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Spiritual Intimacy

If you're out of sync on matters of faith, use this exercise to get back in touch
For a couple to have spiritual intimacy, they need a foundation of shared beliefs about who Jesus is and basic agreement on the central tenets of the Christian faith. Once that is established, they can deepen their unity by encouraging each other's spiritual growth.

Sharing

A great way to start is for each of you to share the history of your spiritual life. Use these questions to discover more about your partner's faith.

  1. What did your parents believe about God, Jesus, church, prayer and the Bible?
  2. How and where did you first learn about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit? At what age?
  3. What questions did you have as a child, and as a teenager, about faith? Who gave you the answers?
  4. Did you memorize any Scripture as a child? Which of those verses do you remember now?
  5. As a child, if you could have asked God any questions, what would they have been?
  6. If you could ask God any questions now, what would they be?
  7. Did anyone you looked up to as a Christian disappoint you as a child? If so, how has that affected you as an adult?
  8. When you went through difficult times growing up, how did that affect your faith?
  9. What has been the greatest spiritual experience of your life?

Praying

Praying together is probably the strongest knot that binds a couple. In his book To Understand Each Other, Paul Tournier writes: "Happy are the couples who do recognize and understand that their happiness is a gift of God, who can kneel together to express their thanks not only for the love which he has put in their hearts, the children he has given them or all of life's joys, but also for the progress in their marriage which he brings about through the hard school of mutual understanding."

Praying together may feel uncomfortable in the beginning. So use these tips to help minimize any self-consciousness and aim you toward God-consciousness.

  1. Set aside time together, possibly first thing in the morning. If early morning doesn't work for you, try Sunday evening. Or pray together while taking a walk or driving in the car.
  2. Read Scripture together. Try the Psalms. Share favorite passages and talk about how they have touched your life.
  3. Get a book of prayers and pray them together.
  4. Make a list of prayer requests.
  5. Talk about how God has answered your prayers in the past.
  6. Take a few moments for silent prayer.
  7. Pray out loud together for each other, for your marriage and for your family.

Helping

Once you have developed the habit of talking about your faith and praying together, you can begin to encourage each other's spiritual growth. To get started, answer these four questions together:

  1. You could help me grow in my faith by …
  2. I feel most comfortable praying with you when we
  3. We could grow together in our faith if we. …
  4. We could serve God together by …

Taken from When Husband and Wife Become Mom and Dad, by Elisa Morgan and Carol Kuykendall. © 1999 by MOPS International, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan.

NOTE: For your convenience, When Husband and Wife Become Mom and Dad, by Elisa Morgan and Carol Kuykendall is available for purchase from the ChristianityToday.com Bookstore.

Read more articles that highlight writing by Christian women at ChristianityToday.com/Women

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Intimacy; Marriage; Spiritual Growth
Today's Christian Woman, Summer, 2000
Posted September 30, 2008

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