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I recently was perusing the shelves of a bookstore going out of business.
Not sure what made me more sad.
That the discounts weren't really that great. Or that a brick-and-mortar bookstore that sells actual books is being gobbled up by the phenomena of eReaders.
Call me old-school, but I like the feel of a book in my hands.
(Trust me...I do have a point about sex in this post. Hang on.)
It's not that I don't see the value of eBooks, because they too are chock full of great info. I've read a few and will likely write one someday. Go figure.
It's just that the experience of reading on a cold tablet feels to me void of many of the things that make a book... well, a book -- the feel of the pages, the texture of the cover, even the smell of books that have sat on the shelf for years.
In my worst moments about this, I envision a day will come when my future grandchildren won't even know what a book is -- at least not a hold-it-in-your-hands-and-feel-the-pages book.
For this exact reason, I refuse to get rid of my children's books. Seriously. I have them stacked meticulously in cardboard diaper boxes, and the youngest has been out of diapers for years.
I have no doubt that someday, my grown children will get all nostalgic when I pull out one of these books and read it to their children.
Their children, of course, will probably be bored out of their mind that the book doesn't talk or have animated characters fly off the pages.
Can I get an amen on any of this?
I just needed a little affirmation before I actually get to my point.
Which I have.
Thanks for hanging in there.
So I was recently at this actual bookstore that is going out of business and I stumbled across "A Tired Woman's Guide to Passionate Sex" by Laurie B. Mintz. I don't think this is a Christian book, per se, but I picked it up. I tend to gravitate toward Christian books on sex and marriage, but I'd be lying if I said my bookshelves don't contain a few secular books as well (none of which, though, are graphic).
Any hoo, I bought Laurie Mintz's book because I was intrigued by the title. And the fact that it was free of any pornographic images and ludicrous back cover claims about hour-long orgasms (which sounds a little taxing, if you ask me, but I digress).
My point is that there are a lot -- I mean a lot -- of resources available to you specifically on improving sexual intimacy.
I recommend quite a few great Christian ones, because there are so many. Seriously, even if the world was wiped clean of all the inappropriate sexual intimacy books, we still would be left with some solid insight.
This wasn't the case decades ago. Or even 10-15 years ago, really.
If you are a Christian wife who wants to improve sexual intimacy with your husband -- and you don't know where to learn a thing or two about that process -- you really have no excuse nowadays.
We are talking information overload, in a good way.
Even if you just started with Christian marriage books and resources, you would probably stumble across more sexual intimacy tips than you could count.
Our parents, grandparents and great grandparents were not quite so fortunate.
So many marriages in the past suffered in isolation, ignorance or fear when it comes to sex -- simply because previous generations did not have as many places to turn. (And didn't know how to broach the topic of sexual intimacy, which in most Christian circles was considered taboo and inappropriate for discussion).
As one wife to another, I'm humbly and tenderly asking: What have you really done to improve sex with your husband?
I am not talking to those of you who have tried relentlessly, only to have your husband remain less-than-responsive to your desire for nurtured sexual intimacy. I'm saddened deeply by these situations.
I am talking, however, to those of you who know that as your husband's wife and partner in life, you could take some initiative.
And by initiative, I'm not merely talking about initiating sex (although, that can be good).
I'm talking about truly bringing about healthy change and priority-setting in your marriage so that sexual intimacy is not only mutually valued, but mutually enjoyed as well.
I encourage you to seek out some Christian books on sexual intimacy.
And even though I sounded a little bitter at the beginning of the post, be sure to not limit yourself to just hard copy books, but also to eBooks and on-line websites, blogs, etc.
My caveat about resources is always the same -- glean what applies to your situation and let the rest go. Proceed with caution on resources that offer "quick fix" mentality, because we all know that marriage is hard and rarely are there quick fixes. Both Paul Byerly and I have referred people to Dan Darling's wise article about The Danger of Marriage Books. Paul just did a post on this, if you want to check it out.
Below are books I like, in no particular order. These are affiliate links, but I've read all the books and recommend them because they each contain helpful insights:
The Five Sex Needs of Men and Women by Dr. Gary and Barbara Rosberg
When Two Become One: Enhancing Sexual Intimacy in Marriage by Christopher and Rachel McCluskey
Intimate Issues: 21 Questions Christian Women Ask ABout Sex by Linda Dillow and Lorraine Pintus
Sacred Sex: A Spiritual Celebration of Oneness in Marriage by Tim Alan Gardner
The Sexually Confident Wife: Connecting With Your Husband by Shannon Ethridge
If you don't want to buy the books, see if the libraries of larger churches in your community have them.
You could also get ambitious and be an agent for change by starting a Christian sex book club with your closest Christian girlfriends who share a passion for improving this aspect of their marriage.
At any rate, when the question "What have you really done to improve sex with your husband?" pops into your head, be sure you could answer confidently that you have indeed done something... maybe a lot of somethings!
Copyright 2011, Julie Sibert, Intimacy in Marriage Blog.