Does anyone remember those dating days?
Remember when you had fun dating?
Remember how fun it was to have that special person you were going to be with?
Remember how you could hardly wait to 'til Friday night or Saturday night?
You spent all week thinking about it, making plans for that date: where you were going to eat, where you were going to go. It was just a real fun time in your life.
The sad thing is when people get married and life starts happening then the fun tends to end.
The couple stops enjoying each other and life becomes more of a routine. This is the time generally there is no more dating. I want to tell you men, you need to date your wife. You need to never stop dating. Women you need to do those same things to attract your husband that you did whenever you were dating him.
There are some things we need to hear from the Word of God because this world has taken the beautiful things God has given us in marriage and distorted and twisted it into something ugly, nasty and evil. God's intention for marriage is for people to have fun as a couple and that we enjoy one another. There are things that we as Christian people need to address. We need to take these issues to the Word of God and not get freaked out because we are discussing them here as a church. For too many years Christians have allowed the world to teach what it means to be sexual and romantic. This is why the Christian culture is in the mess it is today concerning sexuality and marriage.
Ecclesiastes 9:9 [NLT]
Live happily with the woman you love through all the meaningless days of life that God has given you under the sun. The wife God gives you is your reward for all your earthly toil.
There are a lot of days that are routine and meaningless days in life. The truth is there are a lot of days we get up, we shower, we dress, eat breakfast, we drive to work, we work, we come home, read the newspaper or watch the news, we eat supper, we watch a little bit of TV, we go to bed, and we get up and do the same thing the next day. After a while there is no enthusiasms, there is no excitement, and there is no passion.
Just days of life becoming a meaningless routine.
The Bible tells us to LIVE HAPPILY with the wife God gave you.
What is your wife to you? She is your REWARD.
Men we should be thanking God that He has given us a reward, and that it is the woman you have!
The Bible says, "He that finds a wife, finds a good thing." [Proverbs 18:22].
She is a reward for all your earthly toil.
You may say, "My boss does not pay me enough and I am working a job, trying to make ends meet." We should be compensated for our work, but our pay is just that, it is our pay. Your wife is your reward for all your earthly toil and your work, not your job or your pay.
The New International Version of the Bible says,
Enjoy life with your wife, whom you love. . .Ecclesiastes 9:9 [NIV].
If we do not enjoy our mate then life is without fun. It is without adventure, it is without romance, without physical intimacy. Marriages like this are often reduced to nothing more than a business arrangement. Much like business partners or two roommates living together in the same house. Communication becomes business-like where you say, "I will pay the bills, you wash the clothes, you cook the meals, and I will do the yard work. You take one to dance and I will take the other to soccer practice, you cover this and I will cover that." You talk about the washer has broken down or the air conditioner needs cleaned out. Your daily conversation becomes no more than business talk. This is what many marriages in America consist of today. There is no fun, no excitement, no enthusiasm, and very little time for romance.
It is interesting that people do not fall in love having a bad time. Have you ever known anyone who fell in love with somebody they were totally board with? It would be like a young lady dating this guy she thinks is so awesome, but when they are together they have absolutely nothing in common. They just sit together without talking. Occasionally she watches him playing his video games on his phone. He is just so dull and boring while they are together. But she is so in love with him and he turns her on. You do not hear this type thing take place with anyone, do you?
What you do hear is someone saying is, they have so much in common, they enjoy being together and going places together, and eating at restaurants together. This is considered fun in the dating life. If it was not we would not ever want to get married and spend our life with that person. It is because it is fun.
Fun is not a luxury in marriage, it is a necessity. You may say you do not have time for fun. If you do not make time to have fun in your marriage, one day you may not have a marriage.
There are three types of fun we must have in marriage.
Face to Face Fun
This is when a husband and wife get together and enjoy each other's company face to face.
Dating couples can get together, alk, and talk, and talk for hours on end. When the night ends you go home and then you call them and you continue talking, and talking, and talking. You talk about what you did on the day, what you ate, what you enjoyed the most and so on. Some may talk to 2a.m. in the morning. Then they run out of words so they just sit there and breath. Not heavily breathing, just simply breathing. The point is they are able to just talk for hours because it is fun.
But then, when they get married their talking turns up being a business time.
"Who is going to go get the kid's?"
"Who is going to go to the dry cleaners?"
"Who is going to take the car to get the oil changed?"
"We are out of milk again."
It becomes nothing more than a business time and it is not face to face, intimate conversation where they are having fun. It is just not working like it used to.
This is why we all need face to face time in our marriages.
Let's look at three portions of Scripture between Solomon and the Shulamite woman in the book of Song of Solomon, which is one of the greatest love stories that has ever been written.
We are going to look at how their relationship progress by having three types of fun.
Watch how Solomon complements this woman, starting at her feet and romantically works his way up her entire body, until he is looking into her eyes and she is totally his.
Song of Solomon 7:1-4 [NIV]
1 How beautiful your sandaled feet, O prince's daughter! Your graceful legs are like jewels, the work of an artist's hands. 2 Your navel is a rounded goblet that never lacks blended wine. Your waist is a mound of wheat encircled by lilies. 3 Your breasts are like two fawns, like twin fawns of a gazelle. 4 Your neck is like an ivory tower. Your eyes are the pools of Heshbon by the gate of Bath Rabbim. Your nose is like the tower of Lebanon looking toward Damascus.
Solomon is talking to this woman intimately, face to face.
He is giving her details. Men like headlines, women like details.
Men like sports center, give us the headlines. Women like the details. They just want to talk and talk about and give you the details of a thing. It is very important to them for a relationship to be an intimate, on-going conversation. This is a huge indicator that when you listen to the details, you care about her. Listen to the details.
You must guard it, you must protect it. If you do not life will squeeze the intimacy out of those face to face conversations. This happens to all of us and that is why we must make time to have face to face conversations as husband and wife.
Have a date night. My wife and I try as often as we can to have a time where we can go out as just the two of us. When is just the two of you it is possible to sit there and talk without it having to be some kind of business in your family. We use this time to talk about things in our personal lives together, in our romance together. We get romantic and continue the date as we did before we were married.
Everyone needs that intimacy which is emotional and face to face.
Whenever I am giving couples counseling for marriage, I can guarantee you, most of the time the couples with problems have surrendered their intimate face to face time. They always tell me, "We just do not communicate pastor. We don't talk to each other. He goes his way and I go my way, and we just don't talk anymore."
This is something you have to do. You have to create time and guard it. If you do not your marriage will suffer.
Driving your kids to their activity, sitting together while watching a television, or talking while you are both playing on your phones, DOES NOT COUNT!!! Put the phone down, place it in a basket, and turn it off; then sit there and talk together.
I know a family that puts their cell phones in a basket when they first get home in the evenings. They don't get their cells phones out of the basket until after dinner. They make this their time to sit down and talk together as a family.
Cell phones are ruining relationships. Everyone has one, but you have to guard yourself from being addicted to them.
We are talking about guarded, consistent, face to face time. Take a weekend and get away, only using your phone for dire emergencies. Invest that time into valuable face to face fun.
Side to Side Fun
This is when you are hanging out with your best friend.
Men, your wife should be your best friend.
Ladies, your husband should be your best friend.
Side to side fun is when you are doing something that you enjoy with your spouse.
This might require you to do something you might not enjoy, but they enjoy.
At other times it might switch, where they are doing something with you they might not enjoy but you do. Side to Side fun is enjoying time together.
Song of Solomon 7:11 [NIV]
Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages.
He is saying let's have a weekend get-away. Let's get someone to take care of the kids and let's leave the house and go have some fun together.
Just as women crave face to face time, men generally crave side to side time.
Hanging out and doing something they enjoy with their wife helps a man to feel a sense of value, especially if it is something the wife might not enjoy. It shows the husband what he likes is valuable to his wife. It can be a time of great fun. If it is something you both like it will be a time of great fun. A man looks at their best friend as being someone that will do things with him that he enjoys. It is an incredibly bonding experience to the man.
I like what one man told me, "I always like being by my wife's side and I like to hold her hand. I do it for two reasons. First, because I love her. Second, because if I let go of her hand she goes shopping." So men, always hold your wife's hand.
I don't know what it would be for you as a couple, maybe it is playing golf, or going camping; maybe even hiking in the woods. As a wife you might not like these things but you go along and do it because you see value in doing things he enjoys.
For the men it is no different, doing things your wife wants to do because you see value in doing things she likes. The best thing to do is find things you both like, you will enjoy these things longer and your relationship will grow deeper, faster.
You could take drives out to the beach. Sit there on the beach and watch the sun go down. Sit together on the patio in the early morning hours drinking coffee and being together. Go to a movie and eat a hamburger together.
Lose yourself in each other's world. From time to time I will sit with my wife and watch an entire show that is all about wedding dresses. I do this because it is something she like to do. Whatever it is, find it, and do it together because side by side time can be a lot of fun. It gets you away from day to day life and leaves you with just each other.
Ladies, there are two times men will to open up to their women.
1. When he is doing something he enjoys.
2. Right after he has done something he enjoys.
Belly Button to Belly Button
The third fun married couples should have to help their marriage is belly button to belly button. This is a clever way to get the point out. This is a term you will never forget.
Song of Solomon 7:11-12 [NIV]
Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages.
Let us go early to the vineyards to see if the vines have budded, if their blossoms have opened, and if the pomegranates are in bloom--there I will give you my love.
To translate this into modern day language, the Shulamite woman is saying to Solomon,
"Hey, Let's go have woopy in the park." That is what she is saying to Solomon. But please, don't go have woopy in the part, you might get arrested.
I could have gotten more graphic, but we need to be mature and not fulgor.
You may feel we should not be talking about this with our teenage kids here.
In America the teenagers hear things more than a hundred times more intense than we are going to talk about here at church. But we will remain mature while talking about this subject. Our children need to hear this so they won't be having pregnancies at the age of twelve and thirteen. We need to understand God created sex. It is to be enjoyed within the bonds of marriage.
The Shulamite woman is saying to Solomon, "Let's have some belly button to belly button, intimate relationship together.
Their culture was different in that day and time because this woman was a part of Solomon's harem. For some reason God did not condemn kings in that day and time for having harems. Our American society and laws prohibit this type behavior. Non the less, Solomon was in love with this woman, much like men are in love with their wife today.
Proverbs 5:18-20 [NLT]
18 Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth. 19 She is a loving deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts satisfy you always. May you always be captivated by her love. 20 Why be captivated, my son, by an immoral woman, or fondle the breasts of a promiscuous woman?
As Christian people, we do not need to think this is something that is nasty. People grow up in Christian homes and they feel so ashamed on their honeymoon because they have been taught that this is something that should not be thought about. They teach this in trying to put fear in their child that thinking on these things are evil and nasty. In a society like ours where children are being molested by parents and relatives, we need to show the truth about sex and teach the wholesomeness about it. God created us and gave it to the man and woman to enjoy in marriage. The Church should start teaching the truth about it so people and children will not be misguided.
Here in Proverbs 5:20 the Word says, ". . .May you be captivated by her love."
The Hebrew word for captivated here is shagah ( שָׁגָה ), pronounced shä·gä'. In the Hebrew it is the same word used for when an animal pursues and attacks another animal.
The New International Version translates this as be intoxicated with her love.
One of the best things you can do for your children is to have a healthy marriage.
Children's stability is partly based upon a healthy and happy marriage between their parents.
You do this by having some physical and intimate fun, belly button to belly button.
Here is my advice for you when it comes to your belly button to belly button fun.
Men, work on your approach.
Get creative in your approach. Quit just doing the same ole thing every day. Don't say, "Hey, you want some of this?" That is not going to work.
Romance your wife. Do some of the things you did when you were dating and you were trying to win her over. Then use some of the things you did when you first got married. Do some candle light dinners, put on some soft music and make your wife feel like she is being pursued. Bring her a gift or send her flowers for no reason other than you love her and you are pursuing her. Rub her feet at night.
Do these things because every husband can make everything sexual. If your wife asked you to get her a bowl of cereal answer back with, "Sure thing honey. I will get you a bowl of cereal and I will stir you us!" Say things like, "I'm gonna call you Google, cause your everything I'm looking for." Get creative with what you say and what you do men. You may need to make it more real and meaningful than these funny examples, but get creative.
Be loving and show some sensitivity, listen to them, and help your wife around the house. Wash the dishes or load the dishwasher to let your wife know you appreciate what she does.
Ladies, make an approach.
Make an opportunity for him to work his approach. Make yourself approachable. Whatever you have, it looks better in silk than in flannel. Take that old thing you have been wearing and throw it away. Get some lingerie.
Some of you may be thinking, "We don't have time for that, we have kids." Go put in a Dora the Explorer CD, run into the bedroom, and use the thirty minutes you have. "Go DeAgo, Go!"
Have Fun in your marriage!!
Generally speaking, most men desire physical intimacy more often than the women.
When you turn off the faucet and things go dry, this is a crisis for a man.
Generally speaking, most women desire emotional intimacy more often than the men.
Silence and no emotional intimacy from the man is a crisis to the woman.
It is so important that couple understand both of these things.
One of the greatest things you can do to refresh your marriage is to come together and renew your covenant. We need to understand that sex is spiritual before it is physical. God created sex to be a spiritual experience.
The dating experience is face to face: getting to know each other mentally and spiritually.
The dating experience grows to be hand to hand: getting to know each other emotionally, being drawn to each other.
Once you get married your experience together becomes physical which is the deepest level. It becomes a spiritual place man and woman were created for.
Relationships Not Centered in Christ
The dating relationship starts as physical from the first night.
This bypasses getting to know each other mentally, spiritually and emotionally.
They never get to the spiritual place man and woman were created for because they bypassed the growth process God intended.
Sex should be reserved only for the bonds of marriage because it was created so man and woman can reach the spiritual experience of it which binds them together in God.
When people get into a dating relationship they need to make their spiritual relationship number one. As they grow emotional, they grow spiritually.
Going to church together.
Reading the Bible together.
As they continue to date they grow together in love, committing themselves properly with self-control.
Then once they are married they use the physical relationship to draw them deep into each other's spirit.
This is how two becomes one, serving each other in love.
Ladies, you need to realize if rhusband is not getting his sexual needs met, he has no reasons for being emotional with you. You are his only outlet for sexual fulfilment. God designed it that way. So when you cut off the faucet, there are problems.
You may say, "He's become a jerk, and I don't like him now."
Feelings follow actions. Start doing what you once did and you will get what you once had.
Men, the same is true for your wife, if her emotional needs are not getting met she has no reasons for being physical. Stop being a jerk and start listening, become romantic again.
Every time you are coming together in the sex act, you are honoring God and renewing your covenant.
God wants us to have that face to face, hand to hand, belly to belly fun in a marriage.
If you do not make this a priority, your spouse can be tempted to look at other people who are fun to be around.
If the grass looks greener in someone else's yard they are tempted to go there.
It is time to water your own lawn.
Go and invest in your own marriage.
Go back and do those first things again.
Go back to your first love.
Enjoy Life together and Have Fun!