Is Sex Important in a Marriage?

When I was a new bride, a few older and wiser women spoke to me about sex. I accepted on an intellectual level that sex would be important in our marriage. Still, I struggled to understand on a heart level how physical intimacy would impact the health of our relationship. I needed to know. Is sex important in a marriage? Now, nineteen years into this lifelong commitment, I understand a little better.

The power of sexual intimacy remains a beautiful mystery, even while its effects on a God-ordained union are undeniable. Because yes, sex is important in a marriage. Here’s why.

1. Because sex symbolizes an unbreakable covenant relationship.

We live in a culture that idealizes and idolizes sex even while using it as a commodity to buy, sell, and barter. But God is the Creator who authored sex and declared his creation good. Sex was created exclusively for a married couple to practice and enjoy. Marriage illustrates God’s covenant love to his people. Just as Christ loves and sacrificed himself for his church, a groom is to love and sacrifice for his bride. Likewise, a wife is to love and honor her husband as the church is created to love and honor Jesus Christ. Sex can be respected and enjoyed within the bounds of marriage because God’s design was to create a safe environment where we might glimpse the joy and safety of this supernatural unity.

2. Because sex focuses our love exclusively on one another.

Marital sex has a unique ability to express love in our busy and distracted lives. Our attention is usually incredibly divided. We juggle kids, work, school, or volunteer commitments and then spend our free time scrolling through our phones. Sex is a time for a husband and wife to shun the distractions and reestablish connection. The act of sex, when practiced humbly, teaches us to lay ourselves bare and give ourselves over for the benefit of another. When we forsake distractions and focus on our spouse, we get to know and be known in the most familiar way.

3. Sex is important, but how important varies by couple.

The frequency and intensity of sex varies widely by couple for a number of reasons. These variations reflect different needs, desires, and circumstances. Frequency of sex may wane following the birth of a baby or during a busy time at work. Over time, how a couple engages in intimacy changes. You may find that your sex drive changes with age or stage of life. There is no set way to pursue sexual intimacy, so be cautious about comparing your sex life with what you think you know about other people’s.

What can you do in the next three days to prioritize your sex life?