Men, I am going to tiptoe into a difficult area today. It is hard to cover in 750 words or less, so feel free to ask clarifying questions in the comments or through direct emails through the Contact Us page.
Have you seen pictures of sinkholes in the news? Crazy! Evidently from time to time these sinkholes will just open up. Usually they occur when something undermines the bedrock underneath, causing the dirt to fall through the hole into a deep cave or underwater river.
Imagine the prospect of trying to fill in one of these. In some cases it is literally impossible…the faster you shovel dirt in, the faster that it is washed away, deep below the surface.
“All you have to do is just fill this up…”
Unfortunately, I have to admit that sometimes my wife feels like she has been commissioned with filling up a sinkhole. By that I mean that no matter what she does to fulfill my needs, still my appetite grows. I am like a sinkhole that keeps getting bigger and bigger. No matter what she does, still I want more. No matter what she does, still I have critiques, suggestions, and demands.
Does your wife ever feel that way?
I’m honestly still working on this myself, but here are some ideas that may help:
1) First, go to God.
You may think you are hungry for sex or romance, but maybe you just need a good quiet time. Blaise Pascal spoke of the “God-shaped vacuum” in the human heart. We search for tangible ways to fill it, but it will only be filled by the intangible. The invisible. The Real Source.
2) Pray for patience.
Ask God to make you a Ninja Monk. A camel, able to traverse wide arid deserts without even batting one of its three eyelids! He can give you the strength to do anything. As William Wallace prayed in Braveheart, “Lord grant me the strength to die well.” And let’s be serious – God has helped people through much longer and more difficult trials than yours and mine. He can help you survive.
3) Keep it in perspective
First, there are worse marriages out there. Or if you are unmarried and are still reading this, you are not alone. Men have been tormented by our desires since the beginning of time, and millions of brothers are in the same boat as you. Hang in there.
Second, if Mick Jagger and Muddy Waters couldn’t be satisfied, then there is no chance for you and me. It is a lie to believe that “If only she would _____________, then I would be happy.” Nope. If she would ___________, then you would think of something else that you’d like her to do, in addition. Don’t kid yourself.
4) Phone a friend.
We were not designed to live this life alone. Even if you are an introvert, you still need that deep personal connection that you can only get from another dude. Your wife will never understand you the way that one of your friends will. I know that some of you would rather live a life of misery than talk to another guy about problems with your marriage or anything else, but that is dumb. Why suffer if you don’t have to? (Well, you’ll still suffer, but it will take the edge off.) What if you haven’t yet developed a close enough trusting friendship with anyone yet? Get started on building one today, and stay tuned for future blog posts. This topic will come up a lot!
5) Serve her! (See future blog posts for ideas.)
When we got married, self-sacrifice and patient understanding are what we signed up for. (Read Ephesians 5 or 1 Peter 3!) It is our duty. It is our honor. But when you are in the middle of this type of battle it doesn’t feel very heroic. It just stinks.
But you can do it. And please remember that part of your job as a man is to manage your expectations. Your wife wants to please you. She wants to delight you. If you constantly tear her down due to ridiculously high expectations, then you are sabotaging any chance of future improvement because her ability to be intimate is rooted in a feeling that she is safe and a belief that she is beautiful. When you serve her, you are putting both of you into the correct mindset.
Ok, I feel like several more blog posts will come out of this idea, but I’ve already exceeded my 750 words.
In the future I will talk about the flip side…how to have Great Expectations for your wife and never to believe the lie that ‘this is how it will always be – it won’t get any better.’
Instead of being a sinkhole, God’s Spirit allows us to be a spring of life-giving water! John 7:37-38
Prayer: God, make me a life-giving stream to my wife, not a selfish sinkhole. Help me to give, not just take. Give me the patience and self-discipline to shut my eyes to the false expectations that the world puts in front of me. Help me to see my wife with Your eyes. Help me to delight in my wife. Even more, help me to delight in You.