Today, I feel the nudge, and so I’m casting myself on His mercy and grace for the doing, that His body may be exhorted and taught.
I’m going to just shoot straight with you about bodies and truth and worldly perceptions and lies and marriages and fear and pain and shame and how all of it–all of it–affects His people. Affects, then, next, the church. And as the church goes (dot, dot, dot), so goes the world.
Here’s the deal. For the past while, my husband and I have had countless, in-depth, sometimes unsettling conversations about our bodies. About what we’ve been taught. About what we’ve believed. About how that’s affected us both.
I’ve told it here before, how the culture of our past was steeped in shame. How the world and the church came together as one to shout, to cry out one loud message: “Bodies are bad! They are instruments of sin! They will always and ever only tempt you.”
At every marriage retreat, in many sermons, in our homes, and every single way in which this message was communicated to us (and often, without words), all of the “experts” agreed. Men were, first and foremost, attracted to the sight of a woman’s body, that it was the woman’s body that would meet his inner needs. As such, the female body was the source and cause of vast temptation, and a man, unable to resist, would fall into lust. Even if he was married
Under that belief, women struggled and suffered as the babies came, the years went by, and the pounds and wrinkles came creeping. For if her man was largely attracted to her in a physical way, and his satisfaction came from that, then safety and security and, yes, love, must be earned and kept with perfection. In this place, every younger woman, every “more perfect” woman was a threat, and we measured our worth by our shape, by our numbers, distrusting our husbands all the while.
How much anguish had come through that damnable lie! How much torment and fear. How much hatred.
Standing back, now, with some time and space and a different perspective, I am able to see what satan’s done. I am able to see that we’ve been sold a bill of goods, and the fruit of it has been death.
In mercy and love, a very kind and loving God has shown us a new way. He has revitalized our marriage. He’s in the process of transforming our minds. He’s brought so much healing from fear, shame and hate, and the fruit of it all…
My beloved Mr. Schrock now knows, believes and understands that what he longed for all along was not for a perfect body, but for a strong, close, emotional connection. With me!
My beloved Mr. Schrock does not judge my worth or the worth of any other woman on a collection of parts. His love for me and his ability to enjoy me or value me does not depend on my shape.
The burden in my heart, the groaning in my spirit this day is for the men who don’t yet know what he knows. It’s for the Christian brothers who have swallowed the lie, that satisfaction will come in a shape. In perfection.
Dear Christian husband. If you are unable to make love to your wife; if you are not attracted to her because of the shape of her body, you’ve bought the lie.
Dear Christian wife. If you are unable to accept and rejoice in the marvelous gift of your own body; if you compare yourself to others and feel that you fall short, you’ve bought the lie.
Men, the inability to love your wives’ bodies is devastating. It’s a rejection, and it isn’t love. Ask the Lord to open your eyes, to teach you the truth. For once you understand that what your heart really craves is the emotional connection with your woman, no matter her shape or her flaws, you will be filled to over-flowing and she can rest, secure.
Because my husband has embraced this truth, I am happy, at peace and content. And to be very, very frank, your wife is secure as well. For if my husband happens to see your wife, he sees a human, a person, a soul of great worth, and he isn’t assessing her parts. And I’m secure.
“May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer–may her breasts satisfy you always. May you ever be intoxicated with her love (Prov. 5:18-19).”
God is not cruel. He doesn’t tease. He doesn’t joke. He doesn’t lie. It is absolutely possible–I would say that it’s simply expected–for a husband to rejoice in the wife of his youth, no matter how old she gets, how much her shape changes, and how many stretch marks she has.
It is not only possible, but expected by a loving Creator that a man and a woman would experience delight. Pleasure. Joy. Security. Emotional closeness and satisfaction for as long as they both shall live.
To a lost, dying, sin-cursed world, this is a great and shining light. This is the picture of Christ and His bride. This, a union for all time.
For Him, for His kingdom, and for the next generation,