HUSBAND: My wife and I were equating Football playbooks with our “for-play cards” (more on that later). I was explaining that the two teams are strategic in knowing their opponents. They have a game plan specific and have a set of plays ready to run on them to make their goal. Then it came to me I had been considering my wife and me to be on opposing teams. Wow, really? I know my wife is not the opposition she is my star receiver.
WIFE: Scarred from an affair in my first marriage, I started my second marriage with a plan to be a sexual fantasy girl for my husband. Because some of my motives were stemmed in insecurity, sex became a source of conflict. Part of the problem was, that in my pre-occupation with being hot and sexy: I never asked him what he wanted from me, and I had not really considered what I truly wanted from him.
The Matthew chapter 7 and James chapter 4 have something to say about asking, receiving, and giving.
Matthew 7: 7-9 says: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?…
James 4:2 1 says: What causes conflicts and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from the passions at war within you? You crave what you do not have. You kill and covet, but are unable to obtain it. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask. And when you do ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may squander it on your pleasures.…
DEVOTION : Listen to a protester struggle to answer the question, “What is it you want to happen?”. Likely, the response will be, “I don’t want this, or I want this to stop.” While we don’t always know what we want or need, God knows our every need before you even ask (Matthew 6:8) . Even so, Matthew says we need to ask, seek, and knock. The book of James nails it when he says that the craving and passions within ourselves causes inner battle, causing quarrels. Kept to ourselves these passions and cravings become the goal misguiding us to run plays against one another. Instead let us consider ourselves on the same team so that our playbook becomes strategic to oppose doubt, confusion, embarrassment, fear of rejection, and any other thing the enemy tries to bring to the game against our marriages. And as James suggests, let our motives be good: to draw close to one another share our true passion and cravings with one another, and in doing so defeat the enemy that would have us covet and quarrel.
PRAYER: Lord you know the inner battles that we struggle with. Help us to see that your Spirit drives the passions that draw us to want to be near to one another. Help us to express our wants and desires in real and practical ways to one another. Trusting that it was You who brought us together. Amen
DEVOTION ACTIVITY: Fore-playbook
TOOL BOX: pen and six to twelve 3×5 cards, timer, imagination,
READING SUGGESTIONS: Wiki-How-To-do anything is a good place to start thinking about what to consider for your fore-playbook. It does a good job of breaking things down. To start try: Wiki’s how to Make-Out; (outside link). For ideas for additional Christian Games check out: Christian Marriage Today (outside link)
HUSBAND AND WIFE SEPARATELY: On three to six 3×5 (or larger) cards write down different “fore-plays“. For this activity a foreplay excludes sex. The plays lasts only two minutes and can include caressing, kissing, fondling, rubbing, teasing, sexual touching over clothing (think PG movie no full nudity). Remember it is a “play” so you want to be able to imagine it as if it were a scene in a movie. Most importantly it is specific to what and how you want to be touched, talked to, and pleasured. Remember this is a team effort, your teammate may not get the play the first run, and you may change your mind on what you thought you would like. Be a good sport this game day and play through. Do No coaching. You can amend your foreplay card before next game day.
Plays that you plan for your partner to run should be detailed enough that they can run the play with no further input from you. Suggested foreplay titles could be Upper Body, Lower Body, Stripper, Romantic Interlude, Power Play,
Suggested Card titles: Upper Body; Kisses; Lower Body; Slow Tease; Power Play; Romantic Interlude.
Plays that you plan for your partner to run should be very specific remember to include enough information so that your partner can set it all up and run the play without your input. Include things like:
- Setting the scene: Where do you want your partner start (standing, sitting, on their lap…) and will they tell you, or show you? Will they ask you to change your clothes, remove articles of clothing? Will they have music? Will they ask you for special props?
- Demeanor: What expression will your partner have on his or her face, what tone of voice? Will they whisper, grunt, remain silent? Where will they be looking?
- Touching: Where will their hands be? How will they touch you (rough, soft, gentle)? Will they use long pauses? What is their pace? Will they kiss, fondle, and/or caress you? (how, where and when)
- Speaking: What would you like your partner to say? How would you like him or her to say it?
- Practical stuff: What will your partner do if your partner laughs, or protest?
TOGETHER: Once the cards are written exchange them and read them aloud, make clarifications (it may be necessary to demonstrate for your partner what you mean on the card by running the play on them). Then there are several ways to use them. The basics method is to pick a card randomly (mixed pile or numbered to match up with a dice). Set the timer to 2 minutes and run the play until the timer is complete. Note: you want these cards to evolve and with use. Timing nuances, and tastes all change.
Wife: Having just two minutes at a time, and knowing that the cards were about foreplay and not about sex made it easy to enjoy each minute. It is a good reminder that a two-minute play can change my mood. It was validating to know it was my actions that were arousing my husband. Fun: We sometimes forgot the timer.
HUSBAND: Writing the cards helped me to give more thought to what I like. I tried to picture what it would look like to have my wife run the play. I found that running my playbook on my wife was more exciting than when she was running her playbook on me. I liked not having to guess.
BIBLE TAKE AWAY: God is gracious knowing what we need, waiting for us to ask, and then putting up with our coaching Him.
VARIATIONS: Add these cards to favorite games, for example if you are playing trivia pursuit you must pull a card in order to get a piece of pie, or for each hit in battle ship you must do a card. Include culminating cards for the “final play” Cards may include role play, or fantasy play, or even a repeat of favorite sex devotions.