I use sex.
I use it all the time. And I’m not ashamed to say it.
Firstly, I’m married–nearly 11 very happy and fulfilled years, in fact. You may now let your 20-something carefree assumptions fly. I’m a 33-year-old suffocated artist who is admittedly submerged deeply in the land of sophomoric suburban purgatory. Add two kids, then subtract a husband who works long hours while I neglect my own personal hygiene in favor of potty-training, alphabet-learning, laundry-doing, lunch-making and (hopefully) life-teaching…and that, my friends, is the classic equation for a pretty lackluster sex life.
I’m not going to lie: my man and I are certainly not swinging from chandeliers. (Who actually DOES that, anyway?) We’re not starting each day with rousing morning relations, either.
But, man, I use sex. And I love it. And, I daresay, so does my husband.
I am so thankful for the way my mother taught me about sex. She is a woman who understood the purpose of sex and was unashamed to instruct her only daughter in the biblical purpose of intimacy in a marriage. She taught me to use it righteously.
I use it to speak to my husband and tell him I love him.
- To ease his grief or pain.
- To help him forget a long day at work.
- To remind him how special he is to me.
I use it to remind myself that I am not just an invisible sandwich-maker and laundry-folder, but an emotional, physical and spiritual being.
- When I need to laugh.
- When I need a workout.
- When I need a hug.
I was taught that sex is not any of the following:
- A weapon.
- A tool used to control another.
- A method of punishment.
To use sex as such is to demolish its original purpose and to disobey, even scorn, its Creator.
Sex can be used for so many purposes: celebration, sexuality, communication, confirmation, dealing with grief, selflessness, or comfort.
Which kind of makes you wonder… perhaps, just perhaps, sex is not that chick on the billboard wearing only a size 2 pair of jeans while straddling the man on the motorcycle.
Or the guy you pick up at the club and just can’t stop touching because the chemistry is oh so powerful.
Or even the boyfriend to whom you’ve chosen to give all of who you are before he has held your hand in his and promised to love, respect, cherish and protect you for ever and ever in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Is it possible, just possible, that sex is not spontaneous moments of passion filmed slow motion with slow, blissful kisses and perfectly situated “oooo’s” and “aaahh’s” ?
Could it be that if we stopped listening to pop culture and believing that sex is only about sexiness, our relationships could be transformed?
I have been honored to know an older couple who experienced the ultimate loss: that of their young child. As the healing began – the agonizing, unbearable, torturous healing that often ruptures even the strongest relationships – they prayed and supplicated with each other spiritually. They talked and communicated with each other verbally. They cried and found consolation in each other emotionally.
And they made love.
In a time when so many couples would not even consider sex, they used it to work through grief, by comforting each other physically.
This wise man and woman respected that we are created as emotional, spiritual, mental and physical beings. We are to serve and experience Christ by using these capacities. And, we are to serve and experience each other in the same way as we are each others ministry and windows into His love. This couple understood our holistic creation and chose to deal with their hardship by being together and reminding each other through sex that they are still alive and they are still connected and they will, TOGETHER take on this short life and all its offerings, good and bad.
Ladies and gentlemen, take it from me. Communicate through words and, yes, through touch. Use sex. Use it for all it’s meant to be. Use it righteously. And you will reap benefits beyond your imagination. I promise.
“That’s all well and good,” you say. “But, Micah, I have a problem. I’m so over my spouse. The spark is barely an ember. We’re tired…of life and each other. I only have sex when I have to and don’t even really enjoy it because I’m just thinking about all the other stuff I have to do. We’ve been going through motions for so long, I don’t even know how to begin fixing it. How can we get out of this rut and find this crazy thing you’re talking about? How can I relearn how to use sex as a positive builder instead of a weapon?”
My friends, it’s so very simple. Choose it. Be deliberate.
You’re not in the mood? Don’t you dare say it out loud. Take captive that thought. Choose not to turn down your spouse for the fourth night in a row. Choose to bless him or her. Choose to let them know you you consider them and desire to please them. Take a moment, go in the bathroom and PRAY. Invite the Holy Spirit into your mind, body and bedroom.
Sounds creepy, I know. But let’s be honest, people: he’s there, anyway. You might as well invite him to dwell mightily in this moment of intimacy between you and your beloved.
In all honesty, my husband and I often joke that the times I don’t initially want to be intimate inevitably turn into our most wonderful evenings together. It’s because I’ve invited our Creator into the very act of creation.
I dare you to choose your spouse over yourself this week.
Consider how you can knock their socks off with how you choose to use sex this week. Don’t consider yourself and your feelings first. Rather, listen to him or her and ask yourself, how might sex be a tool in this situation? If your spouse comes home in a bad mood and venting about their miserable day, I dare you to lighten the mood and offer them their favorite sexual activity. Hey, it makes pretty much everything better, right? Life looks a little different after a roll in the hay, even if it didn’t begin with candlelight dinner. Choose it.
Choose from day one to respect your spouse sexually. Expect to be respected as well. While I encourage you to respond to your spouse often regardless of your own desires in the moment, I also want to iterate that your first and foremost obedience is to Christ and if your spouse is asking or pressuring you to act against His commandments sexually or otherwise, you are never called to disobey Christ. Otherwise, be open to understanding how to use sex the way it was created to be used: within the bonds of marriage, and with emotional, spiritual and physical consideration for your partner.
Oh, friends… sex is so much more than our culture has made it to be. Once we can respect that and live that, I think we will be shocked at how it can change us and our partners.
So use it.
Flickr photo (cc) by www.rowenawaack.com