The online dictionary defines intimacy as, “close familiarity or friendship; closeness.” It can also be “an intimate act, especially sexual intercourse.” I have never counseled a couple that told me their “intimacy tank” was full. No one has ever said that they don’t need any more intimacy in their marriage.
Intimacy seems to be something that we all want in our marriage, but it is just out of reach. At times we get close, then it slips from our grasp. So what is the problem? Are we pursuing something that we can never attain? Are we just wasting our time? Unfortunately, whether they say it or not, I think far too many couples come to the decision, “We will never get there. It’s just too much work.”
The problem with that decision is the Bible. I see clearly in God’s Word that He designed marriage to be a very close, intimate relationship like no other in this life. It is knowing and being known. It is familiarity, friendship, closeness and an intimate act. It is connection with another human being of the opposite sex that comes as close to Christ’s relationship with the church as possible. It is removing anything and everything that stands in the way of baring our soul to another human being. That is intimacy.
Now, how do we get there? If we go back to God’s comparison of marriage between a man and a woman to the relationship Jesus has to the church, I think we get our answer. Jesus was completely unselfish. He loved with a passion that led Him to the cross. He spent time with people. He listened to people. He had fun with people. He was totally transparent. Translate some of that to your marriage. I know, Jesus was perfect and you are not! I get that, but why not use Him as our model even of we fall short? Here is your bullet list:
Be as unselfish as you can with your spouse. Ask God daily to help you love your spouse the way he/she needs to be loved by you.
Be passionate about loving your spouse. Be willing to give up everything for him/her.
Spend good, quality time with your spouse every day.
Listen well to your spouse. Really hear what they are saying. Let them know you hear them.
Have fun with your spouse. Laugh until your stomach hurts.
Be completely and totally transparent with your spouse. Hold nothing back. Be an open book. Letting your spouse completely know you is the only way you will know you are loved unconditionally by your spouse.
Can you even imagine your marriage if both of you did this? When we looked in the online dictionary for the definition of intimacy, we would find your names!
Your first step is to share this blog with your spouse. Then if the two of you agree this is what you want, bring that desire before God. Then together plot your course. What will each of you do? What will you do together? Who will hold each of you accountable? Finally, commit to see this through. Building intimacy in your marriage will take a lot of work but can you even imagine the results you will enjoy together?