Our previous post, http://square1ministries.com/intimacy-123, touched on the need for Devotion as a key component of marital intimacy. For your wife to truly experience (feel) intimacy with you, she has got to know that you are “all in”. Knowing that you are committed to her for a lifetime, no matter what, will anchor her emotional foundation and allow her to focus on other things….. like you.
In addition, she needs to experience your Deliberateness as her husband, shepherd and leader of your household. In the same way you must become a deliberate Christ-follower if you are ever to experience the abundant life promised by Jesus, your marriage will never be what you desire it to be until you choose to become a deliberate husband. Enjoying a fulfilling, intimate relationship with your wife won’t happen on its own. It won’t happen just because you attend church, or go to small group, or even attend a marriage seminar and take good notes. Good intentions won’t do.
I Corinthians 9:24 – Do you not know that all those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize. Run in such a way that you may win.
Most men I know are very deliberate when it comes to their hobbies. They will spend hours working on their deer stands or duck blinds and training their retriever, or hours at the driving range or attending golf lessons to correct their awful slice. Many try to stay in shape (or get there in the first place) by working out diligently at the gym or on their bike. To be good at these things takes hard work, time and money.
Are you running the marriage “race” to win? Are you working hard to be the marriage partner your wife desires, and that God requires?
When my oldest son was in elementary school, his private Christian school was often needing to raise money. Twice a year they would hold a “jog-a-thon”. The little kids would seek out donors to pay a small amount of money for every lap they ran around the jog-a-thon track.
Every kid who ran in the jog-a-thon received a “participant” ribbon, whether they ran one lap or a hundred. No one’s fragile personality was harmed as they all got a ribbon. One kid, however, received special recognition (and a trophy) for finishing first (running the most laps). You guessed it, my son could have cared less about being a participant – he wanted to win the thing. It didn’t matter if it was bitter cold or sweltering hot, he would run around that huge parking lot until he was declared the winner. We still have those little trophies in our attic today.
Each of us is a participant in marriage, but are we putting forth the effort to win?
Your wife knows. God knows. And, you know.
Another real key to experiencing intimacy in your marriage is for your wife to see you investing significant time and effort in your relationship with her. She needs to know that she is truly your #1 priority in this life (see I Cor. 7:33 and Romans 12:10). If you want a wife that is “in to you”, and attracted to you – you need to be “in to ” her and attracted to her – as a person and friend – not just when you want to satisfy your sexual needs.
If you will become a deliberate husband, a student of your wife (her needs, fears, hopes, dreams, etc.), and be willing to put every other priority, hobby, project, work, etc. behind your desire to know her and spend time with her – you will find a wife who is delightfully attracted to you. Hard work? Absolutely, but the “prize” is well worth it.
Remember – men experience intimacy by having sex, but your wife needs to experience intimacy before she wants sex. A huge part of her feeling that, is her seeing your devotion to her and your deliberate efforts to walk with God and be the best husband you can be.
Don’t be content with a participant ribbon. As the boy’s T-shirt reminds us – “I’m not done until I’ve won” – let’s choose to be deliberate husbands.
For His glory,