Dear Young Bonny,
When you were a teen you prayed for a husband who would make you sizzle and God heard.
Your future husband is truly a David, a man of passion after God’s own heart. Never doubt his desire to reflect the character of Christ. He will be a loving and courageous servant leader.
Your shared love of Christ will cradle you through moments of unbearable brokenness. The mystery of marriage floats weaknesses to the surface. However, our human failings are gifts of potential. Through Christ, selfishness has the potential to be selfless. Pollution has the potential to be purity.
Trust God. Here is a little of what he has shown me.
With great sizzle comes great responsibility. With sizzle there is an underlying current that can cause electrocution. Handle with intention. Slow down your response time so tempers don’t flare. Always assume love no matter what actions look like.
Never stop talking about that one conversation. You know the one where he said he wanted your marriage to be based on respect, communication and Ephesians 5:21? Discuss long and often if you’ve shown each other respect and communicated clearly. Each give examples of what love looks like to you, in word, action or deed.
And just to be clear, communication skills will need a lot of honing. Find some kind of communication training, seriously. It will save heartache when you are both saying the same thing but hearing the complete opposite.
Actually, you both can be right. He doesn’t understand you and you aren’t going to understand him. Thankfully, there doesn’t have to be a winner because you are both on the same team!
Be aware that when you debate in order to understand his logic, he sees it as arguing. Don’t overdo the ‘devil’s advocate’ thing, either.
Let your confidence soften into transparency. Your husband likes that you are a can-do woman. But, you both want him to know how much you need him.
Your ‘independent’ personality is a façade to hide your weak spots. Be honest about your weaknesses. Tell him how he can love you through your weak spots. (i.e. Sit with me close in church, introduce me to your friends you meet on the street, put me first before friends.)
Get busy unlearning traits from childhood. You grew up in a verbal family, he did not. He goes on overload when you share every detail of your day. When he says, ‘you talk too much,’ hear him say, ‘I can’t process all you are telling me.’ But, you do have permission to ask him to rephrase ‘you talk too much.’
Nurture your spiritual intimacy. Study the Bible together outside of church. Pray together! (You don’t flunk as a Christian just because you feel anxious praying out loud. So, gently tell him you aren’t comfortable now, but you will be one day. Which is really kind of ironic, seeing that you like to talk so much.)
Re-think your birth control choice. *Spoiler alert* A pregnancy scare conjures a nightmare because you are already overwhelmed with the blessing of three toddlers. You’re sinking on the Titanic and can’t find all the children.
At this moment, you decide to reach for the most effective means of birth control. Research other methods, first! I am convinced your sex drive was permanently damaged by three years of hormonal birth control use.
Date night is crucial, imperative and m.a.n.d.a.t.o.r.y!!! I know you are going to be e.x.h.a.u.s.t.e.d after days of wrangling toddlers. You are going to be s.t.r.e.t.c.h.e.d living on one income. Even so, permanently schedule dates on your calendar with a Sharpie.
If you feel disconnected it’s because you are not having enough time with your husband alone (whether doing something fun, talking or making love). Feeling disconnected will not promote other kinds of intimacy, especial sexual.
Remember with great sizzle comes great responsibility? Newlywed, I know you relish making love with your husband. But, you’ve also heard and expect that sexual intimacy goes by the wayside after awhile. That’s a lie.
Your husband is emotionally intimate through his lovemaking. His process of emotionally connecting is first through sexual intimacy. Which is part of God’s amazing design. (See Why Sex?)
Here is a thought you won’t learn for decades, sexual intimacy is a form of spiritual intimacy. Don’t exclude God from your love-making or overall sexual health of your marriage. Trust him with your entire being, which includes all sexual aspects.
I will sign off now, because some of your life should be a surprise.
Peace, Love & Sincerely hoping this letter doesn’t create a Butterfly Effect,