Facilitating Relational Intimacy

What environment would you think best facilitates intimacy? I think we would all agree that at the heart of intimacy is trust. Learning to trust is most important for intimacy to thrive. Certainly, there are many things that tempt us to distrust, would it surprise you if I suggested that moments of vulnerability provide intimacy’s greatest opportunity? It is the difficulties, the trials of life that best facilitate the testing of our faith. We might say that the difficulties and the trials of life which occur during a marriage relationship, best facilitate the testing of our intimacy one-for-the-other.

Learning to trust in difficult situations, are times which draw us closer to Christ in intimacy, and likewise, others whom we trust. CONFLICTS encountered – In Christ can be one of the greatest opportunities of building an intimate trusting relationship. That seems to be why Paul explained his desire to “know Him, and the fellowship of His sufferings…” (Phil. 3:10). Suffering and pain are not a separate component of “knowing Jesus” they are integrally connected. To “know” is to experience intimacy.

Relational intimacy involves sharing our secrets, openness and transparency with another person, or persons, to the extent that the persons involved know and trust one another with the deepest secrets of their being, to that extent they have experienced intimacy. Obviously, that should be true in a marriage relationship, the closest of earthly relationships, but it is also the ideal that God intends in the close relationships of genuine Christian community. This is since relational intimacy is always the result of knowing the Triune God.

It is impossible to experience intimacy with another apart from an intimate relationship with God. Ultimate intimacy is in The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the Trinity of the Godhead which involves knowledge of God’s intent and purpose in our relationships. God the Father, through the revelation of the Son, desires to heal us and draw us into the intimacy of His pure relational love. As we are receptive to His revelation to us – we experience intimacy with Him. Our faithful receptivity involves intentional vulnerability, that does not seek to hide behind a selfish desire to protect ourselves and remain in control.

To attempt to live as a self-sufficient “independent self” is the death-knoll for relational intimacy. To be willing to “open-up” in transparent vulnerability is essential to relational intimacy. Real agape love that seeks the highest good of the other, without thought of “how it affects me,” love that desires to share and be known at the deepest level, in a wholehearted relationship. Relational intimacy “into-me-see” requires vulnerability. Are you willing to let another “see into you?” Love always takes the risk. Because loving intimacy does not fear loss for it is sacrificially for others.

The question we must all ask ourselves is, “will we let JESUS be the Truth in our relationships?”

Two key factors describe a healthy intimate relationship:

1. Intimacy requires that we are vulnerable.
Vulnerability means to exposed, laid bare oneself to the other person. Some people have not admitted their weaknesses, faults, and past indiscretions even to themselves, much less to someone else, and are thus not capable of genuine personal intimacy.

2. Intimacy requires a loving trust of the other person. Intimacy results only when we are confident that the other person will continue to love us unconditionally, even when they know our weaknesses, infidelities, indiscretions, faults and failures, etc. They will love and accept us – warts and all!

Living the Victorious Life

Living the Victorious Life

Living the Victorious Life

Leave a Reply