Spiritual Intimacy in Marriage

Dear Sweet Friend {who longs for spiritual intimacy with her husband},

I’ve been thinking a lot about you and praying you are doing well. But there’s this nudge from within, telling me that maybe, just maybe you’re in need of a little encouragement. So, how are you and your husband doing? Are you doing well?

Dear Sweet Friend, {who longs for spiritual intimacy with her husband} || ManagingYourBlessings.com

I’ve been reminded here lately of how important spiritual intimacy is within the context of marriage. It’s easy to forget as time goes by and life gets busy and in the way. So, I’m grateful for the reminder. I smile because I know the current circumstances we’re facing, along with the ones we’ve faced all year long, are a wake-up call to check ourselves and make sure we’re not getting lazy or complacent.

When my husband asked me to marry him eighteen years ago in a little restaurant we both loved, there was no question that this man was the one for me. Even now, as I let myself rest with the memory of the two of us sitting at that tiny table for two…my heart skips a beat. And when he whisked me away to the top of a mountain overlooking a brilliant blue bay a few weeks later, my heart was filled with hopeful detailed plans for our future. So was his. We knew, standing there hand in hand, in front of our God, a minister, and one of our very best friends, that we were becoming one forever and we couldn’t wait.

We lived in a sweet blissful honeymoon bubble for quite a while. It was beautiful. Time went on and still, we felt like the “lucky ones”…really, the blessed ones because God had brought us to a place of such peace and comfort. Life felt free and easy. We were thankful but it was what we had come to expect. So when life started feeling a bit more difficult and the weight of the world began pressing in around us, we were caught a bit off guard.

Suddenly, the realities of life’s difficulties and the harder work of marriage began to show up, and we were faced with a choice. Would we seek God and allow Him to lead us together? Or would we try to operate as two married people filled with our own thoughts, opinions, and desires, who loved one another, but felt justified to try and lead the other on our own terms?

I’ll be honest and tell you that we tried the latter for a while. It was a tragic fail.

And once we had children, for a while my fragmented mind took over and I also felt like my husband just couldn’t possibly understand me. Ever. To be even more honest, I was so desperate for him to “get me” that I placed this impossible burden on this sweet man to be the one to complete me. I tried. But it didn’t work. To some degree we both had our own expectations of the other that were wildly outside of God’s will.

Husbands and wives were not created to complete one another on this earth. No, we were created to love God and love others. So, within the context of marriage, we are to be others-centered, to love the other person standing in front of us, and to love God.

Once we realized how far we had gotten off track, we became desperate for spiritual intimacy with God and each other. We had sadly crowded God out, trying to fill a God-shaped hole in our marriage with things that left us feeling empty and hopeless. In Genesis 2:24, we are reminded of Adam and Eve’s union. Remember also, God was there in the garden with them. He was at the center of their lives.

“That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”

So, I ask you again…how are you my friend? Are you desperate for an intimacy like you’ve never felt before with your husband and your God? I know this desperation, too. Let me tell you, there’s good news. Incredible news, actually.

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Do you see the good news? Oh, I hope you didn’t miss it. Our greatest strength in marriage is in knowing that where we fall short, where we are weak, that is actually where God can do His most powerful work. He delights in drawing us close to Him and to each other through the power of His Love. The hope that my husband and I first longed for was in a future filled with life and things, tangible things. But when all things tangible proved they couldn’t fill our desperate hearts the way we had hoped, Jesus met us in our struggles and in the mess we were in and began a heart work in both of us that continues on to this day.

Don’t get me wrong, we still struggle. I still have my days. But it’s a different kind of struggle now. I’m seeing now, how the brokenness of our souls and the surrender of our lives becomes an open invitation for the Healer to come in and begin rebuilding from the ground up. When we surrender, God is faithful to fill all of our broken places with a kind the healing that makes things stronger than they were before.

This year my family has endured many hardships. I wish I could say we’ve behaved flawlessly, but that isn’t the truth. We all sin and fall short. We’re human and still, God loves us and lavishes great heaps of grace upon us. I’m so thankful Love covers a multitude of sins. It’s not an easy practice, but one we are trying to teach our children, isn’t it…to love others, even when they’re hard to love.

Remember those vows to faithfully love, honor, respect, and trust each other unconditionally in sickness and in health, in good times and bad, and in joy as well as in sorrow. It’s in the face of trials and weaknesses that we can really grow in our marriages. Let Jesus minister to you both by humbly submitting to Him and each other that this life is hard, we’re full of weaknesses, and we can only walk as one if we let Him lead us into spiritual intimacy with Him and each other.

I urge you to get really honest with each other. Trust one another and run to Jesus for your Hope. He really wants to meet you both wherever you’re at and show you just how much He can do when you place Him at the center of your marriage union. True oneness, spiritual intimacy, and joy are possible, my friends.

Sweet Blessings to you,

Megan @ Devotional Motherhood