, then pray and ask God for it to return. God will help you! After all, intimacy in marriage is His idea, design, and gift. Ask the creator of intimacy for help and blessing.
Then, in faith and by the power of the Holy Spirit, walk with your God and your husband through each stage, bringing life to each situation you encounter.
Then, when all is said and done, go to your grave loving each other and believing God to do miracles in your marriage and life along the way.
Today, at I Take Joy: Sally is beginning a series on Depression as we discuss Chapter Five of Desperate! Click here for part one of Light A Candle, Don’t Curse the Darkness