In This Series:
- A Quick Introduction to Spiritual Intimacy
- Blending Two Spiritual Lives
- When My Husband Joined My Devotions
- When Two Pray
- Beginning to Pray Together
- How Do We Pray Together?
- What If We Don’t Like the Same Church?
- Overcoming a Bad Church Experience
- Helping Your Spouse Grow Spiritually
- Serving Others
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
If you are unsatisfied with the spiritual state of your marriage, and want to grow close to your husband or wife spiritually, this series is for you.
It’s not uncommon to feel you’ve hit a spiritual dry spot in your marriage. Or maybe you don’t feel like you and your spouse are on the same page spiritually. Don’t worry. You can work towards cultivating spiritual intimacy in your marriage — even if your spouse is not a believer.
Spiritual intimacy in marriage is about more than just spending time in God’s Word. It’s more than agreeing on theological topics. It’s about learning how to connect with your spouse through your faith.
Spiritual Intimacy Is Generated by Walking Together in Christ
Often times, couples say that they “can’t connect with their spouse” because they’re not in the same place spiritually. However, spiritual intimacy and unity does not mean to simply be on the same page about everything. You can have differing perspectives and still have a happy, healthy spiritual life together.
If you and your spouse are in different places spiritually, or have differing views, that’s okay. What really matters is that you are both walking towards Christ. As you walk together in your spiritual journey, you will find that you and your spouse will naturally grow in unity. Christ is your anchor. He’s the fixed point that both of your compasses point to. So as you both move closer to Him, you will inevitably move closer to each other.
Walking together is not a passive process. It will take work. Here are some things you can work on as a couple to intentionally invest in your spiritual walk together.
Wield the Power of Prayer Together
You can start building intimacy in your spiritual life by praying daily for your spouse and your relationship as a couple. Some people, usually well-seasoned prayer warriors, spend hours before the Lord, praying with and for their spouse.
However, you don’t need to start there to reap the fruit of spiritual growth. You can still practice daily prayer, tuning your heart and mind to Christ without spending hours in prayer. Try setting aside just 10 minutes a day, whether morning or night, to go before God in prayer. Doing this will fix your eyes on Christ, the One with the power to affect your marriage. If you pray regularly for your spouse and your marriage, you will see your spiritual intimacy strengthened.
If you pray together with your spouse, these benefits will exponentially abound. Your faith will grow in tandem with each other. You’ll begin to see what the Lord has been putting on your spouse’s heart and doing in their life. And you’ll begin to see them as God does: deeply beloved.
Connect Spiritually with Your Spouse by Attending Church
Corporate worship is an excellent way to build spiritual intimacy with your spouse. Watching your husband or wife interact with others on a spiritual level likely will increase your spiritual appreciation.
Also, ministering to others together will bring you to a whole new level of intimacy that nothing else can. Some couples, like Focus on the Family’s very own Dr. Greg and Erin Smalley, say it is their favorite part of their marriage.
It is also important to have others around you who really know and care for you. Fellow believers who can watch your back will prove vital to your marriage’s spiritual health. These can be mentors who will teach and guide you. They can also be married peers who walk a similar path to you and can encourage you. So get connected. Building fellowship with other believers will help you and your spouse stay strong in your walk towards Christ.
If Your Spouse Isn’t Interested in Church
Some couples, however, may not have a spouse who is willing to attend corporate worship. If you and your spouse aren’t connecting around church, don’t force it. Setting high expectations for your spouse to attend church with you every Sunday may only deter them. Instead, start small.
See if he or she would be willing to attend once a month or for a special event. This way, You aren’t setting the bar so high that you’re doomed to failure. Remember: Small steps along the way make a big difference down the road. Spiritual intimacy is not out of reach for your marriage.
But, what if your spouse won’t attend church at all?
In that case, dig deep into God’s Word, stay faithful in attending church, and commit every part of your relationship with your spouse to prayer. In Matthew 19:26, Jesus states that “… with God all things are possible.” So don’t give up. Stay fervent in your commitment to the Lord.
Find Good Examples of Spiritual Intimacy to Follow
Diane and Roger Ingolia have been married for 46 years and have a wealth of knowledge on the topic of connecting spiritually. Check out this video where the Ingolias talk about their spiritual growth and intimacy in their marriage.
It is so important to have people you can look to in order to see how godly unity is done. If you can find people like the Ingolias in your church, family, or circle of friends, then reach out to them. Talk to them about their spiritual practices. See what advice they have to help you get to where they are in your spiritual walk.
Chart Your Path to Spiritual Intimacy in Marriage
The saying “Fail to plan, plan to fail” is so true when couples desire to experience spiritual growth together. If you don’t have a solid idea of where you want to end up, how will you ever get there?
Dedicate some time to sit down with your spouse and communicate where you each want to be spiritually. Talk about where God is leading you and what He has been putting on your heart. Listen to what your spouse has to say as well. Then, prayerfully make a spiritual intimacy plan with your spouse, considering each others’ callings and gifting. God loves to answer prayers like these.
These are just the most basic steps to a richer spiritual connection with your spouse. Read the next article in this series for some tips on how to set up a plan for spiritual intimacy within your marriage.