Give Me Intimacy
Our marriages today are crying out for intimacy. Why? Because so many of us are intimacy starved. This is a huge problem because we all have a driving desire to be intimate with someone. This is ironic because while we all say we want to be intimate with our spouses; few of us really want it at all.
We should probably define “intimacy”. There are many thoughts out there of what intimacy should look like and I’m sure you have your own picture. Here is mine: Intimacy in a marriage relationship is being completely laid bare before your spouse. It is the ability to “be” with your spouse just as you are. It is the ability to share your hopes and fears and every emotion that you have at any time. Being able to just lay there with your spouse in bed and not even have to say anything but just being together. Not just showing superficial emotion; for example, when you smash your finger with a hammer, you show the anger emotion. That is a superficial emotion. Intimate emotions I would classify as emotions that come from who you really are. Real emotional intimacy is willingly making yourself vulnerable. That is definitely a risk not many are willing to take, even with their spouses.
To have real intimacy we must be willing to share intimate emotions. But what are they? Let’s use an example of a hypothetical conflict. My wife comes to me and says that she is going out with her friends on a night that we were supposed to spend together. So she does, and I am upset. She comes back home, and I tell her that she hurt me. I tell her that she hurt me because we were supposed to spend the night together and I was looking forward to it. She apologizes, and we kiss and make up with a plan to spend the next night together. This is good, right? This is how we have been taught to deal with hurt and pain. Heck, most of us do not even do this. Most of us who can make it to that point give ourselves a pat on the back for being such good communicators and addressing problems as they arise.
However, is this enough, or is there a much deeper level of emotion that you are protecting by stopping at “you hurt me”? What about addressing the reason why it hurt you? We did that by saying that we were looking forward to spending time with them, right? What about addressing the real reason that it hurt you and why it hurt so badly? Why don’t you address the fact that deep down you have judged that you are a bad husband/wife, a bad person, unattractive, and that you are lucky to have your spouse? What you are really hearing when your spouse says that he/she wants to spend some time with someone else is that you are a bad husband/wife, ugly, not fun to be around, a bad person, and that he/she might want to leave you for someone better. So your spouse has just reinforced what you already believe about yourself, and you hear rejection and feel the weight of rejection. The emotions that come from your inner being that are directly related to what your impression of yourself is are intimate emotions. That is intimacy.
Do you want this level of intimacy? Your gut reaction is probably “No”. Why is that? The answer is “fear”. We have all been rejected many times in our lives. Nobody has been spared from the pain of not being accepted by someone or something. So we protect ourselves by guarding our most vulnerable place; our intimate emotions or, you might say our hearts. This makes true intimacy unacceptable to us. We fear the rejection that could come as we expose ourselves.
But why is fear crippling us and our marriages? Fear is ruling you because within you is a separation or a block to the perfect love of God. 1st John 4:18 says that “Perfect love casts out fear. Those who fear have not been made perfect in love.” When we have been made whole by the perfect love of God, we can be emotionally intimate with our spouses without fear because we know that we are accepted and loved by God.
If you are being ruled by fear I encourage you to ask God what the block to His love is inside of you. Listen to Him tell you what it is and how to be free. God bless!

Jesse Birkey
Author of “Marriage What’s The Point?”

Author's Bio: 

The son of a pastor, Jesse grew up in the church with an intellectual knowledge of God. As a teenager he faced the same struggles as everyone else especially in the area of acceptance. He married his school sweetheart, made a career as a firefighter/paramedic and had two beautiful children. His life was enviable and he found security in what he had until God allowed his most treasured relationship, his marriage, to be tested. The veil was pulled back and he was able to see himself as he was "poor, blind and naked". He came to the revelation that he needed a relationship with God and not a religion. He made a choice to die to himself, sacrificing his own selfish desires and learned to walk in obedience to God. God restored his marriage, but even more started him on a journey of understanding true love and intimacy. God has given Jesse a ministry of setting the captives free through Jesus Christ. He uses his website, www.marriagewhatsthepoint.com, as an outreach for the hurting and broken.