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Return to Eden

Return to Eden

An artist's metaphor for building intimacy in marriage

Have the colors of intimacy in your marriage faded over time? Has one of you been a source of hurt and fraud in the marital bed, or turned to other avenues of self-gratification? Lovemaking that has turned 50 shades of gray is not even on the same color wheel as the original design of Eden, which promised sexuality that is satisfying and ecstatically vibrant. What if, like the creators of Pleasantville, we could color our own intimate world with hues of delight and satisfaction? What if we controlled the color? What if it could be as easy as picking up the correct brush and adding the right shade?

There is a way to bring back all the colors of Eden into married sexuality, but it requires an artistry of mutual satisfaction, created with the palette of unconditional love available to Christian marriages, sanctified and blessed by God.

Recognize the Forgery

Real husbands and wives are messy canvases. They are fallible. Their attempts at lovemaking might have become like the travesty of a priceless Picasso covered with the forgery of a thick layer of dried paint that must be removed to get down to the masterpiece beneath. Excuses of emotional scarring, baggage from the past, fatigue, headaches, and the busyness of life cause many to hide from true intimacy, leaving instead the bland shades of hope deferred. But every lover longs to return to Eden, to dip their brush into a pool of color and paint satisfaction and ecstasy back into marital intimacy, so here are a few tips and tools to add to your artist's kit.

Remove the Fig Leaves

Be willing to remove the fig leaves of Eden's shame by stripping off the outer coverings of sin, rejection, defrauding, resistance, and layers of hurt to get back to the basics of one man and one woman, naked and unashamed. Address physical issues such as lack of libido, pain, or hormonal imbalances that might interfere with intimacy. Get help from professionals if there is a hindrance to physical pleasure, issues with family planning, or deeper, more painful emotional scarring from the past. Be honest about what feels good and what doesn't. Explore together the paths that lead to pleasure. Perfection is an illusion; normal doesn't exist. The real artistry of sexual intimacy appears in overcoming personal barriers in the pursuit of mutual pleasure—together.

Set up a Secluded Studio

Eliminate distractions and interruptions. Create a schedule that works. Make changes to the children's routines and sleeping arrangements so there are no excuses to avoid intimacy. Clean out the cobwebs, scatter some rose petals, buy some new sheets. Rearrange and redecorate the bedroom if necessary to create a studio of love! The marital bed is meant to be undefiled with the excuses of entanglements, diversions that divide, resentment the reproduces—and the continual presence of kids.

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