I wrote a guest post today for Jacy, and I'd love for you to read it!
At the Togetherness Project, Dr. Skinner talked about intimacy. I equate intimacy with sex, but he said intimacy isn't about sex... at least, not primarily. Intimacy is better pronounced, he said, as "into me see."
It all goes back to Avatar, I swear.
But I've been thinking about what he said, and I've been reading the book "Captivating" by Stasi and John Eldredge. There's a lot to be said about intimacy, and I got squirmy when the authors began suggesting that women should strive to be intimate with Christ -to be romanced by Heavenly Father.
I felt like Marty McFly's mom, "This is all wrong... When I kiss you, it's like I'm kissing... my brother."
The authors suggested that the Lord woos us through beauty. He desires us, He longs for us, He sees us and knows us and works tirelessly on our behalves. They encourage women to look for signs of his love -I believe Elder Bednar calls them "tender mercies."
I set the book aside and let the words sort of... digest. Did they sit right with me? No. Why not?
It's Heavenly FATHER!
And then I remembered "Into Me See."
And my soul hungered, faltered, and fell.
I want that. Can I have that? He wouldn't like what I have to offer.
I then realized in one swift and awful moment that I've never had intimacy in my marriage (or life? I don't even know. My brain would explode if I tried to think that far back at this point). I've never been seen beyond a certain point.
I've had sex. Yes.
So I've always assumed that I've been intimate.
But sex is sex and intimacy is Into Me See.
If you have trouble grasping the difference, you can watch some Hollywood movies. Or don't. Because they're garbagey.
I read an article yesterday about Jimmy Stewart. He mentioned his wife (of which he only had The One) and this is what he had to say:
“I could tell right off that she was a thoroughbred. For me it had been love at first sight. She was the kind of a girl I had always dreamed of. The kind you associate with open country, cooking stew and not fainting because it was made of cut-up squirrels. She’d look at home on a sailboat or a raft; in a graceful swing from a tree branch into the swimming pool.”
(Q: Why does it seem blush-inducing complimentary and NOT borderline offensive that he referred to his wife as a "thoroughbred"?
A: Because he's Jimmy Stewart, and he can make offensive things sound complimentary.)
I have read that quote at least 5 times, and it still gets me. He SEES his wife. Open country, cooking stew! Nothing about her legs or breasts or clothes! He gives us an in-depth look into his wife and we feel like we KNOW her without him saying a word about Her Looks.
He into-her-sees and as a result, WE into-her-see. And THAT. That right there is intimacy. It's contagious and warm and more gratifying, fulfilling and satisfying that any amount or variety of any kind of sex out there.
I want it.
I waaaaaaant it!
I've spent years searching for that deep connection. I searched websites and companies dedicated to helping married people "date." I created THIS basket and THAT game. I planned and schemed and curled my eyelashes! I worked out. I baked! I cleaned! I read self-help books!
I WAS GOD! The almighty, powerful! I could save and fix and create and do it ALONE!
(Are you laughing right now? or crying? Either is an acceptable reaction.)
I turned everywhere but TO God because I thought (without realizing it) that I WAS God.
Ironically, God is the ONLY one who can fill my vessel. My vessel is bottomless, ever in need of fulfillment and connection.
Who can fill an endless vessel?
Living Water, The Great I Am.
It's time to seek out that intimacy -it's time to truly understand a concept of connection that has alluded me since... forever.
It's time to seek more fully the Valentines from God.
Yesterday I was given three. One of which was a Mormon Message titled Wrong Roads:
And one was an blatant over-abundace of gleeful giggles -no doubt in my mind they were Heaven sent.
Today I'm praying that the Lord will please send a Valentine that looks and behaves exactly like a housekeeper.
It never hurts to ask, right?
I will continue to battle my belief that what I have to offer is not enough to be worthy of intimacy, my fear that I'll fall short of the Lord's approval because of my character weaknesses. But I will battle it today with God and not Google, with Christ and holy connection.
And? *gulp* Intimacy.