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February 3, 2022 9:00 pm
Concerning marriage and intimacy, do you wonder how to be a better lover of your spouse? On FamilyLife Today, hosts Dave and Ann Wilson share how the FamilyLife Sex Assessment helped them and can help you too.
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So we did something this week. We've never done before in the area of sex, health intriguing, that actually did come out right.
I try to say his.
We took our sex assessment. Welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue relationships that matter most and Wilson and Dave Wilson and you can find his life today.com or on our family life, family life today.
Married assessment, but it was really focused on the sexual part of our marriage relationship.
Surely never done know that's why I said it was unique. We've never done it before.
I felt scared taking it was with family life and we obviously want them left today, but it was an online course of human life is just created in. You begin the course by taken assessment of your own sex life in your marriage. And so we both took the SS not together. Now I took on his survey it was gone. You took her survey we had same questions I think their exact same questions yeah and then you get sort of an assessment at the end of how you rated your happiness, your marriage or sexual relationship, how you trust one another on a percent how you think biblically about it.
There were a lot of different areas.
All I want to know is this good about this sort talk about it live on the air with thousands of people listening to our intimate conversation about the intimate part of our marriage. What you think what you think when you answer the questions honestly. I felt guilty about what I just thought of how I'm feeling and I think I have felt that over the years and I think with this topic. We have these peaks we had these valleys and sometimes it's just kind of flatlined and there are times it's great but I just felt like I'm not doing very well in this area and Dave is probably disappointed. That's nice out. I felt something really yeah I mean it was very revealing. As you take the assessment you start thinking about things we haven't talked about a long time and I felt like while not doing a good job in this area of our marriage, you know, for whatever reasons I didn't feel anything toward you, like your letting me die LOL I'm letting you all that's how interest is a questions get at things that how you think about this how your spouse thinks about this. Are you happy in this area of your pursuing your spouse you are you affectionate are you creative and Jan like Amy and Ann were super busy right now, which probably in this phase of marriage, it should probably be the best because were older we been married 41 years got no reason to run around the house. No kids waking us up at night. There's no excuse for on sale so that gives me hope for the future. Here's one of the ideas I had taken it was we need to talk need to their what you are doing right now is crazy. But when we turn off the microphones and were home. This is an area that's really hard to talk about Heidi think it's so intimate, I think for me I'm fearful that I'm not going to do a good job that I'm not loving you as you long to be loved as you told me and so I feel like I'm letting you down and so part of me is like, okay, let's just not talk about it because I don't want to be disappointed. I want to hear your hurt.
That's so interesting because I feel like I'm failing and to like even physically how you feel about yourself. I thought feel very good about myself right now and that affects the bedroom.
It affects intimacy and think we've really talked about that in a long time either. So we need to talk about all the things I can't believe you're doing this on. There is nothing. This is too intimate of a cover if it would help other people have these conversations and even taking this assessment. I think it's a really good tool. Yet the tool is great because I knew that as I was taking. This will force us to talk about this and I did not see that coming. When I started the assessment into you know so that's the good thing because I think were not the only couples that struggle to talk about this.
I've found as a pastor and as a marriage writer in your cohost here it's easier to talk about it on stage or in a marriage conference. Even at the we can remember we do a session not then it is to talk about it with you in the kitchen or in the bedroom at that conflict of our marriage because you bring things up.
I don't bring it up now I'm really talking about this in front of thousands of people were doing right now. I know you but you brought it up.
Don't blame me, you know, I mean it does. I think couples like us struggle in the same way need to. It's a scary topic. Here's what guys do. We joke about it in the locker room and you know why because were afraid to really have a honest real conversation about it, especially with our spouse and I want to encourage couples to do what were doing to do right now is you gonna talk about this and again the assessment ask you questions like do you know your spouse likes in the bedroom.
If you can't answer that question that that means you haven't talked you're not really honest. Even maybe when you're making love to be that vulnerable with one another and if you're not going to go there. You're never going to experience the intimacy God wants.
But if you're willing to take those risks that are scary. There's an intimacy that's be on the physical that's beyond the sex part that sold his soul in your marriage and not just in your bedroom right and that's God's intent that we connect sold his soul because it's beautiful at intimate it's but how God designed us and why he design the intimacy physically. It really binds us together and you know is you say that here's where my thoughts is growing up.
Neither one of us were followers of Christ. We made poor decisions sexually with other people when we started dating. We are like were going to do this.
God's way. So we are in a different place spiritually so it was only relationship that we remain virgins until our wedding, but the other ones we made bad decisions and want things that we had to reset which is really hard for us after we got married was God says a married couple making love is a beautiful thing. It's a good thing.
It's something God wants. We had always seen sex is something you shouldn't do because we heard that from the church and so it felt wrong and dirtied us and then we get married is supposed be beautiful and wonderful. It's like how do we shift our mind to that right well I remember being at the weekend to remember getaway the first time we went and I remember them saying present as an engaged couple.
Yes, bring God into the bedroom. I was like why Pat is messed up that just feel so contrary to what I felt. That meant bring God's heart bring God's perspective on God's word on sex into your sexual relation because he's the creator of it right and yet growing up, my past has pornography, it has sexual abuse and so to bring God into that. It felt wrong. It felt like God was ashamed of me and what had happened to me and what I had done. I didn't want to bring him in, because I felt like he would see the true nakedness and brokenness of my soul, and the truth is he does see all of that and he loves us and he wants to repair us. He wants to hear less.
He wants to heal our marriages and I think he's the only one that can do that. Yeah, that's one of the reasons were talking about.
This is often the church is been silent and know what is given God's perspective and that's why I meet some people are here in this conversation is uncomfortable for them because nobody seems to be talking about it. We need to talk about this from God's word was a what is God's heart. God created this because not ashamed of this and God wants to redeem and restore what's been broken in our lives much in this area and he's done that for us and what he wants to be a part of this conversation because he redeems this one of the podcasts that I love to listen to about this topic is Java with Julie, who's been aghast on family life today. She's been a guest on the love like you mean it cruises and man she just is so good at bringing God's heart and view she helps us and so we have a clip by Julie Slattery on this topic.
I don't think God cares much great sexes in a moment but he cares deeply about whether or not becoming lovers whether where becoming people that are sharing a journey of intimacy, whether where learning to listen and understand and forgive and find.
So a lot of us have the wrong lighting. We get frustrated and I think we continually hear what in the wrong way. We hear that sex is all about sexual activity. Instead of it being about sexual intimacy. There are some of you in this room been married for decades and you had sex with each other for decades, but you never been sexually intimate with each other. You share your bodies but you haven't shut your heart and your soul as you haven't worked through the issues that require love and listening and mercy and sacrifice. All I can say is wow. I mean here. Here's what I am thinking I've missed it so badly in this area when he leaned in our marriage when Julie was saying is exactly what I've done. I remember we had conflicts about frequency of sex in our marriage for years, especially when the kids were little toddlers and I would complain that you're not as interested in sex as I am in it never dawned on me until you communicated it took me years understand that you are interested you just looked at sex differently than me. I'm thinking you know nakedness in the bedroom. Your second.
I long to be loved, affection, conversation, nonsexual touch.
I want you to be intimate with me without just the physical sex part and I always thought you're not interested what I realizes you are very interested. You were not feeling loved and I was just blaming it on you and I look back and say I was the one missing it. I didn't understand how to really really love you. I don't think I understood anything. Honestly, I think I pastor so broken and I think most listeners would say that my past is broken into and so to bring God into it.
As Julie was describing that I thought so beautiful it's biblical. Of course that's why God created because not only are our bodies connected in oneness our spirit or soul, our emotions, everything comes one and it's beautiful. I think we long for that.
We just don't know how to get to that. Talk about what you try to tell me over the years. What that means to woman that is beyond the physical lives beyond the sexual. I think it can feel like it's just an act like oh there's a beginning and there's an end and that's what our physical intimacy is about. But what you're saying is the same thing I was trying to communicate. I long to be touched on sexually for you to pursue me and to want to be with me, not only physically speaking, but emotionally all of that together makes it so beautiful and your loving me as a whole person not just the physical part of intimacy and I really sort of balked at that, unlike you don't want to make love and acted yeah and you would say things like we haven't even talked and you didn't mean today you met this week this month and there's part of me at that time was like, who cares, I really did.
I was like, so what you know it was so selfish of me not to understand you're saying. I long for more than just a sexual touch. I want to be intimate. It was your ways and we haven't talked were not connecting and to go in the bedroom or wherever, and just do the physical act is just an acting that doesn't make you feel loved well and just to kinda get into background. I think it's important for us to look into our backgrounds growing up there was absolutely no physical affection in our family. There is never hugs. There never kisses your home but on appropriate yeah and there wasn't abuse in my home. It was outside of the home and so as a result of that, the only time I had any kind of physical touch was through abuse and so I carried that into our marriage and so as we were married for a while you stopped being affectionate with me except in the bedroom and so that triggered all of my past stuff and let me just say this is well. I remember when we were going to seminary and then later as we are transitioning out of our church. The times that you've been super super stressed in your life you haven't been as interested in physical intimacy in our sex life which then made me feel like what's wrong with me. I must not be appealing to you and that taking a whole another area that can be really hard and it feels vulnerable to talk about that because I felt like hell in my not good enough to super honest is the big okay I think it's time to play another clip who goes we've let people in the depths of our boy, our marriage are home you in our bedroom so you go back and listen to another clip from the course and you get the link to sign up for this online sex email@example.com so on this course. Not only is there assessment, but we will have these clips to be able to listen to yelp and then you're going to build a talk with your spouse about these like what were dwellers around sort of modeling for our listener what they will actually get to do sexually see, instead of compatibility frequency is about becoming lovers lover. Are you if I only looked at your sex life.
When I conclude that you are father, Christ the way you love your spouse sexually.
It focuses instead on attraction. It focuses on intimate connection has been I've been married for 25 years, and even though our bodies have changed the journey that we've shared together sexually over 25 years is so strong that were attracted to each other because we have a history together and no one else shares it just about us focuses on that shared journey and even the obstacles we face and we face some significant obstacles. Those are the opportunity to become even more glued together through the fire to learn to love each other more, and the focuses on how we get our needs met. How do we serve each other, both in and out of bed boy thought what Julie said about could I tell you're a Christian by the way you are as a lover yeah what you think. Well, I mean my first thought was in the bedroom. You should be selfless and one of the distinct qualities that God transforms in our lives when we come to Christ is from selfishness to selflessness and I'm not saying we have no selfishness left Dennis. But that is one of the distinct marks that should be there of a Christ followers is that it's no longer about me. Boy, when you bring that into your married bedroom. It's not about my pleasure is not about me it's about laying down my needs and desires to love and serve my spouse to to bring joy to her as a husband.
That's a beautiful thing. That's what married sex and the covenant of marriage as Christ followers should look like. As you say that I mean the thing that popped into my head was.
I mean, I don't even know if this is right or wrong. I'm just kind of this is off the top of my head, but I thought if you maybe give yourself away in the bedroom but in the home. Your spouse is super negligent of you of your kids of your family but then he gets into the bedroom and he's a servant I'm like are you talking about me right now I'm just I'm just saying you hike it all bleeds. I don't know if it does that for men, but as a woman. It bleeds into one another. So you're saying for a woman. It doesn't work that way.
You can't just be a servant in the bedroom effeminate awesome yeah I'm saying. That's awesome that is one of the things that she was saying in the beginning. She said if I only looked at your sex life and you continue to where she was going, what would it tell me about your spirit life, but I was thinking if I only looked at your sex life. What would I conclude about your marriage, which is interesting and this is the part and I don't know if this is just me and I don't want to make any generalizations because were all different, as men and women. But if our marriage isn't doing well if you're gone all the time.
If you're not if you're not invested in our relationship and our family that affects the bedroom and that's I'm saying so if you come into the bedroom in your servant you want to please me. But you haven't please me anywhere else that gets tricky because I don't know if men do this, but my relationship with you is so tied to everything.
Are you also saying that a great marriage can lead to great sex life, not the other way around. Other words a great sex life doesn't lead to a great marriage and maybe a little bit. I mean, I think both are important. But yeah, I think having a great marriage produces a great sex life, which I think is the opposite with the cultural tell you oh animals like men you can be hot in the bedroom as God leads his great marriage and it's like doesn't always wear it hardly ever works that way it's like a great relationship were like you're saying were a husband's laying down his life to serve his wife as Christ did the church Ephesians 5 were a wife is honoring and affirming and respecting her man.
And there's this real connection outside the bedroom that leads to a lot hotter sex life in the bedroom.
Now let's say somebody hooks up with someone before they're married, you know, that happens all the time and it was amazing and they think, oh yeah this is going to be a good, let's get married. It can be great but we all know once you get into marriage and you have the stress of life and jobs and kids and the struggle of getting along. It's not to be like that first time necessary candy, but life affects our desire sexually. Yeah, and even listen to Julie. It reminds me what you've said many times I want to be a great lover outside the bedroom was a major event. I want to love you in a way that you feel loved and you've told me and you know what if that has affected the bedroom great. If it doesn't it doesn't matter. That is what I want to do and what I'm called to do. And by the way I know how it will affect the bedroom. It's going to be a good, much better if you're feeling loved outside the bedroom so I think what were really trying to say is is is right where we started.
This is an area that deserves you, given your all I know doesn't just mean in the bedroom. Obviously we spent this whole time saying a lot of that is outside the bedroom. Give your marriage everything you got and be willing to go to a scary area which is talk about this area of your marriage, and I would add before you talk about this in your marriage.
Talk about this Jesus, I would bring him into the bedroom talk to him about all of these areas. What you're feeling like you're thinking your insecurities, fear your frustration and then I think that always helps your marriage to pray with one another about this topic. This is an area you never think about praying about. Yeah with your spouse, but why not bring about other things you do together want to ask him to bless us as well because we live in a culture that has so perverted and so distorted what healthy married. Sexuality is supposed to look like it can be easy for all of us to approach this subject thinking were dealing with something that maybe we shouldn't even be talking about and then there are couples who are dealing with issues of shame and regret, that make it hard to have conversations about the whole area of marital intimacy and married sex. This is one of the reasons why a family life. We put together a course it's an online course that couples can take together privately.
You do this on your own as a couple and learn and grow and interact and help resolve some of the issues that you may be facing when it comes to marital intimacy. Help your marriage be all God intends for it to be in this area. The him on course is called the nearly complete guide to better married sex features Ron Diehl and Julie Slattery. There are five sessions. There's an assessment that couples take before you begin watching the sessions together. There are activities to do.
There's a devotion for couples to work through. There are other resources that are made available to you. All of this is something again you do together on your own in private go to family life today.com for more information about how you can enroll in the nearly complete guide to better married sex from family life. There's a link available on our firstname.lastname@example.org. The website is family life to.com give me questions, give us a call at one 800 FL today and we trust your time as a couple engaging with this content is going to enable you to have the kind of marriage. God wants you to have, especially in this area of marital… And we hope you have a great week of this week and hope you and your family are able to worship together in your local church. We hope you can join us on Monday when were to continue to talk about the distorted and confused picture of sex that exists in our culture and talk about how we engage with our children on this subject because the culture is having the conversation with them. So what we do, how do we interact with them and how do we know what to say.
Sean McDowell joins us. Monday we hope you can be here as well on behalf of our host Steven and Wilson on Bob Payne see you back Monday for another edition of family life helping you pursue the relationships the most