My husband says I have an ongoing problem of taking on more than I can accomplish. On this, and plenty of other things, he is right! After a couple of weeks of running around trying to get things done and feeling that I was nowhere near on time with anything, I’m trying to regain my equilibrium. But in those crazy-sauce moments, I came across a written interview about my book, Hot, Holy & Humorous: Sex in Marriage by God’s Design.
I believe these were questions suggested by my publisher to radio show and podcast hosts interviewing me about the book when it released in 2016. To prepare, I wrote out some answers, and you know what? There’s some good stuff there! Today I’m sharing these general sex tips with you.
Remember, these answers are aimed at women—since that is the primary audience for my how-to sex guide for Christian wives (Hot, Holy, and Humorous book). But there are takeaways for husbands as well.
In our hectic lives, how do you suggest couples find time for intimacy?
It’s like anything else, really: you have to make time for what you believe is important. I know some wives out there are stressed, exhausted, and wrung out, and the thought of someone saying, “Clear your calendar for marital intimacy!” comes across as another task on their already-full to-do list.
But it’s not just about sex—God created this act to be a unique connection between husband and wife. And we have to invest in our marriages if they’re going to go the distance.
Ask if there’s anything you’re doing now that you can drop. Look for creative times to be intimate. It doesn’t have to happen at night after the kids go to bed. You can make love before the kids get up and in the afternoon while the kids are watching a Disney movie or playing next door. Coordinate your schedules better to make sure you have one-on-one time. And schedule sex.
Yes, schedule sex. Because if you put something on your calendar, you’ve cleared that time. It’s just like setting any other date, and you can do whatever you want when you arrive. I know a couple who makes love every Saturday morning like clockwork, and it’s been great for them to carve out that regular intimacy time.
You say much of a woman’s sex drive is in her mind. What are some ways she can help prepare herself for sex that will help get her in the mood?
There’s the old saying that men have a one-track mind. If that’s true, women are an international train station.
We can be aware of a lot of stimuli, and we can multitask. And that’s great for us in many environments. But that can get in the way when it comes to intimacy, because we need to be able to focus on what’s happening with our bodies and our intimacy.
I find it fascinating that the Song of Songs says three different times “Don’t awaken love until it so desires.” That implies that once the time is right, we have to awaken love. We have to step away from distractions, maybe prepare our bedrooms to be more inviting, or at least not have a collection of Lego toys and Barbie clothes on the bed, and spend some time getting ready.
Tell your husband you need a few minutes to decompress from the day before you can be ready. Maybe take a bubble bath to awaken your body’s senses or ask him for a massage. Put on something that makes you feel desirable. Use the powers of anticipation to focus on what’s coming and learn to look forward to this special time.
Women tend to be extremely critical of themselves and a majority of them feel self-conscious about certain parts of their body. How can they learn to feel more confident?
We ladies tend to do two things that crash our self-confidence: First, we focus on what we don’t like. We’ve got to start recognizing how beautiful our bodies are, knitted together by the Creator Himself. But we tend to home in on those few aspects about our bodies that we don’t like.
Our major second problem is comparison. And that can be comparing ourselves to women we know, models on magazine covers, or even how we used to look.
But I challenge wives to find what they do like about their bodies, whether it the dimples on their cheeks or their legs or their eye color. Start focusing on those things in the mirror and in your head, because you absolutely possess beauty.
And dress to show off your best assets. I have a chapter about choosing lingerie that works for your body.
Truly, when I hear from husbands, they aren’t looking at the things we see as flaws. Most husbands are just amazed by our different form, our soft skin, our curves, our secret places. They find that all very fascinating and beautiful, and they don’t really care if you’re sporting a few extra pounds. You are female and the woman he loved enough to marry, and that makes you beautiful in his eyes.
What are some of the most common questions you receive from men or women? Why do you think these questions are so common?
How do I get my spouse to…?
For wives, I tend to get stories from different ends of the spectrum: either “how do I feel good about having sex?” because sex has not yet been a blessing in her life, or “why doesn’t my husband want me?” from wives who have a higher-drive than their husbands but have been told all their lives that it should be the other way around.
From husbands, I get more of “why doesn’t she believe me when I tell her she’s beautiful?” and “why doesn’t she understand how important sexual intimacy is to me?” I also think this is because of wrong messages we sent about sex, that it’s for men or that it’s merely physical. We haven’t fully embraced God’s design for sexual intimacy in marriage.
Are there some things women do to be more sexy that are actually considered turn-offs?
Yes. The first one that pops into my mind is playing hard-to-get. I’ve heard that advice more than once given from woman-to-woman: make him work for it.
Sure, I tell husbands to keep pursuing their wives. But what makes a husband feel loved is knowing his wife desires him and makes sexual intimacy a priority in their marriage. It’s a turn-off to have to scale a mountain every time you want to be physically intimate, and it’s just playing games.
Bartering can also be a turn-off. Because it’s saying to a husband that you don’t really want him or that special connection. Some husbands will back away and say it’s not worth it because trading favors isn’t intimacy he wants and needs.
Can you explain the difference in what goes through a woman’s mind during sex vs. what goes through man’s mind?
Oh, we’re thinking a million things: from how our bodies look to what’s actually happening to did we turn off the oven to when’s the last time we made love, was it Wednesday or Thursday? Most men are just thinking yessssss.
So we wives have to make an effort to concentrate. It’s almost like meditation where you’re asked to think merely about your breath or the words going through your mind, which is great to do with Scripture. But you can do that in the midst of marital intimacy too, just turning and returning to the sensations going through your body so you can be in the moment and experience them fully.
What is your opinion on couples who watch pornography together?
Terrible idea. And it’s no longer just Christians saying so. Research has demonstrated over and over the perils of watching pornography whether alone or together.
The sexual acts demonstrated in porn do not comport with the kind of love described in 1 Corinthians 13—that is, patient, kind, honoring, protecting, and so on. And porn retrains to self-centered imagery rather than real-life intimacy. It’s having such terrible consequences as physical harm in the bedroom when people try to emulate what they’ve seen in porn, impotence for men who no longer respond properly to real stimuli, and relationship breakdown.
If you need tips for ways to spice things up, porn isn’t the place to turn. My book has numerous practical and biblical ideas for getting healthy and holy intimacy in your bedroom.
What types of tips does Hot, Holy, and Humorous explain about foreplay and different positions? Why did you feel it was important to speak specifically and also to lighten the tone of the book with a bit of humor?
Years ago, I picked up a Christian book about sex and its position section had four positions, described very drily. And I thought, “That’s it?” Meanwhile, the Kama Sutra’s supposed to have 64, so a lot of Christian started pulling that book out. And it’s not that helpful. So I go with practical suggestions that vary your lovemaking and help couples experience different sensations.
I took the same tactic with foreplay, wanting to be both biblical and practical. I describe things pretty straightforward, but I’m not unnecessarily graphic. I try to think of it like I’m chatting with a friend over coffee at my local café.
And that’s probably where my humor spills out. I found that sex can be an awkward topic for some people, and yet we all know from our bedroom experiences that it can be funny too, so I bring that forward. When we all have this sense of lightheartedness about it, we can talk more openly and productively.
That’s it! And here’s the book itself:
Did anything in particular strike you? Which topic do you believe should be covered more?