Monthly Archives: February 2016

Q&A with J: His Porn Past Is Affecting Our Relationship

Today’s question came in a while ago. I pray that things have improved in this woman’s relationship, but she wrote a very long email about the situation with her long-time boyfriend. I’ll summarize some issues first:

  1. He was molested as a child. He didn’t say anything at first, but when he reported the incident, adults took charge and action was taken. In the meantime, another child had been sexually assaulted, and he felt somewhat responsible.
  2. Following his molestation, he began looking at pornography. This may have been his way of trying to understand what had happened, to feel more in control of his sexuality. But the fact that he was able to access porn at such a young age is heartbreaking.
  3. This began a ten-year-long, daily porn habit. Finally wanting to break free, he began fighting the porn addiction through counseling.
  4. The relationship between this man and the girl who wrote me is serious, and in almost every way, this man is seeking God, the good of his girlfriend, and goodness.

But when it comes to sex . . .

We both agree that we have gone WAY [too] far physically, so much further than I ever wanted too before marriage. We haven’t had sex, but we’ve done just about everything else. It is extremely hard to stop once you’ve started, and that’s [where] we’re having trouble. We don’t seem to be in-sync. I’ll be the one saying we need to stop while he wants to continue one night, than the next night he’ll be the one saying we need to stop. You can imagine how this can pose problems. Whenever he is turned on, it is very very hard, almost impossible, for him to [accept] that we need to stop. He is never mean or abusive towards me (I would have headed straight for the door at the first sign), but he gets extremely grumpy, and is in a very very bad mood for the rest of the evening. It’s almost like he is mad at me. It’s like he’s in this haze, and he’s an entirely different person. I’ve asked him about it many times before and he says that at the time he’s slightly angry with me, but more frustrated at the situation. Once he snaps out of it, he is extremely remorseful for wanting to continue and is in total agreement with me that we need to stop. However, the haze thing scares me a lot. What if I’m not in the mood one night when we’re married and he’s angry with me over it?

I’ve also noticed that he can be rough when we make out and when we cross the line. This also scares me for his sake. (He has never hurt me, let me just point that out). I know that it can be ok to have rough sex. Heck, the prospect of having rough sex sounds like a lot of fun to me! However, there’s a good part of the time [where] he seems like he’s in that haze again. It makes me feel like I am being used as a way to release sexual tension when this happens, no love involved. Sometimes I don’t even have to do anything. I tested this out once. I decided to see how long it took for him to noticed that I wasn’t doing anything back (no touching, kissing, just sitting there) and it lasted till I had to tell him to stop because he was going to go too far.

The only issue that makes me hesitant about getting married is this: I am  concerned that his past has greatly affected his ability to separate sex from aggression and he will never be able to connect sex and love. . . . How can I help him overcome his past and help him to be able to show love physical? What can I do to help him get over his porn addiction?

Q&A with J: His Porn Past Is Affecting Our Relationship

That’s a really long opening, so please forgive me for a longer post today. But I wanted readers to have enough information to understand that this man is not an evil person seeking his own kicks, but someone who’s also faced a fair number of challenges in his own life.

Yet when people tell me that viewing pornography does not alter how you view the sex act, this is the kind of story they should read. It’s delusional to think that you can fill your mind with sexual garbage and it have no effect on how you view your spouse and your sexuality.

It's delusional to think you can fill your mind w/garbage and it have no effect on how you view sex. Click To Tweet

Let me take on these issues in turn.

We’ve gone way too far. She says, “It is extremely hard to stop once you’ve started, and that’s where we’re having trouble.” I’d like to add to that statement… #truth. It is extremely hard to stop when you have no strategy for stopping. You talk about “when we make out,” which tells me that you’re setting aside times to make out and hoping (against hope) that it won’t go as far this time as it has previous times.

Having been there before myself, let me assert that: (1) Technical virginity doesn’t get bonus points with God. Manual sex, oral sex, etc. are other forms of sex — just ask us married couples. (2) God is not mad at you, and He wants you to succeed. He believes in repentance and redemption — even if you need to repeat that cycle more than once. So don’t give up, and ask for God’s help. (3) You two will go too far if you don’t have a specific plan for not getting there in the first place. Because emotions and hormones are so strong in that moment, and few people successfully combat those urges again and again.

I have tips on staying sexually pure before marriage. But essentially, you need to stop being alone, on a couch or a bed, entangled in each other’s arms and lips, and use your dating time instead to get to know each other more. You can get to know each other’s bodies later. If you get married, there will be plenty of time to explore and enjoy.

He’s angry when we stop. He should not be angry at you, of course. But I do understand the frustration. It’s like presenting the most delicious dessert on a silver plate — letting you see it, sniff, touch it. But then it gets whisked away, and you don’t get to eat what your body now craves. Even if you knew you shouldn’t be eating that uber-rich dessert, you might feel annoyed. Perhaps grumpy.

Added to that, he likely has a strain of guilt for having pushed too far. For wanting more than he should have. For putting you in a terrible position. When we feel that guilt, I think it’s the Holy Spirit helping us in our weakness — trying to get our attention and encourage us to seek God’s way instead. (See Romans 8.)

This is one of the reasons why sex should be in marriage. There are very few times when my husband and I have to stop mid-stream, so to speak. Once one or both of you have reached that point of craving for a sexual release, you can get it. Neither one of us gets flagged down at the edge of climax and told to turn back. Which means I’m less concerned about this happening within marriage, even though it’s a problem for you now.

However, I think you should set some boundaries. It’s okay to be frustrated. It’s not okay to mistreat you. You can speak up and say exactly that: “I understand you being frustrated, but the way you pull away and then appear gruff afterward scares me. I need to know that you’ve got control of your anger.” Maybe you could open your Bibles and look up the verses about anger in Proverbs (anger / angry). Memorizing a couple of those verses has helped me.

He can be rough. This line really concerned me: “I decided to see how long it took for him to noticed that I wasn’t doing anything back (no touching, kissing, just sitting there) and it lasted till I had to tell him to stop because he was going to go too far.” He didn’t notice? That’s a major red flag that he has not resolved the issues of his past!

It might seem that overcoming porn simply involves not looking at porn anymore. I applaud your boyfriend’s efforts to smother the porn addiction into oblivion, and he has clearly made great strides. But that viewpoint of sex based on porn must be replaced by an understanding of what God designed sex to be. It’s not merely about the act, but the person with whom you engage.

This isn’t about gentle sex or rough sex. (Although I could take on that issue another day, because I don’t know what you mean by “rough sex,” and that could be no big deal or a problem depending on your meaning.) This is about respectful sex. Nothing — absolutely nothing — in the Bible says that your partner’s body is your sexual tool to use as you wish.

Nothing in the Bible says that your partner's body is your sexual tool to use as you wish. Click To Tweet

Before anyone says “I do” here, I highly encourage you both to seek out better truth about sexual intimacy in marriage. Starting with relational intimacy in marriage. For instance, reading Gary Thomas’s Sacred Marriage might help with understanding the purpose of this relationship to begin with.

His long porn habit has clearly affected how he views you and sex when he gets highly aroused. It’s probably not a conscious thing, simply an instinct at this point. But it needs to be addressed and changed. And you need to be willing to set boundaries here as well: “I need to feel safe and valued, and if you start treating me like a sex toy rather than the woman you love, I’m going to have to get up and walk away.” You can say this while dating or married, because God does not intend for you to be disregarded.

Be there for your boyfriend, but remember that this is his journey. Until you two are bound as one flesh in marriage, it’s a he problem, not a we problem. You can support him, but he needs to show that he’s willing to do the hard work of overcoming his porn past. If you’re always the one pushing for improvement, his gains probably won’t stick.

Yes, I feel enormous sympathy for him, but it’s not in his best interest either to enter marriage without meeting this challenge, getting God’s guidance, and becoming a victor in the area of sexual intimacy.

Throughout your issues, pray. Pray fervently that you will have the wisdom, courage, and peace to do what’s right. May God bless you both.

For dating and engaged couples, I’m also a big fan of the website, Preengaged.com. Check out their blog posts and resources.

Don’t Just Have Sex. Make Love.

I know marriage authors who far prefer talking about making love than having sex. For the most part, it seems a bit po-tay-to, po-tah-to to me. If I say “make love,” y’all all know I’m talking about having sex with your spouse.

And from a writer’s perspective, it’s nice to have more than one way to express the meaning of sexual intimacy. We have plenty of alternate names for nookie — everything from “marital intimacy” to “the beast with two backs” (thanks for that one, Shakespeare).

In a marriage with healthy, godly sexual intimacy, does it matter too much whether we call it “coitus” or “making love”? Either way, you’ll likely experience it in a loving way.

But many of you are not in those perfect, we’ve-got-it-all-together sexual relationships with your beloved. Maybe it’s a far cry from where it should be, or maybe you just need some tweaking. But when you come together, it doesn’t feel as intimate as it should. It’s just having sex.

And that’s not really the point of sex in marriage.

For those of us who messed up pre-marriage and remember a bit of what it was like to be with someone you didn’t care about nearly enough, we definitely know the difference. It’s why I plead with people not to do what I did! (Including my children.) I want them to have a better experience than just having sex. Because anyone can do that. Big whoop.

But my Heavenly Father has a much more valuable gift for me. He wants me to experience deep and meaningful love as part of the physical act of sex. He wants it to be in the context of a covenant relationship with a life partner. He wants it to be pleasurable for my body, my heart, and my soul. And that’s why He said outright that it should be done in love.

It’s right here in this all-encompassing verse: Do everything in love” (1 Corinthians 16:14).

Marriage Memory Verse 2-27-16

You can’t really argue with the word everything. That’s got to include sex in your marriage bed.

And the word translated as love is the Greek word agapeAgape is often described as a selfless, servant love that wants the best for the other person. It’s known as being the kind of love God Himself has for us. I like how Merriam-Webster defines agape as “love feast.”

That’s how agape works. It’s over-the-top, giving-all-I’ve-got love.

And it’s the kind of love we don’t master on our own. Rather, we channel it from God Himself by seeing our spouse through His eyes.

When you bring that kind of making love in your marital bedroom? Let’s just say, WOW!

Give it whatever name you want, but we are called to treat sex with our spouse as an agape experience. We are supposed to make love by treating our spouse with Christ-like love and approaching sex as an expression of our deepest feelings for our beloved.

“Do everything in love.” It’s not an easy command, but we should take it seriously. Especially when it comes to our marriages.

Isn’t your marriage worth giving it all you’ve got?

Memory Verse Help

Now whether or not you’ve been joining me for my Marriage Memory Verse challenge, don’t tell me that you can’t memorize this week’s verse! Four words and a citation. You can do it!

Remember that I’m only asking you to choose one verse per month to commit to memory. It’s also good to go over those verses at other times in your head to keep them fresh. Then when you face a difficult situation, those memorized verses come to mind as God’s guidance.

Let’s talk this week, though, about remembering citations. Because I stink at that. I’m always saying something like, “Somewhere in the New Testament, it says . . .” But it’s better to know where a verse comes from, so you can access it later and read it in context for better understanding.

And this is where “Sword Drills” are a great tool. If you grew up in a church that did this activity, you’ll remember how it goes. But basically, your sword is your Bible (“sword of the Spirit,” Ephesians 6:17).  You can play alone or with others. But close your Bible, look at the verse reference, call it aloud, and then see how fast you can find that scripture in your Bible.

Once there, read the scripture aloud.

Rinse and repeat.

By interacting with the information in a fun way, you’ll be more likely to commit both the verse and the citation to memory. For a great info-graphic on Sword Drills, check out this link from OneHope.

Only a few days left!

A Wife’s Guide to Sexual Man Speak

Last Thursday, I wrote a post that got some flak. Because I explained how my husband tried to initiate sex in the middle of the night. In our conversation later, he’d said something like, “I woke up and felt turned on.” Which makes it sound like he just had an urge and expected my body to meet his “need.” Not at all what happened, because I know how loving and gentle his advances were, how he views sex in our marriage generally, and how to translate man-speak.

A Wife's Guide to Sexual Man Speak

Oh, if only our men would express their heartfelt desire for closeness and connection the way heroes do in the pages of romantic novels! Novels almost all written by women.

I’m not knocking all romance novels. I actually enjoy some of them. But many do a poor job of illuminating the mind of a man. We can come to expect that a man’s mind works much like ours does, and then when we find out otherwise we’re offended that “men are pigs.”

But they’re not. They’re just a different side of the same human coin. So let’s give our husbands some grace, remember that — by and large — husbands truly love their wives, and translate some common hubby phrases when it comes to sex.

“I’m turned on.”

It sounds like he flipped a switch and expects you to be ready to go just as fast, right? But really, this translates to “You turn me on.”

I’m not saying a man never gets turned on by other stuff, or just it being that time of the day. (Even with all the research I’ve done, I still find their equipment to be a bit of a mystery.) But the consistent message I hear from husbands is that they get most turned on by being with the wife they love.

And it can happen slowly or quickly. It could build from intimate actions and deep feelings throughout the day, or she can just walk through the room naked. Maybe that’s why it feels so weird to hear “I’m turned on” for some wives. Because the pattern for women is more often getting turned on after romantic and sexual activity begin, while hubby can get turned on by you and then seek a sexual encounter.

Just be assured it’s most likely about you. Not simply a burning need in his pants.

(Note: Men do get turned on by porn, and that’s a whole different issue. God definitely intended the turn-on stimulus to be one another, not third parties or images of third parties. If porn is a struggle in your marriage, it needs to be addressed immediately, lovingly, and firmly.)

“I need sex.” 

Speaking of need, here’s another phrase you might hear in your marriage: “I need sex.” This rarely means “I have a purely biological need to have sex, and you’ll do.” Yes, God did make us sexual beings, with reproductive biology and sex drives. Most husbands feel sex as a need. But husbands tell me again and again that their need for emotional connection to their wives is even stronger.

Yes, he “needs” sex in the sense that he has a biological drive to sate the desire he feels in his gut, his brain, and, oh yeah, his groin. (It’s all connected.) But “I need sex” is more about “I long to experience the love and intimacy I feel when I have sex my beloved wife.”

“I want you.”

In too many wives’ minds, we complete that sentence with extra stuff. Like “I want you to do me a sexual favor,” “I want you to be at my beck-and-call,” “I want you to sate my desire.” Yeah, I get it. To some extent, those are all in the fantasy wheelhouse for plenty of husbands. Not all — yes, I see you, higher-drive wives! — but some.

We wives often put the emphasis on want when, once again, it should be on the you. And very often, it means that he wants all of you. Not just your body. He wants you to be fully involved in the experience, giving yourself 100% to the physical intimacy that binds you together as one flesh. He wants all of you engaged in the marriage bed.

I suspect most of us know the difference between letting your body show up for sex and engaging your whole self in sexual intimacy. When your husband says he wants you, consider that he wants all of you — your heart, your body, your pleasure, your connection.

“You’re beautiful.”

To husbands, this means: “You’re beautiful.” Yep, they’re actually saying what they mean. Unfortunately, we ladies often read their words as “he’s just saying that,” “he only wants sex,” “he knows I’m not as beautiful as ____.”

But for the most part, hubbies think their wives are hot. Not because we’re all objectively Helens of Troy, but our guys love us, they have history with us, they like our curves, they think our smile is cute, they know that bodies don’t stay 20 years old forever, etc. Basically, your husband’s love for you gives him special vision that helps him see past the pounds, wrinkles, and self-doubt to the beautiful you that you truly are.

For the men.

And guys, do you see how you come off sometimes to women? I get that many of you are straight-to-the-point, as-few-words-as-possible men. Believe me, I’m married to one. But use your words to express what you really mean and what your wife really means to you.

If you want sex with your wife, express that you want her, not just the sex. Your wife is worth the extra effort to consider your words carefully and be a little more of a romantic hero in her life.

Also worth reading: Ten Lies Wives Believe about Sex (And Ten Truths Husbands Want You To Know)

Q&A with J: “He Wants It Every Night…Several Times”

Today’s question is a doozy. It’s from a wife whose husband is rather insistent about his especially high sex drive:

What do you recommend for wives who do not become aroused during love making? My husband has a very high sex drive. He wants it every night and would like it several times a night not just once. We have been married almost 40 years. I [used] to enjoy sex but in the last 10 years I have found it impossible to become aroused. We still have sex even though he knows I get nothing out of it. I am just going through the motions. I try to keep him happy. I spoke with my Doctor but he didn’t have any suggestions as to why this happened. I am beginning to feel used because my husband doesn’t seem to care as long as his needs are met and on his days off hounds me for sex all day long even if we had sex the night before. If I give in, he then starts in a couple of hours later wanting sex again. It seems the more sex he has the more he wants. I am at the end of my rope. I want him to be happy but I don’t know how much more I can take.

Q&A with J: "He Wants Sex Every Night...Several Times"

Honestly, my first reaction was: Of course, you’re not aroused during lovemaking! You’re exhausted, honey. And he’s not considering your needs and desires.

Upon further thought, my second reaction was the same. But let’s break this down further. Because that thought — true as it may be — doesn’t lead to solutions.

His extra-high sex drive. One of the tough things when you’re dealing with an issue that feels off in your sexual intimacy is knowing what’s normal. You think to yourself, Is this how it should be? If you get your information from media (please, don’t), you’d think that everyone is either having sex constantly or that they experience a complete death of their sex lives upon saying “I do.” Neither of those scenarios is anywhere close to true. But you’re hardly going to take up your own research study and ask around about everyone else’s sex lives until you have a statistically significant sample and then draw conclusions about what’s healthy and normal.

But I’d read a lot on this subject, so let me assure you that a husband at his age who expects several times a day is atypical. Yes, men can continue with high libidos well into their elder years. But by this time, the desire is not usually as frequent and urgent. I wouldn’t be asking simply why your body isn’t aroused, I’d want to know why his body is on overdrive. For instance, is he on testosterone supplements and needs his medication adjusted?

It may not have a physical/hormonal cause, but I’d sit down with my hubby and explain that, while I respect his desire for frequent sexual intimacy, several times a day is just more than you can handle and more than men of his age typically want. Ask why he thinks his sex drive is so strong, and talk about ways he can release some of that pent-up feeling that doesn’t involve more sex than your body can take. I’m not talking about masturbation, but rather physical activity or meditation or a hobby that gives him something to do. If you think there could be a physical component, ask him to see a doctor and request to go with him for support and understanding.

You’re his wife, not his sex service. You say, “I am beginning to feel used.” I immediately wondered why you’d only just begun to feel that way. It sounds like he’s treating you as his sex service, more than his wife. Healthy sexual intimacy in marriage isn’t about either one of you being at the other’s beck-and-call. It isn’t about relieving pent-up stress with a “fix.” It isn’t about one person’s pleasure to the neglect of the other person’s pleasure.

While you have an obligation in marriage to have sex with each other (1 Corinthians 7:3-5), you also have the right to set boundaries. I can’t remember who said this first, but that scripture has been explained something like this: Yes, your body belongs to him, but his body belongs to you. Thus, he might expect your body to be up for grabs one night, but you could turn around and say, “Fine, but your body will treat my body in this way.” Bluntly put, he has part ownership of your vagina, but you have part ownership of his penis. He doesn’t get free rein with his body parts to subjugate your body parts.

Now I believe that if he only wanted a physical release, he knows he could take care of that on his own. He does want you, because he’s not simply pursuing sex, but sex with you. However, he may think that you’re not supposed to be as into this as he is, and thus it’s okay to treat your body the way he’s treating you. And it’s just not okay.

I hope you’ve explained calmly but firmly how his constant advances make you feel. If not, sit him down and talk about the kind of intimacy you desire for your marriage. Talk about that verse in the Bible and what it should mean in your marriage. Open up the Song of Songs and read together — seeing how mutual the sexual pleasure was for this married couple.

If he responds, great! If he doesn’t get it, set some boundaries. You don’t have to say yes every single time he proposes sex. And you can make suggestions back to him, like “I need time to mentally and physically prepare” or “Can we reschedule until the morning when I’m feeling better?” If he starts treating you like your his personal love doll, you can stop things right there and say, “I want to cooperate and enjoy this, but you have to respect me as a person and how I feel.” Be aware that when you set boundaries with someone, you will likely get some pushback — because you’re changing how things work — but if you can calmly stick with it, you can get the point across over time and alter the pattern of behavior.

Your arousal and satisfaction matters.Twice you said how you want him to be happy, and that’s great. Oftentimes that’s where we need to start with improving our sexual intimacy — a desire to give our spouse delight. But sex in marriage isn’t about one spouse being happy. God intended sexual intimacy to be a mutually satisfying experience.

You say: “We still have sex even though he knows I get nothing out of it. I am just going through the motions.” And your initial question was: “What do you recommend for wives who do not become aroused during love making?” I recommend you speak up and ask for what you need in the marital bedroom.

You say that you used to enjoy sex, so you know what arousal and enjoyment feel like. But you’ve lost that lovin’ feeling because your arousal and enjoyment has not been prioritized in your marriage. Your husband obviously has no problem requesting (again and again) for what he wants in the bedroom. There’s nothing wrong with you advocating for your sexual pleasure.

Want examples?

“Honey, I’m open to making love tonight, but I cannot just go through the motions. I want to feel pleasure in your arms. I need you to slow down tonight and help me feel truly aroused before we begin intercourse.”

“I remember enjoying sex so much in the past, and I want to enjoy it again with you. Can we please work on helping me climax? I think that would increase my enjoyment a lot.”

“I want you to be happy with our sex life together, but I’m not happy with the lack of pleasure I feel. I need your help to get my body back in the game. I promise we can make love later, but for now, can we focus on what makes my body aroused enough to crave sex with you?”

You should also feel free to speak up in the moment with comments on what feels good, where you’d prefer he move his hand, what sexual position you’d like to try, etc. Take charge sometimes so you can learn what you like and he can see that you’re trying to get involved but you won’t settle anymore for sex not feeling good.

Get your own body checked out. Usually, I start with this one. But given your story, I think the more likely cause of your lack of sexual responsiveness is the dynamics in your marriage. However, it’s worth asking your doctor again if everything’s going the way it should. We ladies can have issues as we age, especially with dryness. Make sure your hormones are balanced and your vaginal walls are secreting properly. If your doctor waves it aside, be a little more insistent. Tell him this is causing issues in your marriage, and you want to know without a doubt that everything is fully functional.

As you can see, a lot of what I say here equates to being your own advocate. I believe God intended you to have a beautiful experience in the bedroom as well. While we should absolutely serve one another in our marriage beds, sometimes the balance shifts so drastically, the neglected spouse needs to speak up. I think that’s where you are in your marriage, and I pray that you find the godly wisdom, the right words, and the loving actions needed to make healthy changes in your sexual intimacy.

Is Christian Sex in Marriage a Threesome?

I was at a fiction writers’ workshop recently in which the speaker tentatively mentioned his belief that the inspirational romance genre was basically ménage à trois: you, me, and Jesus. He wasn’t attempting to be offensive, and actually I wasn’t offended. I sort of agree.

By no means am I being gross about this. Please bear with me. Because of course sex happens merely between husband and wife in the marriage bed. Jesus is not literally hanging out in the middle of the experience. Don’t get that image stuck in your head and freak out the next time you’re starting to get intimate with your hubby in the bedroom.

However, as Christians we believe that sex in marriage has a higher purpose. That it is a gift from God and blessed by our Heavenly Father. We can imagine the approval of our Creator as we revel in His beautiful creation of sexual intimacy.

“Every good and perfect gift is from above.” James 1:17

We believe in the omniscience and omnipresence of God — that He knows all and exists everywhere.

” ‘Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?’ declares the Lord. ‘Do not I fill heaven and earth?’ declares the Lord.” – Jeremiah 23:24

God sees what’s going on in your bedroom and He’s there. Not gawking and trying to make you uncomfortable — more like giving you a thumbs up for investing in your marriage through physical intimacy.

I also think that when we invite God, He shows up in an even more discernible way.

“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” Matthew 18:10

As believers in Christ, I encourage couples to invite the Lord into their marriage. We need His help in every facet of our relationship, including sexual intimacy. You can see the beauty of this by hearing from couples who pray before and after they make love. Even praying at other times as a couple appears to have a positive effect on your sexual intimacy.

God’s involvement also protects our marriage bed.

“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:12

Woven together with God, your marriage has even greater strength and perseverance. As does your marriage bed.

So is Christian sex in marriage a threesome? I think it kind of is. Of course, God is opposed to actual third parties, but He wants us to invite Him into our hearts and lives in all areas. Why not the marriage bed?

Besides, I wouldn’t even know what deep, abiding love looked like without knowing the Father. My own marriage is still alive and kicking because we (finally) aimed for deep, godly love for one another. This verse says it well:

Marriage Memory Verse 2-20-16

This scripture is this week’s marriage memory verse. Because if you want to love your husband intimately, learn more about God’s love. Starting with the fact that love itself is from God. Then put that love into practice in the bedroom. Let God into your sex life.

Once again, not in the creepy way. But the God-made-sex-and-blesses-you way.

Maybe you can even practice this verse by looking right into your husband’s eyes and saying those words, “Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God.” Because that’s where great marriages and satisfying sexual intimacy begins — by recognizing the source of true love.

Memory Verse Help

Chunking is a memorization technique we often use without realizing we’re doing it. For instance, social security and telephone numbers are broken up into chunks, with digits separated by hyphens. When you memorize those digits and repeat them to others, you say the number back in chunks. Like a telephone number might be 800-555-5555.

We also memorize poetry in chunks, even if it’s something like:

I’m a poet
And I didn’t know it
But my feet show it
‘Cause they’re Longfellows.

That’s a passed-around poem, origin unknown, that uses word play to refer to large feet and the famous poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. But each of those lines is a chunk we memorize, and then we put the poem together.

You can use chunking for memory verses too. Break the scripture into pieces, then memorize each piece until you feel comfortable with it. Move onto the next and the next. And eventually, you’ve got the whole thing.

Visually, it might look like this:

Beloved
Let us love one another
Because love is from God
Everyone who loves is born of God
And knows God.
1 John 4:7