The wedding was expectedly spectacular! And the honeymoon, uh … (censored). But not long after, an uneasy doubt begins to creep in precipitating the all too familiar misgiving: “oh no is she really like that?” But then the doubts began to take on a semblance of reality.
Few months down the road, you wake up and think “what in the world have I done?” Is that familiar? I hear stories everyday and they are authentic. When we realized life wouldn’t be a fairy tale after all, some of us became confounded. But most of us simply lowered our expectations, closed our mouth most of the time or run it more than usual or just tried to make the best of things. Still some of the frustrations remain.
We repress it as long and as hard as we can, but from time to time, those little annoying things our spouses do are like matches thrown into a barrel of gasoline ( not pretty at all). It gets fiery sometimes and mostly it’s all about sex. Eh, say what!
God made us sexual beings and placed within us the capacity to enjoy a healthy, physical bonding relationship. He doesn’t prevent it – we do! Sex is God-given, a special gift and the most powerful passion God ever created. It is time for couples to take back this sacred ground and enjoy this holy gift.
The world and the devil have attempted to make the subject of sex their domain: it’s in our faces, on the billboards, in the news, at the check-out, on the net and unsolicited. You don’t have to ask for it but you might take a second look and think about it afterwards.
We live in a sex-saturated culture. Everywhere we look we see seductive images and hear exciting words. Indeed, the scope of sex and human sexuality has been pushed beyond acceptable limits. Men and women may have differing hopes about sex, but it’s one of the most powerful forces in human nature.
Some couples talk openly about their desires, pleasure zones, creative positions, and problems related to their sex lives, but many couples talk with each other about anything and everything except their sex lives.
Their partners have to guess what their desires might be, and they can only hope they connect emotionally and physically to make it worth the effort. Sexual hopes and dreams are completely normal, and so are struggles in this area of our lives.
We have made sex to be what it isn’t. Instead of it being fulfilling and fun, it feels seductive, manipulative and empty. And some of us grew up in families where sex was simply never mentioned.
Everybody knew it happened occasionally, but it was a taboo subject. You can only imagine what might be going on behind closed doors. Our silence about the subject is following the example of our parents, and we’re modeling the same thing to our kids. (I’m talking to my kids now at age appropriation)
I went to speak with a bunch of 6th graders on the invitation of their teacher who was so concern
ed about some of her students.
I met Ms. Smart (not her real name) in a library while I was working on a new curriculum, “Creating Positive Relationships.” She asked an adult question and we kept on talking for a very long time but ended up asking if I could simplify the curriculum for youths as well.
That was a big challenge but I love challenges! Two months later I called Ms. Smart to see what I’d put together for her students. She was so excited she wanted me to share it as soon as was practically possible. Well, Valentine’s Day was around the corner and what could be a more perfect day to talk about love.
To simply say that I was shocked at some of the issues raised by these little people is to put it mildly! The seriousness of the encounter can only be understood in light of how fast these kids are growing, swamped at such an early age by sexuality that defies even conventional wisdom. Of course, we had a great time and I kept thinking I wished I had someone to tell me that when I was 11 years old.
This is just my way of saying it is ok to talk about sex. Come to think of it, can we truly deny the possibility of real sex-talk among them and their peers in this sex-crazed world of ours today? The truth is that if you don’t talk about it yourself, someone else will do it for you. What we need is simply a healthy balance to get it done.
Sex in its most elemental form was God’s idea and He intended it to be one of the most fulfilling activities in a couple’s relationship. The act of marriage should be immensely pleasurable and it should cement the two individuals as “one flesh.” Most churches don’t talk about sex at all.
Even when they do, it is so familiar and monotonous, making many Christians feel embarrassed by the subject.
But we think about it and we fantasize about it and our hearts bleed because of it and we remain miserable for it. Because it is avoided, some women assume it’s somehow not on the list of God’s best gifts.
Inside the pages of our Bibles, we find intriguing and racy little book of the Song of Solomon. It seems to describe passionate lovemaking: (Song of Solomon 4:1-7, 5:11-16 & 8:3-4,13-14).
If you pay attention to chapter 5:16, “This is my love, and this is my friend,” you’ll discover that you can’t have a satisfying and real lovemaking if you cannot look at your spouse and say “this is my friend.” Don’t be deceived; the open, loving and joyful expression of sexual desire in marriage is good and godly.
The thrills we enjoy with our spouse fulfill our marriage vows to become one. God doesn’t scowl at us when we plan creative sexual encounters with our spouse, and He doesn’t frown when we actually enjoy ourselves. He delights in us enjoying the good gifts He has given us.
I haven’t seen a single verse in the Bible that describes sex as sinful, dirty, or wrong. It is only the misuse of sex when it is experienced outside a loving, intimate commitment between a husband and a wife. That is what the Bible speaks against! Sex as God intended is a beautiful thing. So why the limits!
It is sometimes quite tempting to think about going back to school to read law so I could make a few extra bucks as a divorce lawyer! But thank God, it’s not all about money and a person’s worth is not in the abundance of what he/she possesses. Regrettably, people will rather spend thousands of dollars on court fees, divorce lawyers, divorce settlement, child support and alimony than spend a couple of hundreds to attend marriage seminars or see a marriage counselor/sex therapist.
And the church will rather raise funds for anniversaries than organize a marriage seminar and invite a professional to come and speak to the congregation. And you’re still wondering why the tithes are not coming in, well if you have to pay for all these avoidable fees then the tithes can wait.
What is it about church and sex? We don’t want to talk about it but we do it even outside of our marriages. We sneak around thinking, wishing, surfing, soliciting and fantasizing just to feel high and gratify our desires. We all know of families or marriages in crisis but what are we doing about it?
A pastor called me recently to ask a question and we talked at length. At the end of it all he asked if I could come to his church to sing (I was a choir director for some years). He’ll rather let me do the worship than talk to the congregation about the same question that he just asked me—sex in marriage. He said we can’t talk about that in the church, no wonder we always have sex scandals in our churches. We just don’t get our priorities right, do we?
If sex is God’s invention, why can’t we talk about it in our churches? Do a very serious anonymous survey in your church and truthfully see how many couples are truly happy about their sex life.
We just don’t get it. We need to invest in our marriages more than we invest in other things that are not as important. Can you be a Christian and still be sensuous? Yes you bet, and very well indeed!
We can organize parties at club meetings and town meetings and bring in all the celebrity pastors and singers, no wonder the church is full of single parents, separated and divorced couples. We have a crisis going on and I personally think it is about time we do something about it.
If I sound too harsh it’s because I deal with this on a daily basis and I know things could be better, we just need to pay more attention and invest in our marriages.
Sex is not just for pro-creation; sex is the symphony of the soul for married couples.
Sex is joyous and it is a time of giving and sharing. It is tender and holy and should be as natural as drinking a glass of water. Sex was never meant to be a single act of expression or feeling.
On the contrary, gentleness, understanding, acts of kindness, and self-sacrifice all combine to become the building blocks of sexual satisfaction. Sex is about joining with your partner, as God designed, for warmth, intimacy, and bonding. Sex is a divine symphony between two lovers, and God is leading the orchestra, it should be a beautiful experience!!!
Experiencing the beauty of sexual intimacy in marriage? Or are you wondering why your man is always fired up and ablaze sexually? Well, not his fault. It’s that atomic bomb called testosterone placed in his body by God. So we’ll start on next week to explore the paradoxes of human sexuality, beginning with the man and then on to the more complicated, the woman.
This reminds me of a joke someone shared in class. Perhaps some of you have heard it too.
Three reasons why the computer should be addressed in the masculine gender:
1. In order to get their attention, you have to turn them on.
2. They are supposed to solve problems, but half of the time they are the problem.
3. As soon as you commit to one, you realize that had you waited a little longer, you could
have gotten a better model.
Three reasons why the computer should be addressed in the feminine gender:
1. No one but the creator understands their internal logic.
2. Even your smallest mistakes are stored in long-term memory.
3. As soon as you commit to one, you find yourself spending half your paycheck on
accessories for it.
Intimate issues with Dr Busola: Interpersonal Tension in marriage
When two people marry, each comes to the marriage with approximately two or more decades of past experiences and ways of looking at life. Each has perspectives that are not shared by the other and sometimes, even when there is a sincere desire for compromise, couples still even have difficulty resolving their differences.
What happens if there is unwillingness to change, insensitivity to the other person’s viewpoints, or a refusal to acknowledge the differences? Often there is tension that frequently centers on one of the following issues.
Sex. At times most couples have sexual problems. What causes sexual difficulty in marriage?
The lack of accurate knowledge (1 Peter 3:7), unrealistic expectations, fear of not being able to perform adequately, differences in sexual drive, inhibiting attitudes about sex, and insufficient opportunities for privacy. Impatience, frigidity, tiredness, and infidelity in turn create more tension, and this further hinders smooth sexual functioning. When these problems are not resolved, marriages almost always suffer.
Roles… We live at a time when traditional male-female roles are being reevaluated. This often leads to conflict over what it means to be a husband or wife. The society gives little guidance because opinions seem to be changing so rapidly. The Bible, in contrast, is much more explicit (Ephesians 5:22-25). Often this tension centers on the nature and extent of the wife’s work or career goals.
Inflexibility. When a man and woman marry, each brings a unique personality to the marriage. When a couple first marries there often is a time of excitement, enthusiasm, and youthful idealism. As the partners grow older and the months turn into years, the marriage must also change and mature if it is to stay healthy. As people go through changes at different stages in life, so do marriages. Marriages must grow through stages if they are to remain stable and fulfilling. When couples are too busy or too rigid to work at building and enriching their marriages, problems are likely to develop.
Religion. The Bible warns of problems when a believer and an unbeliever try to live together in marriage (1 Corinthians 7:12-15). When a husband and wife differ from each other in their religious preferences, the degree of commitment to spiritual things, interest in religion, or expectations about the religious education of children become a major tension problem. Sometimes these differences create tension in other areas such as choice of friends, views of ethics or the use of time on Sundays. Religion can be a binding, strengthening force in a marriage, but when a husband and wife have different viewpoints, religion can also be a destructive focus for marital tension. Notice I said religion, not the Bible. We must not confuse man’s religions with Bible teachings!
Values. What is really important in life? How should we spend our time and money? What are our goals? These questions concern values. When a couple has similar values, the marriage is often healthy and growing. When values are in conflict, however, the relationship may be one of tension, power struggles, and mutual criticism. Value conflicts are at the heart of many marital problems. This is where the Bible can become a great source of values in which a couple can build a solid foundation for marriage.
Conflicting needs and Personality Differences. Most people will agree that we each need food; rest; air and freedom from pain, but there also are psychological needs such as the need for love, security, and contact with others. In addition it seems that most people have unique personal needs (such as the need to dominate, need to control, to possess, to achieve, or to help and rescue others). If one spouse has a need to dominate while the other wants to be controlled, then there may be compatibility. If both are devoted to career building, there can be conflict, especially if one spouse wants to accept a career advancement that will involve a family move and the other spouse resists.
Personality differences also can create tension. When one spouse is open (freely sharing about one’s needs, temptations, attitudes, and feelings) but the other spouse tends to hold things in, these differences can create problems.
Money. How are the family finances to be earned? Who controls the money? How is it to be spent? What things are really needed and which are merely desirable? Is a budget necessary? What happens when there is a shortage of money?
Answers to questions like these reflect one’s financial values and attitudes. When a husband and wife have different answers to these kinds of questions, there is potential for conflict.
Dr Olubusola Ijaduola
Brings the best out of your relationship