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Are you harboring unforgiveness toward your spouse? More than likely, you are paying a bigger price for that unforgiveness than you may realize.
Cassie Celestain of True Agape explores what unforgiveness can do to sexual intimacy. Cassie's post is part of my ongoing guest blog series on things that destroy sex in marriage.
I am so grateful for Cassie's willingness to be a part of this series. She offers great insights on the reality that it is often the small grievances that turn into huge roadblocks in our relationship.
When Ryan and I started dating. we made an agreement to deal with issues as they arose.
In past relationships, we hid our true feelings, pushed concerns back and dealt with problems once they became big enough that they couldn't be ignored. Those past relationships in part did not work out because of those reasons.
We wanted our relationship to be different, to be genuine.
We will soon celebrate our 4th anniversary. I feel like Ryan and I have done pretty well with our agreement. We have had very few big issues because lack of communication. But to be honest, it's the small things that I constantly have to check myself about.
I must be willing to forgive the little things or else they become big things. Big things that can start destroying our sex life.
There are certainly big issues in marriages that cause unforgiveness. However, for me, and for others, they are typically small disappointments.
We weren't asked if he could help with dinner.
We wished they would have spent more time with us this weekend.
She didn't do something she said she was going to.
These are small disappointments that can easily be talked over and forgiven. But instead, if we focus on those unmet expectations, we can become angry. Our anger can turn into bitterness and then resentment.
In return, staying resentful then makes us come to a stage when we just don't care anymore.
When you "just don't care" anymore it is hard to connect in general, but even more so during sex.
Sex was created to be an intimate action to draw closer together as husband and wife. If we have walls build up from hurt, unmet expectations, anger and unforgiveness, we tend to either avoid sex or complete the act disconnected. Both of those will destroy our marriage sex life.
It comes down to the simple, but not easy, fact that we have to forgive. Forgiveness is not an option, but a must. God forgave us for our sins; therefore, we are called to forgive others of theirs.
Start communicating about tough topics before they build up into something else.
Remember that as amazing as your spouse is, they are human and not a perfect being.
It is not our job to judge our mates action, but instead love them unconditionally.
Pray for your heart to be changed. Pray for God to mold your spouse into who He wants them to be.
When a negative thought comes to mind about your spouse, replace it with a positive one.
Begin rebuilding connection and intimacy with these physical touch ideas.
Personally, staying focused on the fact that sin is sin can also be helpful. That all sin is equal. And all of my sins were forgiven by God who loves me unconditionally.
That is what helps me to forgive and love Ryan even when my human self doesn't think it is possible. It is not in my own strength that I am able to forgive, but with the strength of God.
Cassie Celestain is a wife, mom, runner and a marriage and family blogger at True Agape. She believes respect, trust, understanding and willingness creates happy marriages and families. She strives to keep those things the main focus in her daily life and wants to challenge others to do the same.
You can get her free 6 page report The Secret to Making your Husband Feel Loved when you sign up for True Agape’s monthly newsletter. She also recently released a children's book titled Running is Totally for Me.
Copyright 2015, Julie Sibert. Intimacy in Marriage Blog.