Dear Aquila, I’m afraid that you were advised wrongly. Such a matter as critical as physical and sexual attraction ought not to be left to chance. It is one of the critical boxes that must be ticked. I admit that there is a tendency for some of our elders in the faith to counsel we don’t focus on the physical. But not to focus is different from not to consider it at all.
It is true that the order of boxes that must be ticked in the choice of a marriage partner is first the question whether the sister is a true child of God. Is she already truly born again? (If you, don’t know how to accurately check whether someone is truly born again, refer to 1 John 3:1-10). If yes, has she matured in Christ or still a baby? If this first box is not ticked, the others are irrelevant, you can as well ignore them.
Next in that order is whether your calling and purpose are amenable to each other? Can both of us partner to carry out God’s assignment on our lives? I’ve always told you that marriage is primarily a tool of ministry. Don’t ever forget. Not every two people that are born again are best as marriage partners. It will all depend on what God wants to use each person for. To answer this question, there is a need to consult the Holy Spirit Himself and to ask deep questions from your about what God has placed in your hearts to do over the years.
But next in this order is the important question whether you’re physically and sexually attracted to your partner. For men, attraction isn’t limited to just physical attributes but also personality. It is a combination of physical attributes and personality that determines attraction for a man.
The normal consequence of lack of attraction is lack of excitement about your partner and the relationship. There will be that perpetual depression in your spirit about the whole thing no matter how good and loving your partner is. You will be punishing a good and innocent soul for nothing. She will do everything to please you to no avail.
You were advised to marry this woman because she’s a good woman and that on account of her goodness, love will grow. Eleven years have passed and love – the erotic love – has not grown despite the fact you yourself noted she is a completely good woman. You can’t even stand her touching you anymore. Your sex life has seriously suffered on account of this. Sooner, I’m afraid you may be overcome with external sexual temptation. I pray it never gets to that.
You haven’t been proud to introduce her at social events. She is totally far off your taste. Yes we all have taste. And everyone is someone’s taste. If you have left this woman alone, she may have met shortly thereafter a man whose taste she is; who will consider her the most beautiful woman in the world.
I would have wished that you waited longer in your courtship to see if it would have grown because it actually sometimes does – like give it two more years back then. That would have still been smart risk management skill. How do you test such a contingency in a permanent contraption called marriage when the evidence from history shows that longevity of marriage does not necessarily confer love on a relationship that lacks one. That was the experience for Mama Leah. She was never an attractive proposition to Jacob. Long years of marriage and plenty male children never made a difference regarding this. There was no evidence to suggest that Jacob ever loved Leah from beginning to the end.
My prayer is that your case won’t be like that of Jacob and Leah. The difference here is I doubt if Jacob ever sought the face of God to be able to love Leah. Maybe he was never interested haven had other satisfactory wives. In your case you’re concerned. You really want to love this woman. Considering the fact that God was the one who wired you originally, He can tamper with the wiring and make it possible for you to love her. It shouldn’t be difficult for us to agree that with God nothing and absolutely nothing shall be impossible.
I noticed in your letter that you never complained about your wife playing a contributory role to this problem like not dressing well or not being amenable to try different styles that could attract you. She probably has done all of that to no avail. Sometimes, when something is too off the mark from what you want, no matter the way you amend and adjust, it will still not fit. Adjustments and amendments work better when you have a product that is close to what you’re looking for. So, I really understand.
With the assumption this problem is all coming from your side, I will say take this matter up in prayers. Divorce is the easy way out but for me it’s not an option. After 11 years? It will really be a great betrayal for this woman. You were the one who asked her out in the first place. Except she also doesn’t mind considering all she has suffered so far. But what happens to your daughter, the innocent girl who is the merged image of the two of you?
I think rather than go the way of divorce or infidelity, you should rise up as a man of responsibility and wrestle with God on this until He reverses the situation. Fight for your marriage. A good woman is also in short supply. Please don’t give up yet. God knows the right buttons to press at all times. He can reset your factory setting and make things click. I will also remember you in my prayers.
Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye.
©Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye| email@example.com
Image Credit: @focusnblur