Encouragement for Today - July 7, 2010
July 7, 2009
The Sticker Book
"Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time so that you may devote yourselves to prayer."I Corinthians 7:5a (NIV)
It took creative measures when it came to potty training our daughter. No sweet treat was good enough to get her ready for her big girl pants. It was going to take something she really loved to lure her into this next phase of life.
Suddenly, it came to me. My daughter loves stickers. This gave me a great idea. I hung a large poster board on the bathroom wall. With colorful markers, I divided the poster into weekly sections. In a basket on the floor, I placed an assortment of sparkly stickers. Peyton's eyes widened with excitement when I showed her my newly decorated bathroom. "Each time you go to the potty, I will give you a sticker to place on the poster board," I explained. "When you get a certain amount of stickers, I'll take you to the store where you can pick out a prize."
I've never seen a diaper come off so quickly before in my life. The stickers were working!
My husband also noticed how well the training was going. One day, he came in from work and tossed a sticker book on the kitchen counter where I was preparing dinner. "What's that?" I questioned.
"I noticed how the stickers were working for Peyton and I thought maybe they'd work for you too," he answered. I narrowed my eyes at him and thought what is he up to?
"Every time you and I have a romantic night, I'll give you a sticker to put in your sticker book. When you fill it up, I'll take you anywhere in the world you want to go." He continued with a huge grin on his face.
It's not that I didn't want to have romantic evenings with my husband, but most of the time tiredness trumped romance. You know what I mean? As women, we wear a lot of hats that require much responsibility. We are constantly pouring ourselves out for others. At the end of the day, all I want is a soothing bath and a warm bed. I suppose my husband could interpret that the wrong way. He probably feels like he only gets my leftovers. This is not God's plan and why He gave married couples this passage:
The wife's body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control" (I Corinthians 7:4-6).
God must have known both women and men would struggle in this area. Whoever is holding out in this, the Bible is clear. The cause of withholding should be mutual, short lived, and discussed openly and privately between husband and wife. The reason for this is so that no one falls into temptation. Communication also helps your spouse hold on to their confidence when they know the reason behind the struggle. After I shared with my husband the cause for my tiredness, he started pitching in around the house. Nothing is sexier than a man running the vacuum!
Working together can bring about great results. On the other hand, buying your spouse a sticker book might also move things in the right direction. I'll be honest. I've not yet filled my sticker book, but I'm working on it. The best reward is really not about visiting some exotic place. The best reward is sticking it out with my husband as we learn to communicate, work together and trust each other through the struggles of everyday life.
Dear Lord, my spouse is a gift to me from You. Give me the courage to talk honestly and openly with him/her. Use communication to deepen and strengthen our relationship in all areas. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
An Untroubled Heart: Finding Faith that is Stronger than My Fears by Micca Campbell
Visit Micca's blog
The Love Dare by Stephen and Alex Kendrick
Confessions of an Adulterous Woman: Lies that got me there, Truths that brought me back by Lyndell Hetrick Holtz
Check out Help! I Think I Misplaced My Sex Drive! for more free encouragement from one girlfriend to another
Sometimes taking to your spouse is all you need. Other times seeking medical care is the answer. A hormone imbalance can stifle your drive. Being overweight, anxious or depressed can also cause a loss of desire. Start by being open with your mate. Use the "Reflections" question below to get you started. You'll be glad you did.
Why might you be holding out? Is it because you don't feel sexy, loved, or appreciated? Are you stressed, addicted to porn, or struggling with lust for someone other than your spouse? Are there other reasons?
Ephesians 5:21, "Submit yourselves to one another in the fear of God." (NIV)
© 2010 by Micca Campbell. All rights reserved.
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