Are you asking the wrong question about sex in a Marriage? Questions like: What is permissible in the marriage bed? When you should be searching: How to Improve Intimacy in a Christian Marriage. This is to the Husband trying to figure out how to please your wife sexually (Christian husband). This is to the wife searching Christian Marriage intimacy ideas. We are both trying to find answers and failing BECAUSE we are asking the wrong questions when seeking marriage advice.
Before we can look at How to Improve Intimacy in a Christian Marriage:
We had better understand the mix up in Men and Women trying to fix the same problem.The uncomfortable truth about sex in a Christian Marriage is that when there are problems in a Christian bedroom they often have little to do with physical intimacy. Click To Tweet
What is the difference between sex and intimacy in marriage?
You can have sex without intimacy. Shoot, you can have sex without love or thought. Nowhere is it written into the Christian Marriage rules “only have sex when you feel in love with your spouse”. Sorry.
But, there won’t be a deep desire for sex or physical intimacy if there is not emotional intimacy and spiritual intimacy. Learn more about that here.
What is Emotional Intimacy?
Emotional intimacy is all about connecting. Emotional intimacy in married life looks like connecting deeper than the surface. We get sucked into a shallow routine so easily.
“How was your day honny?”
“Fine. How was yours?”
“Same ol same ol. The kids have ball practice at 7:00.”
“K. Don’t forget the dryer is rattling.”
If you are not intentional, a lack of intimacy in Marriage can become your norm.
Do you need some encouragement to keep pressing into that Daily Commitment?
We could all use a community to help us in Reclaiming Hope & Joy in our marriages!
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Can a marriage survive without intimacy?
Not for long. If you don’t begin to rebuild intimacy in marriage, the intimacy you had in your dating relationship, divorce could be around the corner. I don’t say that to scare you, just give you a reality check.
We ask 'How can I get the romance back in my Marriage?' when we should be asking 'How do I build intimacy in my marriage like it was when we were dating?' Click To Tweet
Reviving intimacy in Marriage happens in Three Crucial stages
Make time to connect and reestablish emotional intimacy.
Wife, take time to speak words of Affirmation to your husband to feed his need for respect (Check out 31 Ways to Speak Words of Affirmation to him here). Ask the question “How can I communicate better with my husband?”
Is communication an area you struggle to improve? Check out this free Communication in Marriage Workshop to grow in that area today!
Husband, take time to listen to your wife and own your mistakes or unintentional hurts. Believe it or not, saying “I’m sorry, will you forgive me?”, for things that hurt her go a long way to showing your wife love, security, and emotional intimacy.
Acknowledge the need for Spiritual Intimacy
If you are in a Christian Marriage, ask “Are we putting God in the center of our daily decisions?”
Talk about ways you can pray for each other. Don’t be hurt if he doesn’t want to pray together yet. Maybe he will one day, let God prompt him that way. Just acknowledging the spiritual parts of your life will do wonders to improve Intimacy in marriage.
If you need help finding ideas to pray, check out this series on Praying for Unity in Marriage; specifically a difficult Marriage.
Focus on Physical Intimacy in Marriage is Healthy
When you have healthy Emotional Intimacy and Spiritual Intimacy, Physical Intimacy is the logical next step. So why doesn’t it always happen smoothly or to our expectations?
Sex or Physical Intimacy is always an uncomfortable subject. Even as a Married woman, I struggle to talk openly about sex or sexual pleasure in Christian Marriage. Crazy right?
Just a Few Disclaimers before we go farther:
I’m not a Christian Marriage Counselor. What I am is a woman that has lots of experience (good, bad and ugly) and a love of God’s Word that has healed many broken pieces. God can fix any mess is my new motto 😉
If you are in an abusive relationship please talk to someone. There are safe places. Please find one. There are people who WILL believe you. Please find one. Know that you are loved by God and God would want you to get help, not try to fix the situation and continue being hurt. Seek Christian Marriage Counseling.
BTW: Throughout this article will be Christian Marriage Books that have helped me Improve Intimacy in a Christian Marriage Click To Tweet
First, we have to ask: What does the Bible say about sex in Marriage?
Sex was designed by God to be a beautiful expression of our love and marriage. Yes, Sex in a Christian Marriage is good.
Some verses about Christian Marriage and sex are 1 Corinthians 7:3-5; Hebrews 13:4; Proverbs 5:18-19; 1 Corinthians 7:2 and the Book of Song of Solomon.
Intended for Pleasure is a marriage book that helped me embrace my personal lack of sexual desire as a wife and see that I needed to ask a different question.
Instead of, “Why do we have to have sex so often?” I needed to ask, “How can I improve my marriage intimacy a little better?”
But even after reading it I struggled because I’m not really a sexual woman. I’d rather not be on display. I don’t want to fulfill his needs many times. How about you?
Second, we need a Perspective shift:
A Mentor gave me this relationship advice to better relate to a man’s need for physical intimacy
The Marriage Bed is to be kept pure
Hebrews 13:4 Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge.
Beware sexual temptation (read more about that here)
1 Corinthians 7:2-5 But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband.
He needs me to be a sexual being. By denying him what he was created to need - I am NOT removing the need. I am removing the only way he can meet that need without sin. Click To Tweet
I always knew my husband was a sexual creature. Do you remember making out and all that fun stuff as you were falling in love early in your relationship? I loved that. What happened?
Third, Physical Intimacy became hard when I believed the enemy’s lies.
The enemy has been distorting God’s perfect design for sex since the beginning. Today he has twisted the picture of sex in Christian Marriage through the media. The medias image of sexuality are unrealistic; thin, tanned, blond, sumptuously proportioned in alluring ways.
Fake women, nothing like what I look like.
I kill myself trying to become that image – that fake woman I see in movies and commercials. I’m not alone. (read more about that here and again here.) In our culture women go from diet to surgery, fashion style to the tanning salon, all in the attempt to become the illusion.
What I needed was a Healthy Biblical Understanding of my Body Image, how it affected our Sex life and a clear path to healing. Click To Tweet
Why don’t I want physical Intimacy with my husband? Why do we believe the enemy about ourselves?
I can’t speak for you, but I always feel like I am competing with that fake woman. How could he love me or want to be intimate with me when he sees all these other -more beautiful women?
Maybe it’s just me. In the bedroom when the clothes go away I am suddenly anxious, ashamed, embarrassed and desperate to hide.
It wouldn’t matter if this were a dream marriage, one with relationship problems (marital problems) a happy marriage or anything else, I feel shame!
I think: ‘Don’t look at me, I’m ugly’. ‘I have stretch marks from babies and failed diets’. ‘Nothing is in the right place anymore’. ‘Let’s get this over with.
His Truth is so far from that.
Your husband sees a beautiful woman – the women he fell in love with. All the flaws you see when you look in the mirror DO NOT cross his mind at that moment. He sees all the things that are really sexy – to him.
How can we get over our shame and embarrassment and encourage our husband with physical intimacy?
We were at a Christian Marriage retreat some years ago by Drs. Les & Leslie Parrot. They gave so many Christian Marriage tips that helped change my way of thinking about my body, sex, and intimacy in Marriage.
“Let your husband be your mirror”, is a marriage quote I took home.
Don’t look at the mirror and believe what you see. Let your husband speak what he sees when he looks at you. And believe him. Don’t call him a liar because you see the flaws in your mirror.
As women, we have the amazing capacity to encourage other women when they feel fat or ugly or rejected. We say something over and over…
Beauty is on the inside. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
To the Christian wife struggling with intimacy in marriage:
You need to stand in that mirror and talk to yourself today.
Healthy Marriage Tips for women on growing in intimacy in Marriage:
Remind yourself that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Stop looking at the flaws. Look to the inside of yourself.
- Your character is amazing.
- You are a great friend.
- No one listens better than you.
- You are a woman of honor and wisdom.
- Kindness shines through your eyes every day.
- You. Are. Beautiful.
Listen when that man tells you about your beauty. Believe him. Remind yourself that you are beautiful. He sees your beauty. Let him enjoy it.
One of my favorite Marriage help books is ‘Men are Like Waffles and Women are Like Spaghetti’. A fun spin on why we are different what intimate for men means as opposed to intimate for women.
How to Fix Your Marriage, Christian Marriage intimacy Ideas to conclude our time.
- Make sure you have invested in Emotional and Spiritual Intimacy.
- If physical Intimacy is still a struggle, be sure you are honest and open about the problem.
- If Body Image is part of the struggle, Let him be your mirror.
- Give your thoughts about body image to God and put them through the Philippians 4:8 Test.
You will both enjoy the Christian Bedroom so much more when you are open about this area and focus on thoughts that line up with scripture..
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things” (Philippians 4:8 NASB).
As usual, I am talking to me today too. As often as I think this is fixed, it pops back up again. So thankful for a Community of Believers to help me stay the course here! And the Faithful Finish Lines Course is really helping me make healthy changes to my body and see myself through God’s eyes as I pursue a healthier life! Learn more about it here!
If you are still looking for more way to improve your marriage intimacy…
Check out this from To Love Honor and Vacuum filled with practical ways to Boost Your Libido
Or this from my list of books to improve Marriage intimacy: 31 Days to Better Sex (whew this goes deep into the heart of intimacy issues and applies scripture to help you change!)
I’m praying for you today.
Tiffany has a passion to equip wives to do Marriage God’s way and inspire women to choose hope and Joy in Christ through every season by growing in faith.
God took me through a journey of re-learning how to live as a godly wife with a Biblical Worldview. It is a joy for me to teach and mentor locally and I am thrilled to launch this new Online Marriage Mentoring, and online Marriage Bible Study.
In this 9 week Bible Study we will dig into the Bible and find out how to restore our Marriage – rebuilding it to Last a lifetime! These are the things that God used to save my marriage and he can save your marriage as well.
- 10 Self-paced video lessons
- Desires Vs. Preferences
- My Mouth
- Appreciation & Admiration
- The Leader
- Understanding Men
- My Priorities
- 9 weeks of personal study
- 5 days each week that should take 10-15 minutes
- 45 Days of Prayer prompts
Learn more here about this 9-week Marriage Bible Study here.