Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The mechanics of a marriage with sex

This is a topic I'm not overly comfortable writing on, but it keeps coming up because of it's importance.  Let me explain...

The passion in my heart has ALWAYS been the inspiration to be the hands and feet of Jesus to people - to show LOVE is a VERB...but it starts in our home and with our family.  A house divided against itself cannot stand (Matthew 12:25). 

So with that said, even though I had a passion for people and to love people, God in the early years of my marriage always reeled me back to my husband...who for years I felt hurt & betrayed by. I just wanted to "do the work of the gospel" but I had NO idea how to fix some areas of my marriage, so I'd just try to ignore the problems and move on to the things I could do well.  But, God lovingly continued to shut the doors I wanted open because He knew there needed to be health in my marriage FIRST before I could work on anything else.

When we feel hurt, betrayed, or offended by our husband, the first place we close off to them TENDS TO BE the sexual relationship.  I've been there, and I know many many women who are and have been in the same boat.  But this is not something we talk about - especially to our husbands!  So it's an area within the relationship that just drifts off to sea without paddle or motor - we just let it go.

The result of this is that our husbands who have been rejected by their mate, tends to lose confidence in many other areas of life.  We want strong leaders in our husbands, but we've taken away their power to lead. They will rarely say, "I need sex to build my confidence" and sometimes they don't necessarily know they do.  Many probably DO know, but don't want to voice it because they already feel like a disappointment & rejected by their wives.  We try to nag them in different areas needing our men to rise up to be the leaders in our home, but that tends to be fruitless. 

Now, I'm NOT suggesting this is everyone's story, but it's shamefully mine, and many brave women who have reached out to me give a big "amen" to identifying with some of my last posts on this subject.

For us women, the lack of sexual intimacy is a hidden poison.  It enlarges the rift between us and our husbands, it causes frustration (not so much sexual in nature, but wanting to fix the lack of balance in our homes).  Because our husband's confidence has been deflated, we rise up to lead (which is not our Biblical place) and we can be over controlling in the process. The bottom line when we are not in step with God, everything else just feels "off" and God calls us to be in unity with our husbands...in ALL areas.

Viscous Circle
 To both husband and wife's relationship lacking sex, there is a vicious circle that tends to be created (for one reason or another - this is ONLY an example, not everyone's story):  The wife gets upset at some point (whether hurt feelings, betrayal, broken promises...) so she withholds sex.  The husband feels shameful & unworthy so he drudges along with a lack of confidence & backs off leading the family as he feels like a failure.  The husband's attitude frustrates the wife, and she gets upset, feels MORE frustrated, and shuts down even more, and is nagging him to rise up.  The husband feels like there's no point in trying, doesn't feel good enough, & looses more confidence & hope in himself...

Dare to be Bare!
The good news is, we can ALMOST INSTANTLY change the destiny of our marriage - by having the strength to DARE TO BE BARE! 

1. Dare to "Bear" your heart to your husband.  Once you acknowledge your desire to change the course of your absent sex life, and no longer withhold this from them, they tend to feel instant relief that you are seeing a need for change, they have compassion as you journey towards more union, and even start to rise up as leaders praying for, and loving you through the growth.

2. Dare to BE BARE.  Sex is not something to be embarrassed about, it's something to celebrate as a married couple.

It's a GIFT!
God gave sex to married couples to celebrate their union.  When we use this gift, it does several things:
1. It instantly boosts confidence in our men.  That husband/leader you've always wanted will instantly begin to rise to the surface.  I did it all backward for YEARS.  I wanted my husband to rise up & lead BEFORE I'd really explore making sex part of our regular life...but it never seemed to happen, in fact, it had the opposite effect and only caused more destruction to my relationship with my hubby.
2. It restores healing & union. That thing that you were frustrated about...will disappear.
3. The Holy Spirit is a BIG advocate of marital sex - and is ever present in times of union between a husband and wife.  You will find renewed relationship with The Father when you unite with your husband.  Cover to cover, the heart of The Bible is relationships, intimacy, and love.  So why do we (myself included) seek God, His direction, His intimacy - but leave our husbands out? 

I recently read the entire Song of Solomon and was blushing non stop - I encourage that as a good read on the topic.

In case you're needing some other scripture references regarding this subject, here a a few I came across recently:

After reading that God was the Creator of sex (Genesis 1:27 ), we then see how it was to be used: "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed" (Genesis 2:24-25).

 "Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth. As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love" (Proverbs 5:18-19)

And of course 1 Corinthians 7:2-6 (The Message)
2-6 Certainly—but only within a certain context. It’s good for a man to have a wife, and for a woman to have a husband. Sexual drives are strong, but marriage is strong enough to contain them and provide for a balanced and fulfilling sexual life in a world of sexual disorder. The marriage bed must be a place of mutuality—the husband seeking to satisfy his wife, the wife seeking to satisfy her husband. Marriage is not a place to “stand up for your rights.” Marriage is a decision to serve the other, whether in bed or out. Abstaining from sex is permissible for a period of time if you both agree to it, and if it’s for the purposes of prayer and fasting—but only for such times. Then come back together again. Satan has an ingenious way of tempting us when we least expect it. I’m not, understand, commanding these periods of abstinence—only providing my best counsel if you should choose them.

Again, this is a topic I keep shying away from on this blog, but ladies have been coming out of their shame closet and reaching out to me on this subject - wanting to better their relationship with their spouses but it seems to be so "tabu".  So I'm going to "sheepishly" offer this - if you'd like to email me personally for any other encouragement on this topic, you may do so through my Facebook page (I'm the only one who looks at it) or my direct email address is info@isaverb.com

What a great time to start a new habit - Thanksgiving season!  I see all over that people are acknowledging the things they are thankful for - let's be even more thankful for our husbands this season!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Learning my daughters' hearts through STRAWBERRIES

Being a homeschool mom, I do spend a lot of time with my daughters.  You'd think I know EVERYTHING that's going on in their beautiful hearts, right?

I recently learned something...I didn't

We have been volunteering at a Tower Garden Farm (hydroponic garden system) planting seeds & getting strawberry plants ready for the towers.  It's been a once a week adventure of sitting on a porch at the farm with no school assignments, TV, games, books, or music.  Just us putting tiny seeds in holes hour after hour...and we LOVE it.

One of our times a couple weeks back, my daughters just started asking me questions...surprising & deep questions - and I was thinking, "Where did all THIS come from?"  Well, come to find out these are things that have been brewing in their heart, but they had not seen the window of time to talk to me.

You see, I can be a busy-body.  I LOVE spending time with my daughters more than almost anything, and we have all kinds of adventures - but I realized parking my butt to a chair and doing NOTHING BUT listening to the deep things in their hearts seemed to hardly happen.

Working at the farm has been such an amazing time of silliness, growing together, learning, clarifying, and bonding.

Our lives these past few weeks have been extremely busy - we just moved, I look after an ailing gentleman, we school, and I do what I can for the community around me...I know you understand!  What I've learned is that I need to covet much more time to just bond heart to heart with my amazing daughters.

The interesting thing is, this is what God wants from us too...to park our butt down to have a heart to heart with HIM.  You see, my girls shared some concerns, and I was able to help & guide them through.  When I sit and have the same talk with my Father God - He does the same; He helps ME navigate difficult situations and offer to help.

God can't help if I don't take the time to tell Him what's going on and give Him a chance to walk with me & guide my steps...just like my girls struggling to navigate through things without my (or their daddy's) help.

So here's to less busy-body-ness, and more strawberry talks :)