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Withholding Sex

Photo by Nik Lanús on Unsplash

First, let’s define “withholding sex” so that we are on the same page.

Withholding sex would mean – I purposely won’t have sex with my husband when I am actually able to. 

(This applies to both spouses, but I only write for women, so I will be addressing only wives in this post.)

In that moment, he would like to have sex, and I am able to, but I decide that:

  • I just don’t feel like it.
  • It would take too much effort.
  • I want to hurt/punish him by turning him down.
  • I don’t care about his legitimate sexual needs.
  • I don’t care that I vowed to be his “to have and to hold.”
  • I don’t care that he feels bonded emotionally to me through sex and that it would bless him, just like I want him to talk with me and connect verbally with me.

The main issue here would be my motives. My motives, as a follower of Christ, are to be holy, kind, honorable, respectful, loving, and good. My motives are not to be selfish, uncaring, apathetic, hurtful, or malicious.

Scripture teaches a few principles that I believe apply to how we are to relate to our spouses (and all people) and how we are not to relate to them:

  • Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 1 Cor. 13:4-5
  • The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Gal. 5:22-23
  • Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. Heb. 13:4
  • Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. Gal. 5:19-21

(Check out the NOTES at the end of this post for a few clarifications.)

Let’s take a look at a passage in scripture about this issue:

“It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. 1 Cor. 7:1-5

Each spouse is to voluntarily and willingly yield to the other. It is a decision made by each individual. It is not forced on anyone.

Some people misunderstand this concept of each spouse “having authority” over the other person’s body to mean that God is saying a husband can rape his wife or take sex with her by force. Or that a wife can violently force her husband to have sex with her against his will. That may be the world’s definition of “authority.” But it is not God’s. Let’s note that the passage never commands a me (or anyone else) to:

  • Take what I want.
  • Use violence to get my way.
  • Physically abuse my spouse, it is my right.
  • Be selfish if my spouse is sick, upset, or hurting.
  • All that matters is what I want, not what my spouse wants.
  • My spouse owes me sex, so I don’t have to have any concern for if this is a good time for him.
  • Be as thoughtless as possible.
  • My sex drive is the only thing in the world that is important.
  • My spouse’s needs for other things don’t matter.

The commands are given to each spouse to be giving, generous, and available to the other spouse when possible.

Sometimes spouses try to beat each other over the head with this passage, demanding sex from each other. That breaks my heart!

In God’s economy, “authority” is not about taking things by force. It is not about being a selfish dictator, tyrant. It is not about exalting self and selfishness. It is about humility, selflessness, and having a servant’s heart.

But Jesus called them aside and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their superiors exercise authority over them. It shall not be this way among you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. Matt. 20:25-27

The one flesh relationship in marriage is supposed to be a beautiful picture of the one Spirit relationship we have with Jesus. Jesus doesn’t spiritually force Himself on us. Ever. He respects our free will to choose to abide in Him or not.

The goal is: selflessness. Unity. Oneness.

Sex is supposed to be a picture of the one Spirit relationship Jesus has with His people. It is supposed to be beautiful and a mutual blessing.

Each spouse should seek to be loving, kind, respectful, understanding, giving, generous, thoughtful, and sensitive to the other. It is about being selfless and loving with the agape love of Christ. It is about seeking to edify the other. Not about taking what I want for myself.

Scriptural principles prohibit believers in Christ from using violence or force to demand their way:

  • The Lord tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence. Ps. 11:5
  • Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife, and in striking each other with wicked fists. You cannot fast as you do today and expect your voice to be heard on high. Isa. 58:4
  • Love does no harm to a neighbor. Rom. 13:10
  • Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. 1 Pet. 3:7
  • Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them. Col. 3:19
  • Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Phil. 2:4
  • Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. 1 Cor. 10:24
  • We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself, but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me.” Rom. 15:1-3
  • But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. … 2 Tim. 3:1-8

SATAN’S STRATEGY:

Satan’s strategy before marriage is to try to tempt us into having sex outside of God’s plan.

After marriage, his strategy is to tempt us into not having sex with our husbands. Or – to desire it with someone else. Again, he encourages us to go outside of the loving, good, life-giving boundaries God has set up in His design for sex.

Let’s not be ignorant of the enemy’s strategies to steal, kill, and destroy our marriages, our husbands, our ourselves, my precious sisters. In this area, or in any other.

PRAY WITH ME:

Lord,

We invite Your healing Spirit into the marriages, families, and homes of all who read this post. We invite Your healing for spiritual, emotional, and sexual intimacy. We invite You to raise marriages up from struggle and pain to victory and wholeness. Lord, rebuke Satan and all of his plans to steal, kill, and destroy in our marriages. He has no authority in our lives anymore. We are dead to this world and we are under the authority of Jesus! Satan wants to divide us in our marriages. He wants us to hold onto hurt and bitterness. He wants to leave families and marriages in shambles. Let us refuse to cooperate with him and his plans. Let us submit all to You – Your Lordship, Your wisdom, Your glory, and Your will. We invite Your love and power to sweep through our midst and to bring new supernatural Life into our husbands, into our marriages, into every area of intimacy, and into ourselves. Let our marriages display the power, beauty, and glory of the Gospel. Not for our selfish purposes – but for Your Kingdom!

Amen!

COMMENTS:

I am not planning to have comments on this post. Thanks for understanding. No one answers to me. Or to any other commenters. I don’t want to create more confusion for anyone. Or become engaged in inappropriate conversations in mixed company.

We answer to the Lord and to our spouses on this issue.

If you have concerns about this issue, please check out what the Bible has to say. Pray. Take your issues to Him. Invite His healing into your marriage. God’s wisdom is really the only thing that matters.  (Please always compare anything I say to the Word of God.)

<3

Also, check out the resources below. 🙂

RESOURCES:

Let’s Talk about Sex – this post has links to all of my other posts about sex including resources for wives whose husbands want a lot more sex than they do and wives whose husbands want less sex than they do. It also has resources for wives who have pain during sex.

If your husband is purposely refusing to have sex with you, please check out Confronting Our Husbands about Their Sin.

A Precious Example – and in this post, a couple who has been married for decades shares what this concept should look like in practice in a Christian marriage in a beautiful way.

If one of you is struggling with porn or a sex addiction, please check out this resource www.xxxchurch.com. There are resources for men and women who want to find victory over porn addiction in Christ. There are also resources for spouses of those who are addicted to porn.

Forgivenwife.com is a resource for wives who have gotten into the habit of withholding sex and want to heal and change in Christ.

Unlock Your Libido is an ebook for wives who struggle with low libido and want to see God heal their marriage by His power.

If you want more connection emotionally/spiritually with your husband – I have a lot of resources on that here. My desire is to see marriages whole, vibrant, and healthy with strong intimacy physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Leave me a comment on another post and I will help you find the posts that may be a blessing. Some examples might be:

If you have very serious issues in your marriage, please seek godly, experienced, trustworthy one-on-one counseling.

If you need a referral to a Christian counselor, please check out the free service available at Focus on the Family.

ABUSE – if you are being abused by your husband (or wife) please contact a trusted, experienced counselor, your local domestic violence resources, or the police. Or get in touch with thehotline.org.

IF YOU WANT TO HAVE A SAVING RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS CHRIST – please read this post.

NOTES:

  1. I don’t believe it is “withholding sex” if a spouse is actually not able to have sex at that moment.  So if a spouse is very sick, in a lot of pain, is physically unable to have sex for some reason, is away from home on business, etc… the other spouse would want to seek to offer grace and understanding. Of course, if there is some kind of sexual dysfunction, disease, or emotional pain, a spouse would not want to ignore it and let it go on untreated. He/she would want to try to find healing for the situation so that one can try to be available to one’s spouse if possible. (If healing is not possible or may take some time, please check out this post.)
  2. Another situation where it may be unwise to have sex is if the spouse is involved in an unrepentant affair. I have seen God restore marriages after adultery, many times. But it is my understanding that the wayward spouse would need to repent and produce much fruit of repentance before a sexual reunion could take place. And the faithful spouse is not biblically required to take back the wayward spouse. But – they may decide to do so as an act of grace if the wayward spouse sincerely repents and trust is restored and they feel led to do so.
  3. If there is major tension or a wife is really hurting emotionally/spiritually – it is certainly fine for her to respectfully ask for what she needs to feel safe and secure so she can relax and feel right about having sex with her husband.
    • There are times when talking through something first is a necessary step to begin healing.
    • There are times when having sex first and talking later can be a wonderful pathway to begin healing.
  4. Husbands tend to connect emotionally (and sometimes even spiritually) with their wives through having sex. Sometimes husbands don’t have the same need for verbally connecting emotionally that wives do. We have different needs and ways of feeling connected. I’d love to see both spouses selflessly seeking to meet the other’s needs and being understanding and compassionate.
  5. Withholding sex before marriage is not a sin. It is obedience to God’s Word.

 

Thriving in a Marriage without Sex If Necessary

Before we get married, we tend to think to ourselves, “Wow, once we are married, I’ll get to have sex with my guy any time I want! It will be AWESOME!”

There is often (but not always) a beautiful honeymoon period where both husband and wife are delighted in being together and enjoying sex together. It can be glorious. Sex is a beautiful gift of God to married couples. The ideal goal is for couples to have sex regularly and to both enjoy it together and for each to seek to be as available as possible to the other, to be compassionate, loving, selfless, and giving. Sex – the one flesh relationship – is intended by God to be a picture of the spiritual oneness of Christ and His bride, the church.

But what we usually don’t expect or plan for, is the reality that there are likely  to be many times in marriage when sex doesn’t or can’t happen. It can be for a large variety of reasons, but almost all of us experience some times where at least one spouse:

  • Has a major illness or injury.
  • Has medical issues that make having sex very difficult – lower back problems, pregnancy, bedrest, recurrent yeast infections, STDs, PTSD, arthritis, etc…
  • Suffers from sexual dysfunction or pain.
  • Is in the hospital for a while.
  • Is dealing with the needs of very sick young children who need almost constant care and attention.
  • Is extremely depressed or spiritually oppressed and can’t function in life in general and loses interest in sex.
  • Has a very different level of libido at the time.
  • Takes a medication (certain anti-depressants, birth control pills, blood pressure pills, etc…) that interfere with libido and sexual function.
  • Has a porn addiction that gets so severe that the spouse can’t function anymore sexually in marriage.
  • Is suffering from the trauma of sexual abuse and can’t seem to get past the fear, shame, and horror he/she associates with sex.
  • Is deployed or has to be gone with work for extended periods of time.
  • Has a completely different work schedule and you are never in bed at the same time.
  • Is so exhausted from working 70-80 hours per week that he/she has no energy left for sex.
  • Doesn’t recognize the signals the other one gives to try to initiate sex.
  • Has an affair.
  • Had an affair and it is not wise or safe to have sex again yet.
  • Decides to separate.
  • Determines to divorce against the other’s will.
  • Dies and the other is left alone.

Truthfully, as people age, things change sometimes. If you are not aware of this, let’s put it out there, ladies:

  • Men tend to peak in their sexual performance and libido in their late teens or twenties.
  • Women tend to peak in their sexual performance and libido in their mid thirties.
  • With increasing age, men are more likely to have high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and prostate enlargement – all of which can contribute to erectile dysfunction. It is not 100% of men. But it is an increasingly larger percentage of men over time.
  • As women enter peri-menopause, we are likely to experience vaginal dryness and thinning of the vaginal tissue which can create pain with vaginal intercourse.
  • As hormones begin to wane in older age, libido tends to decrease a lot. Some people do have sex into their 70s and 80s. That is awesome! But not everyone does or can. And that is okay, too.

So we are probably all going to face this issue at some point or another – probably not by choice. What can we do?

FROM A BELIEVING WIFE WHO HAS BEEN THERE:

Just like everything else in life that we have to face and let go of, if we are in a time where we have to be celibate, what will come up is our will in contrast to the will of God. That is always where the battle lies! When we can’t do, have, or be what we want, right now, that is what makes it so much harder to face and let go of it!

If we are in a time where we have to be celibate, it will come down to this: are we going to accept that this is God’s will for us right now? Or are we going to kick and fight against it, clinging to our own will in the matter, and seeking to make our will happen?

The reason it is so hard to do anything we don’t want to do is because we don’t want to do it!

We want something else, something other than God’s will at the moment! And that is the battle we all face in so many different things in life. But just as in this situation, the Lord is seeking to create in us the Spirit of Christ that lets go of all, empties all of self, that God may fill us up with His all! We have to let go of our own will in order to come into all that God is purposing!

The longer we cling to our own will and way in life, the more miserable, dry, and fleshly we become.

But the sooner we surrender to His will in any moment and season in our life, the sooner our heart is filled to overflowing with the peace, rest, and presence of God which FAR surpasses any fleeting sexual pleasure we may get by having our will instead of His!

He is seeking to make Christ Lord and our All-in-All when things in life do not go our way!! <3

FROM PEACEFUL WIFE

Here are some suggestions to prayerfully consider…

Don’t:

  • Resent God.
  • Focus on all that you are missing and how deprived you are.
  • Allow resentment to develop toward your husband.
  • Listen to Satan’s accusations against your husband.
  • Feed your mind and heart with lots of marriage resources about sex if you can’t have sex at the time and reading about it upsets you.
  • Read about how “normal men all want sex every day.” Not helpful. And not true.
  • Freak out.
  • Lash out at your husband in resentment or hatred.
  • Tell him how “he is not a real man” if he won’t/can’t have sex with you, insult his manhood, or call him names.
  • Look outside your marriage for sexual satisfaction (porn, raunchy novels, that guy that flirts with you at work, other women, etc…)
  • Talk to another man about how deprived you feel sexually.

 

Do:

  • Turn to the Lord in faith. Pour out your heart to Him.
  • Claim His promises to you and stand on them. (Ie: Rom. 8:28-29 and James 1)
  • Pray about the situation, invite God to heal your sex life and marriage. To work to accomplish His will and His good purposes to help you grow in your faith and in spiritual maturity.
  • Guard your heart from other men and from sources of temptation in the media.
  • Be willing to take care of any issues on your end so that you can be available to your husband.
  • Share with your husband what you would like, if appropriate – if it is possible for him – but don’t try to force or pressure him.
  • Respond with grace if he can’t or won’t have sex with you.
  • Focus on all of the good things about your husband and marriage.
  • Think about all the things you respect and enjoy about your husband.
  • Be available to help your husband respectfully with any issues he may have that are contributing to the problem.
  • Be his teammate.
  • Continue to respect your husband and to honor his leadership appropriately.
  • Enjoy affection with him if he is up for that.
  • Enjoy spiritual intimacy if he is receptive.
  • Starve your flesh by switching your thoughts from sex to the Lord, His Word, His love, His promises, and other things.
    • You can seriously dramatically lower your sexual desire level, if necessary, simply by diverting your thoughts. Then if sex becomes available with your husband again later, you can begin thinking more about sex to increase your desire level. How much you think about sex can raise or lower your libido level a lot.
  • Take your thoughts captive for Christ.
  • Depend on Christ for the strength you need to walk in holiness and self-control, be Spirit-filled.

 

NOTE #1 – If you are getting older and there are severe medical issues going on, and neither of you are really interested in sex anymore, give yourself and your husband some grace. Marriage books and blogs talk about how “men want sex” and “a man’s greatest need is sex.” Well, that may be true sometimes in certain situations. But as we age, things can change. You may be able to enjoy simply being sensual together. If neither of you seriously desires sex, or one or both of you are no longer capable of having sex, it is okay to let that go and just enjoy each other in other ways. Don’t let marriage books or blogs and the generalities they share make you worry about your marriage if you have a particular situation and medically can’t have sex and are both truly content with that.

NOTE #2 –  Reminder: Sexual refusal is not something either spouse should purposely do to the other. If your spouse is able to have sex but is purposely withholding, or you are able to have sex but are purposely withholding, 1 Corinthians 7:3-5 addresses that. We are to be available to our spouses. Not to force them into sex or selfishly “take” sex. But each spouse is to be ready to freely and generously give to the other if it is possible.

SHARE:

Ladies,

If you have wisdom to share, you are welcome to share here. You can set up your name to be anonymous if you would like. And if you are struggling, you are also welcome to share and be encouraged here. 🙂

Much love!

RELATED:

Sexual Rejection in Marriage

When You Feel Deprived in Your Marriage

When Your Husband Rejects You

Confronting Our Husbands about Their Sin

Placing My Higher Sexual Appetite Under God’s Control – a guest post

Twenty Simple Ways to Enjoy Your Man

Handling a Very Delicate and Sensitive Matter with Respect – a Husband’s Impotence 

Encouragement for Military Wives Whose Husbands Are Deployed – a guest post

Nina Roesner’s e-course for wives in difficult marriages: “Becoming a Woman of Strength and Dignity”

 

Let’s Talk about Sex!

Photo by Rhema Kallianpur on Unsplash

Ladies,

If you have general questions about sexual intimacy and marriage that you would like to see me write about in a post, I’d love to hear from you. Especially if it is a topic I have not covered in the past. You may leave a comment here in the comment section, or you may leave your question on my Contact page if you would prefer to be more anonymous.

I’d like to keep discussions G-rated, wholesome, holy, and honoring to the Lord. And this will be a ladies-only conversation. Thanks for understanding!

Lord,

I thank You for creating men, women, marriage, and sex. Thank You for Your good design. I pray for Your healing for the sex lives of my readers – so that their marriages might be vibrant, healthy, and most of all, that Your Name might be greatly glorified in their lives. Thank You for the marriage gift of sexual intimacy. Thank You for the picture the one flesh relationship is of the one Spirit relationship Jesus has with the church. Help us to honor our marriage beds and to please give us the tools we need to promote strong healthy sex lives in our marriages.

Amen!

I have a number of resources about sex in marriage and related issues that you are welcome to check out:

ATTRACTION

BODY IMAGE

BOUNDARIES ABOUT SEX IN MARRIAGE

A HUSBAND WANTS MORE SEX THAN HIS WIFE DOES

A WIFE WANTS MORE SEX THAN HER HUSBAND DOES

A WIFE WANTS MORE CONNECTION

DEALING WITH DESTRUCTIVE JEALOUSY

 

Also – if you are interested in seeing more material from me, check out my:

Ten Reasons to Consider Fasting

 

Fasting is not a topic we discuss much in some church circles – especially not the ones where I have grown up. We’d rather have a big fellowship supper! But fasting is something I believe we may each want to very prayerfully consider. It is a spiritual discipline that benefits believers and the church, particularly in times of distress and great need. It is a way to show that our hunger for the Lord is our greatest hunger of all.

There are specific times when fasting may be especially important:

  1. When we are repenting from significant sin and grieving over our sin before the Lord. (Joel 2:12)
  2. When we are facing serious temptation to sin and we want to appeal to the Lord for victory and His power. (Matt. 4:1-11)
  3. When we are praying for repentance for our families, our churches, or our country and grieving over these sins, feeling the pain the Lord feels over them. (Daniel 9) Surely this is one of the greatest needs our church and nation has today.
  4. When church leaders are prayerfully deciding on appointing new men to lead in the church, particularly pastors or missionaries. (Acts 14:23)
  5. When we have a very serious prayer request and we want to seek the Lord in a deeper way. (Ezra 8:21-23)
  6. In times of great grief, perhaps during times of national mourning. (2 Sam. 1:12)
  7. When we are praying for significant healing – spiritually, emotionally, relationally, or physically – for ourselves or others. (Psalm 35:13)
  8. When there is a great crisis for the church or the nation and we need God’s intervention – there is threat of war, famine, plague, great persecution, etc… (Jonah 3:5-10Nehemiah 9:1Esther 4:3)
  9. When we are praying for a massive movement of God’s Spirit to bring many into the Kingdom – a new Great Awakening. (Check out this article on revivals and fasting by John Piper)
  10. As a regular voluntary habit or occasional practice to draw nearer to the Lord and to grow in spiritual maturity ourselves. (Luke 2:37)

Verses about fasting:

  • ‘Why have we fasted, and you see it not? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you take no knowledge of it?’ Behold, in the day of your fast you seek your own pleasure, and oppress all your workers. Behold, you fast only to quarrel and to fight and to hit with a wicked fist. Fasting like yours this day will not make your voice to be heard on high. Is such the fast that I choose, a day for a person to humble himself? Is it to bow down his head like a reed, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the Lord? “Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? Isaiah 58:3-7
  • I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, for the full three weeks. Daniel 10:3
  • “Yet even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; Joel 2:12
  • “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. Matthew 6:16-18

 

There are a number of kinds of fasting:  *

  • Standard Fast – Avoid all food for a certain period of time and only drink water.
  • Absolute Fast – Avoid all food and liquids for a certain period of time.
    • Esther and the Jews fasted for 3 days when the Jews were threatened with genocide. (Esther 4:3)
  • Partial Fast – Avoid certain foods but other foods are okay to eat.
  • Intermittent Fast – A fast that is for certain parts of the day.
  • Electronics Fast – Avoid distractions like screens, phones, the internet, and social media, to really concentrate on the Lord and on prayer for a certain period of time.
  • Sexual Fast – husbands and wives may choose to do this only by mutual consent, and only for a limited time, so that they may pray. (1 Cor. 7:5)

Who Initiates Fasting?

  • A Christian may decide to fast in secret for himself/herself.
  • Believers may come together to decide to fast together for a specific reason and time.
  • Church leaders may call the local church or the church in a nation or worldwide to fast and pray.
  • Both spouses must agree to a sexual fast and it must have a specific and limited time period.
  • Political leaders may call a city, state, or nation to fast and pray. (2 Chron. 20:3)

 

NOTE* – If you are pregnant, nursing, diabetic, hypoglycemic, or have significant medical conditions, please check with your doctor or medical professional before prayerfully deciding what type of fast you might want to do.

SHARE:

If you’d like to share resources on fasting or about how fasting has been a blessing in your life, you are welcome to share!

RESOURCES:

www.gotquestions.org has a number of posts about what fasting is and the importance of it.

Types of Fasting – by www.gotquestions.org

John Piper’s articles on fasting

Fasting for Beginners – by David Mathis at www.desiringgod.org

 

“Are Particular Sexual Activities Wrong in Marriage?”

ABOUT MY APPROACH TO THIS POST:

I haven’t stated my personal convictions about specific sexual activities in marriage for a variety of reasons. One reason is that last year, God convicted me that Romans 14 admonishes believers to keep our personal convictions about “disputable matters” private.

The sharing of personal convictions tends to cause a lot of division in the body of Christ.

  • Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. Romans 14:1

 

So I took down any posts that were about my own convictions on a number of topics. I want to build the unity in the body, not create division over trivial matters.

  • So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. Romans 14:22

I decided to write about this topic after several requests. However, I am not going to be sharing my own convictions or details about my marriage in this area out of respect for God, for Greg, for myself, and for the body of Christ. I appreciate everyone respecting my approach. 🙂

I have decided not to have comments available on this particular post.

  • This topic lends itself toward becoming a debate that would probably not be productive.
  • I also don’t want to have any unwholesome or inappropriate conversations in mixed company.

There are some resources at the bottom of the post. I invite you to check them out and prayerfully consider each issue for yourself with your own husband. 🙂

A FEW FOUNDATIONAL THOUGHTS:

First, I want to remember that my greatest goal as a believer is to bring glory to God in all I do.

Second, I want to remember that anything that God calls sin is something that is ultimately destructive for me or for someone else. I want to focus on God’s incredible love for His children and the fact that His motives toward us are always good and never evil. Any parameters God gives, I want to embrace with total faith and trust.

Third, I want to remember that God created sex for marriage and that it is very good.

Fourth, I want to remember that Satan wants to make sex outside of marriage and sex before marriage as enticing as possible and he wants to make sex in marriage as difficult, painful, and frustrating as possible. He wants to create division and dissension and do all he can to prevent us from having unity in every area of our marriages, including the area of physical intimacy.

Warning, dear sisters:

Be aware of Satan’s strategies and tactics and resist him, yielding your heart completely to the Lord. He wants you to think accusing, negative, terrible thoughts toward your husband. He wants you bound up in guilt, shame, fear, anxiety, pride, and self-righteousness.

It is so critical that we take our thoughts captive for Christ so that we allow God’s Spirit to control our thoughts, motives, and all that we do, not the flesh.

Jesus set us free from sin, death, shame, guilt, bondage, oppression, fear, and every toxic way of thinking! He guides us in all truth by His Spirit and His Word. He can purify our hearts and minds and empower us to be the women He calls us to be. There is so much freedom in Christ. It is not about rules. It is about abiding in Him and being filled to overflowing with His goodness and then He gives us His wisdom and healing so graciously.

  • Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. The mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace… Romans 8:5-6

Let the fruit of the Spirit be very evident in the way we treat our husbands sexually, and in every other way. May God’s supernatural love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control abound in our hearts and in our interactions with our husbands. May the way we relate to them bring great joy to God’s heart and glory to His Name!

HOW TO DECIDE IF A PARTICULAR SEXUAL ACTIVITY IS A SIN IN MARRIAGE:

I need to prayerfully ask myself some questions as I seek to allow God’s Spirit to show me His truth and goodness from the Bible – with a heart that longs to obey God no matter what He may ask of me:

1. Does the Bible list this thing as a sin? If the Bible lists it as sin, it’s out of the question. I can’t participate in that.

2. Does the activity I want to do violate a general principle of God’s Word? Is it selfish, hurtful, involving sex outside of marriage, involving lust for someone to whom I am not married? Is it an addiction? Does it involve idolatry, greed, lying, envy of others, etc…?

3. Could what I want to do cause harm/pain emotionally or physically to my spouse? I must remember that “love does no harm to a neighbor” (Rom. 13:10). Could the activity cause harm to myself or anyone else in some way?

4. If the Bible is silent about it, the activity doesn’t go against a general principle of God’s Word, and it does not cause harm to someone then it really isn’t my place to label something as sin that God doesn’t label as sin. I don’t want to put myself in the position of deciding what is sinful. And I don’t want to make up my own “sins” and put myself in bondage unnecessarily to manmade rules. I can have personal convictions that are based on my own thinking. But I don’t get to label things as “sin.” That is God’s job.

5. If an activity violates a particular believer’s conscience, then for that person, he/she is not acting in faith and that is sin for that person even if this is an area where there is Christian liberty and freedom. I don’t want to force my spouse to do something that would violate his conscience. I would seek to “bear with him in love” and patience and put my desire for a particular thing on the back burner.

6. In areas of Christian liberty, I am free in Christ to enjoy something that is not labeled as sin by God and that does not violate biblical principles.

7. My primary purpose in the sexual aspect of my life must be to glorify and love God and love my husband. Sex is not “all about me.” Yes, I can enjoy it, and that is awesome. But, as a believer, I want my mindset to be, “How might I bless my husband in this area?”

 

Note:

In my book, I share a number of ways that we can be disrespectful to our husbands about sex and ways we can respect our husbands about sex. The Peaceful Wife – Living in Submission to Christ As Lord

Much love to each of you in Christ!

RELATED:

Is Masturbation a Sin? – by www.gotquestions.org
Is Oral Sex/Anal Sex Okay in Marriage? – by www.gotquestions.org
What Is a Christian Couple Allowed to Do in Sex? – by www.gotquestions.org

PEACEFULWIFE POSTS ABOUT SEX:

For wives who desire sex more than their husbands do –

For wives whose husbands may desire sex more than they do –

Other related topics –

You may also search my home page for things like:
– porn
– destructive jealousy
– husband broke my trust
– bitterness
– forgiveness

"Placing My Higher Sexual Appetite under God’s Control" – a guest post

I appreciate both wives today sharing their stories about this difficult topic. So thankful for all that God is doing in our midst! Whether I am the higher drive spouse or the lower drive spouse at the time – God calls me to learn to be more selfless, giving, patient, respectful, and understanding. He can use the variations in libido in a marriage to help each spouse learn to be content in Him alone and to learn to seek to please Him far above anything or anyone else. This is an area where we must all learn to die to self. When we do, there are great blessings in store for us spiritually, and maybe even healing sexually for the marriage. 

(Note – this post is not written for wives who are being sexually abused or physically abused. If that is your situation, or if you are dealing with active drug/alcohol addictions or unrepentant adultery, please seek godly, experienced, trusted help one-on-one. If you or your husband are struggling with porn, please check out the links to resources at the bottom of the post.)

FROM A SISTER IN CHRIST WHO IS BEGINNING TO TAKE SERIOUS STEPS ON THIS JOURNEY:

So the other day I wrote a really long comment about part of my journey, but it was lost along the way. The funny thing is, writing about it helped me to work through some of my feelings. I am going to try to remember the jist of what I wrote, because I think it was definitely a lightbulb moment for me.

Of course, my journey has been a little different, but we all have different journeys.

A LIGHT BULB MOMENT

I get a devotional in my inbox each day from Dr. Charles Stanley. This one was about controlling our appetites. And what he said really jumped out at me. Now, I don’t have too much trouble controlling my appetite for food (says the girl who is sitting here eating jellybeans as she types this!) 🙂 But I do have trouble with my appetite for intimacy with my husband. See, I am in the awkward position of having the higher sex drive in our relationship, and that has tortured me for a long time.

(Note from Peacefulwife – this is actually pretty common for a wife to be higher drive, especially as couples enter into their 30s/40s and beyond. It isn’t that unusual at all, especially, it seems, if the wife is the stronger personality and the husband is more passive.)

As you know, I have struggled greatly with his lower libido. I have allowed our situation to make me feel uglier, unappreciated, and completely worthless as a wife and a woman. Finally, recently, I have begun to see and understand my worth in Christ, and that helps a great deal. So often I need to refocus. Like, daily. But here is what jumped out at me from the devotion:

“Human appetites, in themselves, are not sinful. In fact, they’re God-given. However, because of our fleshly weaknesses, they need to be controlled. When our appetites rule us, we’re in trouble.”

You see, my appetite for intimacy with my husband has been ruling me.

I’ve been allowing my desire for my husband and the imbalance in our libidos to consume me, and to control my thoughts and waste my time. For so long, I prayed that God would take away my desires for my husband, but He has not. I think He may be using our situation to grow me. To grow us. Granted, our situation isn’t the typical one, but so what?

For me, it’s not about the “release” (I really hate that word). It’s about the connection with my husband, and my husband only. He is happy to connect once a week, which is far, far, far too little for my taste. As anyone who has struggled with this issue knows, the spouse with the lower libido has all the control and that can be incredibly frustrating and can feel demeaning.

I have allowed my frustrations to control my thoughts and emotions, and for my thoughts to control me. I have allowed my fretting over this to monopolize my time. I think me being stuck here has been pleasing to Satan, because it has seriously limited my time with God.

A NEW PERSPECTIVE

So I finally realized, my desire for my husband is not a bad thing. It is not the curse I was beginning to think it was. It is a God-given appetite and it is good. However, I need to learn to control my appetite. The problem here isn’t my husband’s lower desire, but perhaps it is my out-of-control appetite. (From Peacefulwife – most couples do not have the exact same level of desire all of the time. One is not wrong, necessarily. The most important thing is how we handle the difference in desire levels.)

So just this week I’ve begun working on things I’ve been procrastinating about, like cleaning the storage room. I have been neglecting my duties because I have been wallowing in self-pity. I’ve been wasting so much time being hyper-focused on this issue.

I’ve decided to stop praying for God to take away my desire for my husband. I am going to try to squash my appetite when it gets too intense, just like I have learned to squash cravings for junk food. I need to redirect myself.

Honestly, I’m not sure if this is totally what I’m supposed to be learning about this, but it sure feels like a step in the right direction. And it sure beats feeling ugly and worthless all of the time. And my husband has been much more relaxed and happier the past couple days. I guess he can sense my more pleasant demeanor.

I know he doesn’t like it when I feel so badly about myself, and he has even shared that he feels really badly that he makes me feel so badly. He doesn’t actually make me feel badly on purpose, it’s like a side effect. But in order to bless him, I need to learn to control my feelings, and my thoughts especially when they head in a negative direction. I might make this sound easy, but trust me – for me it is not easy! But I’m going to try. And I’ll fail. And I’ll try again. 🙂

FROM ANOTHER WIFE WHO HAD A HIGHER DRIVE:

I was the more dominant personality and my husband was more passive earlier in our marriage. My attempts to control extended to our physical intimacy, too, unfortunately.  My husband was working extremely long hours at a very physically demanding job and was completely exhausted most evenings, not even getting to bed until midnight or 1am – which didn’t help matters, of course. (He was not addicted to porn.)

I’m so thankful for what God has shown me about being a more peaceful wife. What eventually worked for my own sanity and to bless my husband was for me to back off, give him more space, grace, and time instead of expecting intimacy every night. I learned to be patient and to be content in Christ no matter what my husband was or was not doing – to stop using the number of times per week/month we had intimacy as a measure of my husband’s love for me or as a measure of my security like this blog talks about.

I learned to really respect him, to accept that his libido was lower than mine in this season (rather than assume “he must not love me” as I had done earlier), to honor him, and to be more selfless. I stopped verbally pressuring him (which I had been doing just about every day) and began to enjoy whatever attention and affection he did give to me. I sought to be joyfully receptive to any advances by him but God also helped me see I needed to not to hold any bitterness or resentment against my husband on the days or even weeks when he was too tired.

I learned to focus on good things and to set down my expectations and stop focusing on self, but rather focus on allowing Christ to change me. I learned that I had been really selfish in so many ways (not just in this area) and that my particular husband was emotionally wounded from my approach in the marriage and needed time to heal. He also needed a break from his extremely demanding work schedule.

Now I can be content with lots of intimacy with my husband or with no intimacy. In the power of Christ, I can be content in all circumstances through Him who gives me strength! (Phil. 4:12-13)

For us, over the course of several months, as I gave my husband more space and time and as I learned to respect and honor him – his libido began to increase again. His work schedule also improved dramatically which has been a great help and now we both enjoy intimacy often and it is a blessing to both of us again.

FOR THOSE WIVES WITH A HIGHER DRIVE:

The Devastation of Sexual Rejection in Marriage

Thriving in Marriage without Sex If Necessary

When You Feel Deprived in Marriage

Fully Trusting God with My Husband 

Respect, Attraction, and Biblical Submission

When Your Husband Is Not Physically Attracted to You

Measuring Intimacy

When Your Husband Rejects You

What Is Attractive to Husbands?

She Has the Stronger Sex Drive – Shaunti Feldhahn’s site

25 Ways to Respect Myself

Oneness in Marriage-  Not Too Close, but Not Too Far Away (not being enmeshed or codependent or having husband as an idol)

I Was Sure I Would NEVER Make My Husband into an Idol

 

FOR THOSE WIVES WITH A LOWER LIBIDO:

Book Review – Unlock Your Libido by Bonny Burns

I Feel Like Just a Piece of Meat to My Husband Sometimes

The Respect Dare – Taking Initiative Sexually 

 

FOR WIVES WHOSE HUSBANDS ARE INVOLVED IN PORN OR WHO ARE INVOLVED IN PORN THEMSELVES:

Posts about porn

www.xxxchurch.org

"Unlock Your Libido" Book Review

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(TRIGGER ALERT – If you are a higher drive wife with a husband with lower libido, please don’t read this review if you know that reading about something like this might be upsetting to you.)

I have never done a book review on such a topic but I have seen how much pain there is in so many marriages where a wife has a lack of desire for physical intimacy. (Of course, there is much pain when a husband has a lack of desire, as well. But that is a different post!) Lack of sexual intimacy in marriage leads to deeply hurting spouses and increased tension, stress, and strife in marriage. Our enemy loves to promote anything that will create tension and division. He wants to steal, kill, and destroy in our marriages and families. But God wants to strengthen our marriages and to empower us to become the godly women He calls us to be for His glory.

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Bonny Logsdon Burns

I had the privilege of “meeting” Bonny Logsdon Burns through the Christian Marriage Bloggers’ Association. There are lots of amazing Christian marriage blogs to be discovered there! (Note – please always compare what any writer says against the Bible – including my own writing, please!)

What I like about “Unlock Your Libido” is the way Bonny points women to finding fulfillment in Christ first and how she directs women to Scripture to deal with the spiritual and emotional issues that may be impacting a woman’s desire for her husband physically. She also talks about neuroscience, biology, neurochemistry, and practical suggestions that surround many of the issues of low libido wives.  That is an approach I can get exited about! Give ALL the resources possible – but focus especially on Christ and the truth of His Word and the power of God’s Spirit.

Bonny shares her story on her blog www.oysterbed7.com where her entire ministry is devoted to “low libido wives.” I’m glad that I can share this resource for those who may need it. I realize not everyone will be in this boat. But I believe that any wife who is in need of spiritual and sexual healing may find a good place to start in Bonny’s book, “Unlock Your Libido.”  I also think that wives with “normal libido” who have a higher drive husband may also benefit. For a wife whose husband is lower drive, she may not want to purposely try to increase her libido – that may just be frustrating. (I have tips for wives to focus on lowering their drive here for these situations.) It is possible that husbands might be able to read this book to “reverse engineer” some beneficial approaches if their wives are struggling with low libido.

THE BOOK

Bonny’s book is a 52 week course. Each week has a devotional section where Bonny discusses a particular topic. Themes vary from Bible passages, to addressing sin, to scientific studies, and topics related to the issue of low libido.  There is then a Scripture passage to focus on for then next week. And then a “positive thought” to help wives practice thinking positive, Philippians 4:8 kinds of things:

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

She gives wives space to write down their thoughts each day of the week about the issue that was discussed and the positive thought and Scripture for that week which I believe is a powerful way to reinforce new thinking and to change our inner dialogue. I want to share some of the topics to give you a tantalizing taste of what you are in for with this ebook:

  • Renewal
  • God is Not Anti-Beauty
  • Sexpectations
  • Benefits of Sexual Intimacy
  • Spiritual Libido
  • Adversity
  • Redefining Sexy
  • You Are Sexually Adequate!
  • The Hero in Your Husband
  • Idol-Free
  • Why Satan Targets Marriage
  • God’s Purpose for Your Low Libido
  • When the Headaches Strike

The book does not address any of the mechanics or details of sex. It is really mostly about how wives struggle and overcome their struggles with low desire.

The devotional is easy to read and usually about a page. Just once a week. Bonny’s writing style is friendly, personal, gentle, engaging, humorous, encouraging, and truthful. She addresses the hard topics with compassion, grace, understanding, and plenty of suggestions to help in various situations. I think wives will get the most out of this book if they stick to reading one devotional each week and then memorize the Scripture passage for each week and write down a brief positive thought each day about that week’s topic. Bonny is careful to address women in their entirety – body, soul, and mind. Love that!

Bonny helps women examine their walk with Christ, their motives, and search for any sin that may be blocking God’s Spirit’s power in their lives. She teaches wives step by step to transform their thinking from negative, self-sabotaging thinking to positive, empowered, Bible-centered thinking. Our thoughts are SO important! And our thoughts and emotions as women are extremely tied into our ability to have a healthy libido and desire for our husband. She encourages wives to view themselves as teammates with their husbands. I also appreciate how she encourages wives to become godly wives and to respect and honor their husbands.

The only thing I was not super excited about – was chapter 51 on “Centering Prayer.” I have some concerns that it could be a bit too closely linked to Eastern meditation practices. That would be something each wife could prayerfully consider for herself or discuss with her husband and research on her own. If you are interested in learning to pray more powerfully, I would recommend Kay Author’s study, “Lord, Teach Me to Pray,” or E. M. Bounds book, “The Necessity of Prayer.”

CONCLUSION

I am so thankful for Bonny’s openness and transparency and for her willingness to share so many pearls of wisdom God has given to her on her own journey. I was going to try to pick one or two chapters that were my favorites, but there were so many that were a blessing – I decided it was impossible to narrow it down. What  a blessing to so many sisters in Christ and to many marriages that God is using her to share this important message of hope with wives in the Body of Christ!

Please join me in praying for Bonny’s ministry and her marriage  – that God might protect her and her husband from temptation and from harm, that He might continue to empower them and use them for His glory, and that His Spirit and truth might flow through Bonny to build up the Body of Christ for the glory of God and of the Gospel.

Strong, godly marriages lead to strong families, strong churches, strong communities, and a healthy, holy new generation to come. Sexual intimacy is a critical part of marriage that the enemy wants to destroy. He knows if he can destroy intimacy in marriage, the marriage may fall apart. I don’t want that to happen to any of us! May God richly bless the intimacy in each of our marriages on every level and may His Spirit shine brightly in and through us to reach this world for Christ!

RELATED:

www.forgivenwife.com  – A “sister blog” to Bonny’s that is a ministry especially for those wives who realize they have been withholding themselves from their husbands and being “sexual gatekeepers” and who want to change to become the wives God desires them to be and to bless their husbands with sexual intimacy.

I Feel Like I’m Just a Piece of Meat to My Husband Sometimes – I answer a wife’s question in this post. Be sure not to miss her response later in the comments about how much God healed her later!

The Devastation of Sexual Rejection in Marriage  – for wives whose husbands tend to reject them sexually

Taking Initiative Sexually in Marriage – for wives who have been hesitant to do so, but whose husbands would really appreciate if they would initiate more

When You Feel Deprived in Your Marriage – for wives who are higher drive than their husbands

Submitting Sexual Desire to the Lord

Peacefulwife Posts about Going Deeper in Prayer

How to Tell If a Sexual Activity Is Wrong in Marriage

When You Feel Deprived in Your Marriage

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Whether you are feeling deprived of attention, love, affection, sex (and yes, a lot of women desire sex more than their husbands do), or anything else – I believe there are some steps godly wives can take to move forward in a productive direction. (If there are severe issues in your marriage, please see the disclaimer at the bottom of the post.)

The power to overcome feelings of disappointment in our husbands is in our thought lives as we choose to align ourselves with God’s wisdom and His ways.

We have two main choices.

  1. We can focus on how unfulfilled, how deprived, how upset, how victimized, and how empty we are feeling at the moment in our marriages. We can focus on all that is wrong and on what we don’t have. We can blame our husbands, expect them to fix all of the problems, and change to meet our needs. We can nurture our bitterness/resentment and dwell on how much our husbands have failed us. We can be irritable, angry, cold, and harsh. We can choose to lash out at our husbands and punish them for disappointing us. That will teach them!
  2. We can focus on Christ and how in Him, we possess every spiritual blessing from heaven that exists in the universe (Ephesians 1:3). We can focus on all that we DO have in Him. We can change the channel from our desire/disappointment to Christ. We can take up our cross daily, placing all of ourselves on the altar before God, living as though we are dead to self and to our own will, following Jesus and finding true, abundant Life in Him. We can choose to see that He is more than sufficient to meet our needs. We can choose to shoot down sinful thoughts immediately and nurture our faith in Christ, our love for Christ, and our desire to bless our husbands. We can choose to be loving, warm, accepting, gracious, joyful, peaceful, and content.

Each of these paths has a very different outcome – spiritual  death or spiritual life.

We do have legitimate needs and desires. It is important for us to respectfully share our feelings, needs, goals, desires, concerns, and perspectives with our husbands. That is part of our responsibility as believing wives. Husbands and wives should all seek to meet their spouse’s needs selflessly, lovingly, and with respect.

But if our husbands cannot or will not meet our needs or do what we believe is best – then where does that leave us? Are we going to try to force our men (or anyone else) to do what we want even if we have to sin to do it? Or will we respect their God-given free will and choose to turn to God in faith with our needs?

Sometimes there will be trials and times of testing in our Christian faith.

God gives us tests to help us see where we are weak in our faith, to bring sin to the surface of our lives as He refines us, and so that sin can be skimmed off. He uses tests, trials, and suffering to cause us to grow in spiritual maturity to completion (verses about suffering). Many times that painful trial of us feeling rejected, abandoned, or alone in our marriage will be the very thing that God will use to draw us to Himself in ways we have never experienced before. Sometimes He will help us see that our husbands are only human and can’t meet our deepest spiritual and emotional needs. Only God can do that! If we are willing, God will use the pain in our lives to chisel and shape us, to teach us treasures and wonderful things about Himself, and to grow and prune us.

How we respond is the key.

Instead of meditating on resentment, bitterness, or disappointment all day long, let’s focus on Philippians 4:8 things:

  • My husband has a lot of traits that I really admire. I’m going to start a list and really think about his good qualities today.
  • My husband likely has good intentions toward me.
  • God has good intentions toward me.
  • God is sovereign over my husband, over my life, and over this frustrating, painful situation. What good might God desire to do through this? What might He have for me to learn? What an adventure it will be to find out His plans!
  •  I can lay my needs and concerns at the feet of Christ and trust Him with them. I don’t have to freak out even if I don’t get what I want or need. If He wants me to have my desires and needs met, He will provide a way for this to happen that brings honor to Himself. If my needs are not met right now in the ways that I want them to be, I will use this experience to practice living for God’s will far above my own. “Not my will but Yours be done, Lord!”
  • By God’s power, I will contribute to unity, harmony, healing, respect, honor, and agape love in our marriage.
  • I have so many gifts from God – I’m going to start a list of all of the things God has done for me and meditate on being thankful for each of these blessings.
  • I am going to focus on allowing God to change me to become the wife and woman  God desires me to be.
  • I am going to sing praises to God for His goodness!
  • I am going to meditate on Scripture and the promises of God.
  • I am going to put my energy to use in fervent prayer to know God more deeply and to grow in my faith.
  • I can focus on NOT feeding my desires for sexual intimacy for this time – by avoiding suggestive books, music, movies, and also by redirecting my thoughts to God and other things when I begin to feel overwhelmed. I can choose to fill my mind with thoughts of things I do have and things I am thankful for rather than ruminating on what I don’t have right now. That is a way that I can “turn down” my libido to some degree if necessary for a time.

If my husband does not meet my needs – I will be okay. If I have Jesus, I have everything that matters!

If I only have Him, His Spirit, and His Word, I have the greatest Treasures of the universe. I will find all of my personhood, worth, acceptance, love, peace, security, safety, hope, faith, joy, strength, and contentment in Christ alone – no matter what my husband does or does not do. My hope is ultimately in Christ Jesus alone, not in my husband. My husband may fail me at times, but God never will fail me or forsake me! Jesus is my Rock, my Strong Tower, my Refuge, my Mighty Fortress, my Comforter, my Great Physician, and my Prince of Peace. He has made me right with God.

I give all of myself to Him and He gives me all of Himself in return! I am a daughter of the King of kings and Lord of lords. I have all of the spiritual treasures of heaven at my disposal to accomplish God’s will. I am not deprived at all. I possess all of the promises of God’s Word, all of His love, all of His support, all of His power, care, and provision. My God can change my husband’s heart. But even if he does not, I will trust in Him completely!

This is how we take our thoughts captive for Christ, my dear sisters!

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8

I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11b-13

Disclaimer:

If either your husband or yourself is involved in serious unrepentant sin, infidelity, abuse, active drug/alcohol addictions, or have uncontrolled mental health problems – please seek appropriate, trustworthy, qualified help for yourself and your marriage. I am not addressing serious issues in this post, although, some things about our walk with Christ will still apply. But you may need outside help in severe situations. If you or your children are not safe, please try to get out and get somewhere safe! Or if you are a danger to your husband or children, please get yourself some help and separate yourself from your family until you can be together safely. I don’t condone abuse or sin against anyone!

PS – a Note about Mutuality:

It is not wrong for a wife to desire for her husband to truly love her. It is not wrong for a husband to long for his wife to truly respect him. There is an expectation for reciprocity in the marriage covenant. Marriage should be a mutual effort and a beautiful interchange between two people who love and respect one another.

I don’t intend to say that wives should not want their husbands to love them. We should want this! Mutuality is a good thing.

My concern is that – it is easy for us to desire our husband’s love so much that we can desire it more than we desire Christ or we can desire it to the point that we are willing to sin to try to get what we want from our husbands. That is where I want us to be very cautious. It’s not that we don’t or shouldn’t want our husband’s love, but that we need to be careful where this desire is in our priorities. I hope that makes sense.
God designed marriage to involve two people who are both contributing to the marriage and both seeking Him. That is the goal!
If you feel that your husband does not love you as he should, that is a very painful place to be.
My prayer for my hurting sisters in this situation is that they might continue on being faithful to God, to their marriage covenant, and to their husband – allowing God to empower them, seeking to please Him, and seeking to bless their husband. We will trust God together to work in your husband’s heart to draw Him to Himself first, and also back to the marriage.
But no matter what our husbands ultimately do, my prayer is that we might walk in holiness, obedience, faithfulness, and by the power of God’s Spirit working in us – that Christ might be greatly pleased with us.

RELATED:

The Devastation of Sexual Rejection in Marriage

She Has the Stronger Sex Drive – Shaunti Feldhahn’s site

Are Particular Sexual Activities Wrong in Marriage?

Placing My Higher Sexual Drive Under God’s Control

My Husband Is Not Attracted to Me

25 Ways to Be a Safe Place for Your Husband Emotionally

Healthy Vs Unhealthy Relationships

What Speaks Disrespect to Husbands?

When Your Husband Rejects You

 

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I am not a therapist, psychologist, a licensed sex counselor, a pastor, a trained counselor or a psychiatrist. I am just a part time pharmacist and a wife who loves Jesus.

The survey questions I had a week or so ago revealed several things about my readers and their marriages that I would like to take some time to discuss.

First – a few results from the survey (about 550-605 women responded):

  • 75% percent of you said that sex was either very important or that you can’t live without it. 21% said you could take it or leave it, and the rest were not very interested in sex at all.
  • 79% said that your husband’s affection was either very important or extremely important. 18% said it was important but you could live without it. The rest were not very interested in affection.
  • 25 of you said that your husband did not initiate ANY physical contact in the past month (for some of you, your husband may be deployed, which could skew those results).
  • A few hundred of you have experienced your husband’s sexual rejection of you. Some of you are able to accept this graciously, but for many, there are a lot of tears and hurt feelings – understandably.
  • About 230 of you have a fairly difficult time talking with your husband about sex.
  • At least 223 of you are pretty unsatisfied sexually in your marriage.
  • 196 of you say that you desire sex more often then your husband does.
  • 109 of you have sex once a month or less (20 of you say you never have sex with your husband anymore).
  • 65 of you say that your husband doesn’t enjoy touching you affectionately very much.
  • 248 of you say your husband sometimes turns you down for sex. 66 of you say your husband often turns you down for sex. 22 of you say your husband always turns you down for sex.

So – There are some major issues going on here for some of us in the sexuality department. Today I want to discuss how we handle situations where our husbands sexually reject us, turn us down, don’t respond or can’t respond. I don’t have all the answers here. I have some ideas to suggest. But I would like for this to be a discussion. I believe that there are a number of you who  may have some really helpful ideas, solutions, approaches and suggestions that may greatly bless some of our other sisters.

MEDICAL ISSUES:

Many of you may be dealing with medical problems on your end or your husband’s end. As a pharmacist, I know that obesity, diabetes, blood pressure problems, exhaustion, depression, low testosterone and many medications can cause a low sex drive for men. A man who has had prostate surgery or who has enlarged prostate may have sexual issues, as well. There are many products that can help with low sex drive in men and with erectile dysfunction today.

  • Exercise and losing weight (if a man is overweight) can boost testosterone levels
  • Viagra, Levitra, Cialis – these are (unbelievably expensive) pills that can help with erectile dysfunction and desire issues for men. They tend to run at least $25 per pill, sometimes more. These drugs do have potential side effects and drug interactions, so your husband would need to discuss these things with his doctor.
  • Caverject – a penile injection that a man can use to help with erectile dysfunction.
  • Muse – a urethral suppository for erectile dysfunction.
  • vacuum devices – can be used to pull the blood into the penis, then a “rubber band” type of device is placed on the base of the shaft of the penis to prevent the blood from draining back out.
  • testosterone – topical or injections can be used for men who have low testosterone, this will increase their energy level and libido, but is only for men who do have low testosterone and there are many possible side effects, particularly if these products are used in too high of a dose.
  • Hitachi Magic Wand – this is an electric vibrator that is also a deep tissue massager that can help men and women who have difficulty achieving orgasm.

If you have questions about medications or medical devices, please contact your pharmacist or doctor. If you have medical issues yourself, please talk to your doctor or OB/GYN about possible solutions.

Here is a post I wrote about dealing with erectile dysfunction. Please keep in mind, this is a very painful subject for most men, sometimes no matter how a wife mentions this subject, it is going to feel emasculating to a husband. To a large degree, a husband may need to decide to go to the doctor for this on his own. In my mind, this would be something to pray about and seek God’s power and wisdom about as you consider how to approach your husband.

PORN ADDICTION:

This topic just breaks my heart. But, for men who are addicted to porn, the neuronal pathways in their brain become permanently altered and if the addiction gets severe enough, eventually men lose the ability to be aroused by their real life wife – no matter how beautiful she is. They train their brains to only respond to porn – which gives the brain hits of neurochemicals that are identical to the high a drug addict gets from heroin or cocaine, but porn can be even more addictive than those things.

  • Check out John Piper’s site www.desiringgod.org “Pornography, The New Narcotic”  and his follow up post, “Hijacking Back Your Brain from Porn.”
  • www.xxxchurch.org is a site to help people overcome and recover from porn and sex addictions, this is the site our youth minister recommends to parents at our church. I haven’t read all of the posts on the site, but the ones I have read seemed very helpful to me.

A HUSBAND FEELS DISRESPECTED:

This is an issue that many wives are not aware of, or may not be before they read much on my site or other books about respecting our husbands. Many husbands have shared on posts in the past that when they feel controlled or disrespected by their wives, they may eventually lose their sexual desire for their wives. Not all husbands do. There are some husbands who would be receptive to sex no matter how upset they were. But there are a large number of men who shut down sexually when they feel dishonored, belittled, humiliated, constantly criticized, verbally emasculated, verbally attacked, disrespected or treated like a little boy instead of a man.

If you are new to my site, I would highly recommend that you read the posts at the top of my home page about disrespect, respect and biblical submission. There is also a post at the top of my home page that shares 8 wives’ stories about how their sex lives changed as the wives began to truly respect and honor their husbands.

And let me mention here – I don’t think it is possible for me to overstate the importance of this:

  • PLEASE do not criticize your husband sexually or humiliate him about his performance or his sexuality!  PLEASE!!!!! Not in private, and absolutely never in public.  Even the slightest implication a wife makes that her husband does not or cannot sexually satisfy her can be crushing and even devastating to many husbands.

A HUSBAND HAS BEEN REJECTED TOO MANY TIMES:

I have also seen husbands whose wives have rejected them hundreds or thousands of times eventually just shut down and refuse any sexual contact with their wives.

  • A very helpful resource for wives may be www.forgivenwife.com.
  • I’d love to see us as wives seek to be as sexually available as possible to our husbands in accordance with I Corinthians 7:1-5.
  • A Precious Example – a wife who gave her husband the most wonderful gift

INDIVIDUAL IDIOSYNCRASIES:

There are some husbands who just have a lower drive. That is not wrong. Some men are much more visual or much more sexual. Some are not as much. There is a continuum of what is normal, not every man is the same. Some men may be totally healthy and normal and be happy with sex once a week or once every two weeks. Really!

There are also issues that come up as a man ages where testosterone levels decrease and prostate problems increase that can affect desire and performance at times. But there is medical help available!

SEVERE ISSUES:

Sometimes sexual problems are caused by a husband being involved in infidelity of some type. If that is your situation, please seek godly, experienced, biblical counseling ASAP! I am not addressing wives whose husbands are involved in adultery in this post. In fact, I wouldn’t want to have sex with my husband if he were cheating on me, until he VERY CLEARLY repented and took tests to check for STDs and was showing extreme transparency to me. It would be a long process of rebuilding that lost trust. It is not impossible for God to heal a marriage after infidelity. I have seen Him do it many, many times. But you may need extra help in this situation.

If there is physical abuse going on, or addictions to drugs/alcohol, please seek godly help! I am not able to address these situations.

If your husband was sexually abused or molested as a child – he is going to have severe spiritual/emotional/sexual scars to try to overcome. If you were sexually abused, molested or raped, you are going to have severe spiritual/emotional/sexual scars to try to overcome. You and he may both need experienced, outside help for this kind of situation, as well.

———

If you have a husband who is feeling extremely disrespected (and he is not involved in adultery), here are my suggestions. Other wives, you are welcome to chime in here as well!

****  PRAY!!!!!!!!!!!!  Pray for God to heal your sexual union for His glory. God gave sex to us in marriage to be a glue to hold us together. The enemy wants to keep us from having a healthy sexual union. God desires us to have a satisfying, vibrant, fulfilling sex life in our marriages (Song of Solomon, I Corinthians 7). Pray for the strongholds to come down, strongholds of any sin on either side of the marriage and strongholds of the enemy.

1. Stop the unintentional and intentional disrespect immediately. Learn what feels disrespectful to your husband. Avoid those things. Say nothing rather than bulldoze him or attack him or put him down. (The Frustrating Quiet Phase)  Look through the Peacefulwife Timeline at the top of my home page and read all the posts  you can find on this topic. Your Words Can Cause Catastrophic Damage.  A Wake Up Call for Wives.

2. Begin to use your words to give life. Begin to use your words to encourage, bless, praise, build up, genuinely admire, honor and respect your husband. Research what it means for a man to feel respected by his wife and what a wife can do to powerfully motivate, bless and breathe life into her husband as she learns to understand his masculine heart and needs. What Is Respect in Marriage? My Wife Would Bless Me If

3. Lay down your expectations. Don’t try to control him in the area of sex. Don’t try to initiate every single night if he is rejecting you fairly often. Giving him a bit of space (waiting for days or possibly weeks) in a situation like this can sometimes help him have a chance to feel his own desire for you more and to want to come to you.

4. If possible, talk with your husband about if he reads your cues or if he is missing them. Some husbands don’t realize that their wives are trying to initiate sex. It would be great if you and your husband could talk about this and maybe you can ask him about his cues that he wants to have sex so you won’t miss his either.

5. Approach him in the morning if possible. Men have the highest levels of testosterone generally in the morning right before or around the time they usually wake up.

6. Some husbands prefer a hands on direct approach rather than a wife initiating with words. Some husbands like words. This will require you to study your husband to know what works best for him.

7.  If things are EXTREMELY tense between you, you may want to just start by sitting in the same room with him quietly and smiling at him whenever he looks at you. Maybe you could eventually move to sit quietly beside him while he watches TV or whatever he is doing and you could read a book and just enjoy being near him.

8. Then, once you are able to be in the same room together and you are smiling at him more often, maybe you could offer a shoulder rub or back massage. If you need ideas, there are videos on YouTube from massage therapists that can give you some great ideas. As things continue to be less tense and if your husband begins to relax a bit, some husbands may respond best at first to a wife’s hands or mouth (if you need more detail on this, we can talk about it in the comments, or you can check out my friend, Kayla’s, series on sex). This could be a great way to begin to bridge the gap if there hasn’t been a lot of sexual intimacy in recent months. I am aware of a number of husbands (not all, but quite a few) responding positively when a wife approaches them in this way just to bless the husband at first for a number of weeks or so. That could be a place to start.

9. Wear your hair the way he likes it whenever possible. Wear clothing he likes whenever possible. Especially if your particular husband is quite visual. Make some effort to doll yourself up for him just to bless him no matter what his response. (If you have issues with food or body image, please seek godly help! There is victory available to us as daughters of the King, we don’t have to be enslaved to addictions and fear! As we give absolute surrender to Christ, He has the power to heal us. There are many godly resources available about these issues.)

10. As much as possible, if he does turn you down, I pray for God to give you the strength to accept this graciously and calmly. I think it is possible to ask for what we desire, then respond with a bit of sadness but to maintain self-control. I know this can be extremely painful and feel very personal. Sometimes a husband may just be tired or extremely stressed or have other things going on. Sometimes it is not personal. But, if we get really emotional and upset, and especially if we lash out verbally in anger in those moments, it is easy for us to create severe emotional/spiritual injuries to our husbands surrounding their sexuality that can be almost impossible to recover from. If we can approach our husbands with empathy, understanding and patience and turn to God for the power to respond in a way that honors Him, we can bless ourselves and our marriage. But if we lash out and say things like:

  • If you were a REAL MAN, you’d want to have sex with me!!!
  • Are you gay or something?!?!?!! You must be! Every other man in the world wants to have sex with his wife but you!
  • If you don’t have sex with me, I’ll find it somewhere else!
  • What is wrong with you!?!?!  I thought men all want sex all the time!

… those kinds of words can destroy and crush a husband’s soul and make him completely shut down sexually on you. I don’t want to see that happen!

I am not personally aware of ANY husbands who respond positively to a wife’s verbal insults and attacks or to a wife who is freaking out.

When we get hysterical and super emotional and upset – that can be pretty scary to our husbands and we can unwittingly repel them when we respond with a huge burst of negative emotion. The bigger deal we make of these situations, the bigger the wall we are building that we will have to overcome the next time, from my perspective.

Some wives try things like:

  • say, “Ok. Well, would you hold me while I do X, please?”
  • approach in a different way, maybe something they know their husband really likes
  • enjoy just cuddling
  • go pray for their husbands and themselves
  • go journal their thoughts and feelings privately
  • plan to try again in the morning
  • understand when their husband is really tired
  • go clean the house
  • go work on a hobby

There is a wide range of normal sexual desire in men. Some men want sex once a day or more. Some men are fine with once a week or once every two weeks or so. There are MANY, MANY factors involved in this issue – spiritual, emotional, psychological, neurological and physiological. I can’t begin to possibly address every specific issue in one post. And, I am not a sex therapist. But – I hope that maybe we can talk about this together, brain storm  and come up with some ideas and approaches to try to use to bless our marriages and our husbands. A lot of you had really helpful ideas that you shared with me on the survey. You are welcome to share them here. It’s fine if you want to be anonymous. 🙂

 

RELATED:

Please check out my good friend, Kayla’s amazing series on sex in marriage

ForgivenWife has included a link for us to learn what happens to husbands when we reject them sexually – she said the comments on the post are important for us to look at.

We have an enemy of our souls who wants to destroy our lives, our marriages, our husbands and our families. This is SPIRITUAL WARFARE, my sisters! Where there is sin, we give the enemy a foothold in our lives – unforgiveness, bitterness, addictions (like pornography), resentment, hatred, pride… The only way to overcome the enemy is absolute surrender to Christ. THEN we will have the power to resist the devil and he must flee. God is able to give us victory!

Please check out David Platt’s 4 part series on Angels, Demons and Spiritual Warfare  and his series on Family, Marriage, Sex and the Gospel on Youtube

 

The Respect Dare, Day 38 – Taking Initiative Sexually in Marriage

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You’ve had a taste of God. Now, like infants at the breast, drink deep of God’s pure kindness. Then you’ll grow up mature and whole in God. I Peter 2:2-3 MSG

Today, Nina Roesner – author of The Respect Dare – talks about how God truly knows best for us and is kind to us. When He gives us guidelines or commands – it is for our ultimate good. Even if we can’t see it at the time.

Let’s get ready to really trust Him – in EVERYTHING.

The topic for Dare 38 is about wives initiating physical intimacy more with our husbands.

  • If you are dealing with infidelity, this post is not about that kind of situation, please seek godly help!  Trust must be re-established before sexual relations can be re-established, in my view.  And it would be wise to be tested for STDs if there is or was infidelity going on in the marriage.  Keep in mind that HIV doesn’t show up until 6 months after the sexual contact that could cause the infection.
  • If you have SERIOUS problems in your marriage – physical abuse, active drug/alcohol addictions, uncontrolled mental health problems… those things go beyond the scope of this blog or this post.  Please seek godly, experienced, professional help ASAP!
  • For the sake of wives who need very practical suggestions and examples, I am going to go into some detail – more than usual – about things to avoid saying and things that may be productive to say.  If you prefer not to read about details on this topic, this may be a post to skip.

While I am very passionate about this topic – I also cringe inside – because I know that there are many of you who DO initiate – or try to initiate love making with your husband – and you are rejected often. The last thing I want to do is make those of you who are being sexually rejected by your own husbands feel even worse. So, I am going to speak to you for a minute – and then redirect you to some other posts that I think might be helpful for you. You are NOT alone if your husband rejects your sexual advances. There is a very sizable minority of women for whom this is reality. It is extremely PAINFUL to desire your husband and to be turned away.  So, I am going to write two posts today.  One for wives who are being sexually rejected by their husbands, and one for wives whose husbands desire them to initiate more and participate in sexual intimacy more often.

FOR THOSE WIVES WHO ARE FEELING REJECTED:

If you have been trying to initiate intimacy with your husband, and he is turning you down, or just not very responsive, here are a few ideas to consider and pray about for your particular and unique situation

1. Many women try to initiate sex with their husbands verbally.

Here is a very important piece of information – men aren’t really into words as much as we are. Not only that, sometimes our words can actually be a turn-off  ESPECIALLY if we are not very tuned in to respect.

If you have been attempting to initiate intimacy by saying things like,

  • “I want to have sex now.”
  • “Let’s have sex.”
  • “We need to have sex!”
  • “When are we ever going to make love again?”
  • “Goodness, it’s been TWO WEEKS!  How long do I have to wait?”

Words like that are not the way to get your husband’s blood pumping.  Flirty words or telling him what you want to do with him may work with some husbands. But a verbal demand for sex, especially if your man tends to reject you,  is WAY too much pressure and feels controlling to many men.

There are some men who don’t like for their wives to pursue them.   They like to be the one to pursue.

2.  Even worse, sometimes wives try to initiate sex by saying disrespectful, blaming things.

  • “Why won’t you ever have sex with me?”
  • “Turn off the stupid TV, I want you to make love to me.”
  • “If you were a real man, you would want to have sex with me X times a week.”
  • “You must be cheating on me if you don’t want to have sex with me!”

These approaches are a sure ticket to his refusing you today, and probably many times in the future.

Disrespect is a HUGE sexual turnoff for many men!

3. Or, if you are being controlling about it and trying to force or guilt him into making love with you – it is probably not going to work – particularly if your husband is feeling very disrespected and controlled in general in the marriage.

So, approaches like…

  • “This book says that men want sex more than women. You hardly ever want sex. Something must be wrong with you! You need to see a doctor or something because I am dying over here.”
  • “I need to have sex 4 times a week. You aren’t holding up your end of the bargain. What am I not good enough for you? Am I not enough for you? You think I’m too fat, don’t you? That’s it! That’s why you never want me anymore. You don’t love me at all!”
  • “I need sex and you aren’t giving it to me. What kind of man are you? Any other man would be GLAD to have me.”
  • “I should have never married you, you are terrible in bed. And you never do X, Y and Z for me like I want.”
  • “If you really loved me, you would want to have sex with me right now.  You better show me that you truly love me or it’s over!”
  • “After ALL I’ve done for you this week/month/year!  You won’t even make love to me!”

…are NOT going to work!

You can’t label your husband the bad guy and expect him to be full of wonderful sexual feelings for you.

You can’t try to manipulate and guilt and shame him into physical intimacy.  This is not only going to make it improbable that you would be able to be intimate that night, but you may hurt and wound him so much that he permanently shuts down sexually with you.

 

2. If you have been critical of your man’s sexual performance lately (or even a long time ago, depending on the severity of his wounds) – he will probably reject you.

That is a very deep pain for a man, a verbal emasculation. It will take time for him to heal and feel safe enough to trust you.

Sexual criticism of him HAS TO GO.

If you have been disparaging in the past – only say positive things about any affection or touching he gives you from this point on. Try to heal the damage that has been done by your words.

If your man feels you disrespect his sexuality, or you imply he doesn’t satisfy you or that he is inadequate sexually – expect him to shut down on you sexually. There is almost nothing more destructive to a husband’s sexual desire for his wife than her complaints or disrespect of his sexuality. I cannot possibly emphasize this enough!

Make sure that you are respecting your husband and not inadvertently treating him with disrespect. Disrespect is a huge turn off for many men. Check out these posts if you haven’t because many times wives come across disrespectfully towards their husbands without ever knowing it or intending to.

3. I would suggest attempting to initiate WITHOUT words if you are going to try anything.

  • If your husband is very visual – lingerie may be a great idea
  • But, if your husband feels pressured by you when you wear lingerie, then skip that and just wear short shorts and a tight t-shirt or something fairly casual. Let him get a glimpse of you changing but be non-chalant about it. It has got to be no-pressure if you have a man who resists if he feels pressured sexually.
  • Offer him a massage if he likes that. Go slowly. See if he is interested in more touching after the massage.
  • Spoon up to him and press yourself against him and just relax and inhale his masculine presence and enjoy touching him if he is ok with that.
  • Kiss him passionately.
  • Hug him passionately.
  • If your husband likes to flirt, flirting with him is a good idea. If he hates it, don’t do that!

Some husbands will feel too pressured even by the things I have mentioned in this section.  In that case, you may have to back away and wait and be receptive for him to come to you.

4. Whatever you do – if he tends to reject your advances – be prepared that he may reject you and be prepared to take “no” gracefully.

Assume it is not personal, unless he tells you it is, just assume the best – that he is not up for intimacy right then. Then be available and receptive to him if he begins to come closer to you. Take your pain to Jesus and pray for His will.

I have a story one wife shared about her husband who prayed for her as his wife for 9 years for her to have a sexual desire for him. She had almost no desire at all that whole time. He prayed in faith. One day, God changed his wife. Now she is the one initiating all the time. The prayer of someone who is in right standing with God is powerful and effective. This is an AWESOME subject to pray about for God’s glory and for the unity and strength and health of the marriage.

Some other related posts:

The Devastation of Sexual Rejection

Making the One-Flesh Relationship a Huge Priority in Your Marriage

Respect and Sexual Attraction

SHARE:

If you have experienced sexual rejection from your husband – and God has brought healing and you would like to share what God has done with other wives, you may leave a comment anonymously.

FOR THOSE WIVES WHO HAVE NOT BEEN INITIATING BUT WHOSE HUSBANDS REALLY WANT THEM TO:

I know that there are a myriad of issues that can be going on with this side of the coin, as well. Some of you are afraid to trust your husband. Some of you feel like a piece of meat to your man. Some of you don’t feel emotionally/spiritually connected and feel cheap and used when you have sex without the rest of the connection going on.  (Remember, if there are SERIOUS issues like drug addiction, alcoholism, infidelity, uncontrolled mental health issues… please get help ASAP!  I am not speaking to wives in these extreme situations in this post.)

Quoting Nina Roesner here:

“Initiating sex communicates respect in a unique and special way to our husbands. When our husbands feel desired by us, their esteem is built, thus enabling them to fully and confidently engage in their roles as men.”

For a much deeper understanding of just how critical our sexual desire, availability, receptivity and willingness to initiate sex can be to our men, check out Shaunti Feldhahn’s book, “For Women Only.” It will help you really get inside the minds of men to see that:

For our husbands, sex IS a very emotional and spiritual connection.  It is FAR MORE than a physical release or physical connection.

I’d like to see it be a very emotional, spiritual and physical connection for all of us in our marriages, too!

For them, it empowers them to be confident in every aspect of their lives – ready to go “slay the dragons” for you. It makes them feel like our heroes. It gives them strength and energy in ways that we may not be able to fully understand. And in marriage, sex bonds them to us in a powerful way. It is possibly the ultimate way that we can allow our men to feel our love, acceptance and respect – it is how they most feel loved for many men.

Here is an important note –

For your husband, it is not just about having sex – it is knowing you desire him and experience pleasure with him that is key here! He desires you to enjoy him sexually, not just tolerate him as a chore or duty. He needs to know you are excited to be with him.

SIDE NOTE:

This is a picture of what God desires with us in our one Spirit relationship with Him!  He wants us to be EXCITED to be with Him, to be passionate for His Spirit to fill us up.  He wants our hearts to be completely captivated with Him – not just worshipping Him and praying out of duty.  NO!  He wants our hearts to be on fire with longing for Him – to be One with Him in Spirit.

That is what sex is!  It is a picture of the unity Christ desires to have with His church.  The one flesh picture between the husband (who represents Christ) and the wife (who represents the church) is ALL ABOUT us worshipping God, inviting His Spirit to live in our hearts and in our bodies.  We become the temple of God’s Spirit.  Much like the wife, temporarily houses part of her husband’s body in the one flesh relationship.

This is a sacred and holy act.

WHAT ON EARTH DO I DO?

Well, you can see a few ideas in the section above for wives who are feeling rejected. There are some basic do’s and don’ts there that may be helpful. But if your husband is feeling sexually starved for you, or he is asking or begging you to initiate. It’s time to just jump in! ASAP!

  • If he likes lingerie, wear some special lingerie and maybe let him get a little peek in private before you go out for the evening.
  • ENJOY his attention.  Be THANKFUL for the fact that he desires you.  WHAT AN INCREDIBLE BLESSING AND GIFT!  Many wives never experience that joy.
  • Send him sexy text messages (IF he won’t get in trouble at work and won’t be too distracted and IF you are REALLY, REALLY sure that you are texting the right person! Careful here, ladies!)
  • Flirt with him if he enjoys that!
  • Ask him to slow dance with you (if that doesn’t embarrass him).
  • Boldly take him by the hand and take him to the bedroom and lock the door.  Begin to undress him.
  • Start with a massage. Use oil if you want to. (Put a towel down on the bedding first!) Just enjoy touching him.
  • Kiss him with passion and genuine desire.
  • Tell him what you want to do with him.
  • Tell him what he does to you – how he makes you feel – this makes him feel so powerful! ie:
  1. you give me chills when you touch me here!!
  2. you make my heart race when you do that!
  3. that feels so good!
  4. I really like that!
  5. mmmmm
  6. please don’t stop!
  7. your hands feel so warm, you just make me melt.
  8. I like it when you hold me close like this.
  • SMILE at him a lot!
  • Be verbal about saying when things feel good.
  • Savor this gift that God has given you to be able to enjoy this holy and sacred moment of being one flesh together!
  • HAVE FUN!!!! ENJOY HIM!!!!!!
  • Talk about what first attracted you to him.
  • Talk about what you find attractive in him now.
  • Ask him what attracted him to you.
  • Tell him any little fantasies you have.
  • Ask him about any fantasies he has and what he might like for you to do with him/for him.

Ok, hopefully these ideas will get you started. A big key is for you to:

Focus on sensual thoughts and ideas about what you want to do with him all throughout the day. Using your imagination often to purposely think about sex and about how intoxicating your husband is to you helps get your motor primed and simmering so it will be easier be “on” later.

THE RESPECT DARE, DARE 38:

Pray that God will help you overcome any embarrassment, fear, concerns, medical issues, anxiety, privacy issues, body image issues and that God might help you embrace the idea of initiating physical intimacy with your husband. Be confident in your body. Stand tall. Enjoy this gift God has given you to share with your husband.  Pray for healing of any past issues or wounds. Pray that God might tear down any strongholds of resentment or bitterness in your heart or unforgiveness. Pray for Him to help you take your physical intimacy with your husband to new heights. Pray for the resources you need if you have physical issues or emotional issues – that you might begin to take steps this week to seek how to overcome those issues.

  • I’d like to dare you to plan to attempt to initiate intimacy 2 times (or more) this week if at all possible.

AND,

  • I would also like to dare you to have a willing and receptive spirit towards your husband sexually this week. If at all possible, if he attempts to initiate intimacy, please warmly receive him with joy and delight. (Unless he is actively involved in infidelity or there are extremely serious issues going on) Please think about the verses in I Corinthians 7

The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4 The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. 5 Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt youbecause of your lack of self-control.

So, if your husband asks about having sex or pulls you in close  or even if he grabs you in a way that doesn’t seem super romantic to you – melt in his arms and say, “yes!” with a smile on your face.

Eventually – pray about this becoming a life-long habit. 🙂

***  God does not endorse spousal rape.  He desires husbands and wives to be available to each other willingly and voluntarily.  There is nothing in Scripture about demanding or forcing a spouse to have sex.  Christ is a gentleman to us.  He desires us to be one with Him in Spirit every day, but He does not force Himself on us.  He waits for us to come willingly and voluntarily to Him to have spiritual intimacy with Him.

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