A few times a year, our radio program highlights what for many can be a very sensitive topic: sexual intimacy within marriage.
I agree that it’s a conversation that should be handled with respect and a certain measure of discreteness, but it needs to take place.
Confusion about sex and sexuality is rampant in our culture, and the negative influence on the Christian community is pervasive. God’s design for sexual intimacy is too important an issue for the Church to politely ignore. If we don’t address it, you can be certain the enemy and the culture will distort it into something ungodly, as we’ve seen all too clearly.
That’s why we’re delving into this conversation today with our guests Kathi Lipp and Erin MacPherson. They’ll be offering valuable input from the female perspective based on discussions they’ve had with hundreds of wives.
The encouraging reminder is that our emotional and physical desires for sex are God-given. They’re wired into us and are intended to be consummated within the boundaries of the marriage relationship.
The trouble, though, is a lot of factors can interfere with a fulfilling sexual relationship between husband and wife.
Like parenthood. The energy children require can sap women of the resources they need for intimacy to thrive within their marriage. By the end of the day, many women feel they have nothing left to give to their husband.
There are other challenges as well. Some Christian women find it hard to immediately redefine their whole concept of sex once they’re married. Throughout adolescence, they’re told “no, no, no,” and as soon as they’re married, it becomes “yes, yes, yes.” That can often be a difficult transition.
Or instead of a healthy view of abstinence, they grew up with the message that sex is bad. That was Erin’s story, and it was debilitating for a time. Instead of looking forward to her wedding night, she dreaded it. And rather than enjoying her honeymoon, she felt guilt-ridden and dirty because she was doing something she had been taught to believe “good girls don’t do.” She found it incredibly difficult to “flip the switch” even months into her marriage.
Other women enter marriage with a distorted view of sex. Intimacy brings out their insecurities and the internal messages telling them they’re not pretty enough, not thin enough, or not good enough to please their husbands.
For intimacy to thrive in their marriages, women have to learn how to integrate their sexuality with their faith and channel it all in a healthy way into their relationship with their husband. It’s about knowing the person God created you to be and living it out.
How do women do that?
Well, that’s exactly what we’ll talk about with Kathi and Erin on this program we’ve titled, “Putting the Sizzle Back in Your Marriage.” We’ll work through issues about body image, guilt, ways to intentionally create moments for intimacy in your marriage in the midst of work, kids, and a busy schedule, and how to say “not tonight” to your husband without making him feel rejected.
Along the way, we’ll also share helpful advice for husbands to better support and nurture their wives and to ease the difficulties they face in this area. Together, couples can develop healthy sexual intimacy that protects their marriage by making sure their relationship is emotionally, spiritually, and physically strong.
I really do believe intimacy in marriage is a crucial aspect of a couple’s relationship. Like a line of dominos, unhealthy sexual behavior leads to unhealthy behavior in other areas. They may pray together and read Scripture together, but if their romance and intimacy are broken, it can destroy their marriage.
So I hope you’ll join us for today’s and tomorrow’s program because I believe it will help you in your marriage. If you’ve got younger children within earshot, you might occupy them elsewhere while you listen. We’ll talk about this matter pretty candidly, but with plenty of humor, as well. As I said, Kathi Lipp and Erin MacPherson are our guests, and they bring a very light-hearted, insightful approach to this topic.