On Saturdays, I’ve been talking about specific verses and passages in the Bible, in hopes that we will learn and memorize more scripture to equip us in our lives and specifically our marriages.
In Acts 20:35, the apostle Paul refers back to something Jesus said, which isn’t recorded elsewhere. Not surprising, since Jesus surely said much more than what’s recorded in the Gospel accounts. Here’s that second half of that verse: “…remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ “
I’m betting you’ve heard that one before. Parents often use the better to give than receive line to make a kid surrender part of his spending money to the church collection plate or to share the bigger piece of pie with his sibling. But, not using it as a hammer, there’s certainly a lot of truth here — more blessed to give than to receive.
Admittedly, when it comes to sexual intimacy, I’m not always sure about this maxim. When the focus is on my pleasure, I’m sort of wrapped up in that joy of that moment that I think receiving is pretty darn good. But when I look more broadly at our sex life, I know the blessings that come from a giving nature.
We can truly enjoy the pleasure we bring to our husband, from the small affections we express to the shuddering climax we evoke from our beloved. There’s so much to enjoy from being a giver, not a taker:
- The sly smile on his face when you offer him a look-see of your intimate places.
- The excitement that sizzles under his skin when you suggest a new sexual activity or old one you both enjoy.
- The improved mood of man who knows he’s loved in every way by his wife.
- The confidence he feels in his abilities as a good husband and lover.
- The sexual satisfaction that helps to keep his heart and mind focused on the good thing he’s got waiting at home.
- The kid-in-a-candy-factory expression on his face during some great foreplay or right after you’ve made love.
- The knowledge that you are following God’s design for sexual intimacy in your marriage.
Take that attitude into your marriage this week, and into your marital bedroom: It is more blessed to give than receive. What can you give your husband that would make him happy and you blessed?
And speaking of giving…
If you were here in September, you know that I announced this great giveaway with lots of goodies and the rules and blah, blah, blah. But then, my entire month was thrown into a tailspin. Long story short: My father died. The event of his death, though not the timing, was expected, and it was a positive goodbye to a life well-lived. But it did reek major havoc with my calendar.
At one moment of surrender, I said to myself, The giveaway is not happening this month. Some of the personal pressure I was feeling lifted from my shoulders, and I decided I’d reschedule when my life was a little more predictable.
So I’m rebooting! The giveaway starts today and will run through the month of November. It is indeed more blessed to give than receive, and I feel very blessed to have these items as part of my giveaway:
- Hot, Holy, and Humorous: Sex in Marriage by God’s Design, three copies signed by me
- Lovemaking: 10 Secrets to Extravagant Intimacy in Marriage (two copies) andSeven Secrets of a Supernatural Marriage: The Joy of Spirit-Led Intimacy,donated by Dr. Dan and Linda Wilson
- Sheet Music: Uncovering the Secrets of Sexual Intimacy in Marriage by Kevin Leman
- The Cookie Sutra: An Ancient Treatise that Love Shall Never Grow Stale. Nor Crumble. by Edward Jaye
- Foreplay in a Row adult game, donated by MarriedDance.com
- Sliquid Dude Lube Ride sample pack of lubricant
- Sliquid Lip Lickers sample pack of flavored lubricant
- Gift certificate for $40.00 to Heavenly Secrets, an online Christian lingerie boutique (sizes XS through 4XLarge)
- Flame-less, flickering LED pillar candles
- All in a beautiful storage box
Total value = approximately $200! And here are the rules:
The giveaway is open to U.S. and Canadian residents only. (Sorry, international followers, I just can’t ship that far!) Find copies of my book in your local bookstore. It’s usually shelved somewhere in Christian Life: Marriage.
To Enter Once: Snap a picture of yourself holding the book in the bookstore and email it to j [at] hotholyhumorous [dot] com, identifying where the photo was taken (bookstore, city, state).
To Enter Twice: Snap that picture, email it to me, and include express permission for me to post it on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest). I will not include a name unless you want me to do so, but I would like to include location.
To Enter Three Times: Snap a picture of yourself buying the book at the cashier and holding the book and your purchase receipt, send it to me, and you’ll be entered three times.
That’s it. Send me the photo anytime up through November 30, and I’ll randomly draw a winner the first week of December. If you win, you’ll receive the package just in time to wrap it up and put it under the Christmas tree for your spouse! (And don’t tell me you’ve already done all your Christmas shopping, or I might have to throw tomatoes at you instead. 😉 )
I’m excited to see where my book has shown up and to blessedly give away a great prize to one lucky reader.
22 thoughts on “Be a Giver, Not a Taker”
I get this was written largely to the ladies, but let me say something from the man’s side.
My greatest joy in sex is not that the action is happening. My greatest joy is that I know I bring joy to my wife. Give a man a woman who is a ten in everything he wants but shows no response to his actions and no joy in response to them and he will want nothing to do with that. A man wants to be wanted and he wants his wife to be able to say that sexually, he is a source of joy.
Ditto! I couldn’t have said it any better Nick. Knowing that she is really enjoying what I’m giving her is an amazing feeling.
Same here. Giving pleasure to my wife is what matters most to me.
J. Perhaps this could be something to write on if you haven’t. A lot of women get so self-conscious about how they look before their husbands and such and it really hurts us. If you want to do something to be healthier or lose weight or improve your appearance or anything like that, that’s fine. That’s also a way of honoring us by saying you want to be your best physically around us, but don’t make it that if you are not like that, we will not take delight in you. So many women worry about having to be perfect tens around their husbands. We would rather have less and have a woman who is passionate and wants us than to have a perfect ten who has no desire for us whatsoever. Our greatest joy is, in fact, getting to know that we are bringing joy to our wives. If you do not delight in us and having sex with us, then we feel like failures. It’s hard for us to be the men we need to be everywhere else if we think we can’t be the man that we want to be with the woman we love more than anyone else.
That’s such a great idea, I’ve written about it and had several guest posts on the topic. Here’s a sampling:
Getting Comfortable Being Naked with Your Husband
Q&A with J: Top 5 Questions Readers Ask about Sex
Is Your Husband A Liar? with Debi Walter
Feeling Beautiful: From His Perspective (Elizabeth Spence, Warrior Wives)
A Wife’s Insecurities, A Husband’s Response (Justin of Do Not Disturb)
Those are really good J. If you’d like, I could contribute some to a piece like this writing from a man’s perspective.
“There’s so much joy from being a giver, not a taker”
Amen for that statement! For that is all I have left, is to give.
Since menopause, I no longer experience sexual arousal or pleasure…mostly pain and discomfort, therefore, my greatest joy comes from giving pleasure to my husband.
I sure hope the fact that my body no longer responds the way it used to, isn’t causing my husband to feel like a failure 🙁
That’s great for you guys. But it works both ways. Sometimes I can please my husband, sometimes I can’t. I mean, he always ends up “happy”, but sometimes he has to take over, and that is a huge blow to my pride. What woman can’t bring her husband the ultimate pleasure without him having to take control? So if I can’t bring him to the brink, without him having to take charge, it makes me feel like a major loser. I, too, love giving to my husband and having him enjoy receiving. But it doesn’t always work, and that makes me feel worthless.
Anon. I’m honestly not sure what you mean by “He has to take over.” I didn’t think anyone took over. Both are required to do their part, but I would also say sex is like pizza. Bad pizza is good pizza and you will ultimately never receive a return receipt on sex.
I think she means he has to finish himself by hand. I’ve had to do that a few times, when I just wasn’t getting over the edge through intercourse. It relieved the sexual tension that had built, but it wasn’t very satisfying. My wife felt somewhat cheated, and I missed the ultimate in closeness.
Anon, don’t let it make you feel bad about yourself. In my case, it was the result of making love when I was really too physically exhausted for it. Started losing my erection and couldn’t climax in her. It really spooked me, so I purchased a device to help keep the erection. Worked like a charm, and we are both very satisfied. I wonder if there is something like this going on with your husband.
I mean, if I’m on top and I can’t bring him to the grand finale no matter how long I try. We sometimes have to switch positions. I feel like a failure when this happens. It usually happens when we have to use protection. He thinks it’s from the condom. I think it’s because he has such an unobstructed view of me, that maybe it decreases his arousal. I know I’m not perfect, and I think it’s easier for him to finish when he doesn’t have to see all of me. Although he does sometimes finish in this position when we don’t need protection, so maybe he’s telling the truth.
Anyway, the point is, I feel like a failure when I can’t bring him to the finish when I’m on top. So it’s not just a guy thing. Women like to be able to please their man, too.
That is so not a failure! The angle, friction, etc. change with sexual positions, and that is most likely the issue with inability to finish him in a particular position. The “unobstructed view” is very likely not influencing that. Just do woman-on-top for a while, then switch positions to finish up.
(And lighten up on yourself! Really. 🙂 )
Anon. I really have to say as a fellow husband I would say it’s the condom. I like what someone told me once about condoms and from my experience it’s true. Using a condom is like eating an ice cream cone with a sock on your tongue. Your husband knows his own anatomy and physiology very well. You might want to try another method of protection. There are several.
J is right. You are definitely not a failure! Have some grace for yourself.
Just had to jump in on this one… I wholeheartedly agree with J on this! I would be willing to bet that it likely has everything to do with the angle, friction, etc and zero to do with you. I absolutely crave my wife’s gorgeous body, and I love every inch of her, but the position you described does pretty much nothing for me.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy it because I do get to see such a fantastic view of her, but I don’t think I could “finish” in that position if my life depended on it.
It just doesn’t keep the sensation that I require at an intense enough level for me to go “over the edge” so to speak.
Also, not sure how old your hubby is, but in my case, things just ain’t as trustworthy downstairs as they used to be…??
A good breeze was once enough to induce “the big finale” and there are times now (45+) that a hurricane would be disappointed…
Obviously, I don’t know your husband, but based purely on the men that I know, I just don’t believe that his issues have anything whatsoever to do with his attraction to you. Quite possibly, he’s having some things occur that are baffling to him, and he’s as devastated as you are, if not more.
It’s a horrible feeling when Mr. Dependable decides he’s going part time, and his hours are “flexible…”
I’d recommend having a conversation about the situation, some place other than in the bedroom, and just see what he has to say. However, it’s a difficult thing to talk about, especially if it’s a rather recent development.
Hope this helps!
J, I’m so very sorry to hear about your father. Even when death is anticipated, it is almost always when unexpected. The same has happened with me in the last few months. I have lost my mother in much that same way as your father,(This is my first public acknowledgment of it. I only alluded to it on my blog.), my wife’s former mother-in-law, my wife’s former brother-in law to suicide, and my wife’s oldest sister. I don’t mean to seem inconsiderate of your loss and not meaning to look like I’m one-upping you at all, but acknowledging how quickly so many things earthly things that provide constancy in our lives can so quickly and permanently change. We can be thankful that God and His promises do not. When such change happens, we can not only be left with sorrow, but with lingering guilt and regret.
All of that change has certainly slowed down my writing on the blog and commenting on others. I’m a bit adrift for now. I’m still anchored in my faith, but drifting about the length of the anchor chain as the tides move about. On 9/11, all the death I’ve personally experienced and come to see on a near-daily basis with my work compelled me to write one of the three or four posts I’ve been able to author this year. If you don’t mind, I’d like to leave a link to it here. There is no reason to allow death to burden us with guilt and regret along with the sorrow. There is something we can do to avoid that if we act in a timely fashion.
All of the bullet points you listed above I would LOVE for my husband to feel or show. Not all husbands care about sex or take pleasure in what their wives try to give them. Sometimes giving giving giving just hurts hurts hurts.
Not all people react and enjoy sex the way we expect they should or the way we do ourselves.
It is hard to give something that is not received with the intended reaction.
Time to re-evaluate what they might enjoy receiving instead.
Then give freely.
What he enjoys receiving is to be left alone to watch tv. He can go a week with no physical touch and feels just fine about it.
I bet if you dug deeper, there’s something else. He married you for a reason.
We HAVE dug into this. We’ve been married 11 years and been to counseling 3 times. He’ll say out of his own mouth it’s because he’s lazy. I don’t wanna get into details because I usually post on Sheila’s blog, I just wanted to mention that sometimes giving everything you’ve got until you’re burned out is wrong.
Well, I’ve read every comment… Whew! As several have said, this is predominantly written to the ladies, but hey, we can all learn can’t we? Nick, I love what you wrote. I have been focusing all my efforts on my wife’s pleasure for about a year now and I must say, that by far gives me greater joy. The less I’m worried about me, the more turned on I get. Men that are reading this… Stop focusing on what you can get out of sex… Start focusing on serving your wife and how you can please her sexually… And my goodness, If you don’t know, ask. Ask in the right time, ask politely, ask with love and actually listen to what she wants… Not what you think she wants. Ladies… If he asks you, then tell him. Tell him what you really want, how you want it. Be specific. We’re men, it might take baby steps, but we can get there. I almost lost my marriage because I was selfish and thought my needs were more important (even if those weren’t the words I used, that was the idea). I now serve one God and one woman (not equally or the same). She gets all my attention. Communicate! And listen to each other!
I agree to a large part, but at the same time, you do have to think about what you like and don’t like some. After all, how can your spouse please you if you don’t know what pleases you? At the same time, if I’m having sex with my wife or doing anything sexual and she doesn’t like it or acts like she just wants me to get it over with, then I feel like a failure and in fact guilty like I’ve used her.
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