What do you think about when you hear the word “intimacy?” I know that is a dangerous question to ask. Most men are going to answer with a simple word: “sex.” Women think differently mostly, but they too will answer with “sex” pretty quickly. dictionary.com uses several definitions, but the one that I liked the most is: a close association with or detailed knowledge or deep understanding…I realize that this definition is discussing a place, history, or a subject. I believe that this definition is also accurate for the marriage relationship, especially the detailed knowledge or deep understanding. One author defined intimacy as “in-to-me-you-see” on a marriage enrichment video series I saw several years ago.
Let’s look at the word intimacy using the definition above as it relates to marriage. The first phrase, “a close association,” describes the marriage relationship. There is no relationship closer than marriage. The Bible says that the husband and wife become one flesh in Gen. 2:24. In other words, a husband and wife should work as one. Their thoughts, desires, goals, and commitments for their marriage should be the same, or at least very similar. I am not saying that either person loses his/her individuality, but the marriage should become the main focus of each spouse.
The second phrase, “detailed knowledge,” is critical for a successful marriage. Married couples should understand one another better than any other relationship. Do you know the history of your spouse? Do you know their background? Their likes and dislikes? Their dreams…goals for their lives? What makes them tick and ticked and know the difference? The marriage relationship should carry with it the deepest knowledge a person can have of another person. Do you take the time to get to know your spouse? Don’t assume that the knowledge will just come as time goes along; ask questions and listen.
The third phrase, “deep understanding,” continues the idea of getting to know each other. As a matter of fact, husbands are told to live with their wives in an understanding way (I Pet. 3:&). When we understand our wives, we can encourage them to flourish in their lives. We provide security for them to succeed within their individuality as well as within the marriage.
Can you think of a relationship that develops as deeply as marriage? Over the next few days, I am going to look at some of the different types of intimacy within the marriage relationship. I will delve into physical, relational, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual intimacies. I hope you will join me each day and join in the discussion.
Bradley D. Watson, BCBT Directed Path Ministries
After spending more than 25 years on church staffs, God has allowed me to take the experiences and knowledge that I gained to develop a Biblical Counseling ministry. The basis of this ministry is to allow God’s Word to shine on the main issues in peoples’ lives in order to bring His resolutions to problems.