Relevant Church doing something...
Realizing that this is a major element missing from some marriages (the frequency factor) their lead pastor, Paul Wirth, has issued a challenge for all the married couples to have sex for 30 days in a row. At the same time he has issued a challenge for all unmarrieds to completely abstain from sex. Of course we know the Bible says that those who are unmarried should not have sex in the first place but the point is, a lot of unmarried's aren't obeying the Lord's command to abstain and this is just one pastor's way of trying to get them to see that indeed, there is a better way! (God's way!) At the same time, many married couples are not following God's instruction to have sex often. (I Corinthians 7 1-7) The pastor is obviously trying to show the married couples that there is definitely a better way than some of them have been choosing, which is to let the busyness of life crowd out the Lord's directive to "come back together again" often.
The church has a website that they've done about this new campaign they are on...you can find it at: http://www.30daysexchallenge.com/. Check out their site -- it's really awesome.
Like I said, I've never visited Relevant Church but it looks like they have some great things going on and maybe our staff will just have to take a little field trip down to Ybor to experience a service for ourselves.
I would have loved to have seen the reaction on the Sunday the pastor made this announcement...did he have to say, "can I get an amen up in here?" (LOL)
On a totally serious note, Larry and I have done a challenge like that for ourselves before (but never challenged the church...yet!) and we noticed a big difference in our marriage because of it. Discussing the benefits of doing such a challenge in your marriage are worthy of a post all it's own. But I will say this for starters - until you do such a "challenge" - you may not realize just how many times you come home from work tired, stressed, and it just becomes easier to eat, watch TV and go to sleep.
Most married couples would agree, "yeah, I come home from work a lot and I'm tired and fall asleep" but many would never realize just how many nights or weeks they have done that...in a row...without connecting - unless they kept track, or did a challenge where they realized, "hey we really don't do this as much as we thought we did." It becomes so easy for tiredness, problems with kids, bills, and other stresses to take first priority.
Assessments are a worthy tool to see where we are at whether in a workplace environment, a church or a marriage relationship. I have found personally that in my marriage, we need an assessment now and then to see how we are doing in all the important areas of our relationship. Sex is one of those areas.
I know many couples who sit in mine and Larry's office (who have come to a difficult point in their marriage) are surprised at where some of the problems started, or how easy it was to lose connection. We've helped many couples who confessed, their sex lives had gotten to the point of once a month, once a year, sometimes non-existent. But it all had to start somewhere.
Sometimes it takes a major wake up call to get you back on track. I know for me, having my doctor say, "you need to lose weight or else" threw me into a major wake up call. When I acted on that wake up call it was through a radical new transformation in eating and exercise that led to a 40 lb. weight loss. I couldn't have done it had I not taken an assessment of where I was, gotten honest with myself and taken a radical challenge to improve. In our relationships sometimes we need a "wake up call" and it takes something radical to get us back on track the way God intended.
I commend Pastor Paul Wirth and his wife Susie, from Relevant Church. They are giving the people of their church a wake up call. To the married they are saying, "connect more" and to the unmarried they are giving the clear call to abstain. Both groups will be so blessed as they take up the challenge!
I look forward to visiting the church someday when my schedule allows. Pastor Paul and Susie seem like really cool people who wouldn't mind if Larry and I steal their idea for our church...in fact they'd probably consider it...relevant?