Intimacy Matters – Part Two

“A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity”  Proverbs 17:17

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend…do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend” Proverbs 27:6,10.

Our culture today has lost the value of friendship. We tend to put greater emphasis on marriage as the all-disclosing arena, but Scripture does show examples of promoting and protecting friendships. I’ve found that the power of sexual temptation lessens the more time I spend among intimate friends(note the word intimate, instead of casual ones). We all need friends in our lives that know us and still love and care for us. Intentionally sharing the details of our lives that we’d rather keep private is a difficult choice at times. But this can be used to forge something that could last for years and years. It’s also difficult to do this when it’s more normal for friendships to be superficial today. Paul David Tripp, a biblical counsellor, says “we live with the delusion that we know one another, but we really don’t. We know cold demographic details about one another(married or single, type of job, number of kids, general location of housing, etc), but we know little about the struggle of faith that is waged every day behind well-maintained personal boundaries. Privatism is not just practiced by the lonely unbeliever; it is rampant in the Church as well.” 

William Struthers, a Christian psychologist, holds the belief that godly male intimacy is the main answer for the porn addiction among men. His point is that our sex drives are not just lessened by sexual intimacy; they can be satisfied by non-sexual intimacy(friendship).

The myths of masculinity in our culture have isolated men from each other and impaired their ability to honor and bless one another. Too many men have too few intimate friends. Their friendships run only as deep as the things they do together. By finding male friends to go deeper with, the need for intimacy can be met in nonsexual ways with these male friends. When this happens the intensity of the need for intimacy is not funneled through sexual intercourse with a woman; it can be shared across many relationships. Sexual intimacy may be experienced with one woman, but intimacy can be experienced with others as well. Not all intimacy is genital, so do not feel restricted in your relationships with your brothers in Christ.                        -William Struthers

Another study has also shown that connection with people can prevent other types of addiction:

 

 

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