Sexual intimacy can be complicated, to say the least. Most couples bring some kind of baggage into marriage and it can make it hard for a couple to connect in the way that God intended. We don't give our partner the 100 percent attention that they deserve, and we slack off on maintaining that strong connection over years of marriage. When you add kids to the mix, it's just a further factor that plays into intimacy dwindling. However, a healthy sex life isn't a myth that Christians shouldn't try to obtain. By God's own beautiful design, intimacy is an important part of any relationship.
Through these steps, you can reclaim and redeem the beautiful gift of sexual intimacy in your marriage.
God wants us to have strong, happy and healthy marriages. The best way to do this is by putting Him right in the middle of it. As a Christian couple, you should regularly be open to letting God be a part of your life. That means going to church together, praying together, or doing daily devotionals together. When you have a strong relationship with the Lord, you can create a stronger relationship with your spouse. Praying together is one of the most vulnerable and intimate ways to open up to your partner, because you are telling them your biggest hopes, fears, and dreams. In turn, this leads to feeling more comfortable and intimate in the bedroom.
Be vulnerable with your partner.
Intimacy, a lot of times, is about being vulnerable with your partner. This requires an incredible amount of trust. Many of us are fearful that we will be judged by our spouse when we are only trying to be ourselves. When trying to cultivate intimacy, it can be jarring when one partner allows themselves to be seen in a non-flattering light but the other keeps their guard up all the time. Being open to being seen embarrassed, afraid, weak, or any other sensitive states we find ourselves in can help build trust, which is vital to maintaining long-term passions.
Read a book together.
When is the last time you both put away your phones and turned off the TV? Reading a book together is a very sensual way to connect with your spouse without the noise of daily life. It helps you to focus on each other, rather than your to-do list. The book doesn't have to be some tacky or lewd romance novel that makes both of you uncomfortable, either. You can pick any book with a story that contains a romantic relationship, and use what you learn together to help cultivate intimacy in your own marriage. Focus on the moments that draw the characters close together to spur your desire to experience similar moments with your partner.
Encourage casual touches.
A sure sign of intimacy between trusting partners is when light physical contact can be made with no warning. This can include holding hands, cuddling, kisses on the forehead, and the like. If your partner flinches or shies away from this type of intimacy, it's a sign that you both are uncomfortable and need to work on your sexual connection. These light, cute touches don't have to have any further sexual meaning behind it either. Being able to casually touch each other for comfort without the implication of escalation is key to both partners being comfortable enough to open up. Focus on just showing your partner affection because you love them, rather than hopes that it will lead to something more.
As cliché as it sounds, modern life moves unbelievably fast and can be hard for the mind to deal with. We become addicted to our phones, spend all our time organizing our kids’ lives, and focus on the crazy stress we accumulate at work. We tend to neglect our marriages and God, as they are the easiest to “forget” about. Sometimes "going native" and taking some time to connect with your instincts can add something more organic to your bond. Spending time together out in the wilderness listening to your bodies is a classic and wholesome way to grow closer together. If camping isn’t your thing, even taking a hike with your partner can help grow a significant bond. Admire the beauty of God’s creations in nature and you will begin to appreciate each other a bit more, too.
Talk to a counselor.
Many Christian couples think that talking to a counselor means that they are giving up on trusting God. This is simply not true. While God absolutely can solve our problems and help us through, He also works through people in amazing and powerful ways. Think about it like this: if someone goes to the doctor because they have cancer that does not mean that they don’t think God can cure them. Rather, they know that God is working through that doctor to help them heal. When we are struggling with sexual intimacy in our marriage, sometimes it takes a licensed professional to help us get back on track. There are many professionals that also use the Christian faith to help guide that path, so shop around for someone that works for both of you.
Try a new activity.
When is the last time you felt truly alive and exhilarated? Can you remember the last time you did something new that scared you? One way to really create a bond with another person is to try and activity that makes you both nervous, such as skydiving. While you don’t have to do anything that crazy, it is important to jazz up your normal day-to-day routine if you want to cultivate more intimacy. Marriages very easily get dry, stale and boring when it’s the same thing day in and day out. Don’t live only for your vacations once a year – keep the excitement alive year round.
Sexual intimacy in your Christian marriage is important to God. He wants you to feel safe, secure, and happy with your spouse both mentally and physically. We can use these tips to connect with our partner on deeper levels, so that we feel confident being vulnerable with them.