Before we were married, my husband, Jesse, and I held hands, cuddled, touched, wrestled playfully and hugged a lot.
Married couples witnessed our flirtation and, rather than offering encouragement, they voiced the words, “Just wait. The passion will go away.”
The same people who said these words to us often followed them up with a hint of laughter as if it were a joke, but that toxic perspective of sex and marriage seeped its way into my mind and instilled fear into my heart.
These types of conversation pour pessimism and failure into our society before we even have the chance to experience the moment for ourselves. It perpetuates a fear that doesn’t need to exist.
Jesse and I had waited to have sex until marriage and, rather than feeling excited, I began to wonder whether our passion could even be sustained past our wedding night.
If I’m completely honest, I fully succumbed to the lie that enjoyable intimacy wouldn’t be a part of our story. It seemed to be the common consensus that fun and enjoyable sex only belonged to people who didn’t abide by God’s calling to wait until marriage.
The world taught me that ‘passionate sex’ only existed outside of marriage and in books like 50 Shades of Grey (I personally haven’t read it, but so I’ve been told.)
Want to hear more on the topic of Sex and Intimacy? Check out The Milk and Honey Podcast for some girl talk with Lindsey!
A few days before our wedding, I opened the book Song of Solomon in the Bible. I read absolutely beautiful poetry about two lovers who desperately desired one another.
They talk about one another’s body parts with affection, the man speaks of the woman’s breasts and her ‘garden’, they yearn for one other with a deep passion and they promise their love to one another.
The Song of Solomon is often seen as an allegory of God’s love for mankind. But it is also absolutely undeniable that the song celebrates human love along with sensuality and sexual desire.
It simply isn’t biblical to teach children that sex is “gross” or for a husband or wife to abstain from their spouse after a certain number of years or because they had a bad argument.
God created sex as a beautiful gift within the confines of marriage to grow us closer to one another physically, spiritually and emotionally.
Why have we become so hesitant to embrace that?
After I read this book in scripture, I decided in that moment that I was going to fight for passion in my marriage.
I was choosing to honor God by placing Him first and my husband second.
By God’s grace and my effort, I would refuse to allow the ‘typical’ story to become my own.
Jesse and I have now been married for seven years. We have an infant and a toddler – two small, beautiful, rowdy boys who keep us sleep-deprived and always on our toes.
We are both extremely busy and ‘time’ often feels non-existent. We have had our fair share of arguments, devastating trials, struggles with our faith, financial concerns, trust issues and moments of doubt and fear.
But through it all, we still hold hands, cuddle, wrestle, kiss and hug a lot – if not more than we did before.
We make time, even when we don’t ‘have’ the time. We are intentional. We schedule date nights. We are far from perfect at this, but we strive to do well because of who Christ is to us.
And to be honest, passion hasn’t left us, it has only grown in us.
Colossians 3:17 says, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
Hear me out on this: the designs of our bodies don’t make God feel embarrassed. We were created and purposed for sexual pleasure. Living out an exciting and passionate sex life is glorifying to Him, not shocking.
Just as we regularly pursue excellent communication or servitude with our spouses to honor God, we should also pursue a holy and thriving sex life for the same purpose.
If you aren’t yet married, I want to be the person who tells you the truth:
Sex in marriage can be better than anything you’ve ever imagined. It can be beautiful, fun, passionate and an act that draws you even closer to the person you love so deeply.
But it must be a choice. Some days it will take intentionality, selflessness and love, just like everything else in marriage, but the outcome will always, always be worth it.
Sweet friends, God wants to free us from the belief that sex is an obligation or a duty or that it should be associated with guilt or shame. As wives and husbands, He has given us the freedom to enjoy it. He wants to free you from past sin or abuse with love, forgiveness and grace. You may be burdened by pain, but Jesus has overcome.
Isaiah 1:18 reminds us, “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool.”
Friends, there are two options:
Either the enemy can use sex and intimacy as a weapon against you with the goal of pulling you apart and destroying your marriage.
Or you can choose to use this gift against him with the goal to thrive and honor God in your marriage.
Which will you choose?
Want to hear more on the topic of Sex and Intimacy?
On The Milk and Honey Podcast, we are having some girl talk about sex! We are sharing our own personal stories and Two Ways that You Can Grow in Sexuality and Intimacy in Your Marriage.
We hope that this episode will bring you some laughter and a lot of encouragement as we share wisdom about biblical intimacy, discussion on what our bodies need, sex drive, dealing with past abuse, making time for sex while having children and much more!
This post originally appeared at sparrowsandlily.com, published with permission.