True Love and Sexual Intimacy

man and woman kiss each other
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Love should be simple, and it really is, but we make it very complicated. Love has its own attributes and when we know them we know love. God describes love as something based on character and not a feeling. Love is patient, kind, long suffering, etc. We think, or believe, its supposed to be a feeling. The emotional high we get when we meet someone is attraction. We are supposed to have that too. If not, no one would ever connect with anyone and “couple”.

The sexual part of loving someone can be an emotional high, but it should be much more profound and deeper than that. It is a physical connection that has spiritual, emotional, and mindful components to the intimate action. The type of depth we can experience during sexual intimacy can not be obtained early on before establishing a deeper understanding of love and devotion. Basically what I am saying is, without getting to know the character of love then the sexual encounter is only physical. There is no devotion in the mere physical part of having sex. There is no intimacy in just going through the sexual motions. All of the things required for the characteristics of love happen aside from having sex. They are deeper, have depth of understanding, and come to agreement even if it is to agree to disagree.

Compassion, as a part of love is necessary to give sexual intimacy meaning. Without compassion there is no true passion, only lust. Do you see where I am going with this now? Can you see why God wants the physical sexual connection to be within the bonds of marriage and devotion? It takes time to even come to understand how the characteristics of love happen between two people. This also takes commitment. Within that commitment there is a discovery of the passion that comes from true compassion and depth of insight into one another.

So often couples come together after they have had a sexual encounter. This is only lust or to fulfill what is perceived to be a feeling of some form of love. Although it might seem loving there is no devotion connected to it, therefore it is merely an encounter and physical exchange. Basically said, sex without love is not real intimacy but only  a lustful encounter. This is so mistaken in society today. For some reason many have been led to believe that once a couple has a sexual encounter they are then sealed as a couple. Not so. Physical sex does not bring devotional love. Real love brings devotion within the physical encounter. We get it backwards. No wonder there are so many divorces!

Love and devotion say, ” I will be there for you when you are at your lowest, when life has sent a curve ball, when finances don’t seem to add up, when we don’t see eye to eye, and when the darkness seems bigger than the light.” Real love and devotion bring growth, and can feel frustrating at times, as two people struggle to become one within their partnered bond. This struggle is the dance we call true romance. It does not feel great at the time, but our frustration is the character of love trying to come to understanding. Two people are never the same. We are all unique. True attraction comes from getting to know a person from the inside out, not the other way around. This can be an easier process or it can be extremely hard. The choice is ours.

Do you confuse sex with love? Maybe take some time to meditate on the qualities and character of love as God has designed it to be. Then compare those qualities to what you present to another and what that other person presents to you. Can you come to an agreement with one another and go deeper into the commitment of love and devotion? If not, then the physical part is a waste of time. We often call having sex, “making love”, but the true making of love is to receive loves character and give out of that wisdom and understanding every single day, especially when it is hardest to do.

Love goes the long haul. Physical sex will not deepen it but love can deepen the physical connection. Meditate on this. Go into the Bible’s explanation of true love and compare it to what you feel you understand about it. Put it into the context of your own character. Is your love patient, kind, long suffering? Does it refuse to keep record of wrongs, but forgives as God forgives? Is your understanding of love one that is present for another because of true devotion and not duty? Deep questions. Real love will always be devotional, commitment oriented, and have a depth of kindness even when we have become angry, upset, and have discord. Real love is like a rubber band that will always spring a couple back into harmony after a hard bought if misunderstanding.

This is an opportunity to check your depth if insight and understanding of yourself and how you love your partner and also yourself. Are you patient with yourself? Do you give yourself compassion and forgiveness as well? Do you wallow in the wrong things you have done or do you keep no record of wrongs? I know I have given you a lot to think about. Maybe some meditative journal time is in order here!

Loving you from here,

Dr Jenine Marie Howry

The Effects of Sexual Addiction in Marriage and Book Suggestion

rhn-sex-addictionQuite awhile ago I picked up a book written by a Christian wife named Laurie Hall. Her book is called “Affair of the Mind”.  It is about how she found out about her husband’s sexual addiction, how it effected her personally, and how she dealt with it as a woman and Christian believer. I recall I had a hard time putting this one down. I read most of it the very first night I had it. My heart went out to her as I read her words and felt like I experienced her life in a lot of ways.

I had been previously married to someone who was a sexually addicted man. Believe me, it’s no walk in the park, and can feel quiet abusive to experience. Beyond the stereotypical “men will be men” comments, sexual abuse is a very serious problem in a marriage. A sex addict gets just as much of a rush from naked images and porn as a cocaine addict does using the drug. I’ve heard stories of men who have looked at porn once and were so addicted that it completely ruined every intimate moment they could have had with their wives. Some eventually can be rendered impotent to even be with their wife in an intimate way.

Just like a drug, being addicted to porn and naked images will rewire a person’s brain. The craving is just like it is when someone needs their next drug fix. Sexual addiction and viewing of pornographic images is one if the largest reasons for the breakdown of a marital couple’s intimate life. Sometimes it ruins a marriage all together and destroys the lives of those around them. The break down of a marriage is a serious thing. A couple does not just lose a relationship. The couple begins to lose everything they built in their lives, including their memories.

Aside from the addiction part, lust after another woman on a husband’s part is considered to be adultery even if he does not have sex with anyone else. Jesus explicitly has stated that if a man even looks at another woman besides his wife with lust, he has already committed adultery. I know it can sound simplistic but adultery is a very serious sin in God’s heart, and one which requires remorse and repentance.

If any of you reading this thinks or believes that your man looking at women’s naked photos is harmless and a “man just being a man”, think again. What this speaks to you is that he is more satisfied with what he is viewing than looking at his own wife. It is an insult to the woman he loves. Can you imagine his response if the tables were turned and he found his wife entranced by the likes of another man? Adultery is adultery regardless to who is committing it. I recall early on in my past marriage my husbands co-worker was sending him photos of naked women by email. We were newly married and at the time we shared one email account. Imagine my shock when I received his co-workers email? I immediately replied for him to NEVER do that again and how insulting that is to me. Anyone sending my husband naked photos of women has no respect for me as his wife nor any respect for women.

Believe me, if you think it is innocent, talk to some women who have been affected by their husbands porn addiction. It strips the very fiber of self worth a woman has, takes away from the powerful intimacy in marriage that God gives as a gift, and sometimes even ruins a marriage completely.

If you are effected by your husbands or boyfriends sexual addiction or viewing of porn, you must read this book! I have the link for you below. It was written awhile back but it still applies and there is so much information she has researched on the subject, right down to how it renders a man impotent. It’s a serious marriage breaker and it hurts the very heart of God and women. I realize it’s not a fun subject to talk about but many women need healing after having a partner who has insisted in lusting after other women. Its a heart breaker and it creates soul scars emotionally as well as soul ties in the spirit world.

Here is the link to the book if you would like to read it!

An Affair of the Mind 

If you have been effected by someone’s sexual addiction or have been dealing with this right now and need prayer, please call me at 800-421-1765. It’s confidential. We can talk and pray over it and ask the Lord to loose the bondage that this spiritual attack will cause!

Lovingly Yours,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries