I believe that his instructions will definitely benefit any couple who is willing to put them into practice.
Paul, whom I first got acquainted with some 35 years ago, was a bachelor for his whole life. Not that he wasn't straight or that he didn't like women, he had a reason which he considered as noble for remaining single. He wanted to concentrate on a cause that he was so passionate about that he thought that having a family would hamper it.
Still, Paul was a wise man and many of his friends went to him for counsel. In his last years, he specifically gave advice to married couples. Those advice helped Michelle and I tremendously as we build our marriage and family. I want to share them with you.
Interestingly, that bachelor boy told us that marriage came with, not just responsibilities but, duties. I remember clearly when he said, "Steven, you must always fulfill your duty as a husband to Michelle and likewise, Michelle, as his wife, you must always fulfill your duty to Steven."
But it was what he next said to us transformed our attitude, especially towards sex.
"Michelle," Paul firmly but gently said, "I want to tell you that you have no authority over your body after you made the decision to marry this man. On that day at the altar when you agreed to be his wife, you have decided to yield your body to Steven. Remember that well."
Wow, Paul was my man!
Momentarily, I thought that Michelle might have suspected that I had coerced my friend into saying those words. But before I could finish my thought, Paul looked me in the eyes and continued, "Steven, in the same way, you do not have authority over your own body. You must yield it to Michelle."
On deeper reflection, we realized that Paul was telling us that in the institution of marriage, mutual yielding is preeminent and the essence for building a meaningful, enjoyable and powerful marital relationship.
Foregoing the ownership of our body and yielding it to our spouse is only the very base of this set of instructions. Yielding and giving up of our "rights"to our spouse is the ultimate goal, and it includes yielding our emotions, dreams, desires, habits, pet peeves and many other self-indulgent things!
Over the years that we have been married, every quarrel that we have had found its root to one of us not willing to yield to the other; we vehemently guarded our old way of life, we refused to surrender our positions or beliefs, we thought more highly of ourself than of the other, we did not want to give in - we simply did not want to yield to one another!
I must say that it is not easy to yield. Absolutely not. The common dictionary defines yield in the following two ways:
to give up, as to superior power or authority,
to give up, or surrender oneself.
Both these definitions center on the giving up of one's rights to a superior authority. My friend, Paul, in his wisdom, addressed that clearly when he said that I did not have authority over my own body but I must surrender it to Michelle and vice versa. Such great wisdom from a bachelor!
Now, let's talk about the yielding of our body to each other, in simple terms, having sex.
Men and women are naturally attracted to the opposite sex. For the men, physical attraction is usually the starting point; men's eyes behold beauty rather "blindly". That said, there are many men who are attracted to a woman's intellect, compassion, sense of adventure and the likes.
For the women, feeling of love, being loved and being protected precede physical attraction. Still, the attraction will eventually lead to a physical expression of intimacy and consummation. This is how the Creator made us and intended it to be ... "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him." and "That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh."
For this reason, Michelle and I have learned to yield our body to each other. We constantly satisfy each other's sexual needs, to give each other pleasure, I for her and she for me.
But sex is not all that there is between us.
By learning to yield our body to each other, we also learned to yield our emotions, personal dreams, desires, finance, recreation, habits and other such "rights" to each other. We don't do things out of selfish desire but with consideration of the other, well, we do this most of the time since we are not perfect creatures yet.
Our reward - an enjoyable and endearing relationship that we want to go on and on till we leave each other in death.
Great lovers yield themselves to one another.
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