Welcome to another monthly roundup of recent posts, podcast episodes, recommended resources, and much more. Scroll through to find what you might have missed or your next great resource for marriage.
Disclosure of Material Connection: This post includes one or more affiliate links, meaning if you click on the link and purchase an item, I receive an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.
This Month on the Blog
I missed two weeks this month! Sorry, but you’ll see why later in this post.
NOTE: There was a lot of disagreement about this next post,
and I’m still thinking through what I said and should have said.
From Sex Chat for Christian Wives Podcast
- Episode 112: Are You Compromising Too Much? (Listener Question)
- Episode 113: The Most Pleasurable Sex Positions
- Episode 114: Pursuing Playfulness in Sexual Intimacy
From Knowing Her Sexually Podcast
My Post at KHS Ministry
Click the image below to read.
A Few Great Reads Elsewhere
- Is marriage easy or hard? For most of us, it gets hard and then harder when we start confronting our problems, but if we can work through them, marriage gets easier. (Not easy, in my opinion, but easier.) That’s why I love this post from Ngina Otiende of Intentional Today: When Marriage Hurts: Why Growth Can Feel Like Regression. She said it so much better than I could!
- Keelie Reason of Love Hope Adventure writes about How Pornography Has Changed Sex. Whether you’re currently pro- or anti-porn, this is worth reading, because she quickly covers some evidence-based reasons why it’s not a good idea. Pursue the best your marriage bed can be, without porn.
- Another excellent post addresses pornography’s effect on marriage with research-based evidence. Porn Is NOT Helping Your Marriage! from Paul Byerly, aka Generous Husband.
- Chris Taylor and I recently did a podcast episode on Why Sex Can Feel Risky to Your Wife? Then I read this post: Adventurous Isn’t a Fair Word When the Wife is More Vulnerable. While it’s in the same vein, Gary Thomas makes other excellent points. Hubbies in particular, check it out!
Recommended Resources & Products
I have to use this section to talk about two amazing online conferences I’m involved in! One is hosted by Gary Thomas and Debra Fileta and the other by Awesome Marriage.
What you should know about my sessions in particular is that it’s original material. That is, I’m not repeating workshop content I did for other online conferences (such as the Dating Divas Sex Seminar and last year’s Awesome Marriage Retreat).
Hosted by bestselling marriage author Gary Thomas and Licensed Counselor Debra Fileta, this conference will help take you take your sex life to the next level. Packed with important seminars from some of the top leaders, teachers, and experts in the marriage space—you’ll learn about love and married sex in a way you never have before.
$89 per couple includes all sessions, viewable for up to a year, and a copy of Thomas & Fileta’s new book, Married Sex (a $26.99 value!).
My session: 5 Sex Myths & God’s Better Truths
Hosted by Dr. Kim Kimberling & Awesome Marriage, this conference focuses on marriage as a whole, including physical intimacy, but also communication, conflict-resolution, relationship-building and more.
$39 per couple through September 28, 2021
$49 per couple after September 28, 2021
Once launched, the videos are viewable for up to a year.
My session: God’s Gift of Sex: What’s Keeping You from Enjoying It Fully?
What I’m Reading
I don’t remember where I heard about this title, but I downloaded the audiobook a while ago and finally listened to it this past month.
The author, evolutionary biologist and researcher Sarah E. Hill, Ph.D., doesn’t share my Christian worldview, but she does have great information about what hormonal contraception has done or might do to women’s bodies and brains.
Dr. Hill strikes a fair balance between showing how altering our cycles can have unintended consequences and not creating panic since most women don’t experience severe side effects. Rather, she shares her and other researchers’ findings so women can make more informed decisions about birth control.
I recommend this book to certain people and with caveats. This is a deep-dive into the science, and most people don’t need or want that level of information. If you work in healthcare or with married couples, however, this book could be a good source of knowledge. Also, some values the author expresses are not mine—and likely not yours—and she uses some curse words. But most people can get the gist well enough by watching Dr. Hill’s TED Talk or by heading to her website, clicking on Articles | Media, and finding a podcast or TV appearance.
Long story short: pay attention to any changes you experience while on hormonal contraception and shop for the right pill, patch, etc. for your body or change to another method.
A totally different read! I got a preview copy of The Flirtation Experiment by Lisa Jacobson and Phylicia Masonheimer.
I’ll be doing a more extensive review of the book in a blog post (because I want to hit some certain points and takeaways for my readers). But the upshot is that I highly recommend this book to wives.
Now, Lisa and Phylicia are upfront in saying this is NOT the right book if you’re in an abusive or emotionally destructive marriage, and I agree. Rather, this book is intended for those couples who are doing good but want to do great or who have mild to moderate conflict and want to reconnect. Basically, it’s for well-meaning spouses who want a boost in their marriage.
But it lives up to that goal beautifully with lots of great ideas based in biblical truths with real-life takeaways.
What J’s Up to These Days
Our house just sold! And the next question everyone asks is: “So where are you moving?” The short answer is:
The longer answer is that we’re hoping to build a house somewhere in Texas and rent an apartment while it’s being constructed. Regardless, we have less than a month to downsize, find a place, and move. I’m not panicked. Nope, not at all.
When not in that mode, I am continuing to work on a book for higher desire wives (getting back to it with renewed focus!) and trying to catch up on my reading.
Biblical Inspiration for the Coming Month
What is the most necessary Christian virtue?
You may quickly answer, “Love, of course.” After all, the apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13:13, “And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love,” and Jesus said the two greatest commands were to love the Lord and love others (see Mark 12:29-31). Yes, but…
In The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis wrote, “Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means, at the point of highest reality.” He wasn’t saying that’s most important virtue, but one that underlies others.
The pastor Andrew Murray made a case for humility being a key feature of the Christian life (see Humility: The Beauty of Holiness). And the longer I live, the more I think, although love and courage are dominant, humility must come before such virtues. After all, Jesus’s sacrificial love began with humbling himself:
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:Philippians 2:5-8
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
I’ve also witnessed people lose their way, ministries go off-track, and marriages torn apart or damaged—not because there was a lack of faith, hope, love, or courage. Rather, each of those was present but put in jeopardy by a lack of humility. We get too full of ourselves and what we think, feel, believe, or know and fail to listen, contemplate, and empathize.
With all this in mind, it occurred to me in the last week or two that the best verse about sex and marriage in the whole Bible isn’t about sex or marriage. It’s about how we treat one another, and following this command can make a profound difference in our marriage—and other relationships, of course.