Stoking the Fires of Romance


Bayless Conley shares the keys to keeping the romance alive in marriage.

Every groom I’ve ever known looks forward to the romance and intimacy with his soon-to-be wife. Romance is a beautiful gift God gives us in marriage.

But as the years go by, it’s easy for the fires of romance to dim. I personally don’t think the romantic fire is meant to die out after you’ve been married a few years. Janet and I have been married for over 30 years and I can tell you that there are no signs of the fires going out at all.

What most men fail to realize is that we not only have the responsibility, but the great privilege, to be the lover of the woman God has given to us. But the fire of romance has to be tended. And as we look to Scripture there are three principles God gives us to keep the romance alive in our marriages.

Principle One: Talk

In the Song of Solomon chapter four we have a beautiful expression of King Solomon verbalizing his love to his Shulamite bride. In verse seven he even tells her, “You are all fair, my love, and there is no spot in you.”

Notice that Solomon is building her up and complimenting her. If you read the story from the beginning in chapter one, it is evident that Solomon’s bride was very insecure about her physical appearance. She was a country girl who had been darkly tanned from working in the vineyards and she felt insecure when compared to the fair-skinned, pampered ladies of the court.

Solomon in his wisdom went to work in that area where she felt most insecure, and he begins to compliment her and praise her. And husbands, you need to do the same. Our wives are a reflection of the words we speak to them.

If you are going to be a good lover, you first have to learn to love with words. Compliment rather than criticize.

Principle Two: Touch

In the Song of Solomon 2:6, the Shulamite bride says this about Solomon, “His left hand is under my head, and his right hand embraces me.”

Men, I strongly encourage you: Embrace your wives. Your wife wants to be held. Just hold her and don’t let go of her. Janet likes to be held, and I am convinced that most women desire to be embraced in the arms of someone who loves them.

I think some men have no idea how important this is in a relationship. If you will caress your wife with words and display your love physically by just holding her and embracing her, when it comes to the act of sexual intimacy you will find that the experience is much richer.

Women are stimulated by words and by affectionate touch. For women, the act of making love starts around breakfast time with the words that you speak to her when you get up in the morning and affectionate touching that says you care about her. So, if you want to be a good lover, you need to start when you get up in the morning.

Principle Three: Time

In Song of Solomon 4:6, Solomon shares these wise words…

Until the day breaks and the shadows flee away, I will go my way to the mountain of myrrh and to the hill of frankincense.

The language used here is of an intimate relationship. But here’s what I want you to notice: “until the day breaks.” Solomon is telling us that romance takes time. In fact, there is an unhurried sense throughout this whole book.

Take time to talk... to communicate. Take time to touch affectionately. Take time for the unhurried expressions of love, both verbally and physically. And take your time when you are physically intimate. Husbands, if you will love your wife this way, the fires of romance in your marriage will stay strong!

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