We know that gratitude builds trust and trust builds intimacy. It takes intentionality to express gratitude towards those we deeply care about because we can tend to focus on ourselves, our struggles and dislikes instead. Take time today to read over Ephesians 1:16 and say a prayer of thanks for all the God has done for you, and for all the people He has surrounded you with that help you love life and faith just a little bit more. Then, reach out to someone you care deeply about today and let them know how much they mean to you. If you feel lead, pray a prayer of blessing over them as well!
Finding common ground in a relationship cultivates intimacy, and it’s often a very simple undertaking. We have to allow our mind to see points of intersections. We must choose to see the good and commit to Nag Control. 1 Corinthians 9:22-23 challenges us to find common ground with everyone. Invite a co-worker, your spouse, or a friend to grab coffee or lunch with you and as you sit with them, ask them some questions that will help you find common ground. Thank them for sharing life with you and speak encouragement over them. Pray that God will help you continue to find common ground with others!
Cultivating intimacy is valuable, but it can also seem to be an overwhelming, daunting pursuit. Still, we must decide to pursue it because it is something that will enhance our relationships for the better. Read over Ephesians 5:15-16 and decide on a time where you will be able to sit down and have focused discussion time with your boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse today. When you do have that time, try saying this: “Hey I almost put this off, I don’t know the best way to start the conversation, but this has been on my mind a bit . . . “ Pray together and ask the Lord to help you both keep cultivating intimacy.
Trying something new isn’t always so scary when you have someone you care deeply about joining you for the journey! Whether you’re single, dating, or married, invite someone you care about to join you in doing something new this week. Go to a new restaurant; see a new movie; Try a cooking class; listen to a live band in a new local spot; Grab a coffee and try a new drink. As you end the day, read over Isaiah 43:19 and ask God to continue giving you the courage to try brave new things. Ask Him to keep making ways in the wilderness so that you can continue to cultivate intimacy in your relationships.
What you do now determines the ease of intimacy. Ease and intimacy can seem almost an oxymoron—it takes time for momentum to build and lots of practice for intimacy to have any amount of ease. The connection you want is determined by the choices you make now. Intimacy is worth fighting through any anxiety. As you focus today on 2 Timothy 1:7, write down the fears and doubts that are keeping you from pursuing intimacy in your relationships. Surrender that list in prayer to God and ask Him to guide you through the relationship with power, love, and self-discipline to cultivate intimacy.
TALK IT OVER
- What did you do for Valentine’s Day?
- What’s the most awkward date you’ve ever been on?
- If your date had something stuck between their teeth, would you tell them?
- FOR SINGLES: What expectations do you have about how marriage will change you?
- FOR DATING COUPLES: What are some expectations you had when you first started dating that you’ve had to adjust now that you are deeper into your relationship?
- FOR MARRIED COUPLES: What are some expectations you had when you first got married that you’ve had to adjust now that you are deeper into your marriage?
- Why is it easier to show our more polished, filtered, and put together rendition than it is to show the people we care about the most our authentic unmasked self?
- Which of the points on cultivating intimacy are you willing to work on? (Gratitude, See common ground, Stop putting it off, Do something new.)